What's new

sunfish video

Edward Teach

New Member
Can anyone recommend a good instructional video for the sunfish? I'm still a novice and I am trying to get the most out of my fish but I’m nowhere near ready of the racing instructional videos unless they teach the basics as well. Also, what is the best way to tame weather helm? I was getting a little tired in a 15kt breeze.

Thanks
Edward
 

Wayne

Member Emeritus
Can anyone recommend a good instructional video for the sunfish? I'm still a novice and I am trying to get the most out of my fish but I’m nowhere near ready of the racing instructional videos unless they teach the basics as well. Also, what is the best way to tame weather helm? I was getting a little tired in a 15kt breeze.
For general Sunfish sailing, I'm not aware of a video that's not racing related.

Go Sail ... by Steve Sleight (Paperback - with DVD)
Uses a Laser, but is about basic sailing with good video demonstrations.



Sailing Is a Breeze ... by Thomas P. Martin
Covers beach boat sailing including Sunfish.



The following books comprise the largest amount of information specific to sailing a Sunfish from sailing basics to the fundamentals of advanced techniques.

The Sunfish Bible ... by Will White
Available from Sunfish dealers for about $30



Sail Ho! ... by Chaille Kelly
Once given away free with new Sunfish. Excerpts can be downloaded from Sunfish Sailor, used books can be found through Amazon for $5 - $15



Learn to Sail in 3 Days ... Free Sunfish handout

Click Here to Download a copy
Once you've been through these exercises they're not done. As with driving a
car, smooth acceleration, good breaking, and accurate cornering are with you
every time you drive, not just steps you move beyond. So too are the basics
of sailing.
.
 

Wayne

Member Emeritus
Also, what is the best way to tame weather helm? I was getting a little tired in a 15kt breeze.
Replace your gooseneck pinch bolt with a Quick Release bolt. With it you can adjust the boom (sail position) forward and back to fine tune helm for the wind speed.


Oh (or is that D'OH), you've already got one . . .

OK, time to put it to use.

Mark your boom measured from the tack end of the tube (not end cap). Start at 16 in and mark lines out to 22 in.

18" - 19" is about average. From here, slide the boom back (17" - 18" area) to increase weather helm, forward (19" - 20" range) to reduce it. Remember this is wind dependant so it's not a
[ P-R-N-D1-D2-L ] setting. It takes practice to learn where you set things for the wind du jour. This adjustment is covered in The Sunfish Bible and I'm sure other members will lend their expertise for starting out learning to balance helm.

.
 

Wavedancer

Upside down?
Staff member
In addition to what Wayne wrote about boat set-up,

"Sail It Flat" is of major importance to reduce weather helm.

PS: This is the title of a 1971 Sunfish primer, written by Larry Lewis.
 

Wayne

Member Emeritus

"Sail It Flat" is of major importance to reduce weather helm.

PS: This is the title of a 1971 Sunfish primer, written by Larry Lewis.
. . . and one of the many reasons why The Sunfish Bible is a "must read" for all Sunfish owners.



.
 

Geophizz

Member
I'll second Wayne's recommendation of "Go Sail" it has great DVD of the basics. Once you get past that, Dayton Colie and David Loring at www.sunfishracing.com have a great Sunfish specific tutorial.

Now I have a question of my own: What are the "additional articles" in the Sunfish Bible? I can't find a listing of the articles anywhere, nor can I find a copy of the book in any nearby library or marine store. I have the three books separately, and I'm not sure that I want to spend $30 for what for me would amount to a few magazine articles.
 

Wayne

Member Emeritus
What are the "additional articles" in the Sunfish Bible? I can't find a listing of the articles anywhere, nor can I find a copy of the book in any nearby library or marine store. I have the three books separately, and I'm not sure that I want to spend $30 for what for me would amount to a few magazine articles.
Most of the "additional articles" first appeared in Windward Leg, the Sunfish Class newsletter. A couple are tips on sailing, racing, and repairs, a couple are about sailing adventures ... examples of "fun events" that can be organized.

The Sunfish Bible is available specifically at Sunfish dealers or a reprint can be obtained through the Class Office (~$30). Some libraries have a copy, if yours does not you could likely order it in through the inter-library lending system.

Amazon and B&N also have it through their affiliate booksellers, although there seems to be some pricing confusion and they've placed it among the ranks of Fabergé eggs. Prices have been seen as high as $200 :eek: which is completely erroneous..., but despite email from many Sunfish sailors, they insist their pricing guide has steered them correctly. Their stock will no doubt last them well into the next century.

.
 

Geophizz

Member
Thanks, Wayne. It sounds like there's really not much that I could use in the parts of the book that I don't already have under separate cover. I asked here mostly because I had nowhee else to turn. No library in my interlocal library network has the book, and my nearest local dealer is the LaserPerformance factory, and believe it or not, they don't carry the book!
 

Wayne

Member Emeritus
It sounds like there's really not much that I could use in the parts of the book that I don't already have under separate cover.
Probably not, but for someone just starting out it's a nice collection under one cover.

I look at learning to sail this way. . .

Hands-on instruction is the quickest way to learn how to do things correctly. It's especially good from the standpoint of having a knowledgeable observer to provide constructive feedback.

Practice, practice, practice hones the techniques into second nature behaviors.

Books and models give depth to hands-on concepts by lending definition to all the interactions happening at once.

During the off-season or after-hours, aside from book information, my favorite and most useful learning tools are a point-of-sail compass and a couple of these . . .



.
 

Geophizz

Member
Are those Super Sunfish?

Off season I use the Virtual Skipper software to hone up on tactics and rules. It's not bad, and you can join virtual regattas with other sailors too. Plus you can sail America's Cup boats!
 

