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Old 05-10-2014, 11:58   #31
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

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Originally Posted by estarzinger View Post
^^

Well . . . .

#1 when you sail thru a lull, the apparent wind comes forward. A zero can be trimmed to that, while deeper sails can not.

#2 the tensionned luff on a zero is much more stable than the "shoulders" on deeper sails, so it requires less attention.

#3 the straight luff makes for more trouble free furling, making the sail much easier to handle thru squalls

All three of those make the sail easier to handle than deeper sails.

#4 sure deeper cut sails are marginally faster than a zero cut when sailing deep, but it is really marginal in cruising terms and the above ease of handling is IMHO more important for a cruiser. With a zero you can pole either the tack or the clew if you want to go deep, and if you put a jib out in the other side you get almost the same projected area as a medium a-chute.

So, the speed loss is practically speaking really small.

#5 you do not need huge halyard tension on a zero, unless/except when sailing quite close (say closer than 50 degrees), and even this "huge" halyard tension is simply accomplished with a 2:1 halyard.

So there are no practical problems using a zero.

Net net we carry two a-chutes and a zero, and have really mostly given up setting the a-chutes because the zero is so easy to set and handle and its speed penalty is so small (in cruising terms).

Note: our zero is made from DP's VZ cloth, and cut like a racing zero except for the mid-girth measurement. That's what a mean by a "cruising zero". I do not mean some sort of gennaker. I have had /used zeros like this from Doyle, quantum and north. (we were, according to North, the first cruising boat in the world to use a furling zero; so I have a few years and miles refining/using this concept)

A racing sailor would look at all this differently because they have different priorities and an extra tenth of a knot is the essential priority.
Thanks again, Evan.

So if a guy were to have only one non-white sail in his inventory, with the object being getting better performance in light wind and downwind when there's not enough wind for the poled-out jib, you think that this "cruising zero" is the right sail for the job, rather than a gennaker, or whatever else people are using? I have to be really carefully choosing a sail inventory, not only because sails are bloody expensive, but also because there is precious little space to store sails of the this size.

The other sail I think about is a blade jib for sailing upwind in stronger weather. But I certainly won't be keeping more than one light air/downwind sail, which I know is anathema to racers with their finely tuned ideas about what sail to use at what angles (cf Stumble's posts).

And what do you think about the Doyle-esque sails this guy is offering me? They have carbon and Vectran yarns and taffeta on both sides. An alternative for about the same money is a regular triradial cruising laminate with carbon and technora.

Regards, Dockhead
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Old 05-10-2014, 12:40   #32
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

^^

On the "light sails", a lot depends on you. I have no idea how likely you are to actually use an A2. I do know two things. (A) I carry three "light" sails and the zero gets by far the most use, and (B) a lot of cruisers I talk to got sold big deep sails and used them a couple times and then basically stuck them in the sail locker and did not use them again except for the ocasional "photo ops", and this is even more prevailing the bigger the boat.

But I do have two friends, who are both smashingly good sailors, way better than I am, who have big boats and do regularily fly deep sails. But note they both also have zeros and also fly them - I would say 50/50.

So, without knowing you, I believe the odds strongly suggest you will get more value from a zero. But perhaps you are one of the rare & special big boat cruisers who will actually fly a deep a-sail a lot.

I was staying out of the discussion on your upwind sails . . . But, I think they will be beautiful sails, which you will get about 20,000 miles out of. You could buy less beautiful sails that would be more durable/long lasting. That is a trade-off that only you can decide.

I do hope the sail designer knows his stuff, because he will make more of a difference than you might expect on how well these end up. There are a lot of details, big and small, he is going to decide on, which may or may not fit your particular sailing style and boat. If these are your first sails from him there is unfortunately very little way to know how good he is at understanding your specific needs. But on the positive side, they will almost certaintly not be "bad" sails (so long as they measured the boat accurately), as the basics at this level are very well understood and built into the software.

Just as an example I have learned over time that designers will underestimate the loads on my mainsail (because hawk has higher righting moment than they expect). And that they need to understand my first mate is short with "female" arm strength (and that she needs to be able to sail the boat). And that we go out in strong winds and sail reefed a lot.
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Old 05-10-2014, 12:53   #33
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

DH, the one mistake I made with our new Genoa was not specifying the colour of the sacrificial strip, result we ended up with white and can't tell that it completely covers the white sail. Blue would have been better but might get hot, problem for a glued sail? light grey would be a good compromise.

