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EricD
11-18-2003, 01:31 PM
Does anybody know where I can find plans to build a new Sailfish hull? Years and years ago, I was given a very waterlogged/'glassed over Sailfish that was beyond repair. I threw the hull in the dump, but have kept the sails, daggerboard, hardware etc etc all this time. I've never been able to find building plans for a new hull....

Anybody got any leads????

Mike H
11-18-2003, 04:09 PM
Both www.GlenL.com (http://www.GlenL.com) and www.Clarkcraft.com (http://www.Clarkcraft.com) have sailfish clones.

Meerkat
11-18-2003, 04:10 PM
http://www.glen-l.com/designs/sailboat/sailboat-images/dsn-bbd.jpg
Buckboard (http://www.glen-l.com/designs/sailboat/buckboard.html)

http://www.stevproj.com/MiniCup.JPEG
The Mini-Cup (http://www.stevproj.com/FastSailrs.html)

Keith Wilson
11-18-2003, 04:18 PM
A couple of other options: Dave Goodchild has inexpensive reprints of old plans from magazines, including several board boats here, (http://www.dngoodchild.com/load_surf.htm) and there are free plans for bunch of boats, also from old magazines, including at least one of the Sailfish type here. (http://www.svensons.com/boat/)
Stevenson Projects (the Weekender people) have a couple of boats I think use the Sunfish rig here here. (http://www.stevproj.com/FastSailrs.html) although they're not clones. The
Clark Craft version seems closest to the original. Here it is:
http://www.clarkcraft.com/cgi-local/shop.pl?cart_id=9ba1d49d49993317ea958c5255495415&type=item&categ=025&item=1040339985

http://www.clarkcraft.com/images/et30.jpg

[ 11-18-2003, 04:34 PM: Message edited by: Keith Wilson ]

ahp
11-18-2003, 04:30 PM
Once upon a time the Sunfish and Sailfish were sold as kits, to use plywood construction. Maybe you could locate a set of the plans from the kit.

Looking on the web, Alcort, the builder, seems to have gone away. But, Sparkman and Stevens, who designed it for Alcort still exist and have offices on Fifth Ave in NYC. Wheather they would bother with you is another question. Now they seem to be into mega yachts.

DavesFlatsBoat
11-18-2003, 06:45 PM
Jacques Mertens has just put out plans for a MoonFish in stitch & glue. Check out BoatPlans-Online (http://www.boatplans-online.com) Look under sailboats

Dave

Steve Lansdowne
11-18-2003, 07:42 PM
I recall that this same or a similar question about sailfish boats was asked previously on the Forum. Try the search function to see if you can find it.

skuthorp
11-20-2003, 04:07 AM
I think I recall that Dingo posted plans or a link. I own one, (1960, the family heirloom) and know of several others here. We are planning a regatta! :D

Keith Wilson
11-20-2003, 09:42 AM
Jacques Mertens' Moonfish (http://www.boatplans-online.com/proddetail.php?prod=MF14) :

http://www.boatplans-online.com/prodimages/MF14_350.jpg

windydaze
12-10-2007, 03:58 PM
I don't know if you'd be interested or not, but if you don't want to have to build one from scratch, I have an old super sailfish hull that I'm not using and looking to get rid of. It's not in amazing condition and most of the hardware is gone, but if you had the time and know how, you could restore it.

Cuyahoga Chuck
12-10-2007, 04:37 PM
Does anybody know where I can find plans to build a new Sailfish hull? Years and years ago, I was given a very waterlogged/'glassed over Sailfish that was beyond repair. I threw the hull in the dump, but have kept the sails, daggerboard, hardware etc etc all this time. I've never been able to find building plans for a new hull....

Anybody got any leads????

We have been thru' this once, and not long ago. The old Glue and Screw crowd wanted plans for a wooden Sunfish which, I believe, is a successor to the Sailfish. I don't recall they ever did discover them.
I offered Jacques Mertens Moonfish but it went over like a lead balloon.
If you really want such a hull in a style that is easy to build the S&G Moonfish is it. The accessories for a Sunfish are compatible but I don't know how close your Sailfish stuff is. I checked a publication from 1978 that was an index of dinghy and board sailers of that era and the Sailfish isn't even mentioned.
I'm a fan of Mertens' work so take what I say with a grain of salt.
If you go this route keep us posted.

skuthorp
12-11-2007, 01:52 AM
I own 2 now, one professionally built and one from modified simpler plans in Popular Mechanics built by my cousin and I in1960(?) or thereabouts. Maybe you need to find a collector of old PM mags on the net and see if he can help? Here's a start http://www.primasoft.com/collectibles/coll381.htm
Good luck.
PS I think the mag was from my local library and dated to the mid 1950's. Not sure, just a feeling
PPS Refer my post above #8 regarding dingo, I'd forgotten that

Sail Ho
03-20-2008, 10:22 PM
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A set of original Alcort Sailfish plans just surfaced.

