A dinghy (or dingey) is a type of small boat, often carried or towed for use as a lifeboat or tender by a larger vessel. The term is a loanword from the Bengali ḍiṅgi, Urdu ḍīngī & Hindi ḍieṁgī.[Note 1] Utility dinghies are usually rowboats or have an outboard motor, but while some are rigged for sailing, they are not to be confused with sailing dinghies which are designed first and foremost for this purpose.
Dinghies usually range in length from about 2 to 6 m (6 to 20 ft). Larger auxiliary vessels are generally called tenders, pinnaces or lifeboats. Folding and take-down multi-piece (nesting) dinghies are used where space is limited. Some newer dinghies have much greater buoyancy, giving them more carrying capacity than older boats of the same size.
Dinghy is also a term given to any small cars, trucks or suvs towed behind a motor home.
On yachts shorter than 10 m (33 ft), there is usually not enough room for a reasonably sized dinghy. A dinghy is useful to avoid the need for expensive dock or slip space, so owners of small yachts compromise by carrying a small rigid dinghy or deflated inflatable, or by towing a larger dinghy. Space can be saved by storing items in containers or bags that are tied to the dinghy. Dinghies are sometimes used as lifeboats; recently self-rescue dinghies have come back into use as proactive lifeboats that can be sailed to safety.
Rigid dinghies for small yachts are very small, about 2 m (6 9⁄16 ft), usually with a pram (blunt) bow to get more beam (width) in a shorter length. Larger dinghies are towed and should have reserve buoyancy, an automatic bailer, and a cover to prevent them from being lost at sea. Most masters prefer a tow cable long enough to put the dinghy on the back side of the swell to prevent the dinghy from ramming the transom of the yacht.
Inflatables are inconvenient to tow and take extra time to inflate but are very compact and fit easily into place while at sea. Space can also be saved by using a sectional two-piece rigid dinghy that is towed while in harbour and disassembled into two nesting pieces while off-shore; typically the bow section fits inside the stern and is stored upside down on deck. There are several types of collapsible rigid dinghy that dismantle into a series of flat panels for easy stowage.
Inflatable tubes can be fitted to an existing hard dinghy, increasing buoyancy and stability.
A dinghy should have a strong ring on the bow. The ring secures the painter (the line that anchors the boat to a dock), and is used for towing and anchoring. Ideally, the dinghy should also have two other rings (one on each side of the stern transom) which, with the bow ring, are used for lifting and securing the dinghy for stowage.
The only other essential pieces of hardware are rowlocks (also known as oarlocks). Conventionally, a dinghy will have an oar on each side. A single sculling oarlock or notch on the transom is less common, but requires less space; and is used with a single sculling oar moving back and forth, never leaving the water, as used on a sampan.
Many modern dinghies are made of synthetic materials. These require minimal care and do not rot but can suffer from fibre glass pox which is caused by the ingress of saltwater through the gel coat. Inflatable dinghies can be made of fabrics coated with Hypalon, neoprene or PVC. Rigid dinghies can be made of glass-fibre reinforced plastic (GRP) but injection-moulded one-piece hulls are also available. Other materials for modern rigid dinghies include aluminium, marine plywood which tends to be much lighter than most types and, with the advent of sturdy, UV resistant polyurethane varnishes, wood. Some wooden dinghies (especially of classic or historical form) are built using the carvel or clinker methods. Favoured woods, in order of rot-resistance, are white oak, black locust, species of cedar and pine, true as well as African and Asian mahoganies, fir and spruce. Rot resistance depends on paint as well as protection from rainwater. Plastic hardware is sometimes used, but bronze and stainless steel are good corrosion-resistant materials for hardware, although stainless steel can be subject to crevice corrosion after many years especially in a boat using an outboard or other motor and must be inspected. Stainless steel should never be used for fittings permanently in the water. Owners should check that the correct grade of stainless steel is used in a fitting .Working boats may use lower-cost galvanized steel, but the hardware may need to be re-galvanized or replaced eventually.
The dinghy is generally carried inverted amidships on yachts,on top of the coachroof where there is the most space. It is useful for a dinghy carried this way to have handholds built into the bottom, making launching easier and providing handholds on deck.
Most yachts launch their dinghies by hand or with a simple lifting tackle rigged from the main mast. Davits over the transom is convenient and elegant, but sailing in a heavy following sea could cause the loss of a dinghy. If a dinghy is towed, an extra line with a loop in the end (known as a lazy painter) can be attached to a dinghy so that if the towing line breaks, there is a line to grab with a boat hook. This makes retrieval easier at sea, especially if the boat is partially swamped.