Since the staysail still has some life left in it, keep it. Also since it's a smaller sail it may not need to be eventually replaced by a laminate, instead how about Vektran, Radian (North) or Hydranet (there are a couple of versions). You have time to research these options.

Not sure why you need a bow sprit for a cruising chute (asymmetric). The tack will be flying above pulpit and clear. Will moving it forward of the forestay in light winds really make a difference on a cruising yacht. Pleasantly surprised by our chute and the drive available even on a beam reach. If you want to sail directly downwind don't forget it is quicker to tack downwind. I watched our sister yacht go gently sailing past me last year because they tacked down wind. It was an interesting lesson.

Who have you chosen as a sailmaker?

What is your forestay length?

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Spinnaker-...item4add492582
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Old 05-10-2014, 14:09   #34
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
Thanks again, Evan.

So if a guy were to have only one non-white sail in his inventory, with the object being getting better performance in light wind and downwind when there's not enough wind for the poled-out jib, you think that this "cruising zero" is the right sail for the job, rather than a gennaker, or whatever else people are using? I have to be really carefully choosing a sail inventory, not only because sails are bloody expensive, but also because there is precious little space to store sails of the this size.

Regards, Dockhead
If you want something for off the wind sailing that'll work when there's not enough wind to fly a poled out jib, then you're looking at a sail made out of some pretty light cloth, relatively speaking. And given that, likely you're not going to need a 2:1 halyard purchase type Code 0, racing, or cruising type. Especially as cloth that light, more than likely wont take those kind of loads on the luff.

So from there, you have to ask the question, for what AWA's do I want the sail to be optimized. Much of which can be answered by comparing the strength of the proposed cloth/laminate(s) to your polars.
The closer you come to the wind, the more the load on the cloth (especially the luff), & then you're better off using something like a blast reacher or true Code 0.

Part of your statement though, does raise an intriguing question. How much do you really pull out & rig up the pole on your boat? In reference to using a poled out jib as part of your off the wind inventory I mean.

As on a boat that size, even a carbon fiber pole can be a handful on a yacht with a small crew (even of professional racers).
Because you need one guy on the bow/clew end, one on the inboard/pole lift end, one on the topping lift, and then you need trimmers + grinders.

- Yes, it can be done with fewer folks, with proper planning, & in slow motion. However, if anything goes awry or the wind suddenly pipes up or shifts, the odds of destroying a sail, the pole, or both, go WAY up.
And it takes a decent amount of wind to both fill up a genoa that size, and for the sail to have enough pressure in it so that it'll carry a pole. Especially if one's doing a bit of rolling back & forth while going down wind. As those kinds of conditions tend to necessitate even more wind to keep the sail full than if the sea's glassy.

So do you have enough experienced hands to use your genoa in this fashion, at night, when they're stupid tired & it's raining, with lumpy cross seas?
I'm not trying to raise your ire, just be realistic about using such a rig, and asking if it truly has a spot in your downwind inventory?

Racers (and some cruisers), especially short-handed ones, carry a few different types of downwind, poleless sails, in part, to avoid the complexity described in the setting, jibing, & take downs of poled jibs & kites (old school symmetrical kites that is).
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Old 05-10-2014, 14:13   #35
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

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Originally Posted by UNCIVILIZED View Post
you're looking at a sail made out of some pretty light cloth, relatively speaking.
This stuff will fly in any wind that will move Dock's boat. It's also pretty durable. It is nice cloth.

An even nicer option is cuben, super stuff, but it is almost as expensive as pure gold.

Either will certainly fly just fine in 3 or 4 kts apparent (at the masthead, so usually less down lower).

North tried to sell me 5oz dacron laminate, which is NOT the right answer.
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Old 05-10-2014, 15:05   #36
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

Evan, I'm not debating that there aren't plenty of cloths which are light enough to fly in the stated conditions. What I'm saying is, is that as the wind angle moves forward, the loads on the sail's luff go up quickly, & at a certain point you wind up with a cloth which is about as heavy as that on a light genoa (or heavier).

