My quest for a used Mirror dinghy in North America

When I decided I wanted to own and sail a Mirror again after a 40-year hiatus, I started looking for on-line sites that might be used as a market place for them in North America. I live near Atlanta in the USA, and soon realized that most North America Mirrors are found in Canada near Toronto, Ontario, or in the USA near the Great Lakes. Here is my journey and experiences, shared in the hope it will speed up the process for others searching for a used Mirror in North America.

I soon found the OMDA Ontario Mirror Dinghy Association web site and its list of used Mirrors for sale as well as those that had been sold through this site. A great price comparison tool. I was not ready to buy at that time (2013) and was just browsing. A few years later I was ready to buy (2016). I went back to the site and contacted all the sellers of the boats I was interested in. I soon found that most had been sold, so I contacted all 10 owners listed on this site. Of the 10, only 4 were available. One was sold during my research, so 3 left. I contacted OMDA to have them update their site which they did. Sadly, it now appears that the OMDA site is no longer being maintained as the posting are aging with no new content.

Craigslist: is a great site to sell items locally in the USA. If you want to see items out of your area, it requires changing the search areas, one by one. It is also difficult to keep track of which areas one has searched. I was then introduced to Search Tempest, . This site searches all Craigslist and eBay listings according to your search criteria. I chose the USA and Canada (in the link above). There is an option to view results in a Single List, or Direct Results (which sometimes flushes out Mirrors not listed in the Single List for some reason). I found Mirrors in many USA states, though it does seem to be seasonal, so don’t expect to find more than one or two at a time, and often none. I did not find any Mirrors on Craigslist from Canada. I did find my ‘new’ Mirror in Ohio through Craigslist.

I have only seen one Mirror come up on eBay in the USA.

Mirror Discussion Forum: A great resource (Especially for advice on refurbishing Mirrors) but not many US boats advertised. Well organized content.

The group “People who love Mirror sailing dinghies” will sometimes carry boats for sale, but mostly in the UK. But still a great resource especially if you are looking for uTube videos, refurbishing pictures, and Mirror visuals, etc. Not as easy to navigate as the Mirror discussion forum.

Other Mirror sites: (though probably won’t help with the search)
1) Google Groups – usmirrorsailing mostly dormant but some interesting older posts
2) - the official international site – Lots of stimulating racing info, and links to local fleets where they exist.
3) – This is the old site for the US Mirror Class Association, but it no longer works.

I have no idea what sites they use to sell items, though I have tried several without any Mirrors to be found.

I did not search here as it is too far away from me.

I hope that this will help any prospective Mirror buyer in North America to find the boat they are looking for and hopefully save another one from a ‘Viking burial’.

Should anyone have any other web sites that one can use, or other buying insights, please add to this list.


Hi Bill,
Thanks for sharing your experience on getting a used Mirror Dinghy and Congratulations on obtaining one.
Another available option is to purchase a new Mirror Dinghy kit from


PuffinInTegel's picture

It's good to hear that you like our forum. I assume that you have read about the Mirror for sale in Houston. The United States are a huge country ... so I suppose transportation is a problem if you don't find a fitting boat in a nearby state.
Excuse us for not always posting when a boat has been sold. Feedback on the sale should come from the buyer or the seller but this is frequently forgotten.
Maybe Pete and I should put a time limit on the sales postings and delete them after the limit is reached, even if no feedback is received.
Gernot H.

Another American Mirror quest... my tale was similar to yours but with a happy ending. I may have been one of the last to buy a used mirror through the OMDA site. A gentleman in Ohio had two for sale and I bought one. To this day I deeply regret not having bought both!

Amazingly enough, here in Massachusetts I have met two local mirror owners, but none close enough to sail with often. It's a beautiful boat and my kids have loved it. Ex pat Brits are drawn to it like flies to honey. Every few times I'm at the boat yard, I hear "I haven't seen one of those in (large number) years! I learned to sail on one of these!".

Do you know that there are 3 or 4 Mirror sailors in Woods Hole, MA?

62816inBerlin's picture

Ohio seems to be a locale where Mirrors were quite popular at some time in the past century. I assume that there are quite a few forgotten boats in barns, sheds and boat-houses in that state.

I have a Mirror that has been hanging from the ceiling of my garage in RI for a long time. As far as I can tell, it has all its hardware, including oars, jib, and spinnaker. The hull has a couple of spots that need attention, all wood surfaces need paint/varnish, and the 80's vintage lines should be replaced. I don't have a trailer.

Chris in Hope Valley, RI

I'm interested in moving it on to a new owner who will restore and use it.

I just sailed a mirror labor day week-end and I want one. Do you stil have yours and is it for sale. I live in East Providence and would love to come take a look at it.

Just purchased Chris in Hope Valley, RI's mirror and can't wait to start cleaning her up and give her a nice coat of paint.
Thank's Chris

Congratulations on the purchase of your Mirror. I hope you have a lot of fun cleaning her up and giving her a nice coat of paint. Then I hope you have as many years sailing her as I did mine.

I'm glad to see it in a new home

PuffinInTegel's picture

A warm welcome from me too.
When you have time after getting your boat ready to sail, think about having your details added to the Roll Call (accessible via the "Documents" menu item on the top left).
I hope this turns out to be a great sailing season for all of us!
Gernot H.

DavidH's picture

I've recently bought a boat. Buying a Mirror in the UK isn't all fun and games (although I enjoyed the search).

There are a few Mirrors for sale on eBay and other auction sites in the UK at any one time. Most look to be restoration jobs, and some are clearly past restoration. When I was looking the (few) good boats advertised were without trailers which meant sourcing a trailer too. I decided on a new trailer in the end. Didn't cost a fortune, and it will be reliable. I found a boat which had hardly been used, then put away in storage. I hope the wood and joints are good - they look to be. The sails look almost new. I'll pick that up in the next two weeks, and get a bit of use out of her before the Winter, then she'll be parked until the Spring. That gives me time to work on the oars, tiller, and other bits and pieces which I think can be improved. I MAY be able to extend the Winter sailing time since I already have a drysuit for kayaking.