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Old 27-11-2015, 12:48   #1
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Hauling Up A New Genoa (42sqM) Single Handed

This issue gave me pause for thought the other day as I rowed out to our boat with the sole passenger being a new 135% genoa sitting all new and eager in its sail bag.

It may be a no-brainer for many on this forum but for me I had to stop and think for a while.

All the halyards and control lines run back to the cockpit on our Bavaria 38, like most setups do these days. On my own, how was I going to be in the cockpit winching up the headsail while being at the same time in the position on the bow feeding the luff into the roller furling groove?

It was probably fortunate for me, being somewhat impulsive, that it was blowing around 15 knots when I got to the boat, so I didn't rush into it, with the idea I'd wait till a little before dark to hoist hoping the wind would start to die down somewhat, which proved to be the case, giving me time to work on this little conundrum.

Another reason to think this through a bit was the experience of my sailmaker who had had trouble hauling the old one down on his own for a measure up. He had arrived to find nearly thirty knots blowing while he struggled with this massive piece of fabric on his own to get it down. He thought he had everything ready to drop, unfurled the sail with all lines ready, went forward and couldn't get it moving no matter what he tried. Meanwhile all hell was breaking loose as the thing started by giving him a good whipping and nothing was moving. No doubt he rechecked all lines were free, no clutches grabbing but still no joy. Eventually he found the trouble on the mast. It seemed that someone had at first set the halyard up to be raised from the mast where a rope clutch had been set up to hold the halyard once tensioned. And then changed their mind and led the halyard back to the cockpit, leaving the halyard going throught that clutch and back to another one in the cockpit. Once he opened that clutch down it came. Perhaps the other clutch on the mast was designed to stop an indadvertant release at the cockpit? A sort of backup... I don't know.

My solution to haul up while still helping feed the sail into the groove.

I unthreaded the genoa halyard from its path back to the cockpit and led it forward where I would be feeding luff rope into track. I found a spare block on the mast step and took it off and secured it to the deck fitting holding the forestay just under the furling drum with a short length of rope. Passing the halyard through this single block I led it down to my horizontal anchor windlass in the anchor well which has a rope drum on the other side. (Lofrans Cayman). With one sheet attached for some control once it was up, and the head secured to the furler swivel, the clew attached to the drum furler end and the luff rope threaded through the prefeeder conveniently attached to a short wire on the furler drum and then started in the luff extrusion we were ready to go. The windlass was switched on at the switchboard, the remote was in my right hand ready to go, I had a couple of turns of halyard on the rope drum of the windlass and I was keeping a watchful eye on the feeding in process- and up she went. The prefeeder did a marvellous job having a bit of flex as the angle of approach constantly shifted as the flaking of the sail on the deck went back and forth. The only times I paused on the windlass was when I found a greater resistance tailing the rope and I could see the angle of the luff rope to the prefeeder was to sharp which I eased a bit by hand until the angle decreased and it would flow freely. I took up a reasonable amount of tension with the windlass, and cleating off the halyard on a bow cleat, went back to the mast clutch and secured it there. (Which come to think of it is probably why it's there- for single handed raising sail) Then went back to the retrieve line in the cockpit and rolled the sail in to stop it flogging while I rerouted the halyard back to cockpit and made final adjustments.

It may be surprising how much I had to think this through to some people. But the reality is with in mast furling for the main and same on the headsail, we hardly do this process very often at all, and hence it doesnt come naturally. Or maybe I'm just a bit thick
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Old 27-11-2015, 13:36   #2
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Re: Hauling Up A New Genoa (42sqM) Single Handed

That sounds like a reasonable solution to all the problems.

Having the remote for the windlass really helped, as did having the feeder for the furler slot. Do you think if you didn't have them, that you could have taken the tail of the halyard around the winch and forward to your station to help the luff rope through the feeder, and hauled it up by hand?

Something I would have done differently is to attach both jib sheets to the clew at the beginning, but then I'm a "belt & suspenders" sort of person.

Have fun with your new sail! I love new sails!

Ann
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Old 27-11-2015, 15:04   #3
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Re: Hauling Up A New Genoa (42sqM) Single Handed

I guess this is a advantage of being on a buoy. I encounter same problem but tide to the bock. Usual end up walking back and forth between furler and cockpit.


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Old 27-11-2015, 16:06   #4
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Re: Hauling Up A New Genoa (42sqM) Single Handed

Hi and thanks for the comments. Yes Ann, I guess if push came to shove I could've taken a turn around the cockpit winch with the halyard and led it forward, even if I had to extend the length with another line. It was the issue of the wind. I thought that it would take some power to get it up with the wind working the sail...I absolutely hate seeing sails flogging uselessly in the wind, especially a new one so the quicker it got up there the quicker it got furled again!

Of course I could have waited for the wind to die completely...

Oh, and I just realized that sometimes I haven't a clew about what I'm speaking of! Er... I mean I haven't a clue... um..Instead of saying: "With one sheet attached for some control once it was up, and the head secured to the furler swivel, the clew attached to the drum furler end..." What I should have said was that "With one sheet attached to the clew for some control once it was up, and the head secured to the furler swivel, the tack attached to the drum furler end..."

