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Old 14-10-2016, 06:11   #1
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New Sails and Staysail Questions Najad 380

Hi,

I am not sure this forum is very active but I will try a post and see what happens.

Our Najad 380 (new to us last year) has tired sails and next season she will have new ones! "Grace" is berthed at Mercury on the Hamble and I have selected the excellent Peter Sanders of Sanders Sails to make our new ones.

I also had great quotes from Rolly Tasker (the cheapest) but I want to go with a local loft.

The main is in mast furled and I will either go for tri-radial main and 130% genny on DP HydraNet Radial or cross-cut on HydraNet. This is a dacron/spectra weave.
If I go crosscut then the savings would allow me to have a No3 type upwind working jib made in addition as a staysail.

Stay Sail

I can see that there is a mast fitting already in place for a secondary forestay parallel to and just behind the main genny furler. This comes down to the deck fitting that is part of the forepeak hardware. I have no forestay for it however, although I do have a 6mm wire staysail halyard that is spliced onto rope higher up. This is ready to go.

So, I will need to add some rigging and a tensioner if I am to do this. I am thinking I could rig a 4:1 tensioner back to the mast step and turn it up to the mast winches.

With the existing 130% genny we sheet outside of all shrouds but from pics of Najad 380's I have seen with 100% jibs it would seem that the car goes fully forward on the track and then the sheet goes between the most forward shroud and the next one back.

Short Handed

My wife and I sail short handed and I am looking for a forgiving F5+ sail that will allow us to sail hard to windward with minimal fuss and good wind angle. I am also wondering if it would be expidient to have it made with a reef point in it to reduce it further.

Questions

1. Would a 100% be the right choice or should we go smaller? We think the new gennny will be reasonable shape from 130 down to 100.

2. Is anyone doing this on a N380? Is it more trouble than its worth?

3. Is the most forward position on the N380's track far enough forward and inboard enough to provide the correct angle for this No3?

4. Is a reef in this sail a good idea for a storm sail?

Any comments and guidance appreciated.

Regards

Mark and Audrey
Grace
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Old 14-10-2016, 07:02   #2
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Re: New Sails and Staysail Questions Najad 380

"I'm not sure whether this forum is very active . . ."

Are you joking? This is the most active sailing forum in the world!


I went through a similar exercise when I had new sails made for my Moody 54.

The standard suit of sails included a 120% yankee jib, a permanently rigged staysail, and in-mast furling main.

For similar reasons as you, I decided I wanted a smaller jib for working upwind. So I had a 90% blade jib made in addition to a new 120% yankee.

The result is that the blade is far better than my wildest hopes. Upwind, it offers equal power to the yankee even in light wind (which I didn't expect), and with far less heeling. It is less powerful than the yankee only in very light wind and with the wind behind the beam.

I wish I had known! If I had known what I know now, I would not have spent money on the yankee. I would have spent it on a cruising Code 0 as a dedicated light wind sail.

So my advice is to have your No. 3 (or whatever -- best of all, non-overlapping) made FIRST, and live with it for a while, before ordering the other headsail. It will really change how your boat sails. Especially in stronger wind, because the wind range is extended upward. I use my blade in up to 30 knots apparent without reefing, after which I simply go to the staysail. So I never reef it.

The other advice is this -- a high aspect sail like this needs the highest modulus sailcloth you can manage, because it produces very great forces along the leech. I would not go with hydranet for this; I would use a cruising laminate. Peter does a very good carbon/technora laminate which is absolutely brilliant, and not much more expensive than hydranet. My sails are made of this, and after 6000 miles they are still absolutely indistinguishable from new.


The other advice is about sheet leads -- if your tracks don't go far enough forward, then you will need to arrange new sheet leads. If you will use the search function on this site, you can see diagrams and photos of mine, which are done like a racing boat with low friction rings and a triple purchase system which allows me to tweak the sheet lead inboard and outboard as well as up and down. The inboard-outboard control gives an amazingly large effect and really helps a lot sailing hard on the wind.

