Transporting a Sunfish home

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#73
Your boat certainly could weigh 160 if the foam is saturated. You have to be careful to not lean on it or support it, which throws the weight off.

Alan sells Sunfish down by Syracuse, and usually has a line on one or two of them. Sometimes he comes across Minis.

All of those chipped areas could allow water inside the hull. The chip is where the polyester resin has flaked off, the resin keeps water from getting to the fiberglass cloth. The cloth has a little bit of resin in it as well, and resists water permeation, but not for long. There also could be micro cracks or fractures in the fiberglass cloth that let water in. Once water comes in it could easily fill up the pontoon hull. A Mini is supposed to weigh 75 pounds, so you potentially have 85 extra pounds of water trapped in the foam. At 8.34 pounds/gallon, there is about 10 gallons of water hiding in there somewhere.
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
#75
I see a hole in the trunk
Picture 4, with a roughly circular defect at the bottom? :oops:

One pic may be showing a slash of sunlight that looks like a long tear (or a "de-lamination"). I'd think all surfaces should all look consistently uniform. Do I see a previous white Marine-Tex touch-up?

The mast step looks wet from testing. Did it hold water overnight?
 
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signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#76
Yes there are several worn or chipped areas in both the mast step and trunk. We shouldn't see white fiberglass or resin chips. As L&VW says the surfaces should look uniform color and be smooth.

Yes there is a previous Marine Tex touchup where you see the white putty.

Here's a picture of a resin chip with fiberglass fracture.

IMG_4646.JPG

On our blog there is a Tag Cloud on the lower right side under Labels. You can click on the tag you are looking for, example daggerboard trunk repair, and tagged posts will pop up. There is also a search term window. We do a pretty good job of labeling our posts, but if you can't find something holler, and we'll dig it up.
 
#78
Now we’re getting somewhere. If you can weigh your boat (and you did) then you can patch that daggerboard trunk. Yes, a small hole or crack can easily take on a lot of water. There are some chips in trunk and mast hole that can be filled with Marine Tex. Buy a small box- color white- sold on amazon or your favorite boating store for about $15.00. If you go on YouTube and look at the first video for Marine Tex you will surely be confused. It is a terrible video- the guy really botched the job and made a huge mess! I was thinking it must be your repair guy again. Simply read the directions, mix the entire kit (don’t mix it on a piece of cardboard like in the video where he wastes half the product spreading it like frosting all over the place)
I mix the two parts thoroughly with a chopstick or such, keeping it in the original small glass bottle. You may not need the full amount, but it’s much easier, as it’s difficult to get a proper ratio of the two parts (liquid catalyst and cream hardener). Check over the Mini and you’ll more than likely find other chips or cracks that could use a bit of the same mixture. Be sure the damaged areas are clean and any chips are sanded before applying. Don’t overdo it- remember you need to fit the mast and daggerboard back into those areas- just enough to fill the void. You can sand it after it hardens, but don’t make too much work for yourself by over applying.
The Mini is overweight and the interior foam will need to dry out. Do you have indoor storage for it this winter? We can walk you through the drying process if you’re up for it! You’ll be sailing a light, fun boat by spring and will feel great knowing you’ve done the work yourself.
 
Thread starter #80
Picture 4, with a roughly circular defect at the bottom? :oops:

One pic may be showing a slash of sunlight that looks like a long tear (or a "de-lamination"). I'd think all surfaces should all look consistently uniform. Do I see a previous white Marine-Tex touch-up?

The mast step looks wet from testing. Did it hold water overnight?
I didn’t leak test yet. Yes it had water from the rain.
 