Sheesh...
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Old 28-11-2015, 08:30   #5
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Re: Hauling Up A New Genoa (42sqM) Single Handed

Using a windlass to raise a sail in a curler is probably a good way to rip the luff tape from the sail. It should not be that difficulf to raise by hand on properly operating fuller until about 2/3 of the way up. Then use winch and carefully raise the final part of the sail watching the luff tape carefully.
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Old 28-11-2015, 08:54   #6
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Re: Hauling Up A New Genoa (42sqM) Single Handed

I have raised head sails on my own a number of times. I take a turn or two around a winch on the mast and bring the halyard from the winch forward to where I am feeding the luff into the slot. Then I have two options, before it gets too heavy, I just feed it in and stand on the line inbetween, and when it gets too heavy for me to do that, it goes around a bow cleat, back to feed some more, take up the slack again, so I am going back and forth. It really doesn't take that long--- but I always wait for a calm day to do that. A winch on the mast is a very handy thing to have, if you don't have one, I would add one.
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Old 28-11-2015, 09:28   #7
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Re: Hauling Up A New Genoa (42sqM) Single Handed

All you need is a $15 pre-feeder. Run the luff tape through the pre-feeder and into the furler groove and haul up from the cockpit.
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Old 28-11-2015, 09:35   #8
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Re: Hauling Up A New Genoa (42sqM) Single Handed

I usually try to get help. But I can do it alone if I wait for a time without wind at the dock or on the hard. If very light or no wind, it can be done at anchor, but I always have the jibs ready to go before I leave a dock just in case of an engine failure. I've had this happen twice over the past year, once due to a starter motor catching fire, and another time due to the water intake through hull being closed.

The first time with the engine fire, I wasn't prepared with the jib so my only option was to drop the anchor. Deciding that I never wanted to be in that position ever again, now we always have the jib up on the furling system before leaving a dock. It came is very handy when the engine overheating alarm came on twice last season.
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Old 28-11-2015, 13:05   #9
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Re: Hauling Up A New Genoa (42sqM) Single Handed

Thanks all for your suggestions. I don't have a winch on the mast but can see its value. I do have a pre-feeder on the furler drum, which did an excellent job and in hindsight I may have gotten away with raising the sail with the cockpit winch with maybe a few trips forward to check the luff going in the groove. I don't think I'd have ripped the luff tape off the sail with only a couple of turns around the windlass, I could sense the resistance when the prefeeder was struggling to take a sharper angle between the sail on the deck and the luffgroove and the stiffness of the new sail. At those times I was at hand to ease the corner through the prefeeder.

Goes to show what roller furling does to our sail hoisting experience, I could count on one hand the times I have hoisted sail since owning the boat from 2009. With in-mast furling and headsail furling, there just hasn't been a need!
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Old 28-11-2015, 13:31   #10
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Re: Hauling Up A New Genoa (42sqM) Single Handed

Why do you have the jib halyard run aft at all? Once it's up, what is the halyard led aft doing?

When we got our boat, it was. I eliminated that and have the jib halyard at the mast. I replaced jib halyard line that went through the blocks and deck organizer with a cunningham for the mainsail.

I have a prefeeder for our ProFurl LCI32. I just haul away at the mast, no winches needed. Your solution was pretty neat, but I would agree that knowing if there is any resisitance is a good (bad?!?) way to rip the luff tape off a jib.
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Old 28-11-2015, 13:56   #11
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Re: Hauling Up A New Genoa (42sqM) Single Handed

I just re read your original post. Using your windlass or an electric winch to raise your sails is always a bad idea. It may work once or twice, but eventually you'll be very sorry for doing it that way.

Why would you need to anyway? It's easy to raise any of our sails on our 54ft boat including the spinnaker using just the manual winch on our mast. If there's no resistance, they go up easily. If there is resistance... you need to solve the problem, and not put more muscle into it.

On our Hunter, we snapped the main halyard one time using the electric halyard winch... we'll never do that again.
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Old 29-11-2015, 07:21   #12
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Re: Hauling Up A New Genoa (42sqM) Single Handed

We always wait for the windless day. Our hoist is from the mast winches so self-tailer and Milwaukee 1/2" right angle drive. The genoa is 135%, 5-layer Quantum fusion. It weighs about 200#; 72 foot hoist. It only comes down for winter. If I had to single hand this I would probably run the halyard forward to the rope gypsy on the windlass.
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Old 29-11-2015, 15:15   #13
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Re: Hauling Up A New Genoa (42sqM) Single Handed

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stu Jackson View Post
Why do you have the jib halyard run aft at all? Once it's up, what is the halyard led aft doing?
It's just the way it was set up when I bought it. I guess when you have limited experience you are cautious about changing a setup thinking the guys that put it there had reasons. The obvious one being that there is no winches on the mast. I have spare blocks and lines led to the cockpit. One of which I plan to use for a boom brake, a local showed a neat setup and I think I'll eventually do that.
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