I've just given up my Hamble mooring, but if you want to see them in the flesh, I'm now in Cowes. Just drop me a PM.
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Old 14-10-2016, 07:06   #3
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Re: New Sails and Staysail Questions Najad 380

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
"I'm not sure whether this forum is very active . . ."

Are you joking? This is the most active sailing forum in the world!


.
Sorry!!!!! This was a cut and paste from the post I made on The Najad owners forum! Doing and edit and then I will read your response in full!


Except I can't edit!

Mark
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Old 14-10-2016, 08:28   #4
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Re: New Sails and Staysail Questions Najad 380

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
"I'm not sure whether this forum is very active . . ."



The other advice is about sheet leads -- if your tracks don't go far enough forward, then you will need to arrange new sheet leads. If you will use the search function on this site, you can see diagrams and photos of mine, which are done like a racing boat with low friction rings and a triple purchase system which allows me to tweak the sheet lead inboard and outboard as well as up and down. The inboard-outboard control gives an amazingly large effect and really helps a lot sailing hard on the wind.

I've just given up my Hamble mooring, but if you want to see them in the flesh, I'm now in Cowes. Just drop me a PM.
Thanks Dockhead.

I am searching threads by you. I can see a long one where you end up extolling the new blade but I see no pics.

Could you point me?

Mark
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Old 14-10-2016, 11:10   #5
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Re: New Sails and Staysail Questions Najad 380

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post

The other advice is about sheet leads -- if your tracks don't go far enough forward, then you will need to arrange new sheet leads. If you will use the search function on this site, you can see diagrams and photos of mine, which are done like a racing boat with low friction rings and a triple purchase system which allows me to tweak the sheet lead inboard and outboard as well as up and down. The inboard-outboard control gives an amazingly large effect and really helps a lot sailing hard on the wind.

.
I don't agree. You can raise the clew of the sail to allow the lead to be farther aft and work with your current track. This may not be the best, but it is an option. Your sail maker should be able to advise you. since this is a higher wind sail, the loss of area from having a high clew is usually not a big deal. It also gets the sail up away from waves and improves vision around the sail.
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Old 14-10-2016, 15:09   #6
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Re: New Sails and Staysail Questions Najad 380

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I don't agree. You can raise the clew of the sail to allow the lead to be farther aft and work with your current track. This may not be the best, but it is an option. Your sail maker should be able to advise you. since this is a higher wind sail, the loss of area from having a high clew is usually not a big deal. It also gets the sail up away from waves and improves vision around the sail.
This is a non sequitur. If it's close enough that you can get a proper sheeting angle somehow or another, then the track is long enough, provided you don't mind the other modification which is required.

But another problem is how far outboard the tracks are. To get the most from a blade, and to take advantage of the fact that the shrouds don't limit how far inboard the sail can be sheeted, you need a way to sheet further inboard, than you can do it with tracks made for overlapping genoas.

You can have an extra pair of tracks installed, or a couple of extra pairs. I've seen older Swans with these -- inboard and outboard tracks for their smaller jibs.

This however is pretty expensive.

The racing type of floating sheet lead only needs one or two strong anchor points, and is much easier and cheaper to arrange. Also you get to adjust the inboard-outboard position of the sheet lead from the cockpit, instead of having only two fixed positions.

I'm travelling and don't have access to my own photos, but you will get lots of info by googling "floating sheet leads". Here's what it looks like on another boat:

Click image for larger version

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From here: Adjustable genoa car system - Sailing - Seabreeze Forums!

The anchor points must be really strong, and I've struggled a bit with that, but otherwise I am extremely happy to have used these. They work better -- smoother, easier, better range of adjustment, plus three dimensions -- than normal tracks do.
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Old 14-10-2016, 15:24   #7
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Re: New Sails and Staysail Questions Najad 380

Here is some good information about how you use three-dimensional sheeting with a blade jib:

Gaining Extra Height with Inhaulers — UK Sailmakers

You can use an inhauler, if you have a conventional track.
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Old 16-10-2016, 03:58   #8
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Re: New Sails and Staysail Questions Najad 380

I will go for a blade jib 90% soon
Large genoas are from the past, my Nauta54 being designed for a 140%!

