Crew: 1-2 man crew. For racing, ideal weight of sailors should be between 100 and 110kgs.
Dimensions: 3.32 meters in length, 1.4 meters in width and ±46kg.
Sail Area: 6.4 square meters, spinnaker is 6 square meters.
Class:Restricted (hull shape remains the same from year to year)
Characteristics: Classic design with a strong UK racing circuit. It is a excellent boat to start sailing on.
Difficulty Level: Beginner
With its low price, light and seaworthy design that is easy to sail, the Mirror quickly achieved its objectives, becoming the World's most popular double handed sailing dinghy. Probably responsible for introducing more people to the delights of sailing than any other design, some have even gone onto win Olympic medals, the latest being Paul Goodison taking Gold in China. The Mirror is a real proper little boat, with its deep 'sit-in' cockpit, that inspires confidence for sailors of all ages and abilities, easy to sail but a challenge to sail well. In 2008 the Mirror is just as relevant and popular as ever, with regular updates to keep the class modern and fresh.
Mirrors can be sailed without a jib by moving the mast into an optional forward step and moving the shroud attachment points forward. However, in this configuration it can be difficult to tack, so it would mainly be used to de-power the boat for beginners. Most single handers retain the mast in the standard position and handle the jib as well: because of the Mirror's small size, this is quite manageable.
Mirror class rules permit the use of a spinnaker. This may also be used by single handers as well - although flying a main, jib and spinnaker single-handed sounds complex, it is quite manageable with a bit of practice.
Mainsail controls permitted by the class are downhaul (Cunningham), outhaul and kicking strap (Vang). The Jib tack fixing may also be adjustable while sailing allowing changes in jib luff tension and tack height.
The Mirror is light and stable enough to be sailed safely by two young teenagers or two adults. It is an excellent boat for children or teenagers learning sailing for the first time.
Despite not being a particularly fast dinghy, the Mirror is popular for one-design racing. Because of the very large number that have been made, it is fairly easy to find other Mirror sailors to race against - at least in the countries where the Mirror is popular. The large fleet of similar boats coupled with the Mirror's stability and relative complexity (for a boat of this size) make it the ideal boat to learn racing skills. It is a recommended UK Olympic pathway boat and many top sailors learned their trade in mirrors. Mirrors are raced competitively worldwide.