Also, I plainly understand that with current sail technology (& even that of 20yrs ago) one can match the strength of a sail in particular areas to match the loads which those areas see.
Not that it matters, but I was there when the original Cuben Fiber came out (as in I still have bits of my America3 wardrobe), the fabric's aren't new to me. I was playing with various early poly-laminate kites in the mid 80's.
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Old 05-10-2014, 15:34   #37
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

^^ mmmm . . . . Let me just simply say that my zero is light enough to fly in any noticeable wind, and also has the strength to go "upwind" (45 apparent) into the teens (apparent).

I had thought that on my zero luff the 2:1 halyard loads were primarily taken by the luff rope, and not the cloth. That the halyard loads were really 'stay loads' to keep the luff streight, rather than "sail loads".

But, in any case, I can say it does simply work for the application and in the way I am describing.

I have found very few sail makers, or racers, understand how most long distance cruisers actually go downwind. It is one area where there is the greatest difference in practical technique and gear between racers and cruisers.
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Old 05-10-2014, 15:41   #38
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

I stand corrected, my humble apologies.
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Old 05-10-2014, 15:59   #39
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by UNCIVILIZED View Post
If you want something for off the wind sailing that'll work when there's not enough wind to fly a poled out jib, then you're looking at a sail made out of some pretty light cloth, relatively speaking. And given that, likely you're not going to need a 2:1 halyard purchase type Code 0, racing, or cruising type. Especially as cloth that light, more than likely wont take those kind of loads on the luff.

So from there, you have to ask the question, for what AWA's do I want the sail to be optimized. Much of which can be answered by comparing the strength of the proposed cloth/laminate(s) to your polars.
The closer you come to the wind, the more the load on the cloth (especially the luff), & then you're better off using something like a blast reacher or true Code 0.

Part of your statement though, does raise an intriguing question. How much do you really pull out & rig up the pole on your boat? In reference to using a poled out jib as part of your off the wind inventory I mean.

As on a boat that size, even a carbon fiber pole can be a handful on a yacht with a small crew (even of professional racers).
Because you need one guy on the bow/clew end, one on the inboard/pole lift end, one on the topping lift, and then you need trimmers + grinders.

- Yes, it can be done with fewer folks, with proper planning, & in slow motion. However, if anything goes awry or the wind suddenly pipes up or shifts, the odds of destroying a sail, the pole, or both, go WAY up.
And it takes a decent amount of wind to both fill up a genoa that size, and for the sail to have enough pressure in it so that it'll carry a pole. Especially if one's doing a bit of rolling back & forth while going down wind. As those kinds of conditions tend to necessitate even more wind to keep the sail full than if the sea's glassy.

So do you have enough experienced hands to use your genoa in this fashion, at night, when they're stupid tired & it's raining, with lumpy cross seas?
I'm not trying to raise your ire, just be realistic about using such a rig, and asking if it truly has a spot in your downwind inventory?

Racers (and some cruisers), especially short-handed ones, carry a few different types of downwind, poleless sails, in part, to avoid the complexity described in the setting, jibing, & take downs of poled jibs & kites (old school symmetrical kites that is).
I don't have a pole at all yet. I put on a track and other gear for it when I had my standing rigging replaced last year.

I sail right down to 180 degrees with my normal white sails and no pole. In a good stiff breeze -- not rare at this latitude -- the yankee alone is brilliant (how well it works in 50 knots you can see here: . I need about 20 knots for good progress and 30 knots for a great sail, in this configuration. In less than 20 knots, I need the sail area of the main, and I preventer that out as far as I can (not all that far since I have aft-swept spreaders) and sail wing on wing. The preventered-out main will tolerate sailing by the lee to even 20 degrees off DDW; the pole-less yankee will not tolerate even one degree of sailing by the lee, but is fine with just a couple of degrees of wind in its favor. That works down to 15 knots; and if you're in the mood for ghosting along at low speed -- 10 knots. Below that (or below 15 knots if I'm not in the ghosting mood) the motor goes on.

With a pole, I am counting on more sail area presented by the yankee downwind, and more stability.