I just bought two big rings :-)

I would ask DH, as a cruiser, how do you manage the jib down on deck?
Folded?
Folded and covered in A long bag?
Under deck?
Or furled?


.... since i was cautioned not to go for laminated sails, if to be kept ON deck along the day... (??)

I want and much prefer hooked sails, thus furling is no option to me..

Is the sheet line permanently kept inside/outside/BETWEEN the shrouds? Or do you change it either?

:-) PS with staysail+main i tack 50 AWA upwind, is it good enough!? I get 40-45 with genoa...
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Old 16-10-2016, 09:51   #9
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Re: New Sails and Staysail Questions Najad 380

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Originally Posted by TheThunderbird View Post
I will go for a blade jib 90% soon
Large genoas are from the past, my Nauta54 being designed for a 140%!

I just bought two big rings :-)

I would ask DH, as a cruiser, how do you manage the jib down on deck?
Folded?
Folded and covered in A long bag?
Under deck?
Or furled?


.... since i was cautioned not to go for laminated sails, if to be kept ON deck along the day... (??)

I want and much prefer hooked sails, thus furling is no option to me..

Is the sheet line permanently kept inside/outside/BETWEEN the shrouds? Or do you change it either?

:-) PS with staysail+main i tack 50 AWA upwind, is it good enough!? I get 40-45 with genoa...
My jibs are all furling, so they don't go down on deck.

I actually also prefer non-furling, hank-on headsails, and since I never reef my blade jib, it would actually work ok as a hank-on.

As to your tacking angle -- it's hard to say what's good or not, it depends on the boat, conditions, etc., but 50 AWA sounds very low to me. What is your tacking angle over ground?

On my boat, angle to the wind in really good conditions (wind strength in the middle of the range for the sail, smooth seas), I reach maximum VMG to windward at 28 to 30 degrees AWA, making about 2/3 of the true wind speed. Over ground it's about 100 degrees.
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Old 16-10-2016, 14:23   #10
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Re: New Sails and Staysail Questions Najad 380

On a #3 it's uncommon to not have tracks which are far enough forward. Especially if you raise the sail's tack at all (on a pennant), which also raises the clew. And having both up higher is assistive in preventing waves from striking the sail, something that's important with smaller, high wind jibs. If you can get the cars up near the shrouds, then you probably don't need anything more, & you can even diagram what'll work & what won't on a sheet of graph paper.

As to the necessity of inboard tracks, or having floating leads. Even if they would be good to have from the perspective of having the proper theoretical sheeting angle, if the boat isn't close winded enough to use them then they're a waste. For example Swans have deep, race inspired keels, & high performance rigs. So they go to weather well, & don't make much leeway. But if a boat has a shallow keel, or a rig not optimized for windward work, then while inboard tracks may work, the boat will suffer from so much leeway when using them that the amount of progress that she makes to weather is laughable (VMG, CMG). In which case adding/added jib tracks don't make sense.

The other component of this is that by the time you switch down to a small jib, usually the wave size has gone up. So that on many boats you make better progress to weather (VMG, CMG) by footing off a little. Thus if this is usually the case on your boat, then it rarely makes sense to be able to sheet the sail those extra few degrees towards centerline.

Don't get me wrong, I'm a BIG fan of adjustable jib leads, & Hate sailing without them. As they make tuning the sails trim to conditions so much easier, which adds speed & pointing ability, while reducing heeling. But if your boat doesn't already have them, investigate things to ensure that it makes sense to add them prior to spending the $.


