Cruisers Forum

Join CruisersForum Today

Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 09-07-2015, 07:24   #1
Registered User
tommyh's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: SF bay
Boat: Newport 28 II
Posts: 144
Furling line length/size

I need a new furling line for an older harken unit.
My boat is 28' and I use a 135 and a 85 for headsails, seems like their are a lot of opinions on this as far as length and line size.
Is there a simple rule for figuring this out.

tommyh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-2015, 07:54   #2

Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Boat is on the Rio Dulce
Boat: Seafarer36c
Posts: 3,584
Re: Furling line length/size

A new Harken furler for your boat would probably come with 5/16 line. The length is up to you. I like to have enough line on the drum to make 4-5 turns around the big sail when furled. Also, think about "fuzzy" rope. Some rope has more texture in the cover and is easier to hold onto when wet. All the rope companies make this type rope.

Guy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-2015, 09:40   #3
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: between the devil and the deep blue sea
Boat: a sailing boat
Posts: 15,117
Re: Furling line length/size

I have used 6, 7 and 8 mm dia (1 inch = 25.4 mm) on sails that were about 400 sq ft. and I found 8 mm best by a huge margin. 6 mm was useless: hard to grip. So I say go for the highest dia your drum capacity will allow.

The length is up to you, you can always cut when you think the tail is too long. It is roughly your foot length plus the deck length plus a margin.

If the drum is small and you want higher dia to get better grip, you can get quality braid on braid and shed the fore portion of the jacket (splicing a short length of the trimmed jacket back into the core). This gives a variable diameter rope that has a fatter working end and may still fit onto a smaller drum.
barnakiel is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 19-07-2015, 06:22   #4
Senior Cruiser
Blue Stocking's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: St. Georges, Bda
Boat: Rhodes Reliant 41ft
Posts: 3,985
Re: Furling line length/size

After sewing the 2 components together, I remove the core section which would be on the drum. Has worked well for years.
so many projects--so little time !!
Blue Stocking is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19-07-2015, 14:22   #5
Registered User
Orion Jim's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Noank, Ct. USA
Boat: Cape Dory 31
Posts: 855
Images: 6
Re: Furling line length/size

Originally Posted by Blue Stocking View Post
After sewing the 2 components together, I remove the core section which would be on the drum. Has worked well for years.
I've done the same thing for years. Run your furling line onto the drum ensuring you have a few extra turns around the drum and fully extend your headsail. Mark your furling line at the drum. Now furl your headsail and remove the furling line from the drum. At the mark on your furling line put several stitches through the cover and core so the core can never creep. Remove the core to that point. Now reattach the furling line to the drum with several extra turns and unfurl your headsail. With the core removed you'll never have your furling line jam within the drum as the core will always lie flat in the drum, and yes, the cover has ample strength, the core is not needed. The tail of the furling line remains full sized since it still has the core and is easy on the hands and/or the furling winch drum.
Orion Jim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19-07-2015, 15:12   #6
Senior Cruiser
Jim Cate's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2008
Location: cruising SW Pacific
Boat: Jon Sayer 1-off 46 ft fract rig sloop strip plank in W Red Cedar
Posts: 9,136
Send a message via Skype™ to Jim Cate
Re: Furling line length/size

One caveat re stripping either cover or core from the furling line: this leaves whichever portion you decide to use exposed to the sun and UV, and this leads inevitably to degradation of strength. We occasionally hear of disasters when the furling line breaks in a squall and the sail is either reefed or being furled, and I suspect that these events are usually using stripped cordage.

So, if one goes this way, more frequent replacement will be required.

Jim and Ann
s/v Insatiable back in MBTBC marina, waiting for next eye jobs to be done
Jim Cate is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 19-07-2015, 22:05   #7
Paul Elliott's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 3,303
Images: 2
Re: Furling line length/size

Make sure you allow for a *tightly* furled sail when you are figuring the line length. If you measure it to give you a few wraps when furling it at the dock in light wind, when you eventually try to furl at sea in heavy wind you will probably run out of line before the sail is completely furled. I would add at least several feet to what you think you will need, then trim it later if you need to. Better too long than too short.

Also, give yourself enough line to be able to start furling from the far side of the cockpit. Sometimes, especially when shorthanded, it's more convenient to work from the other side of the boat.

Paul Elliott, S/V VALIS - Pacific Seacraft 44 #16 - Friday Harbor, WA
Paul Elliott is offline   Reply With Quote

furling, size

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Leech Line Length Snore Deck hardware: Rigging, Sails & Hoisting 6 14-12-2014 07:18
Extended Cruising Anchor Line Length Suggestions hatteras53 Seamanship & Boat Handling 31 14-10-2014 14:10
Length of stern line waybad Anchoring & Mooring 7 29-05-2014 02:24
For Sale: Roller furling for head sail and roller furling for main cealpotts Classifieds Archive 0 20-09-2013 07:55
Dock Line Length Duke 48 Anchoring & Mooring 6 03-03-2012 08:10

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities

Copyright 2002-2015 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 12:53.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.