The perfect dinghy

Except for childhood Optimist sailing, my first real dinghy, in the 1970s and 80s, was a Type E sailing canoe built in 1945. Thanks to the 50kg steel centerboard, it was extremely stable and I never ever succeeded to capsize. I finally sold it because the steel frame of the centerboard housing was totally rusted.

Since then, I have mostly experience of Laser and Windy. Laser is a fun toy but too small to be a daysailer and it's difficult to carry luggage. Windy is wonderfully over-rigged, extreme lightweight and fast, thus too unstable singlehanded unless I replace the wooden centerboard with a 75kg steel centerboard. Also, the Windy requires the mainsail to be rigged mast first and then boom, which is difficult singlehanded in hard wind. Also, I can't handle the spinnaker singlehanded, which makes a gennaker the preferred choice.

I look for alternatives.

My perfect dinghy should fill most of the following requirements:

  • length: 4.5–6m
  • mainsail, jib and spinnaker/gennaker
  • roller reefing jib
  • total weight 150–500kg, thus I can easily winch the boat up on the beach
  • trapeze
  • stowing compartment for anchor and luggage

Among present candidates is the Laser Bahia. I haven't tried it. It seems a bit too lightweight but perhaps the stock weightless centerboard can be replaced with a heavy centerboard.

The search continues.

Per Åkesson, Oct 2011

rev okt -11