In some countries dinghies have names or registration numbers. On hard dinghies these are usually on the bow, on inflatables on the inside of the transom.
Small dinghies under 3.7 m (12 ft) are usually powered by rowing with one set of oars. Beyond 5 m (16 ft) it is feasible to have two or even three rowers, normally using a pair of oars. In some models, sliding thwarts allow far more powerful rowing while in others, a removable thwart can permit standing rowing. Some self-rescue dinghy/yacht tender dinghies have two sets of oarlocks(rowlocks) and an adjustable middle seat to allow for ergonomically efficient rowing positions. A single sculling oar with an oarlock on the rear transom can be a compact emergency oar. Inflatable dinghies without a rigid bottom are difficult to row more than a short distance, and are usually powered with an outboard motor, or, if necessary, paddled.
Another option is an outboard motor. Two horsepower per meter can reach hull speed. Ten horsepower per metre will put a flat-bottomed dinghy on plane. A 3-metre (10 ft) dinghy with a hard V-bottom hull and a fifteen-horsepower outboard can reach speeds of 25 mph (40 km/h; 22 kn). The gas tank is usually placed under the rear thwart. Engines always swing up so the dinghy can be grounded without damage. Since the transom may need to be cut down for the engine to fit properly, an engine well should be used to prevent low waves from splashing over the transom and flooding the boat.
A typical sailing rig for a dinghy is a gunter with a two-piece folding mast stepped through a thwart and resting on the keel. It is raised by pulling a rope called a halyard. A single-sailed rig is usually preferred over a marconi or Bermudan (with a triangular mainsail and jib) because this rig is simpler, with no stays to attach. Sprit rigs also have no boom, and the advantage that the sail can be brailed up out of the way against the mast when rowing or motoring. Lug rigs are another common single sail type used in small dinghies, both standing and balanced (with some area forward of the mast), and usable with or without a boom.
Traditional working dinghies have a lee board that can be hooked over the side. This does not split the cargo space. A sailing rudder is usually tied or clipped to a simple pair of pintles (hinge pins) on the transom with the bottom pintle being longer so that the rudder can be mounted one pintle at a time. The rope keeps the rudder from floating off in a wave. Both rudders and lee boards have swiveling tips so the dinghy can be landed. Rudders are often arranged so the tiller folds against the rudder to make a compact package.
Racing dinghies usually have a daggerboard or centreboard to better sail upwind. The trunk is in the middle of what would otherwise be cargo area. A self-rescue dinghy intended to be used as a proactive lifeboat has leeboards on either side, to allow for maximum open cockpit area.
Solar propulsion uses hybrid flexible solar panels integrated into the bimini suppling power to a lithium battery bank. Twin in-hull trolling motors produce 72 pounds of thrust powering the solar dinghy to 3 - 5 knots depending on weather conditions. Alternate power is supplied by a propane outboard for increased speed and range.
Additional U.S. Coast Guard Required Items and Non-Required Items that should always be on a dinghy: These are the U.S. Coast Guard's Minimum Requirements For Recreational Boats:
These next Items are not a Coast Guard Requirement but you should always try to have these on board to maximize safety:
This equipment should be in a bag made of water-resistant materials.
Andersen-style self-bailers are also useful for engine-driven and sailing dinghies. These slot-shaped seacocks project into the stream below the hull and open when submerged and moving rapidly using the venturi effect. The downside of this solution is that if the boat is beached in sand, it can clog the self-bailers until the boat is inverted and the sand removed. These devices do not replace a hand-bailer as they are only useful if the vessel is moving.
A small anchor can be used to allow the crew of the dinghy to fish or rest. Dinghy anchors are usually either a mushroom shape, a small folding grapple hook or the more modern and efficient Danforth type, with floating rope that will avoid being cut by snags on the bottom. The mushroom is used in locations where the bottom is very muddy, while the grapple works better in rocks. Some persons prefer a small Danforth or plow,because of their superior holding power in all but rocks, but these have sharp edges, and need to be set with a little care. Even a dinghy should have a length of chain attached to the anchor - the same length as the dinghy. The warp then attaches to the short chain with a wired shackle. This gives added weight and help in setting an anchor. It also stops the warp fraying on sharp rocks when the dinghy swings to and fro with the tide. Generally an anchor warp should be 4 times the depth of the water. In strong winds this can be extended to 8 times the depth but most dinghies are not seaworthy enough to be anchored securely in such storm conditions.