Thread starter #81
Now we’re getting somewhere. If you can weigh your boat (and you did) then you can patch that daggerboard trunk. Yes, a small hole or crack can easily take on a lot of water. There are some chips in trunk and mast hole that can be filled with Marine Tex. Buy a small box- color white- sold on amazon or your favorite boating store for about $15.00. If you go on YouTube and look at the first video for Marine Tex you will surely be confused. It is a terrible video- the guy really botched the job and made a huge mess! I was thinking it must be your repair guy again. Simply read the directions, mix the entire kit (don’t mix it on a piece of cardboard like in the video where he wastes half the product spreading it like frosting all over the place)
I mix the two parts thoroughly with a chopstick or such, keeping it in the original small glass bottle. You may not need the full amount, but it’s much easier, as it’s difficult to get a proper ratio of the two parts (liquid catalyst and cream hardener). Check over the Mini and you’ll more than likely find other chips or cracks that could use a bit of the same mixture. Be sure the damaged areas are clean and any chips are sanded before applying. Don’t overdo it- remember you need to fit the mast and daggerboard back into those areas- just enough to fill the void. You can sand it after it hardens, but don’t make too much work for yourself by over applying.
The Mini is overweight and the interior foam will need to dry out. Do you have indoor storage for it this winter? We can walk you through the drying process if you’re up for it! You’ll be sailing a light, fun boat by spring and will feel great knowing you’ve done the work yourself.
I don’t have indoor storage- I would have to see if it can fit inside my house. Doesn’t drying it out need inspection ports? I know I can’t do that myself. I would need the repair guy.
 
Thread starter #82
The vent would be a good indicator of how much air us coming out, we wouldn't cover it. It is also a good spot to pump air in, hard to pump much air through that little hole. Your electric pump should work just fine.

FWIW we don't like those transom dollies. That is a lot of stress on that fitting, probably going to work it loose and cause leaks. It is also not handy to pull the boat by the bow handle as it is only held in by 4 screws.

You should be able to handle the Sunfish sheet and tiller just as well as a waterlogged Mini.

Consider checking with Alan to see if he has a good boat for you to buy for next season, he is about 3 hours away.
I thought that maybe there would be more resistance from the sunfish sheet and tiller because it has more sail area than a mini has.
 
#83
I thought that maybe there would be more resistance from the sunfish sheet and tiller because it has more sail area than a mini has.
It is true that with more sail area in a Sunfish that you will feel slightly more pull on the mainsheet, and that obviously increases as the wind increases. FWIW, my wife is comfortable managing the mainsheet in 10-12 knot winds on our sunfish.

Now let's talk about the tiller. If the sail is rigged properly and you are sitting in the boat at a location appropriate to the wind direction and wind speed, the tiller should have almost no resistance, or possibly some weather helm. 'Weather helm' means that if you were to let the tiller go, the rudder wants to turn the boat into 'weather' or into the wind. If you are feeling lots of weather helm (more common than 'Lee helm'), you can adjust the sail rigging (usually done on shore) or shift your weight in the boat. Here is a nice thread discussing weather helm if you want to read more about the science behind it.
 

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#84
You heavy Mini does not heel as much as it should, so sheet resistance is about the same. Maybe even a little more. And you can only pull the same amount on each boat, so on a Sunfish you just may not be able to sheet in as far, that is countered by the sail having more sail area. If your Mini is indeed 160 pounds then you may find a dry Sunfish more responsive with less effort.

Skipper is comfortable with the sheet on both boats, she likes having more room for her legs and knees in the Sunfish cockpit.
 
Thread starter #85
You heavy Mini does not heel as much as it should, so sheet resistance is about the same. Maybe even a little more. And you can only pull the same amount on each boat, so on a Sunfish you just may not be able to sheet in as far, that is countered by the sail having more sail area. If your Mini is indeed 160 pounds then you may find a dry Sunfish more responsive with less effort.

Skipper is comfortable with the sheet on both boats, she likes having more room for her legs and knees in the Sunfish cockpit.
Thank you. I will know for sure in the spring when I sail the used Sunfish I decided to buy. Any advice on winter storage? I have to keep it outside and we get a lot of snow up here. I've kept my old one on a wooden deck, up on it's side, leaning against a wooden railing- or leaning against the side of my house with a piece of wood under the edge so it's not touching the frozen ground. I don't cover it. I've read that it should be covered with a tarp but also read that it should NOT be covered because condensation builds up on the boat under the plastic.
 

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
#86
You can't keep water out but you can keep it in. Your Frozen North neighbors will have some specific ideas, but in general a tarp is good as long as air can circulate under it. Keep the cockpit facing the house there is less chance of water or snow getting in there, freezing, expanding and breaking the fiberglass seams.

I'd put something soft under the deck edge. And remember to wear white socks with black shoes while storing your boats...

sunfish garage storage.jpg
 
Thread starter #87
You can't keep water out but you can keep it in. Your Frozen North neighbors will have some specific ideas, but in general a tarp is good as long as air can circulate under it. Keep the cockpit facing the house there is less chance of water or snow getting in there, freezing, expanding and breaking the fiberglass seams.

