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Old 19-04-2012, 16:12   #46
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Re: Furling mains

Originally Posted by CarlF View Post
I believe the strongest argument for furling mains on cruising boats (either in-mast or boom) is the safety of a short-handed crew.

1. You don't have to leave the safety of the cockpit at sea. Ever. I also have never seen a slab system that doesn't hang up once in a while and require a trip to the mast. I've never had a jamb.

2. It is so easy to reef that you don't delay putting in a reef as weather deteriorates. I'll reef for any threatening thunderhead. Only takes a moment.

3. It is easy for my wife to reef or douse the mainsail alone.

I'll take safety any day.

You would think so, but based on my experience with a tightly jammed sail that wouldnt roll up or come out, (the entire rig had just been rebuilt including the furling apparatus) wind blowing 40 SE of hatteras, and about a 14 ft sea running.... i'll take a trip to mast to do what works quick, easy and well anyday.... It's also a mess of lines, halyards, winches and stoppers under the Dodger with the in mast furling all led aft. JMHO ...I'm not really saying I'd never have it again.... but my preference at least at this time is not for me... I guess normal jiffy reefing has become automatic for me and is simple....

"I spent most of my money on Booze, Broads and Boats. The rest I wasted" - Elmore Leonard

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Old 19-04-2012, 18:30   #47
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I have a 38 foot boat with in mast furling and would never consider anything else after cruising with it for the last six years. It's never jammed even with the old Baggie main. To makeup for lost sail area because of lack of roach the mast is a bit taller which to me makes the boat look better. Sail shape is not a problem once you learn how to control it. I can be sailing with it in under a minute and putting it away takes the same amount of time (I love that!) When everyone else is reaching around with just their jib because they don't want to deal with their main, we always have ours out.

What sold me on the stowaway was Phil Weld. He raced Moxie in the Ostar (? England to Newport) when he was quite old and won. He told me after winning that all the credit went to the stowaway. When it got a little windy he would roll the main in and right back out when the wind moderated. No five minute rule. No pre-preparing for squalls. He credited it with not tiring him out so he could use all his energy to go fast. Great sailor!

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Old 21-04-2012, 06:00   #48
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Originally Posted by Sparmanusa
I’ve been making masts and booms for 26 years, and you will find advantages and disadvantages with any furling system. Most people go with a new in-mast furler if you need a new mast and a furling boom if your mast is fine. The booms are expensive….for your boat you are in the 25-30k range, which is more than a new furling mast with boom, the question is do you spend that type of money then bolt it to an ageing mast with ageing rigging (remember rigging must be replaced every 10 years) or you could get a new standard mast and add a furling boom, but that gets even more pricey......if you need some firm numbers please let me know. Cheers
Hey thanks...I had this Tartan 37 delivered and the mast was broken in half in an accident, so a new mast is needed. That's why I am going to in mast furling main. I am very experienced ..crossed the Atlantic, so have done lots of reefing, am usually alone and am 65. Thus the desire for the furler. Considering Selden in mast. Any thoughts?
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Old 21-04-2012, 07:44   #49
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Re: Furling Mains

On a T-37, I'd strongly recommend a furling boom over furling mast. The rig wasn't designed for the smaller roach sail of a furling mast. You'll also badly miss proper battens.

Getting a standard mast means you can really shop around for a good price. There are often local riggers who can do a great job. As to the boom, I chose Schaefer after looking at all and talking to many owners. It was a close call.

A Schaefer roller boom for your boat lists at $10,000 without vang. If you go this route, I'd call Schaefer for recommendations of sailmakers in your area with experience and get multiple quotes for a package of sail, boom and installation.

Schaefer Marine - Boom Furlers


PS - I think the Practical Sailor article is based on testing and largely written over 10 years ago. I remember the old article. What they call the "recently introduced" Schaefer has been around for about 15 years.


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