They are posted at - http://groups.yahoo.com/group/sunfish_sailor

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Dan Miller
03-21-2008, 08:17 AM
Looking on the web, Alcort, the builder, seems to have gone away. But, Sparkman and Stevens, who designed it for Alcort still exist and have offices on Fifth Ave in NYC. Wheather they would bother with you is another question. Now they seem to be into mega yachts.

If S&S did design the Sailfish, the plans may very well be in the S&S archives at the Antique Boat Museum.

Cheers,
Dan

Ben Fuller
03-21-2008, 08:36 AM
S&S archives at the Antique Boat Museum are brokerage files.

I have no evidence that S&S designed either boat: see my brief writeup on page 45 of Watercraft 3rd edition. The kit directions at and prints at the Sunfish site are very good. I know that Mystic was offered a kit Sailfish at one time, after it got 2001.6. Vanguard inherited a wooden Sailfish when they acquired Sunfish, and they may know where there are kit instructions.

Dan Miller
03-21-2008, 08:55 AM
Thanks for the correction Ben, I'm still learning my way around the archives...

Cheers,
Dan

Lewisboats
03-21-2008, 10:14 AM
Took me a while to track it down but here is a Super Sunray plan...free even!

http://members.aol.com/polysail/HTML/sunray.htm

Steve

Sail Ho
03-21-2008, 09:40 PM
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According to an interview with one of founders of the original Alcort, Inc., published in The Sunfish Book now, The Sunfish Bible by Will White, the Sailfish concept originally came from a RFQ by the Red Cross in about 1945. The Red Cross was attempting to develop a sailing rescue surfboard. The Red Cross design was No-Quoted for being unsound, but the Alcort boys resigned the plan with more length and beam and it worked.

I speculate both the Red Cross and Alcort worked from influences found in DIY sailing skiff plans of the late 1930s and 1940s. The concept of a sailing surfboard certainly pre-dates Alcort in catalog and magazine plans of the day by several years.

Alcort, Inc., was local to Connecticut and obscure outside the region until 1948 when a friend of a friend got a weekend sail on the Sailfish and became enthusiastic over itís simplicity. The friend worked for LIFE magazine and came back in 1949 to shoot a photo essay that got published (LIFE - Volume 27, Number 7, August 15, 1949). That exposure put Alcort out front over similar kit boats and boat plans offered in the back pages of the ďPopularĒ magazines.

With national recognition Alcort got a foot in the door at boat dealers and with mail order for both their kits and finished boats. I think whatís to their credit isnít the boat design, that wasnít original. What was original thinking for its day was a boat kit so well planned out and kitted up the average Joe without much skill or many tools for this sort of job could be successful at building it.

The Sunfish has passed between six different builders throughout itís 300,000+ boat history. Alcort, AMF, Loveless-DeGarmo, Pearson, Sunfish/Laser, Vanguard (now LaserPerformance). AMF dropped the Sailfish from production in about 1975. I have never seen a mention of Sparkman and Stevens in association with the original Alcort Sailfish or Sunfish design. Thatís not to say they werenít involved with something similar. In the late 1960s through the early 1980s hundreds of boat builders, some quite notable, jumped on the post WWII band wagon of small boat populatiry. The Sunfish or Sailfish like lateen rig was the boat of choice companies used to luer in new-to-sailing blood then try and move sailors up into bigger boats. That knock-off movement also made the name Sunfish generic for just about anybodyís lateen style boat.

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Todd Bradshaw
03-21-2008, 10:44 PM
Make that Alcort dropped the Sunfish somewhere around 1980. I was an Alcort dealer in the 1978-1980 period and we sold plenty of Sunfish, Super Sunfish and Minifish from them.

Steve Paskey
03-22-2008, 12:08 AM
Wm. and John Atkin designed a 13-foot "sailing surfboard" called Skimmer some time before 1955 (when it appeared in vol. 40 of Motorboating's Ideal Series). See: www.atkinboatplans.com (http://www.atkinboatplans.com/) The write-up says that they were inspired in part by the Sailfish.

Skimmer can be built from two sheets of plywood and uses a 60-square-foot lateen rig ... I don't know if it's identical to the Sailfish rig, but if anyone's interested I can dig up the dimensions.

Sail Ho
03-22-2008, 05:23 AM
Make that Alcort dropped the Sunfish somewhere around 1980. I was an Alcort dealer in the 1978-1980 period and we sold plenty of Sunfish, Super Sunfish and Minifish from them.


TB - Excuse me for questioning the accuracy of your statement, but I believe you are mistaken.

Many folks are under the impression Alcort was simply a sailboat division of AMF, even former dealer personnel, however the fact of the matter is Alcort started out as a small sailboat and iceboat company founded in Waterbury, CT in 1945 by Alex Bryan and Cortland Heyniger.

