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Old 28-09-2011, 09:59   #31
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Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Ohio
Posts: 2,259
Re: Cruiser Light Wind Sails

I was wondering what the Hanse owners solution was to the blade jib. When touring a Hanse at the Annapolis boat show last year I asked the rep where they trimmed when off the wind. He said "jibs are on the self tacker" end of discussion. When I asked him what the sail shape looked like when cracked he had no answer. I didn't offer the answer but it goes like this. The leach opens and drive is lost without the ablility to move the lead forward and out.

Swagman, did you add track or pad eyes?

Originally Posted by swagman View Post
From practical experience when cruising - no.

Our last boat came with a 90% self tacking blade headsail and a huge main. We got a symetrical spinnaker for off the breeze running. This was in 2005. All cross cut and well built.

The blade headsail was super high & fast upwind in medium to strong winds, but as you'd imagine not the best reaching and frankly no good upwind in the light stuff.

So in 2006 we ordered a 200% mylar code 0 which was an increadible sail. It needed to be as it cost 10,000 euro. It gave us 7 knots boat speed upwind in 7 knots of true breeze. Perfect sail if the conditions were right or if you were racing in light stuff with a big crew.

But it came on it's own facnor furler and would not last a month with too much UV exposure. Meaning rigging it took 30 minutes at least. Taking it down two up when the apparent breeze got close to 20 knots was a real PITA. And the sailbag to hold it took as much space as the spinnaker.

So in 2007 we got a well built 120% genoa which would still work upwind if furled to 100%. It was the answer to a lot of our needs. We reached like deamons, went quick upwind in light to medium, still stormed upwind in stronger stuff with it furled, and even off the breeze the genoa poled out was almost only a knot slower than the spinnaker. And a lot easier for two to handle.

A month in and the blade headsail went to the bin. I doubt we used the code 0 more than three hours over the following 3 years. And only used the spinnaker when racing with crew.

They say you learn by your mistakes so hope others can learn from ours.

As a result of the above, I'd forget a pure light wind sail and suggest a well cut furling genoa with a foam luff would meet the needs, last longer, and save the cost and space consumed by multiple sails.


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