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merlin2375 03-07-2008 10:59 AM

Anyone out there enjoy Dinghy sailing?
Most of you guys have fairly large boats, I was wondering if any of you enjoy dinghy sailing. I have been learning on a lot of dinghys (15', centerboard or keel) and I don't really enjoy it that much. I am a full sized adult and I find it a pain to move around. I have a much more enjoyable time on a larger boat where I won't be tipping it over with just my body weight.

So my questions are...
Do you enjoy dinghy sailing at all?
Did you learn on a dinghy?
If you learned on one but no longer sail dinghys, are you glad those days are behind you :)

erps 03-07-2008 11:12 AM

We have a little Minto sailing dinghy that we take with us each summer on our vacation. I sail the dinghy more than I sail the big boat. The problem I run into is that the dog always wants to go too, and that doesn't leave much room for the beer cooler.

timebandit 03-07-2008 11:18 AM

+more char

bobmcgov 03-07-2008 11:27 AM


Originally Posted by erps (Post 278257)
The problem I run into is that the dog always wants to go too, and that doesn't leave much room for the beer cooler.

These are the decisions all great Admirals struggle with. Dog... or beer?:D (Lord Nelson famously opted for "a hip flask and smallish dog" -- it's why he won at Abukir Bay, some historians think.)

Yeah, we dinghy sail. You are right, it is physical and uncomfortable and rife with crowded moments. Wouldn't trade it for anything. My girlfriend finds the Buccaneer too demanding, agility-wise. She enjoys it but bruises easily.:o

Lion35 03-07-2008 11:44 AM

I grew up dingy sailing and still enjoy it. I don't get to do it as often as I would like but when I do I love it. I have a Laser that's in need of work and it never gets the attention away from the big boat.

nolatom 03-07-2008 12:18 PM

Yes, yes, and no, respectively.

The best racing sailors tend to come out of dinghys rather from heavier boats. It's fun, but is it more difficult as you get older? Yup. Your weight is still equal to the boat's weight (or worse), and it's slower for you to move it around, which latter is critical to boat balance.

Lasers are the bomb. But as I approach 60, I light that fuse less often ;-)

I'm thinking skiing is similar. At 20, you ski the double-diamonds and hit every mogul. At 50, you are satisfied with the single diamonds (steep, but not lumpy). At 60, you cut a few turns, and are happy to arrive back at the base lift.

sailingdog 03-07-2008 12:26 PM

Dinghy sailing is great for fine tuning your skills...but dinghies are fairly limited in what you can do in them... can't really overnight in them, can't anchor most of them... it is back to the bigger boats for most of us.

Plumper 03-07-2008 12:27 PM

I learned on 505s, Kolibris, wayfarers and Lasers. I have a Minto as well and I love sailing around the anchorages.

I still sail dinghies and still love it.

I firmly believe that the fun in boats is inversely proportional to size. Once I get tired of cruising I will buy another small trailerable dinghy or keel boat.

merlin2375 03-07-2008 12:45 PM

Thanks guys for the responses, just trying to get a feel for others opinions. I haven't yet sailed a laser but seems like I would enjoy it more if I was going to get wet anyways. :)

Oh, and don't get me wrong, I'll do anything to be out on the water :)

poltergeist 03-07-2008 12:52 PM

My Flying Scot is not what most people would consider a dinghy, but it's certainly one of the smallest and least complicated boats represented here on Sailnet ... and that's exactly why I chose it. I learned on Rhodes 19's, so the size and performance feel very comfortable to me.

It's big enough that I won't capsize it by moving around, and the cockpit is huge, so the typical dinghy complaints of banged shins and heads are kept to a minimum. I can rig and splash it off the trailer in 15 minutes and do what I want to do ... get out on the water by myself or with two or three friends with minimum fuss. I'm also shopping for a cheap used Laser to knock around on.

It would be nice to have a boat I could occasionally sleep aboard, I guess, but that usually implies a head, electronics, through-hulls, motors, dockage, and the myriad other complexities that most readers here put up with as a matter of course. It's just no for me.


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