A dinghy should not be able to scratch the mother-boat's paint; therefore a fender made from a length of heavy rope (or a strip of polyurethane) can be tied loosely to the outside of the bulwarks. This also provides a handhold for launching, or for people overboard to climb into the boat. Many modern dinghies have a molded ridge of plastic to replace the rope. A fitted acrylic canvas cover can shed seas or act as a shade or storage cover. Traditionally it toggles to the fender-rope or is suspended from the gunter (small folding mast) but can also be tied to a few points and secured with snaps or Velcro. Depending on the design there may be a large locker under a thwart.
Media related to Dinghies at Wikimedia Commons
The dictionary definition of dinghies at Wiktionary
The Twelve Foot Dinghy was designed by George Cockshott, an amateur boat designer from Southport, England in response to a 1912 design contest. It became the first one-design racing dinghy to achieve international recognition.The class was granted the 'International' status by the IYRU in 1919 and remained this status until 1964 when it was revoked by the same authority.
The class was selected as one of the Olympic classes for the Olympics in 1920 & 1928.18 foot dinghy
The 18 foot Dinghy was used in the 1920 Summer Olympics as a double handed Olympic class. One team was present at the starting line and won the gold. Three races were scheduled, with final places decided by total points with point-for-place scoring for each race. Only one race was started with only Great Britain competing but accounts vary as to if they finished the race.420 (dinghy)
The International 420 Class Dinghy is a double-handed (2 crew) monohull planing dinghy with centreboard, bermuda rig and center sheeting. The name describes the overall length of the boat in centimeters (the boat is exactly 4.2 meters long). The hull is fiberglass with internal buoyancy tanks. The 420 is equipped with spinnaker and optional trapeze. It has a large sail-area-to-weight ratio, and is designed to plane easily. It can be rigged to be sailed single-handed.
The 420 was designed specifically to be easier to handle than its larger higher-performance cousin, the 470. The 420 was designed by French engineer Christian Maury, as a stepping-stone for club and youth sailing to the 470. The 420 is an International class recognized by the International Sailing Federation.
A derivative of the 420 called the Club 420 is popular in the North America. This class is not recognised by International Sailing Federation or the International 420 Class Association and cannot be used at class events. The boats are very similar in appearance but the Club 420 is slightly stronger and heavier.470 (dinghy)
The 470 (Four-Seventy) is a double-handed monohull planing dinghy with a centreboard, Bermuda rig, and centre sheeting. Equipped with a spinnaker, trapeze and a large sail-area-to-weight ratio, it is designed to plane easily, and good teamwork necessary to sail it well. The name comes from the overall length of the boat in centimetres (i.e., the boat is 4.70 metres long).
The 470 is a popular class with both individuals and sailing schools, offering a good introduction to high-performance boats without being excessively difficult to handle, but it is not a boat designed for beginners. Its smaller sister, the 420, is a stepping stone to the 470.
The 470 is a World Sailing International Class and has been an Olympic class since the 1976 games.49er (dinghy)
The 49er and 49er FX is a two-handed skiff-type high-performance sailing dinghy. The two crew work on different roles with the helm making many tactical decisions, as well as steering, and the crew doing most of the sail control. Both of the crew are equipped with their own trapeze and sailing is handled while "flying".
The 49er was designed by Julian Bethwaite (the son of Frank Bethwaite) and developed by a consortium consisting of Bethwaites, Performance Sailcraft Japan, Peter Johnston, and Ovington boats. The boat has been an Olympic class since it was selected by the International Sailing Federation after a series of trials to be the men's high performance double handed dinghy Sydney Summer Games of 2000. Its derivative featuring a re-designed rig, the 49er FX, was selected by ISAF to be the women's high performance double-hander at the Rio Summer Olympics of 2016.B14 (dinghy)
The B14 is a two man monohull dinghy, designed by Julian Bethwaite. It is recognised as an international class by the International Sailing Federation. The boat was designed in 1984.Byte (dinghy)
The Byte is a small one-design sailing dinghy sailed by one person. It was designed by Canadian Ian Bruce, who also commissioned and marketed the Laser.Cadet (dinghy)
The Cadet is a class of sailing dinghy designed to be sailed by two children up to the age of 17. It is a one-design class, originally designed by Jack Holt in 1947. Cadets are sailed worldwide in more than 40 countries.Dinghy sailing
Dinghy sailing is the activity of sailing small boats by using five essential controls:
the foils (i.e. the daggerboard or centreboard and rudder and sometimes lifting foils as found on the Moth)
the trim (forward/rear angle of the boat in the water)
side-to-side balance of the dinghy by hiking or movement of the crew, particularly in windy weather ("move fast or swim")
the choice of route (in terms of existing and anticipated wind shifts, possible obstacles, other water traffic, currents, tides etc.)When racing, the above skills need to be refined and additional skills and techniques learned, such as the application of the "racing rules of sailing", boat handling skills when starting and when rounding marks, and knowledge of tactics and strategy. Racing tactics include positioning your boat at different angles. To improve speed when racing, sailors should position themselves at the windward direction (closest to the direction of the wind) in order to get "clean air".
