Posts Tagged 'sunfish class'

how to rig a Sunfish [video]

here is an another video on how to rig, or set up, your Sunfish so that it is ready to sail.  this video was created by Carolina State Parks – it looks like Sunfish are available to use at Lake Norman Community Sailing.

they give the following steps:

  • Securing the Drain Plugs
  • Attaching the Rudder
  • Attach and Hoist the Mainsail
  • Rigging the Mainsheet
  • Rigging the Daggerboard

I’ve posted other videos and various topics previously on how to rig your Sunfish.

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sunfish sailing in the rain

it was an interesting afternoon: winds seemed light and shifty at times and the sky out on the horizon looked dark and cloudy. radar showed a big storm coming across Lake Michigan, but it seemed like it might pass up to the north of Camp. my son T2 and I decided to try sailing on our Sunfish and Minifish despite the chance of rain.

as we started rigging our boats the first rain drops started to fall. but I didn’t see anything to dark on the horizon and had not heard any thunder. we figured let’s try it out and see if we could at least get a quick sail.

I sent him off in the Minifish and then raised the sail on my Sunfish. winds were mostly from the south and had picked up some. rain continued to drip down on me, just a nice gentle rain.

as we sailed, the wind and waves both kept increasing as the rainstorm kept coming from the west and across Lake Michigan. I was able to snap a few pics before it got too intense.

T2 sailing behind me, Camp Arcadia on the shoreline of Lake Michigan behind him.

the cool rain was awesome and as the wind and waves kept picking up it just got better. we were both flying across the water, mostly just reaches east and west, as I didn’t want to wander to far north or south up the shoreline with the storm close.

it was an awesome afternoon of sailing!

UConn alumni sunfish regatta (2018)

a few weeks ago, the University of Connecticut held their annual spring Sunfish regatta – a great opportunity for alumni to mingle with and get to know current students in the sailing team at UConn.  from the regatta write-up (see link below), it sounds like it was a great event – with 15 alumni and 10 UConn students, with great weather and competitive sailing.

here is a short video from the regatta, shot & edited by LiftAndSea.com

you can find the full regatta write-up (.pdf), results (.pdf), or view the UConn sailing FB page or the UConn Alumni Regatta FB page.

windward leg archives

the Sunfish Class has made good progress on building up a nice electronic archive of the Class newsletter – the Windward Leg.

We have recently uploaded to the Class Website most of the Windward Leg issues since they were first published in 1979. The Leg was originally printed by the builder AMF and was also the newsletter for some of the other classes they manufactured during that period such as Force 5, Super Sunfish, Apollo, etc.

As the Sunfish Class became more independent in the late 1980s, the Windward Leg gradually became the exclusive and official Newsletter of ISCA. Some of the original issues are still missing, but we are working actively with class members order to have these added to the library.

when you join the Sunfish Class, you receive the newsletter a few times a year, with race results from around the country (and world), as well as how-to tips for racing, recreational sailing, and common repairs.

you can browse the scanned Windward Leg archives on the Sunfish Class website.

sunfish adventure raid [June 2-3, 2018]

Laser Performance is sponsoring a 2-day sailing event on the lower Connecticut River near Hartford this summer.

Rig your Sunfish or any boat that can be beached (daggerboard/centerboard), pack your sleeping bags, and grab a friend!! After hearing from the sailors, ISCO has revived the Sunfish Adventure Classic and, transformed it into an annual roaming event for the Sunfish fleet to take any shore. To be known as the Sunfish Adventure Raid, ISCO is proud to host its first regatta. Join us for a two-day fun race following the lower Connecticut River from the industrial banks of Hartford, past meadowlands and wetlands, meandering past eighteenth-century seaports, to finish at tree-covered Essex. Up to two people sail per boat, carrying on board the necessary camping gear (tents, sleeping bags), life jackets, clothing and foul-weather gear, lunch and drinks for two days. LaserPerformance provides the food, drink, and staff for the Saturday night cookout and a complete breakfast Sunday, as well as a post race party! Register for two days of family fun and adventure!

sign up/registration information can be found here.  additional details can be found at LP’s Facebook page for the event.

this event has been held annually for the last several years, but had been mainly initiated and organized by just a few Sunfish enthusiasts.  it’s nice to see Laser Performance sponsoring the race this year, and hopefully they will continue that sponsorship for future years.

historically, the Connecticut River race was a huge Sunfish event, with even reference to it in the Sports Illustrated article “Here She is, the True Love Boat“:

Enthusiasts have been known to enjoy offshore cruising in, and overnight camping from, Sunfish, and have used them on river trips. Every May a fleet of about 100 of the little boats participates in a three-day race down the Connecticut River from Hartford to Essex.

I’m not sure that any of the recent events have come close to that many participants, but perhaps with LP acting as a sponsor, it will help create more interest in getting this back as a Sunfish tradition.

 

greater Detroit 2018 Sunfish race schedule

the Greater Detroit Sunfish Club (GDSC) has released their 2018 Sunfish race schedule (you can find it with additional information posted at their Yahoo Group).  you can also check them out on their Facebook page.

  • May 20th – Watkins Lake
  • June 3rd – Watkins Lake
  • June 9th & 10th – Gull Lake Sunfish Open Regatta (details & NOR TBD)
  • June 23rd & 24th – camping weekend at Muskegon Lake (Muskegon State Park)
  • July 29th – U.P. Island Race (Les Cheneaux YC… details t.b.d.)
  • early August – Sunfish Youth North American Championships & Sunfish North American Championships (Lake Bluff, IL)
  • September 1st & 2nd – camping weekend at Higgins Lake (South State Park)
  • September 15th & 16th – Devils Lake Regatta (Bruce Goldsmith Memorial – details & NOR TBD)
  • September 30th – Watkins Lake

all Sunday races start at 12:30pm [uno], with the camping/racing weekends starting earlier in the day to get extra races in over the weekend.

I said this last year (and the year before… and the year before… and the year before), and didn’t get a chance to sail with this group, but I’m again going to do my best to meet up with them for some sailing races this year.

Sunfish Youth Foundation

the Sunfish Class issued an announcement today for the newly created Sunfish Youth Foundation (official press release .pdf here).

This foundation is being formed to help introduce young sailors to the Sunfish and encourage more Youth to sail Sunfish competitively.

The mission of SYF is to provide financial support for youth sailors who wish to attend local, national and world championship regattas.

Donations made to the SYF will allow us to sponsor more activities that promote Sunfish sailing such as on- and off-the-water sailing clinics, rigging and go-fast seminars, youth travel subsidies to major competitions and publish/mail promotional materials to Clubs with a Junior Sailing Program to name just a few possibilities.

it’ll be interesting to see where this goes – since it is initiated by the Class, it has a better chance of going places than the Laser Performance United… not sure whatever happened with that campaign.

can the simple appeal of the Sunfish compete with the up and coming new boats that offer a bit more of a challenge – like the RS Aero, the Melges 14, or even the new UFO Foiler?

the Sunfish has a distinct advantage in that there are thousands and thousands of them available, and refurbishing and refitting an older Sunfish hull is always a good option for starting out with a young sailor.

but realistically, for this to happen – the local Sunfish sailing clubs need to focus on sailing for the youth.  teaching their kids to sail by letting them ride along with them in the Sunfish – even during racing, and then alongside them during club races on the youth’s own Sunfish when they can handle a Sunfish on their own.

I love sailing with, or alongside my boys, on our Sunfish and Minifish.  now I just need to get them involved more in racing – they did some of it during sailing lessons, but I need to just get us out to join up with some of the racing at our local club, the Greater Detroit Sunfish Club.


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