So what am I trying to achieve? I'm not racing, so it's not the last 0.1 knot of speed. I understand that the white sails do cover 80% of the range of conditions up here, but I'd just like to push out the envelope a little into the lighter wind ranges. I reckon I don't care as much upwind as I do downwind -- with the wind ahead of the beam, I am reasonably satisified with what I can achieve with white sails.



As to 20,000 miles -- I will be more than happy with such a life. My Dacron sails -- good quality and made by Hood -- have no more than about that, yet they were bagged out when I bought the boat (at maybe 8,000 miles?), got still baggier with every passing mile, and the yankee has blown out irreparably. In sails of this size and at this latitude I think Dacron just doesn't work. I will be deliriously happy to get 20k miles out of the new sails -- if I can believe what I read about laminated sails, 20k miles of excellent shape than bang. That's ok with me.
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Old 05-10-2014, 16:40   #40
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

I have learned more about sails in this one thread than I have learned in 5 years.

I also have been gratified to see so many experienced sailors, and Dockhead is a sailor for whom I have a fondness for his threads and explanations, converse together offering exceptional experience and advice to each other and actually see each point taken on board and respected and expanded without ego or striving to be the top dog.

This is what I love about CF. Thank you Gentlemen for being gentlemen.

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Old 05-10-2014, 17:02   #41
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by estarzinger View Post
^^ mmmm . . . . Let me just simply say that my zero is light enough to fly in any noticeable wind, and also has the strength to go "upwind" (45 apparent) into the teens (apparent).

I had thought that on my zero luff the 2:1 halyard loads were primarily taken by the luff rope, and not the cloth. That the halyard loads were really 'stay loads' to keep the luff streight, rather than "sail loads".

But, in any case, I can say it does simply work for the application and in the way I am describing.
Evan, on this particular sail, is it made of a laminate where the amount of reinforcing fibers in between the films is constant throughout the sail, or is there a higher density per area of fibers where the loads are greater?



Dockhead,
How far aft are your spreaders swept, and do you find them maiming the main excessively (chafe). Particularly in the kind of breezes you're speaking of. And what do you do to mitigate the issue in terms of sail protection, prior to them causing any wear to the sail. As I'm guessing that you need to do a bit more than just wrapping the aft sides of the spreaders with insignia cloth.

I'm curious about your rig/spreaders, as they do definitely have a few nice perks to offer in terms of rig design.
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Old 05-10-2014, 17:13   #42
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

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Dockhead,
How far aft are your spreaders swept, and do you find them maiming the main excessively (chafe). Particularly in the kind of breezes you're speaking of. And what do you do to mitigate the issue in terms of sail protection, prior to them causing any wear to the sail. As I'm guessing that you need to do a bit more than just wrapping the aft sides of the spreaders with insignia cloth.

I'm curious about your rig/spreaders, as they do definitely have a few nice perks to offer in terms of rig design.
I have not noticed any problem with chafe; the spreaders are moderately swept and I trim to keep the sail off of them. They have smooth chrome caps which don't seem to bother the sail too much in any case.

The rig is a lovely Swedish Selden, three-spreader, tall rig designed for in-mast furling, 23 meters air draft. Running back stays to tension the inner forestay. What I don't have are the jumper stays which the later versions of my boat have, which give you greater latitude without the running backs.
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Old 05-10-2014, 17:22   #43
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

What's a jumper stay?

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Old 05-10-2014, 17:37   #44
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

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What's a jumper stay?
Google is your friend:

"A short stay mounted on the forward part of the upper mast to brace against the force of the backstay. The jumper is fastened at a tang near the masthead, leads over a short jumper strut then back to another tang on the upper mast forming a strong triangle."

Nautical Dictionary, Glossary and Terms directory: Search Results

Commonly used on fractional rigs, which may allow running backs to be entirely dispensed with, they are now used on cutters as well, including all of the big Moodys except mine, as mine was the prototype of the 54 and they hadn't figured it out yet.
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Old 05-10-2014, 18:00   #45
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

Dockhead, so you never sail much in the way of deep angles then?

As to your runners, at least they, & subsequently the rig, are easily tuneable. With jumpers, unless you've got hydraulics, usually the only way to tune'em then is via a bosun's chair.
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