Shared challenges and the variability of the weather and sea can make dinghy sailing and racing a fascinating and rewarding recreational sport: physically, mentally, and in terms of personal relationships with other crew members, competitors, and organizers. The RYA, regulating authority for sail training in the UK and Europe, states that, "With a reliance on nature and the elements, sailing ... is about adventure, exploration, teamwork and fun."Europe (dinghy)
The Europe is a one-person dinghy designed in Belgium in 1960 by Alois Roland as a class legal Moth dinghy. The design later changed into its own one-design class.
The dinghy is ideal for sailors weighing 50–75 kilos. The hull is made of fibre glass and weighs 45 kg, fully rigged 60 kg. The dinghy is tapering in the stem and round in the bottom. The sail is made of dacron. The mast is made of carbon fibre and specially designed to the sailor. A soft mast is best for light sailors, while heavier sailors use stiffer masts. Sails are also specially designed according to mast stiffness and crew weight.
The Europe was introduced as an Olympic class in the 1992 Summer Olympics as the women's single-handed dinghy. It was replaced by the Laser Radial in the 2008 Summer Olympics.
Since 2008 the Europe is one of the Vintage Yachting Classes at the Vintage Yachting Games.Finn (dinghy)
The Finn dinghy is the men's single-handed, cat-rigged Olympic class for sailing. It was designed by Swedish canoe designer, Rickard Sarby, in 1949 for the 1952 Summer Olympics in Helsinki. Since the 1952 debut of the boat, the design has been in every summer Olympics, making it one of the most prolific Olympic sailboats as it is the longest serving dinghy in the Olympic Regatta. It currently fills the slot for the Heavyweight Dinghy at the Olympic games. It has been contended that the Finn is the most physical and tactical singlehander sailboat in the world.Fireball (dinghy)
Originally designed by Peter Milne in 1962, the Fireball is a one-design high-performance sailing dinghy. The Fireball is sailed by a crew of two, and sports a single trapeze, symmetric spinnaker and chined hull. The class is strictly controlled, but has adapted to advances in building techniques. The hulls (plywood, FRP or composite) have a strict minimum weight limit of 175 lb (79 kg) (with correctors).
The Fireball is a highly competitive dinghy, with large fleets worldwide and state, national, continental and world championships held annually. Competitors of all ages help make this class enjoyable for everyone. The performance of the boat is very dependent on tuning as the Fireball's rig can be adjusted in numerous ways.
The 2010 Fireball World Championships were held in Barbados in May 2010. The 2011 Worlds were held in Sligo Yacht Club, Sligo, Ireland. The 2012 World Championships were held in Mandurah, Western Australia. The 2012 European Championships were held at Lake Bracciano in July. The Fireball celebrated its 50th year in 2012 and the 50th UK National Championships was held at Penzance in August.
The Fireball can also be sailed in a mixed fleet using the Portsmouth Yardstick handicap scheme. Its Portsmouth number is 980 in the UK and its D-PN (in the USA) is 85.6.Flying Dutchman (dinghy)
The Flying Dutchman (FD) is a 20-foot one-design high-performance two-person monohull racing dinghy. Developed in the early 1950s in the Netherlands, its large sail area per unit weight allow it to plane easily when sailing upwind. The boat utilizes a trapeze harness for the crew and hiking straps for the skipper to counterbalance the wind force on its sails. It made its Olympic debut at the 1960 Olympic Games.
The FD is still one of the fastest racing dinghies in the world. She carries a mainsail, a very large foresail genoa, and a large spinnaker for running and reaching. The FD has been the basis for many important innovations in sailing over the past half century:
First one-design dinghy to make use of a trapeze gear, a feature commonly found today on high performance dinghies and catamarans
Roller furling genoa
Windward sheeting traveler
Spinnaker pole launchers
Composite constructionThese innovations were possible because the FD was left as an "open" one-design class, where innovation and development in the boat is allowed and encouraged. Parameters that influence the speed of the boat directly, including hull shape, weight, and sail area are strictly controlled, but other areas can be adapted to suit.
