Avon Sailboats

Small boats.  Right parts.  Fine service.  Since 1968.

Board Boats

Resting between Laser Races


  • Ease of Handling

    Lightweight and simple, board boats are an excellent choice if you just want to sail, and you want to sail primarily alone. Easy to beach, just lift the daggerboard as the water shallows.

  • Exceptional for Learning

    Learning on a board boat is as straightforward as you get. They are top-notch, teach-yourself-by-trial-and-error sailboats. You will receive immediate reward for your right action, and immediate consequence from your poor choice of action. You'll get seat-of-the-pants fun, and if you are wise enough to laugh at yourself, they will prove a constant source of amusement.

  • Responsiveness

    Board boats are excellent boats on which to hone your skills. Being small, they respond to your weight shifts. Being uncomplicated, you learn what each piece, and each control line does independent of the other—and you are in charge of them all. Some say if you can sail a board boat well, you can sail anything.

  • Easy to Upright
    VIDEO: Righting a Laser

    —capsized by a dolphin!

    Because of its lean rig, and shallow, doesn't-scoop-up-water hull, a board boat is easy to right after a capsize. You can't get yourself into too much trouble on any size lake, assuming you have enough body weight and agility to right the boat and climb in after a capsize, and you're spry enough to repeat the procedure multiple times on a windy day. Most board boats self-bail any water that splashes in.

  • Car-top ability

    Car-topping is feasible for one-time or occasional transport, but trailering is easier, launching is faster, and you can go sailing when and where you want to, with or without anyone else around.

Keep in Mind

Because they are small, board boats are especially sensitive to passengers' weight and placement. Everyone in the boat must be active right now—and for the duration of the sail. No passivity allowed. No "sit here, stay put." When you are learning, passengers may be a hindrance.

When it's windy, board boats are a wet, wild ride. Buy gear for your body so you can remain dry, warm, and comfortable in various conditions; plan your budget accordingly.


Just because they're small, doesn't mean they're easy—especially on a windy day. Sailors using any small boat should know how to swim—and this is crucial in a board boat, as capsizing is likely when you're new to sailing, and when sailing in a blow.

Remember speeding downhill on your bike? Sail a board boat!

What's a board boat?


Board boats are shallow and often flat on top, thus the term board boat. Most have a footwell or cockpit for your legs, and are lightweight. You sit on board boats, rarely in them.

Sail Rig

All have one upright pole (mast). Most have a simple rig (lateen or Marconi) with one sail. Some have two sails (sloop), few have three (sloop with spinnaker).


Board boats are suitable for any size lake, even big water, near shore, if your experience and skill are adequate.


Capacity: 1–3 people.


Price range: ready to sail used $1000–$4000; new $3200–$6000.

Sail in Michigan?

Connect with southeast Michigan sailing clubs and fleets, find sailing lakes in nearby Metro Detroit counties or learn to sail, even if you don't yet own a boat.

Need something else?

  1. Pico

    durable beach boat

    User-friendly, roomy. Two sails promote teamwork between parent/child. Rugged and inexpensive. Easily singlehanded. more

  2. Sunfish

    seat-of-the-pants fun

    Classic: one of the first fiberglass board boats. Popular since 1950. Simple rig: kid can raise the lateen sail. more

  3. Expo 12.5

    so easy to sail

    Sporty design with innovative SmartRig™: sail rolls up in seconds. more

  4. Laser

    affordable perfection

    The "gold standard" of board boats. Responsive, raced worldwide. Olympic class since 1996. more

  5. Other Boats

    available by special order including the V–15

  6. Used Boats ▼

    We stock new and used board boats. Prices start around $1000. Call or visit our showroom. Need directions to our shop?

Copyright © 2008 Avon Sailboats • SMALL SAILBOATS & KAYAKS, METRO DETROIT, SOUTHEAST MICHIGAN • 1033 East Auburn, Rochester Hills • r8.5.21