By the ‘70s Alcort, Inc. was no longer involved with the boat line having sold to AMF in 1969. AMF named its sailboat division after the most recognizable brand they had acquired, Alcort. Into this bucket they threw boats picked up from other builders, like the Puffer, Sunbird, Trac Catamaran, Zuma, and Force 5 along with those, they added boats developed in house, such as the AMFlite, Minifish, Minifish II, Super Sunfish, and Windflite. However, these additional boats only had a relation to the original Alcort, Inc. Sailfish and Sunfish by their proximity under the AMF parent name. This is often a source for confusion about the true origins of these boats.

You may recall that beyond their bowling equipment, AMF was making a grab at dominating the popular sports brands of the day. They acquired Hogan golf equipment, Head skis, Voit sports gear, Roadmaster bicycles, Slickcraft powerboats, Skidaddler snowmobiles, and Harley Davidson. Their marketing often leaned toward making it appear these brands were all their children from the start. Some brands fared well under AMF, others did not, as we now know.

The Sunfish was never dropped by AMF and has been in continuous production since its introduction in 1952. The factory assembled wood hull Sunfish was discontinued by Alcort in the early 1960s, but the kits continued to be marketed up until AMF purchased the company. AMF did phase out production of the Sailfish around 1975. The fiberglass version of the Sunfish has continued to be built since it came on the scene in 1960.

You don’t have to take my word for it, the history and evolution can be verified by checking with any of these sources:

LaserPerformance (formerly Vanguard) current builder
http://www.teamvanguard.com/2007/boats/sunfish/default.htm

US Sailing One Design Class Council
(AMF started the Sunfish One Design Class in 1969 and it continues today)
http://www.ussailing.org/odcc

The International Sunfish Class
http://www.sunfishclass.org

1995 induction into the Sailing Hall of Fame
http://www.sailamerica.com/halloffame/sunfish.asp

The Sunfish Bible (available at many sailing shops and libraries)
http://www.apsltd.com/Tree/d297000/e294317.asp

The support Forums
http://www.sunfishforum.com 4000 + members
and
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/sunfish_sailor 2000 + members

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katiedobe
03-22-2008, 10:40 AM
Wow Sail Ho you really like your little boat!!!
Do you sail anything else?
I want to get a couple of sunfish for down here on the lake. Then I can go out with a couple of buddies and play around without having to use the big boats.
Sometimes small is nice.
What is your take on the Mini-cup? I beleive I can build two or three of those and use poly tarp for sails cheaper than I can drive up to TExas and buy and import and drive back down to Bacalar with real sunfish boats.
What is your opinion?

Dave Carnell
03-22-2008, 11:45 AM
Build a FEATHERWIND from <smallboatforum.com>. Go just as fast with a dry bottom (yours) and capacity for up to four.

Conflict of interest: The plans are my creation.

Todd Bradshaw
03-22-2008, 01:23 PM
Sail Ho, You are correct, by the time we had them, AMF had bought Alcort and they were sold under the name of AMF/Alcort, which is who we wrote the checks to.

Sail Ho
03-22-2008, 03:33 PM
Jimmy -

I have a couple of Sunfish right now. Across fifty years of sailing there have been many boats in my yard big and small.

I built a few of these nail & glue boats, but never had two at the same time to compare side by side. Most were from the "Popular" magazine plans of the 60s (in the 60s) Each was fun in it's own right.

The minicup looks well designed though don't recall the name from yester-year. Look for a design with a Sunfish-like broader flatter bottom at the bow. It wil rise up and plane in lower wind speed.

Polytarp and Tyvek are viable short term. They lack UV resistance and durability. Depending on how much you sail they could need replacing seasonally. A couple of seasons and you've invested as much in time and materials as a commercial dacron sail cost ($150) True sailcloth can last 20+ years as a recreation sail.

Check at Duckworks for sailcloth or here for low cost sails. http://www.thesailstore.com/sunfish-sails-c-21.html

Daniel Noyes
03-27-2008, 08:50 PM
how about a radius chine sailfish type, 15-18' long, flat bottom, 4-5' wide, with a main and jib, should be a fun little sailing scow/board boat!
Dan
http://dansdories.googlepages.com

Sail Ho
04-03-2008, 02:05 AM
Hello Dan

Your boats are quite impressive.


how about a radius chine sailfish type...
Would you give me a rundown on the qualities that make then similar to the Sailfish.

SchoonerRat
04-03-2008, 02:38 AM
I had a lot of fun with the Sailfish I owned for 2 or 3 weeks back in the '60s. The only reason I sold it was that I needed the money to buy the I-14 that I had a lot more fun with.

kyky
02-20-2011, 10:23 AM
http://dngoodchild.com/divide_for_surf_boards.htm this has plenty of old sailfish clones on it...