The fine art of dumping a sunfish! - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 11-07-2008
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The fine art of dumping a sunfish!

So, I've sailed a sunfish the past couple of classes, and it's a lot of♦ fun! Nice to have the boat to myself, just wish the boom was a little higher!!

Problem is, every other time I go out, I dump the boat. 2x ago it was a bad tack, I got caught up in the rigging. Last time, a puff caught me just as I was switching sides in a jibe, and knocked me down. No biggie, except.....

1. The water is starting to get a little chilly!!!

2. When she went over, the daggerboard fell out! (Still attached by a line)

3. because of a lack of mast float and wave action, it turtled. Since we're sailing in a river, the mast got stuck in the muck, had to wait on top of the boat for about 15 min. for the instructor to come back in the safety boat to get it unstuck (now I know I can tie a bowline in stressful situations!)

When it dumped, my first reaction was to just get out of the way, to make sure I didn't get caught up in the lines. My question is, should I instead go over the top to get to the daggerboard before it falls through the slot?

Thanks in advance for any advice!!
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Old 11-07-2008
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Going over

Learned my lesson on capsizing in a Laser years ago. First time it went over on me I didn't know what to do. Fell into the sail.

Yes, ideally you climb over the edge and get on the board before it slips out. I have found it is easier said than done, you need to time it right and get over when you pass the point of hiking not being enough to recover any more. Once you pass that magic point slip on over and find the board with your feet.

If you don't make it over the edge, best routine is to jump clear as soon as you know you are going over, then rapidly get around to the board before she turtles...

You are going to end up cold and wet no matter what!
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Old 11-07-2008
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you have to get the feel of the boat (sunfish) etc. any dingy you sail. become one with the way the boat acts, feels. become part of the boat! when you master that you will be able to tell when you reach that critical point. when you've reached that point either spill wind in a hurry and hopefully don't flip the boat to the windward side. if not play with the main sheet to get balance back in the boat if you loose control and she starts to go over on the leeward side start moving yourself in position to go over to the dagger board. make sure you let go the main sheet and at the same time climb aboard as the boat rights. piece of cake once you get the hang of it!!!! and you'll feel like a pro and look like one also. if someone says anything to you , you can say you planned it that way to cool off!!!!!!!
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Old 11-07-2008
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As I recall, from a LONG time ago, the daggerboard on the Sunfish should have a brass bent clip thingy to help keep it in the daggerboard trunk if you capsize.

Is it missing or worn out? Perhaps that's why it's coming out.

As the other posters have replied, the best thing to do is to climb out on the daggerboard as the boat is capsizing.

You can right the boat that way and climb back in to balance it as the boat returns upright.

Keeps you dry, is fun, and fun to watch!

Good luck!

David
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Old 11-07-2008
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Well

Even on the J24 when it is getting breezy its one hand on the tiller and one ready to dump the main cause we wont capsize BUT you can get pretty twisted up if you dont react to the puffs
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If a dirty bottom slows you down what do you think it does to your boat
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Old 11-24-2008
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SunFeesh should have "Born to Dump" lettered across the transom. We put the mast in the water fifteen times one afternoon. About the easiest boat to right, too. Daggerboard should have a tensioning clip; if not, make sure that cord is on so you don't lose it, & if it falls out, no sweat. Either shove it in and dog paddle around for the Chin-Up or just clamber over the high side, dig your toes into the daggerboard slot, grab the rail and lean back. Should hesitate for five seconds then flip right up.
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Old 11-24-2008
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Wow.. these are some great memories! I used to sail Phantoms..

We always had a bungee holding the dagger board in... but... I've done my share of paddling around and chin ups too... Since my sister was the instructor and I wasn't paying.... I always ended up with the crappiest boat! heh... Nothing ever worked right.. but I was expected to win!

But I never stuck the mast head into the muck...! I used to break the goose necks about once a week.. heh. I've done more fiberglass repairs to the hulls than I care to imagine!

As the water gets colder it will be a natural "electric shock therapy" for you and you'll learn to keep that puppy upright at all costs...! So KEEP SAILING!!
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Old 11-29-2008
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So your asking advice on how to have....FUN

Ok,,When it gets cold wear a wetsuit to start...meantime learn how to GRACEFULLY go over the rail and stand on the daggerboard....GRACEFULLY.

This will take some practice hence the wetsuit.

When you find your not going over the rail at least 4 times a day you no longer having FUN......

Cheak into a old foggies home.....
Mark
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