The Dolphin Story
A sailing dinghy, which satisfies the need for ease of handling by a two-man crew, combined with practical single-handed pleasure sailing capability, the DOLPHIN succeeds in offering both characteristics in addition to superb racing performance. With these criteria in mind, Heinz Horstbrink designed the DOLPHIN in the early eighties. Heinz further specified that the craft should have simple, standardised controls and that operating and maintenance expenses should be minimal. DOLPHIN NO. 1 was carefully crafted from wood. The hull was then used to generate the first mould, from which the fibreglass hulls are drawn.
The DOLPHIN is an all-fibreglass dinghy measuring 4,60m from stem to stern. Sloop rigged she carries jib (3.6m2 )and mainsail (9.0m2 ). The cockpit is spacious, almost 2,44m in length and is surrounded by four separate buoyancy compartments formed by the bow and stern sections and side tanks. The hull is of sandwich construction, stiffened by two longitudinal ribs. A feature of the DOLPHIN is the outstanding finish. Centreboard casing top, thwart, centreboard, rudder, rudderstock and tiller are varnished wood. The cockpit floor is coated with non-slip paint. Stringent class rules require that all DOLPHINS must remain virtually identical. The DOLPHIN thus remains both competitive and a sound investment. Specified fittings consist of:- adjustable jib fairleads with cleats mounted on the side tanks, mainsheet block mounted on the aft end of the centreboard casing, kicking strap, cunningham, clew outhaul, toe straps for both helmsman and crew, and whisker pole. The mast is tapered and stayed with fixed spreaders. Two self-bailers are fitted underneath the thwart. The centreboard may be controlled by two lines led aft and the rudder may be raised. The jib and main halyards are stowed by two neat shock cords mounted on the forward bulkhead.
The DOLPHIN has a beautifully balanced helm and performs superbly under all conditions. Control response is quick, safe and confidence inspiring. The ability to plane, even to windward, astonishes even the best of dinghy sailors.
For handicapping purposes the DOLPHIN is rated at 109 Portsmouth yardstick. (This can be compared to the Laser at 114 and the Fireball at 105).
The DOLPHIN Class Association is properly constituted and affiliated to South African Sailing. Membership of both associations is obligatory for participation in racing events.