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Old 19-05-2013, 11:03   #1
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Battens Fouling Lazy Jacks When Raising the Main

I have a fully battened main on my Westerly Tempest, the problem I have is that unless she is right up to the wind the ends of the battens get fouled in my lazy jacks. This is a major pain as it means partially dropping the main to clear the foul before trying again. Has anyone else had this problem and if so how did you fix it.

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Old 19-05-2013, 11:09   #2
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Re: Battens Fouling Lazy Jacks When Raising the Main

This is an extremely common problem, and if you have fixed lazy jacks, you may have no easy solution. I've been researching EZ-Jax and they seem to have a decent solution...it allows you to move the jacks out of the way when you're ready to raise the main. I plan on making my own system for my boat, since the layout seems pretty simple. Or you could do a dutchman system, but I've heard they're very finnicky. My research hasn't found any easy solution to standard lazy jacks, but someone may have found something. You may want to switch out your system with something more conducive to battens.
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Old 19-05-2013, 11:09   #3
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Re: Battens Fouling Lazy Jacks When Raising the Main

Could you move them forward some? Or ease them and bungee them forward?
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Old 19-05-2013, 11:10   #4
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Re: Battens Fouling Lazy Jacks When Raising the Main

Some people have their lazy jacks rigged so that you can pull them forward to the mast when raising sail. Myself, I just deal with it and try to watch carefully as I raise the mainsail so that if a batten catches I just lower a little, then proceed to raise again. I like having all haliards at the mast as it is easier to control this type of issue, and I mostly pull up the main by hand until the last bit when I put it on a winch.
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Old 19-05-2013, 11:12   #5
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Re: Battens Fouling Lazy Jacks When Raising the Main

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Originally Posted by andyrawcliffe View Post
I have a fully battened main on my Westerly Tempest, the problem I have is that unless she is right up to the wind the ends of the battens get fouled in my lazy jacks. This is a major pain as it means partially dropping the main to clear the foul before trying again. Has anyone else had this problem and if so how did you fix it.

Thanks
Andrew...

Make the line you use to tighten and loosen the LJ longer so you can pull them straight across the length of the boom to the mast. Have a cleat there at boom height so you can cleat-hitch that line off. I realized after I posted about having that problem that it's gone since that line was lengthened.
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Old 19-05-2013, 11:15   #6
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Re: Battens Fouling Lazy Jacks When Raising the Main

If you can move the mast blocks out onto the spreaders, this creates a larger opened angle and helps.

Make sure the boom is loose so that it can weathercock to wind angle changes while raising.

But catching battens is a compromise one learns to adjust for and live with. Moving the lazy jacks out of the way before raising solves the problem, but they need to be moved back before lowering.

Mark
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Old 19-05-2013, 11:22   #7
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Re: Battens Fouling Lazy Jacks When Raising the Main

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If you can move the mast blocks out onto the spreaders, this creates a larger opened angle and helps.

Make sure the boom is loose so that it can weathercock to wind angle changes while raising.

But catching battens is a compromise one learns to adjust for and live with. Moving the lazy jacks out of the way before raising solves the problem, but they need to be moved back before lowering.

Mark

Yeah. That's not hard to do and getting them out of the way makes the boat look tidier as well as simplifying raising the sail.
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Old 19-05-2013, 11:23   #8
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Apologies for posting this in the wrong section but a big thanks to the members who have replied so quickly, yours replies have already given me some ideas!!
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Old 19-05-2013, 15:31   #9
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Re: Battens Fouling Lazy Jacks When Raising the Main

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Originally Posted by andyrawcliffe View Post
Apologies for posting this in the wrong section but a big thanks to the members who have replied so quickly, yours replies have already given me some ideas!!
This issue keeps coming up. On our boat, we've secured the halyards halfway out the lower spreaders; this opening up the "mouth" helps a lot, as mentioned above. The other part of the solution is, if you're singlehanded, get enough way on that the apparent wind will stay from ahead when you go to raise the sail, and watch out for batten ends catching. In our case, I'm on the helm, watching the luff of the sail (and all the other stuff, too) and tell Jim when there's a problem: if you have someone else on the boat, they can help by giving you info and by following the puffs around to keep the sail luffing.

