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Sailing/scorpion sailboat


Bill Scorpion wrote at 2007-03-25 19:20:44
Scorpion was a 13'10" sailboat with a lanteen rig sail. The sail was dacron and about 75 square feet. It was made by Pargo Industries, Charlotte, NC, as I recall. Pargo is gone. It is an inch longer than a Sunfish and had better design characteristics and real brass fittings as opposed to the Sunfish, made by AMF, the bowling alley people. I have a 1970 Scorpion and it holds two people. It has a cockpit for the legs but it is a wet ride sometimes. Great for learning  basics of sailing and the math that goes with it. Fun for all. If it tips over, you just stand on the daggerboard and rights itself. While this post is months after the question, some other web travellers might find this helpful. $125 is a good deal. It is not the same as the UK boat.

Steve wrote at 2007-06-05 02:41:05
I have a small sunfish liek sailbot that was called a scorpion when I bought it.  $125 is a very good price if its usable.  Its parts are supposed to be interchangeable with sunfish parts but I havent had to replace anything yet.  The sail rigging is exactly the same and I have bought a sunfish sail for it that works fine.  

Capt Norm wrote at 2007-12-31 02:45:33
My wife got one for graduation in 1976 (jacksonville Fl) and we still have it. It needs some repair and I am presently restoring it. it is 14'-0" long and holds two people just fine. It is a knock off of a sunfish day sailer.

Production stopped some time in the late 1970's I think (maybe early 80's)

Mark wrote at 2008-04-26 12:03:33
I am an owner of the type of scorpion you are describing. I bought it new in 1973 from a dearer in Michigan. It was made in Charlotte, North Carolina by a company named Pargo Incorporated (just looked at the tag). I only recently got the boat back as a brother has had it for the last 25 years. I am currently restoring it and I am sure I will exceed the value during the restoration. I believe many of the parts are the same as the Sunfish. I have never compared the boat next to a Sunfish but have never compared it directly to the Sunfish. I do know that we could always point higher and sail faster than the Sunfish out on the lakes but that may have more to do with our aggressiveness rather than boat design. My understanding is that a Sunfish had 75 sq ft of sail and the Scorpion carried 85 sq ft. This is from memory rather than a true comparison.

Mark wrote at 2008-04-27 12:30:34
I am currently restoring one that I bought in 1973 and one difference is the sail area is a little larger than a Sunfish. Sunfish have 75sq ft sail area, (12.26x12.26 divided by 2)vs the Scorpion at 85 advertised sq ft, Actual is 84.5 sq ft, (13x13 divided by 2). I am considering giving up the difference and purchasing a Sunfish sail rather than having a sail made. I beleive there will be a big cost differenc.

D Trontell sailing buff wrote at 2008-08-14 00:39:32
I don't know what you mean by the Scorpion was, I purchased one in 1973 and am still sailing it.  The Scorpion is an ideal wet sailor with a lateen rig that was built to last.  As you stated the standing rigging is of a higher quality than that on the sunfish which superceded it, and can be rigged and sailed by one person.  This 13' 10" wet sailor was the first boat I owned and will probably be the one I keep after I have sold all the boats I have purchased since.  The reason is, it is an excellent craft. Designed to sail in winds up to 22 knots, the Scorpian makes a sunfish look like a tinker toy, sails faster, points higher, and will stay upright in higher winds, making it a fun boat to sail on breezy days.  

The Scorpian is suitable for those learning to sail, and the boat you will want to keep after you have lost interest in sailing bigger or more complicated racing rigs.  I would not part with mine for $800.00, so if you find one for less you have found a gem.

Doug142 wrote at 2008-09-06 23:31:12
I just today bought a brand new Scorpion ....YES it is true... has been in a garage for 33 years and has never seen the water....BRAND NEW  still had a bow sticker on it... sail perfect, rudder and daggerboard not a scratch. No sail rings and no big deal...I have ordered them.

Would like a owners manual for it though...any one have one they could copy and send me???


