Welcome to CSC!

The Cal Sailing Club is a non-profit, volunteer-run sailing club in Berkeley

Membership costs just $99 for 3 months ($89 for students and seniors) plus 2 hours volunteer work and there are no charges for lessons, equipment use, cruises, or other club activities.  Choose About CSC for more information, to join, See plans and pricing.

Once you've signed up, you'll need your Membership #  from your invoice or confirmation email.  If you forget that, check with the dayleader (they have the list of current members) or better yet, login again with your username and password and go to Account Info .  

Welcome aboard! Welcome to CSC!

Junior Skipper Fast Track Dates for 2018

We will be offering five Junior Skipper Fast Tracks this year. These are 5 day (Monday through Friday) intensive dinghy lessons, 1 on 2, from around 5pm to sunset. They are designed to move you closer to your Junior Skipper rating (which you may even get that week, but even if you don't, you'll be a much better sailor at the end of the week). Details will be announced within a few weeks of the start of each. Participants should have all Junior requirements completed except for the on-the-water test.

These are the dates:

  • April 30 - May 4
  • June 4 - 8
  • June 25 - 29
  • July 30 - August 3
  • August 20 - 24

Advanced Dinghy Classes for 2018

Advanced Dinghy will start of Monday,  May 7, and will be held on every Monday evening from then until the end of August, except for US holidays and Fast Track weeks. These classes are intended for Junior Skippers working on their Senior rating. They will cover the required skills and much more. Details will be announced a few weeks before the classes start.

Open House Dates for 2018

During Open Houses we offer FREE introductory sails to the general public aboard our fleet of keelboats and dinghies. Children must be at least 5 years of age and accompanied by an adult. Each Open House runs from 1-4pm on the dates listed above. More detailed information is here.

Please try to arrive promptly at 1 pm when the signups start.  Depending on the conditions and the amount of people, the sign-up/rides may end before 4pm.Come on down and get out on the bay! Already a member? Come on down and help out! The 2018 Open House Schedule is below:

  • Sunday, February 4
  • Sunday, March 11
  • Saturday, April 14 - Coincides with the Berkeley Bay Festival! 
  • Sunday, May 13
  • Sunday, June 17
  • Sunday, July 15
  • Sunday, August 12
  • Sunday, September 16
  • Sunday, October 14
  • Sunday, November 11

Junior Dinghy Skipper/Windsurfer Tests Now Online

Until now, you had to take your Junior Dinghy Skipper and Junior Windsurfer Written at the Clubhouse. No longer. It's now available on-line. You can take it on the Clubhouse computer or at home. You can also go through the test to prepare yourself before taking it.

You need to be logged in to look at or take the test.

To look at the Junior Skipper Test (you must be logged in):
Go to Ratings->Written Test->Junior Skipper Sailboat->Read Test
To take the test:
Go to Ratings->Written Test->Junior Skipper Sailboat->Take Test

To look at the Junior Wiindsurfer Test (you must be logged in):
Go to Ratings->Written Test->Junior Windsufert->Read Test
To take the test:
Go to Ratings->Written Test->Junior Windsufer->Take Test

Both are closed book, so please honor that and don't look up the answers while you're taking the
test, but feel free to go through the exam ahead of time.

If you pass, that will be recorded automatically, and you will get an email of the results.
If you don't pass, you won't be told what you missed, and you'll have to wait a day to take the test again.

Note that you must take the test online, at the Clubhouse or elsewhere. You can no longer take
it on paper. This gives the Day Leader more time to monitor the South Sailing Basin.

The Novice Windwurfer and Racing Skipper tests have been available online for some time.

Windsurf Lessons Now on "Fall/Winter" Schedule

We no longer offer windsurf lessons on Sundays, only Saturdays from 10:30 am to 1 pm. Sunday windsurf lessons will begin again in late Spring. Watch this space.

 

Step 7: Steering

Did you ever notice that there is no rudder on these darn things, let alone a tiller or wheel. A brilliant insight of Drake and Schweitzer was that a rudder wasn't needed!

Steering upwind is easy. Move the sail back and over the rear of the board (see Figure A). The foot of the sail may actually touch the deck of the board. Hold this position until the board changes direction: then move the sail back to the neutral position (see sailing stance). If you are having trouble making the board head upwind, you are not moving the sail far enough back and far enough over the board. The lighter the wind, the more you have to exaggerate this move. Be careful that you do not head up into the wind too much and get caught in the NO sailing zone (see below and Sailing Terms, Points of Sail).

Many sailors have more trouble turning off the wind (away from the wind). The maneuver is just the opposite of the above: move the sail forward and across the front of the board (see Figure B). Be sure to sheet in, because if you do not have power in the sail, you will not turn. After you change direction, move the sail back to the neutral position. If the wind is light, you must exaggerate leaning the sail forward and to windward. In order to move the sail far enough forward, it may be necessary to move your hands back on the boom.

If you have trouble turning the board off the wind, you are doing one of two things wrong: (1) You do not have the sail leaning far enough forward and across the front of the board. Lean the sail as much as the figure B above; (2) You are not sheeting in and therefore do not have power in the sail.

Where should you steer? To the next Whiskey Bar? For now, you should orient yourself to the wind, and sail in the green areas in the figure below. You will learn how to sail downwind (running) later. Avoid the NO sailing area. If you find yourself drifting sideways, or not moving much despite plenty of wind, you might be in the NO Sailing area. (Yes, the Bermuda Triangle exists.)

Now would be a good time to review stance: Are your knees bent? Is your butt in? Is your sail straight up and down or is it leaning out to leeward?

The theory of steering without a rudder

The sailboard is turned by moving the Center of Effort (CE) either in front or behind the Center of Lateral Resistance (CLR, see figure below). The CE is the center of the force of the wind on the sail. The CLR is the center of all the side-ways forces on the board. The CLR is located about approximately at the center of the centerboard. Think of the forces acting on the sail and board like a child on a teeter-totter. The CLR is the pivot point, the CE is the force (i.e. it is a child on one end of the teeter-totter or the other). If there is more wind force at the front of the board, the board will pivot and the bow of the board will swing downwind. If there is more wind force at the rear of the board, the board will pivot and point upwind.

Theory of Steering

The location of the CLR is determined mostly by the location of the centerboard. In high wind, you may have a tendency to point upwind. One way to counteract this is to move the CLR back by moving the centerboard partway up. When you raise the centerboard part way up, it will swing back, moving the CLR. (This trick also works with sailboats.)

The location of the CE is determined mostly by where you place the sail. If the board seems to have a slight tendency to head up or downwind, you can change the CE forward or back by moving your hands on the boom. For example, if you have a tendency to turn upwind, moving your hands back on the boom will have the effect of moving the sail (and CE) forward. Moving your hands forward on the boom has the opposite effect. Also, you can move the CE by moving the mast in the mast track forward or back. For example, in high wind if you continually tend to head upwind, move your hands back on the boom. If that doesn't do the trick, raise the centerboard about halfway up. Finally, you can move the mast forward in the mast track. (Move the mast back if you have a tendency to head downwind.)