In our case, our main is quite large, the mast tall, and bringing the lazy jacks forward to get them totally out of the way became a hassle because the halyard would then do what ropes love to to, make tangles in itself!http://www.cruisersforum.com/images/...s/banghead.gif which I would then have to remove before I could the LJ back up. PITA


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Old 19-05-2013, 15:39   #10
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Re: Battens Fouling Lazy Jacks When Raising the Main

And easy way to make fixed jacks retractable:

Sail Delmarva: Adjustable Lazy Jacks--Done the Lazy Way

Yup, had the same problem. Generally it is only on windy days singlehanding that I need to retract them.
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Old 19-05-2013, 19:52   #11
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Re: Battens Fouling Lazy Jacks When Raising the Main

My unintentional "fix" was to have the batten fittings come loose and the jump overboard. No more batten, no more problem!
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Old 19-05-2013, 20:26   #12
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Re: Battens Fouling Lazy Jacks When Raising the Main

I have sailed long and far without lazy jacks, even in a boat with a jib-headed main. No lazy jacks=no problem
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Old 19-05-2013, 20:35   #13
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Re: Battens Fouling Lazy Jacks When Raising the Main

I have the same problem as my lazyjacks are permanently attached at the top, so there is very little option to slacken them, and no way to widen the slot between them. I am currently redoing the rigging and will address this at the same time. I plan to open the slot by running a line to near the outer ends of the spreaders, as well as an option to pull them forward to the mast (which I may rarely do).

If you have a narrow slot between lazyjacks, a technique to assist the raising process is not to use the winch (I have an electric one), but to haul the sail up by hand. With the autopilot heading into the wind and enough speed on to keep it that way (as suggested by Ann Cate), pull the sail up enough so it is only just snagging a batten on the lazyjack. As the leach flaps around a little, it will flick into the slot where you want it. When that happens, pull the halyard quickly to get the batten past and safely in the clear. Repeat at the next catching point until you are past the catching points, then use the winch for the rest.

Of course that technique should not be needed if the lazyjack system is well designed.
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Old 19-05-2013, 21:20   #14
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Re: Battens Fouling Lazy Jacks When Raising the Main

Quote:
Originally Posted by silviris View Post
This is an extremely common problem, and if you have fixed lazy jacks, you may have no easy solution. I've been researching EZ-Jax and they seem to have a decent solution...it allows you to move the jacks out of the way when you're ready to raise the main. I plan on making my own system for my boat, since the layout seems pretty simple. Or you could do a dutchman system, but I've heard they're very finnicky. My research hasn't found any easy solution to standard lazy jacks, but someone may have found something. You may want to switch out your system with something more conducive to battens.
I'm amazed that such a common problem even exists in the boating world. What's wrong with sail designers ? How hard can it be to A)make the batten not stick past the leech and B) make the batten pocket cover a shape that doesn't snag lines.

Seriously ! Move the batten tensioners to the luff and keep the leach clean. Easier to tension, no issues raising etc.

I've even had the sheave on single line reefing systems snag the lazy jack lines when lowering the sail, them snag again trying to clear the issue. In the rest of the design world that kind of silliness would be changed in an instant. Nobody would tolerate it.

Sometimes I just don't get the marine environment.

Dave L38 #38
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Old 20-05-2013, 05:18   #15
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Re: Battens Fouling Lazy Jacks When Raising the Main

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I'm amazed that such a common problem even exists in the boating world. What's wrong with sail designers ? How hard can it be to A)make the batten not stick past the leech and B) make the batten pocket cover a shape that doesn't snag lines.

Seriously ! Move the batten tensioners to the luff and keep the leach clean. Easier to tension, no issues raising etc.

I've even had the sheave on single line reefing systems snag the lazy jack lines when lowering the sail, them snag again trying to clear the issue. In the rest of the design world that kind of silliness would be changed in an instant. Nobody would tolerate it.

Sometimes I just don't get the marine environment.

Dave L38 #38
The same issue exists for partly battened mains. Sometimes it even worse since the roach can flop around independent of the main in light winds.

The main thing to consider is that for the most part, battens are there to support an extended roach. Extended roaches are a way of gaining extra sail area without violating any racing rules. If you don't race constantly, you don't need the roach or the battens (or the headboard really).
No battens = no snagging.

You're right about the marine environment. We put up with finicky gear designed specifically for racers and accept it as the norm. We put up with electronics designed for coastal cruising (because there will always be a repair depot close by) and complain when it fails in some atoll in the south Pacific.

I would think cruisers would want to simplify their boats by using things like battenless mains and high clewed jibs (for visibility and less water scooping).

Lazy jacks work great on a battenless main and you don't have to move them. Talk to your sailmaker.
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