Doug   Oh! by the way I paid $636. for it...what a buy... brand new !!!!!

selenaserval wrote at 2009-09-18 02:32:06
I just bought a Scorpion today for $200.00 with a great trailer.  The boat is in really good condition, but I'm not sure what year mine was made.  It's not in the condition of Doug's new old stock boat, but it's really nice.  I think I got a good deal, especially with the trailer included in the price... everything's there, no missing parts at all.  Selena

DT wrote at 2010-03-04 22:25:04
Hey, all!  The scorpion is not a knock off of a sunfish, the sunfish is a knock off of the scorpion.  Yep, that's right.  AMF began to make sunfishes using the scorpion design when the original patten expired. The scorpion was the original lateen rig wet sailor.  Pargo didn't design it either.  A man from New Jersey did, sorry I do not remember his name. Anyway, if you are looking for fittings, the best thing to do is go to a marine hardward store.  Sunfish fittings easily distort under the pressure of a scorpian in sail.  The sail area is also larger that that used on a sunfish and if you try to mount a sunfish sail on a scorpion it will be like using a reefed sail.  The best thing to do is ship the original sail to North Sails and ask them to use the original as a template for a new sail.  I am so glad to see I am not the only long term scorpion lover out there, but not surprised.  While sunfishes have been falling apart and decaying, our scorpions keep on sailing!

Minnesota Matt wrote at 2010-05-14 01:35:32

Doug142 wrote at 2008-09-06 asking if someone had a manual.

I am a scorpion owner and would like to get my hands on one too.

Doug142... anyone?

Does someone have one to copy?


St Paul MN

Scorpion0419 wrote at 2011-04-15 19:48:30
I also would like to have a Scorpion manual. My wife and I have sailed a

Sunfish for the last 5 years and I recently met a man at a campground who was watching us and asked if we would be interested in owning a Scorpion that he had not sailed in the past 10 years. We went and looked at it and then left with it for 350.00$ with a very nice trailer. For the last year i have fallen in love with the Scorpion and have let my wife take ownership of the fish. I have also thought of buying a racing sail from "Intencity sails" But am worried about the size difference, Is a Sunfish racing sail larger then a regular sail?

Daren wrote at 2011-08-29 13:19:56
Finally!  Some Scorpion Owners!  I too just acquired a Scorpion on a it for an 8' Walker Bay Dinghy with a sail kit and electric outboard.  I think I got the better of the deal.  So, I am looking for other Scorpion sailors to talk to on line and wondering there are any in the DC area.  The HIN on my boat is 56044.  Anyone know what the year of manufacture is based on the HIN?


selenaserval wrote at 2011-09-02 23:45:32
Daren,  I love sailing my Scorpion on the Hood Canal in Washington state, and in a small lake by my cabin.  Wish there were more Scorpion owners around so we could sail boats together... have clam bakes, and regattas.  All the best,  Selena

SailorforLife wrote at 2012-05-13 00:24:51
The Scorpion is a Sunfish knockoff (Sunfish started back in 1959). There are many boats that are similar to the Sunfish, all sail pretty much the same. The big difference is that Sunfish became a CLASS boat with a huge following. So, if you just plan on kicking around and enjoying sailing, pretty much any of the 'knockoffs' will work for you - find the one in the best shape for the least price. If you think you ever plan on racing, then find a real sunfish. When racing, its important to race against identical boats, with well-controlled class rules.

By the way, there IS a Scorpion CLASS boat, but its an entirely different craft. Also, early sunfish boats had bronze fittings too. (not brass - brass is not good for fittings).

Hope this helps.

Grub wrote at 2015-04-10 20:57:29
Hi fellow Scorpion owners.  Nice to know there are some others out there.  I bought one new at age 16 for just under $500 (1968), having worked and saved for it as a teenager.  Still have it--still useable, w/ all original parts--though it hasn't been out of the garage for the past few years due to my schedule.  That will change this coming summer, when I'll get to use it more.  Given where I live, it has been used only seasonally.  Used to sail it in the ocean off the beaches in New Hampshire, now sail it on a river on the boundary between Maine and NH.  I wash it down from the salt water after each use and it has stood the test of time.  It's a great, fun boat.


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Andrew Pometti


I am a Level 1 (Small Boat) US Sailing Certified Instructor on City Island (Bronx), NY. I have been sailing since I was a young child and starting racing as a Junior Sailor and continue both now. Racing as a Junior Sailor against the regular club members we won three first place trophies in the club owned boat. In another race we borrowed a members boat and placed third in a race that attracted sailors from around the NY,NJ,CT area.

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