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Old 10-01-2016, 17:53   #1
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Any obvious issues with headsail down hauls?

To douse my jib, I go to the mast, cast off the Jib Halyard,
then - being very careful not to let the halyard loose, I walk to the bow and pull the jib down by hand.
As the mast winch does double duty, there is a clutch on the mast. Frustratingly, as the halyard runs through, this clutch trips itself at times, stopping the halyard coming down. I must then return to the mast to free it.

I've read about Jib Down haul.
( Headsail downhaul solution | The $tingy Sailor)

As a solution to the 'forth & back mast foot / bow' this looks inviting, taking the jib down with work all from the base of the mast?

Any obvious issues with headsail down hauls?
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Old 10-01-2016, 18:15   #2
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Re: Any obvious issues with headsail down hauls?

Downhaul is the way to go. Don't put it on the headboard, use the first or second hank. I always used to heave to when sailing on port tack, so the jib would come down on the foredeck and the hanks would be perfectly positioned to release. Think about it.
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Old 10-01-2016, 18:46   #3
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Re: Any obvious issues with headsail down hauls?

I sometimes run the tail of the halyard forward through a block as a downhaul. This works well, but in light winds it can hang up slightly slowing the drop. A few fairleads up the luff or some such can help stop the bight going overboard. And also reduces the chance of the downhaul getting caught on stuff on the way up.

Downhauls are well worth a try, but normally I prefer the simplicity of just hauling it down by hand, unless the sail is on the end of a long slippery bowsprit or something.

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Old 10-01-2016, 20:40   #4
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Re: Any obvious issues with headsail down hauls?

You can also attach a loop to the mast above the clutch that you can lower over the clutch arm to keep it from dropping when you want the clutch to stay open.

Some folks run both the halyard and the downhaul to the cockpit to avoid having to go to the bow at all, which is nice in rough weather.

You might also enjoy Googling "Gerr downhaul".
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Old 11-01-2016, 09:02   #5
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Re: Any obvious issues with headsail down hauls?

Downhauls are great, as discussed. One of the better uses for light Spectra/Dyneema line, because you can use very thin stuff as it's strong enough, as long as it's got a top cover for the UV issue. Head to wind, release and boom, it's on deck. Bring in the sheets and leave it secure until docking.
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Old 11-01-2016, 09:10   #6
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Re: Any obvious issues with headsail down hauls?

Slightly off topic but if you head directly downwind the jib/genoa will usually come flying down, no need for a down haul.
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Old 11-01-2016, 13:54   #7
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Re: Any obvious issues with headsail down hauls?

If you head directly downwind and just release the halyard, the top of the genoa will go overboard over the lifelines. You need somebody on the foredeck to catch it.

Alain
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Old 11-01-2016, 15:16   #8
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Re: Any obvious issues with headsail down hauls?

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Originally Posted by Hydra View Post
If you head directly downwind and just release the halyard, the CLEW of the genoa will go overboard over the lifelines. You need somebody on the foredeck to catch it.

Alain
Did you really mean this? ^^^^
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Old 11-01-2016, 17:49   #9
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Re: Any obvious issues with headsail down hauls?

No, I really meant the top (the upper part, perhaps the upper half, not the head) of the sail.

To keep the clew on the deck, you just have to oversheet the sail. But when the sail goes down, the leech becomes slack and it is pushed forward by the wind, even when sheltered by the mainsail. Then, somebody has to go on the foredeck and bring this upper part of the sail aboard.

Alain
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Old 11-01-2016, 18:02   #10
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Re: Any obvious issues with headsail down hauls?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hydra View Post
No, I really meant the top (the upper part, perhaps the upper half, not the head) of the sail.

To keep the clew on the deck, you just have to oversheet the sail. But when the sail goes down, the leech becomes slack and it is pushed forward by the wind, even when sheltered by the mainsail. Then, somebody has to go on the foredeck and bring this upper part of the sail aboard.

Alain
Aha, now I get it. That's why I suggested a heave to earlier. The clew is already sheeted in and the sail drops on the foredeck. I did a lot of singlehanded sailing on that boat for 13 years and tried to figure out the easiest way to do as much as I could.
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Old 11-01-2016, 19:45   #11
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Re: Any obvious issues with headsail down hauls?

I don't have a clutch, just a winch and cleat. Still gets hungup, but a good pull brings her down. Seems the clutch should not get in the way of dousing. Is it in good shape, not bent, etc., mounted properly? Just doesn't seem right.
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Old 15-01-2016, 09:24   #12
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Re: Any obvious issues with headsail down hauls?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TomLewis View Post
I don't have a clutch, just a winch and cleat. Still gets hungup, but a good pull brings her down. Seems the clutch should not get in the way of dousing. Is it in good shape, not bent, etc., mounted properly? Just doesn't seem right.

Tom,
Do you perhaps have an over-sized halyard? This could cause the halyard to slightly jam in the sheave box or block.
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Old 15-01-2016, 21:10   #13
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Re: Any obvious issues with headsail down hauls?

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Originally Posted by rognvald View Post
Tom,
Do you perhaps have an over-sized halyard? This could cause the halyard to slightly jam in the sheave box or block.
Quite possible, I will have to pay more attention to what it is. I always thought the block was the issue, but good point. I have replaced the main halyard, but not the jib.
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