Edward Teach

New Member
Replace your gooseneck pinch bolt with a Quick Release bolt. With it you can adjust the boom (sail position) forward and back to fine tune helm for the wind speed.


Oh (or is that D'OH), you've already got one . . .

OK, time to put it to use.

Mark your boom measured from the tack end of the tube (not end cap). Start at 16 in and mark lines out to 22 in.

18" - 19" is about average. From here, slide the boom back (17" - 18" area) to increase weather helm, forward (19" - 20" range) to reduce it. Remember this is wind dependant so it's not a
[ P-R-N-D1-D2-L ] setting. It takes practice to learn where you set things for the wind du jour. This adjustment is covered in The Sunfish Bible and I'm sure other members will lend their expertise for starting out learning to balance helm.

.
Wayne,
Thanks again for sharing your knowledge. I have marked my lower boom with red and green electrical tape to mark a range of 17 to 23 inches and have been playing with the height of the sail on the mast. Unfortunately, here in central Ohio we have had very little wind like around 3-4 kts, therefore I have had the boom around the 17 inch position. I really only experience the weather helm on a day with 12 - 15kts of wind and I had the boom position up around the 18 inch range. Even though the winds have been light I am actually enjoying just sitting in the cockpit and floating along, but I am starting to wish the wind would be around 10kts so I can get more experience in moving around the cockpit and sailing at different points of sail.
 

Edward Teach

New Member
For general Sunfish sailing, I'm not aware of a video that's not racing related.

Go Sail ... by Steve Sleight (Paperback - with DVD)
Uses a Laser, but is about basic sailing with good video demonstrations.



Sailing Is a Breeze ... by Thomas P. Martin
Covers beach boat sailing including Sunfish.



The following books comprise the largest amount of information specific to sailing a Sunfish from sailing basics to the fundamentals of advanced techniques.

The Sunfish Bible ... by Will White
Available from Sunfish dealers for about $30



Sail Ho! ... by Chaille Kelly
Once given away free with new Sunfish. Excerpts can be downloaded from Sunfish Sailor, used books can be found through Amazon for $5 - $15



Learn to Sail in 3 Days ... Free Sunfish handout

Click Here to Download a copy
Once you've been through these exercises they're not done. As with driving a
car, smooth acceleration, good breaking, and accurate cornering are with you
every time you drive, not just steps you move beyond. So too are the basics
of sailing.
.
Wayne,
The Sunfish Bible has been an excellent read so far, but unfortunately I am one who learns best by hands on learning and visual demonstration. Do you think the racing videos I have seen at Intensity Sails would be to advenced for the novice or do you think there would be good info on there for the beginner? I guess I may be assuming that you have seen these videos. Thanks again for your input!:D
 

Wayne

Member Emeritus
Do you think the racing videos I have seen at Intensity Sails would be to advenced for the novice or do you think there would be good info on there for the beginner?
The trouble I see is the racing videos tend to rely on you already having a good handle on the basics.

You can certainly get a video and use The Sunfish Bible and on the water practice to help bridge the gaps. However, depending on how much you are able to get out and sail, they could be a season or two ahead of where you are now. Though not as devistating as with other endeavors, stalling and ground-looping a Sunfish can still get discouraging. ;)

The trick with books is to take only a couple of concepts at a time and work on them until you perform them without having to think about it..., you know the drill - touch & go. Mastering the sailing steps in the Learning to Sail in 3 Days guide can occupy a whole season of one day a week sailing.

You might look around for a small boat sailing class. Often club or community sailing classes can be found at a reasonable cost. The unfortunate reality about classes is, in some places around the country, there is only a class for people destine to lease a bare boat for a Caribbean cruise. These can be dizzyingly expensive.

.
 

tag

my2fish
Wayne,
The Sunfish Bible has been an excellent read so far, but unfortunately I am one who learns best by hands on learning and visual demonstration. Do you think the racing videos I have seen at Intensity Sails would be to advenced for the novice or do you think there would be good info on there for the beginner? I guess I may be assuming that you have seen these videos. Thanks again for your input!:D
I'm not Wayne, but I'll give my 2 cents.

The "Go Sail" book by Steve Sleight with the accompanying DVD is excellent - I think you would be better off finding a copy of that to read and then watch the DVD before getting the racing videos. I had to have my library order the book from a partner library. I reviewed the book and DVD here.
the DVD: overall the DVD was fantastic – well put together, with Steve Sleight doing the voice-over, providing great commentary to explain the step-by-step procedures required to complete most of the necessary maneuvers while sailing. the DVD was a perfect length – about 30 minutes – so that an appropriate amount of time was spent explaining each maneuver, but things were not drawn out too long to make the subject matter boring or slow to watch. each maneuver and tactic was shown for both the 1-person Laser and the 2-person RS200, and the role of both the helmsman and crew were explained for the 2-person RS200.
cheers,
tag
 

Wavedancer

Upside down?
Staff member
Can anyone recommend a good instructional video for the sunfish? I'm still a novice and I am trying to get the most out of my fish but I’m nowhere near ready of the racing instructional videos unless they teach the basics as well. Also, what is the best way to tame weather helm? I was getting a little tired in a 15kt breeze.

Thanks
Edward
Although not strictly instructional, there's a lot of Sunfish visual info on YouTube.com.
For instance,

PS: Did I waste (way) too much time sailing the Internet?

;)
 

ylojelo

Member
I'm not Wayne, but I'll give my 2 cents.

The "Go Sail" book by Steve Sleight with the accompanying DVD is excellent - I think you would be better off finding a copy of that to read and then watch the DVD before getting the racing videos. I had to have my library order the book from a partner library. I reviewed the book and DVD here.
cheers,
tag
from your recommendation, i bought the Go Sail book used off Amazon for $6 (including shipping). Ive just started into it and so far quite informative.
 
Top