The FD was sailed in Olympic competitions from 1960 Olympic Games through the 1992 Olympic Games. Since 2008 the FD is one of the Vintage Yachting Classes at the Vintage Yachting Games.Laser (dinghy)
The International Laser Class sailboat, also called Laser Standard and the Laser One is a popular one-design class of small sailing dinghy. According to the Laser Class Rules the boat may be sailed by either one or two people, though it is rarely sailed by two. The design, by Bruce Kirby, emphasizes simplicity and performance. The dinghy is manufactured by independent companies in different parts of the world, including LaserPerformance (Americas, Europe, Asia, and Middle East), Performance Sailcraft Australia (Oceania) and Performance Sailcraft Japan.
The Laser is one of the most popular single-handed dinghies in the world. As of 2018, there are more than 215,000 boats worldwide. A commonly cited reason for its popularity is that it is robust and simple to rig and sail in addition to its durability; it's also very fast. The Laser also provides very competitive racing due to the very tight class association controls which eliminate differences in hull, sails and equipment.
The term "Laser" is often used to refer to the Laser Standard (the largest of the sail plan rigs available for the Laser hull). However, there are two other sail plan rigs available for the Laser Standard hull and a series of other "Laser"-branded boats which are of completely different hull designs. Examples include the Laser 2 and Laser Pico. The Laser Standard, Laser Radial and Laser 4.7 are three types of 'Laser' administered by the International Laser Class Association.
The laser's hull is made out of GRP, Glass Reinforced Plastics. The deck has a foam layer underneath for strength.Laser 2
The Laser 2 is a double-handed version of the popular Laser one-design class of small sailing dinghy. It is a quick, planing dinghy that differs from the Laser in that it has a jib, symmetric spinnaker and a
trapeze for the crew. It was designed by New Zealander Frank Bethwaite and was first launched as a product in Australia then North America in 1979 and in Europe in 1980. The hull is made of GRP (glass reinforced plastic). The rig is a Bermudian rig sloop with spinnaker. It is designed to be a mid to high performance racer. In Britain, its most common current use is at university class in British University Sailing Association (BUSA) events. A version known as the Laser Fun was available, the same hull but featuring a reefable mainsail and a roller furling jib, and with the option of an asymmetric spinnaker (Laser Fun New Wave). As a strict one-design boat the Laser 2 was not available for amateur construction.
Frank Bethwaite's hull design for the Laser 2 was married to a new deck and rig to produce the Laser 3000 in 1996, which has since gone on to form the basis of the 3000 Class. Production was discontinued after the 2007 merger of its manufacturers Laser UK and Vanguard Sailboats into Laser Performance.Mirror (dinghy)
The Mirror is a popular sailing dinghy with more than 70,000 built.
The Mirror was named after the Daily Mirror, a UK newspaper with a largely working class distribution. The Mirror was from the start promoted as an affordable boat, and as a design it has done a great deal to make dinghy sailing accessible to a wide audience. Although most popular in the UK, Mirrors are also sailed in other countries, notably Australia, Ireland, Sweden, Canada, the Netherlands, South Africa, New Zealand, the Philippines and the United States.OK (dinghy)
The OK Dinghy is an international class sailing dinghy, designed by Knud Olsen in 1956.Optimist (dinghy)
The Optimist is a small, single-handed sailing dinghy intended for use by children up to the age of 15. Contemporary boats are usually made of fibreglass, although wooden boats are still built.
It is one of the most popular sailing dinghies in the world, with over 150,000 boats officially registered with the class and many more built but never registered.
The Optimist is recognized as an International Class by the International Sailing Federation.Snipe (dinghy)
The Snipe is a 15 1⁄2 foot, 2 person, one design racing dinghy. Designed by William Crosby in 1931, it has evolved into a modern, tactical racing dinghy with fleets around the world. The class is governed by the Snipe Class International Racing Association (SCIRA) and recognized by the International Sailing Federation as an International Class sailed in 30 different countries. There have been over 31,000 Snipes constructed worldwide.
The global Snipe slogan is "Serious sailing, Serious fun".
The Snipe class has both developed and attracted some of the sailing world's top competitors. Four of the top olympic medalists in sailing (Torben Grael, Paul Elvstrøm, Robert Scheidt and Mark Reynolds) have competed in the Snipe. Five Snipe sailors have received the ISAF World Sailor of the Year Awards: Mark Reynolds, Robert Scheidt, Torben Grael, Anna Tunnicliffe and Santiago Lange.