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Old 30-06-2016, 08:28   #1
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Jib Sheets

I have a new to me 27' DuFour sailboat. I am putting new sheets on the boat for the jib(s). I have two jibs for the boat - a 90% jib and a 155% genoa. From what I understand the sheets for the genoa should be 1.5 times the length of the boat. Questions: is this a good figure? What about the standard jib, does it need a separate set of sheets or should I use one set for both sails? Another question - what about the sheets themselves is there a standard thickness that I should use, is 1/2" sufficient?

Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks very much

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Old 30-06-2016, 08:45   #2
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Re: Jib Sheets

The 1.5 length should OK. Longer is better.

One set of sheets is all you need.

Make sure that the diameter of the sheet is appropriate to the primary winches.

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Old 30-06-2016, 10:26   #3
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Re: Jib Sheets

Let's back up a bit...

The sheet length recomendation of 1.5 boat length is assuming a 155 jib, a smaller jib can get away with a shorter sheet. Though the best option is to measure a sheet that is known to work.

As for size... 1/2" an a 27' boat is grossly oversized. For a boat that sized you would expect to see 5/16 typically, maybe go up to 3/8 for a nicer hand, but past that you would need to replace all of your deck hardware to work with larger line. It isn't just the winches, the turning blocks, deck organizer, etc would all need to be replaced.

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Old 30-06-2016, 18:40   #4
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Re: Jib Sheets

Stumble probably knows more than me about this, but 10 mm (about 3/8") is as small line as my hands like to use. If the old line is smaller than 3/8, it is safe to assume it has worked okay in the past. Some owners like to buy a bit oversize to reduce chafe, but oversize also increases friction, so it's really up to you to decide. Try handling some line at the chandlery, but also check the sizes of the blocks the line will be going through, too. Put the calipers on the old line to measure the diameter. If your hands are large, the larger lines may be easier for you to handle.

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Old 30-06-2016, 20:59   #5
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Re: Jib Sheets

5/16" is large enough for strength but too small for comfort for me. 3/8" is about as small as works for my hands but prefer 7/16". !/2" is nice but bulky and totally over strength for a boat your size. Purpose of the sail is another determinate. If it's a light air sail, you want the lightest sheets that will work. Regular use sails, it's how comfortable you are using the line.

1.5 times boat length for spinnaker and Genoa Halyards is a good place to start. Working/non overlapping jibs can get by with shorter line like the boat's length or even shorter.

I use dedicated lines for each jib. Buy line double the length needed for an individual sheet and run it through the sails clew equal distance. Use a Brummell splice to secure the line. This is the Brummell splice where you run each free end through the other side of line not the locking splice that is needed for the slippery high tech. lines. Using the Brummell splice makes tacking overlapping headsails a piece of cake as the sheets don't hang up on the shrouds like individual bowline secured sheets tend to do. You can also use a cow hitch to attach the line but that is a bit lumpy and snags a little as it passes over the shrouds though not nearly as much as bowlines.
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