I'd put something soft under the deck edge. And remember to wear white socks with black shoes while storing your boats...

View attachment 34665
Something soft?
 
#88
I kept my boat the last 3 seasons stored upside down on saw horses with a tarp over the top. Shape of the hull helped keep snow from piling up. My tarp is big enough to drape to the ground. If there is any condensation it will run down the tarp to the ground. Although I don’t see this as an issue because the relative humidity of the air in winter time. I actually left my inspection port open figuring the dry winter air would help dry out any unwanted moisture.
An added bonus of having the boat up on the horses I was able to store some of the kids summer toys under the tarp as well. Not to mention the UV protection the tarp adds. I do remove the sail from the spars and store that in the house, keep the spars under my deck and rudder and daggerboard in my shed out of the weather.
 
#91
Just catching up to this thread and reading the latest replies... in Coronado, I stored my Laser and my Minifish up against the northern wall of my house, but that was to help keep the sun from beating down on the boat, tarp or no tarp. I also built simple wooden cradles with thin ply and a few pieces of scrap lumber. Padded each cradle with an old Mexican blanket... I'd rinse whichever hull on my driveway or dolly to get the salt water off it, then place it in the appropriate cradle. Deck always toward the house, all hatch covers off, and a tarp on the boat once it dried. Not a bad system, and having the concrete driveway right there made loading and unloading relatively easy while cartopping. BTW, large rubber-coated utility hooks from Home Depot (or some similar store) are great for storing spars out of the way along an interior garage or carport wall, and a simple outdoor wooden drying rack for lines and gear will add to their working life... I'd rinse everything back in the day and drape it over the drying rack, nothing got stored elsewhere until it was fully dry, yeah? Anything stored wet will bring on mold and mildew, which you do NOT want. Not exactly sure what sort of storage area the OP has, but a quick gander at dinghy storage at the nearest club or marina may provide some alternate ideas & solutions. Moi, I liked storing each of my boats up on one rail to keep my driveway clear, but of course I was cartopping so I didn't have to worry about a trailer. Just my $.02, CHEERS!!! :rolleyes:
 
Thread starter #95
Just catching up to this thread and reading the latest replies... in Coronado, I stored my Laser and my Minifish up against the northern wall of my house, but that was to help keep the sun from beating down on the boat, tarp or no tarp. I also built simple wooden cradles with thin ply and a few pieces of scrap lumber. Padded each cradle with an old Mexican blanket... I'd rinse whichever hull on my driveway or dolly to get the salt water off it, then place it in the appropriate cradle. Deck always toward the house, all hatch covers off, and a tarp on the boat once it dried. Not a bad system, and having the concrete driveway right there made loading and unloading relatively easy while cartopping. BTW, large rubber-coated utility hooks from Home Depot (or some similar store) are great for storing spars out of the way along an interior garage or carport wall, and a simple outdoor wooden drying rack for lines and gear will add to their working life... I'd rinse everything back in the day and drape it over the drying rack, nothing got stored elsewhere until it was fully dry, yeah? Anything stored wet will bring on mold and mildew, which you do NOT want. Not exactly sure what sort of storage area the OP has, but a quick gander at dinghy storage at the nearest club or marina may provide some alternate ideas & solutions. Moi, I liked storing each of my boats up on one rail to keep my driveway clear, but of course I was cartopping so I didn't have to worry about a trailer. Just my $.02, CHEERS!!! :rolleyes:
I have it up against the house on one edge. It’s under the eves so I’m wondering if that’s enough protection or I should drape a plastic tarp over it. I attached a photo. 527C9DBA-0A6C-4865-B419-F57341A10CF3.jpeg 527C9DBA-0A6C-4865-B419-F57341A10CF3.jpeg
 
#96
If the sun beats on the hull anytime during the day, cover the hull with a tarp... better for the tarp to take the solar abuse rather than the hull. Looks like you have some pool noodles jammed under the rail? You can make a simple wooden storage cradle using a few scraps of lumber and some thin plywood... doesn't have to look pretty, just provide fuller support for the rail. Not rocket science, and you can pad the curved cradle with an old blanket or beach towel folded lengthwise. Otherwise, nice autumnal photo with the falling leaves, LOL... another reason to tarp the boat, so wet decomposing leaves don't dirty or stain the hull. :confused:
 
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