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updates on the "modern" Sunfish sail


here is some updated information on the new “modern" Sunfish sails that are being used by the Sunfish sailors on Sag Harbor. the sails are designed by a member of the Sag Harbor Sunfish sailing fleet, along with Kevin Farrar from Farrar Sails in New London, Connecticut. all photos and the highlights listed below were provided by Julian S., one of the Sunfish sailors using these new sails on Sag Harbor.


a few highlights for the new sails:
  • kevlar reinforced mylar – you can see in front of you!
  • the sail is made with a sock over the upper spar – no sail ties – results in better air flow over the front spar
  • slightly larger total area – moved to the top of the sail
  • 28″ removed from the lower spar with no weather helm
  • center of force on the sail now over the centerboard
they have made other modifications such as inboard (not on the spar) outhaul control. and what looks like an upgrade mainsheet control (see pic below).
mainsheet rigging.png

there is a 3rd version of the sail in the works with a square top and loose foot that is even shorter still and will allow for center sheeting (no bridle in the back). the red sail is a prototype of their Mk. III sail.
farrar mk 3.JPG

honestly, I think the perfect match would be to pair these modern updated sails, or at least a similar version of them, with the newly designed and upcoming Rocket sailboat – which looks like it has made some great improvements on the Sunfish hull design.

(also posted the same on my blog here)


I was thinking the same thing earlier - a brand new Intensity Sails race cut sail is less than $150...

po-man sailor

Active Member
I wonder exactly how much more surface it has...how does it perform speed wise in light wind...and how does it point...will it sail closer upwind.
Cool though.


Well-Known Member
If I could point higher (sailing back to my launch area), it's a no brainer...if it's cheaper than a 2nd fish. And while the Sunfish is great because of possible low introductory expenses for new sailors...what are total costs to go to a regatta 1200 miles away? It's all relative.
Kinda good eye candy too.
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Active Member
Beautiful sails
I noticed the Viadana block.
I installed a carbo ratchet Viadana block with a stand up spring.
Are used one without a becket for the standard Sunfish mainsheet set up.

The Viadana oval shaped backing plate fits perfectly under the Sunfish lip.
If you preload the Spring assembly on to the Stainless eye strap, first it makes life a lot easier.
Sub a cotter pin in for the ring ding, while using zip ties to hold a spring compressed.
Started to use overhead machine screws but went to the flat heads.
The spring seats nicely on top of the eye strap with a flat head screws.

Also in the picture is the Rooster designed hiking strap adjuster, it works flawlessly even with just one eye strap on the cubby lip. Do go onto Roosters blog to see good pictures on how to reeve the line If you attempt this.
it’s pretty ingenious, very simple, with dynema it’s very slippery and works well, it releases under load easily.
I installed a backing plate and hiking strap plate on the front bulkhead.
I’ll try to post a picture with the tail of the line trimmed and the “pull handle” oriented correctly it’s kind of hard to see how it leads from this picture. I just left all the tails long until I tested it out, now I Will neaten up.

Went for a rollicking sail yesterday, 15kts with 20 gusts and it performed flawlessly. :D

to rollicking Sailing!!!!!


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a new pic, showing all 3 sails.
Right to left:
#11 is Mk I
#1.62 is Mk. II
#888 is Mk. III
Behind 888 is a standard Sunfish sail
farrar all 3 sails.jpg


Well-Known Member
Great pic...puts them all in perspective. Now...where can I get one of those red flatheads? :)


Insignia looks like it is the Farrar Sails' logo. And as Beldar noted, you could try to contact them to see how to purchase one of these sails.


I can’t find a link to the article but Lee mentions in his recent video that Sailing World magazine has a recent article about these new sails and the Aerosouth rudders too.



a comment on my blog post mentioned that if you order the new Rocket sailboat with the "Interceptor" package, it will come with one of these Farrar sails.
I've sent an email to ask about pricing and handicap ratings for the various sails.


It would be nice to know how this fleet adjusts the scores (handicap) for the different rigs. Or maybe they don't.
Here is the response I got:
No handicap. Races are rarely decided on boat speed anyway.
Starts, strategy, snappy tacks are the things.
Our main system is to not keep score.

Peter Beardsley

New Member
I am in the Sag Harbor Sunfish fleet - just stumbled across the thread.
I also sail one design Sunfish on Shelter Island.
Cost for the sail is meaningfully more expensive than a stock one design sail (2.5x more) but a lot more care goes into the manufacturing of it and the materials are also more expensive than the stock one design sail. Sail area is around 10% larger so I am told but I haven't done the side-by-side comparison yet. Speed doesn't seem meaningfully different, but there is a lot less weather helm since the center of effort has been moved forward. Not only are scores not adjusted for the different sails, scores aren't even kept. That said, the newest iteration of the sail with the very square top aloft is definitely quicker downwind in light to medium air (it is also a loose footed main, so hard to tell which change produced the biggest advantage), but is not as quick upwind. We've also had people show up in stock one design sails who are good sailors and do just as well vs. the new sails. The folks in the fleet who led the effort on this are an innovative bunch who used to frostbite Europe Dinghies before moving to Sunfish and tweaking the sail design, so they are wired a bit differently in general. Very nice group though, and if anyone is on Long Island, there are loaner boats and loaner sails (of earlier iterations of the design) if you want to come race on a Sunday morning.


Active Member
These sails sound really cool, ...but I'm not sure I could put a diferent sail on my fish, just because the original sunfish sail is so beautiful and iconic.
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