Posts Tagged 'sunfish rigging'

erie open regatta

the Erie Open Regatta is coming up in a few weeks – June 5th and 6th at Erie Yacht Club in Erie, PA.

This Sunfish regatta may not be a District Championship or a World Qualifier, but come sail anyway at one of the nicest venues on the Great Lakes!

official notice of race is here.

on the wings of a Sunfish

I found a woodworking and sailing creator named Mark on Instagram that has been experimenting with building a wing foil for his Sunfish.

photo by Mark Palmquist

The wing is designed to skim over the water like a horizontal water ski. If it dives, the wing will still have a lifting force due to its curved upper trailing edge. The speed record for a sunfish is around 11 knots in 20 knots of wind. Beyond that bow gets too bouncy and your live ballast can no long keep the hull flat. The wing creates lift on the leeward side forward of the center of effort lifting the hull. Hopefully the wing won’t come loose. It’s basically clamped on.

photo by Mark Palmquist

Mark has two videos posted with the wing foil attached to his Sunfish – the first was very light winds, so not really a good test, but the video below was higher wind. (click thru to watch the video on Instagram…)

Results: a hydroplaning wing works much better on a skinnier, faster hull. The current wing shape is not ideal. Fluid separated on the upper surface. It needs to be optimized for underwater lift, which means having the foil lower and changing the profile shape. Hydroplaning only works well at speeds above 11 knots and that’s the speed limit of the sunfish. Therefore a sunfish would benefit more from a hydrofoil since they work at 8 knots.

sounds like mixed results, so I’ll be curious to see if Mark goes back to the drawing board to tweak the foil shape… or if he maybe has moved on to tweaking his ideas on a sailboat that is a little sleeker than an ol’ Sunfish.

is it spring?

warm (45°F) and sunny February day in Michigan has me thinking sailing thoughts…. even though we just had ~18” of accumulated snow and a 3-week period when daily high temps didn’t even get above freezing.

I was scrolling through some old photos and found some great Sunfish sailing memories. these are from vacationing at Camp Arcadia on Lake Michigan, probably 2009 or so.

a common theme to the photos: I like taking people (adults and kids) for rides on my Sunfish so they can experience the thrill of it, even on some of the calmer wind days.

Allen ratchet block for mainsheet

I recently installed a new Allen 60mm ratchet block on my Sunfish. the Allen Pro-Ratchet 60 (A2160WAVE) is a selectable ratchet, 60mm size, with Allen’s new wave sheave.

The NEW wave ratchet offers 20 to 40%* more grip without adding any additional wear to the rope.

The most effective way to increase friction is to add sharp edges to the ratchet sheave, but this quickly deteriorates and wears away the rope. So, after working alongside leading rope manufacturers the Allen design team came up with a simple solution which improves grip without chewing away at your expensive rope.

The Wave Ratchet sheave has an offset V style grip, made from a hard-wearing recycled plastic nylon, which does not have sharp edges that will eat into the rope. Instead, by adjusting the V formation in the sheave to be slightly offset, the ratchet now grips the rope at additional points around the sheave, resulting in more grip. However, the new Wave Ratchet not only improves grip but as a result of the design it also allows for a less ‘jumpy’ feel when easing the sheets.

img_1387

I’ve posted previously on my Sunfish mainsheet controls upgrades (ratchet block, spring, etc.), now I’ve now just opted to try this new ratchet block.

I moved the Harken 2135 over to our Minifish.

here is a pic of both blocks – the Allen 60mm and the Harken 57mm 2135.

I used the zip-tie trick to compress the stand-up spring again, such a simple and clever trick makes install of the mainsheet block so much easier.

Tillerman over at Proper Course (and now blogging about his RS Aero at Aerobian) a while back posted a snapshot from his RS Aero instructions that details this zip tie trick quite well:

sunfish assisted capsize recovery

sailors at the North Shore Yacht Club on Lake Michigan in Highland Park, Illinois have developed some new techniques to help Sunfish sailors assist nearby sailors that have capsized their Sunfish sailboat and are having difficulty righting the boat or getting back out of the water into the boat.  Alan Cohen is an American Canoe Association certified Level 2 Sea Kayak Instructor, an experienced Sunfish sailor, and former Commodore of the North Shore Yacht Club, and he prepared an article discussing these methods and helped with the re-enactment to make the video below to help explain the methods.  Alan’s article can be found here or here (.pdf file).

a few of the reasons this method might be beneficial are highlighted in the article and video, including the following:

  • Sunfish has capsized and/or fully turtled
  • the daggerboard has fallen out, or won’t stay in the daggerboard slot to assist with flipping the Sunfish back over
  • sailor fatigue
  • help getting in the boat

there’s often discussions over on the Sunfish Forum about various ways to help with one or several of the above list, but I’m not sure I’ve ever seen them summarized so nicely in a written article, and now a video demonstration as well.  the article and video highlight (4) basic techniques to help a nearby Sunfish sailor recover from a capsize:

  • getting a fallen daggerboard back into the boat
  • helping to right a capsized boat
  • using a rope foot sling to assist with reboarding
  • steadying a Sunfish to assist during reboarding

North Shore Yacht Club has been a leader in putting together great videos to help Sunfish sailors, I’ve highlighted some of their previous videos on my blog already:

1970’s Sunfish sailing comic

I found this great sailing comic posted on Shoreline Sailboats’ Instagram account:

1971-1973 AMF Alcort Sunfish comic book was a 12 page comic highlighting the AMF line of sailboats along with sailing pointers and selling points.


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