As to choosing which type of sail construction to use, it may not make sense to spend the extra $ for Hydranet if you're going to go with Crosscut sails. Yes, Hydranet will increase their lifespan a bit, including helping them to retain their shape a little longer. But depending on your sailing style, & what you're planning to do with the boat, it may not be the best economy. So other cloth choices may make more sense, especially since staysails on boats that size tend to be small in terms of area. So unless you often use it as a primary sail by itself, such as for a jib in high winds. Then you’re better to stick with standard woven Dacron for it, as the gains by using Hydranet will likely be too small to realize.

To put it another way, some cloth/cut combinations are like putting tires for a Ferrari on an SUV, or vice versa. So it's an area where talking to your sailmaker helps. Ditto on asking for input from guys who know you (& your sailing style) better, along with the differences between sail cuts & material types.

On cloth & budget. You might entertain going a step higher in terms of "cloth" type on one or two of the sails, while having another built to a slightly lower standard. I can't imagine that it would hurt to check, & it could give you much better lifespan in the sails that you use more.

The word Cloth is in quotes as the sail may actually wind up being a laminate some cases, if it's a step up from Hydranet. Also, when discussing this, see if such a change makes sense from the perspective of your sailing style & plans. As well as being honest with how long you think you'll keep the boat. Since if you'll be selling her in 18 months, then your choices may be different.
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Old 16-10-2016, 15:10   #11
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Re: New Sails and Staysail Questions Najad 380

fwiw, our sailmaker (Steve Walker in Tasmania) advised us that while Radial Hydranet, used in radial cut sails was definitely a step up from any pure Dacron availablle, the cross cut Hydranet, used in a cross cut sail was not worth the extra cost. We are quite happy with our radial Hydranet main and small genoa. We chose Dacron cross cut for our Solent jib (much like a blade in shape).

YMMV

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Old 17-10-2016, 09:58   #12
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Re: New Sails and Staysail Questions Najad 380

Sailcloth is kind of a different conversation, and there is tons of information in the archives of this site.

Everyone will have his own different opinion about it, but for what it's worth, here's mine:

1. The smaller the sail, the less the cloth matters.

2. All woven sailcloth, including Hydranet, creeps and stretches, because of the geometry of the threads. It's the "crimp" in the weave, which pulls out under force and allows the sail to stretch, never to return to its original shape. The bigger the sail, the greater forces applied over longer distances, and this snowballs quickly.

3. Woven sails start to lose their shape the first day. Doesn't mean they don't sail, but you get more and more and more drag every time you go out, which means more heeling and less soaring. This may or may not matter to you much, depending on (a) whether you are really keen on sailing upwind; and (b) how big the sails are and therefore how fast the stretching out happens.

4. After having tried laminate sails, I will now never ever have another woven sail on any boat of mine. The difference is amazing; incredible. But I have a large, powerful boat with large sails, so YMMV. The OP, with a 38' boat, might not notice nearly as much difference.
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Old 17-10-2016, 12:25   #13
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Re: New Sails and Staysail Questions Najad 380

DH, my NAUTA54 is much like your boat.

Two considerations

SA is approx. 70sqm for headsail, which means 30+kg for a dacron sail (dry)

Our boats are heavy with big ballast, which works on sails more than any modern boats

We dont need to be speed-maniac to appreciate the benefit of laminate, stiff and lighter, which has 15 years of history. A serious cruiser should appreciate it.

Thank you for your feedback on this issue
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Old 19-10-2016, 05:33   #14
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Re: New Sails and Staysail Questions Najad 380

Hi Mark,

It might be worth speaking to Ben at Shore Sails up at Swanwick ( premier marina) he made a set for our Moody 40 and spent plenty of time speaking to us and looking at the boat to make sure what he supplied was really going to work. He has subsequently made some alterations to the sails on our Malo and is extremely helpful. I've no connection with his company other than being a satisfied customer.


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Old 20-10-2016, 11:50   #15
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Re: New Sails and Staysail Questions Najad 380

Thanks all for great info.

Most helpful!

Mark
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