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Old 23-06-2010, 07:42   #1
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ProFurl Furling Line

I have just installed a Pro Furl on my head sail for my Cheoy Lee 41 Pedrick. The rigger installed 3/8 double braid line. When furling it is very difficult to furl even with bow fully head to wind. The double braid also seems to stretch more that I would like.

Any suggestions on the best line to use, replacement line type or is this as good as it gets?

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Old 23-06-2010, 07:57   #2
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I don't think the type of line will affect ease of furling. Should furl on any point of sail, just ease the sheet. You might have too much tension on the halyard.
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Old 23-06-2010, 08:21   #3
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My Furlex is also hard to get started but after the first couple of turns it gets EZer. I installed a small winch to get it started, plus I can ease it out with control and not burn the gloves. A couple items to check;

When the sail is furled all the way in, there should be 3-4 wraps still on the drum. That keeps the bitter end from getting over stressed.

When starting to furl make sure the upper swivel/halyard is not trying to wrap around the forestay. If so, the halyard will need the guide brought down the mast some more.
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Old 23-06-2010, 08:23   #4
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3/8' line is as small as I'd use for a furling line if that is one of your questions. Had 5/16" on my ProFurl and it ate my hands up and took too many turns on a winch when trying to furl in heavy air.

It's really essential to let the sheets completely loose when you start to furl. Thought my furling was defective the first time I tried to furl in strong winds. Couldn't get the sail to furl even with a winch. Finally let the sheets fly completely free and it furled up relatively easily. Have heard, but not tried, that furling is easier if you head off and blanket the headsail behind the mainsail before you try and furl.

Headstay tension also may have a factor in furling effort. If the stay has too much sag, it will increase friction in the foil against the wire. In general, have found the ProFurl to not be an effortless furl in any conditions. Takes a bit of a tug on the line to furl. Don't have any experience with other furlers except watching others, but my ProFurl doesn't seem as smooth to furl in flat conditions. That could be just better technique the others that I've happened to observe, however.
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Old 23-06-2010, 08:25   #5
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I think your line should be OK. I use 3/8" doublebraid (New England Ropes Sta-Set, nothing fancy) on our 44ft cutter VALIS. We've got a Harken furler for the 120% genoa, and even in high winds with the sail rolled to the first or second reef point, which puts a lot of stress on the furling line, it does fine.

Loosen the halyard slightly, check the bearings and blocks for smooth operation, and make sure the line lead is fair. Actually, you shouldn't need to ease the halyard, but it is easier on the furler bearings. It does take some strength to furl in strong wind, unless you let the sail flog a little. Sometimes I use a winch, but usually I furl by hand.

[edit] As I think about this, the size of the furler, especially the diameter of the drum, is going to make a big difference. My Harken has a pretty big drum, at least compared to some I've seen. The smaller the drum diameter, the harder you need to pull.
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Old 18-07-2010, 15:19   #6
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Furling - tension

We have a Harken furler (III) with a 135% jib. I have the same issue - the first few turns are tough in heavy air. In addition to easing the sheets (guessing you've tried that), and making sure that your furler bearings are clean and free (maybe even hit 'em with McLube) here are two thoughts:

1) If it's breezy, just steer off the wind before you stow the jib. It's really easy to furl, and it puts less wear on the headsail, since you avoid all that flogging. (Typical sequence: head off, stow the jib, then head up and drop the main).

2) I often forget this, but it's important for me to ease my backstay tension prior to furling. This seems to make a huge difference. Even if you don't have an adjustable backstay, this suggests that the load on the furler bearings is important. So, if you must furl while headed upwind, maybe easing the jib halyard a couple of inches will help? Also, how about the main sheet and boomvang - are they both slack?
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Old 18-07-2010, 17:08   #7
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A professional rigger friend of mine , in your application, would use 1/2" for the handling section of the line, with the core removed and sown tight, for the drum section.
Thats what he did for me, and it works great.
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Old 18-07-2010, 18:04   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cfarrar View Post
2) I often forget this, but it's important for me to ease my backstay tension prior to furling. This seems to make a huge difference. Even if you don't have an adjustable backstay, this suggests that the load on the furler bearings is important.
In the typical setup the backstay shouldn't be loading the furler bearings in any way.

Definitely bear away. Wind behind the beam.

I don't like Sta-Set for furling. Especially when it's new. It's too soft. So soft the coils crush into the drum. Something with a tighter weave (or old and stiff) seems to work better.

The idea of a stripped and sewn line is a good one.
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Old 19-07-2010, 12:11   #9
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1. Bearing off and furling off the breeze definately the way to go when possible. Way eased sheets in any case.

2. If you ever need to reef the furler Sta-set blowsa alond with any other polyester double braid. Use Warpspeed or any other dyneema cored line. Then strip out the core near the end. This is what the good riggers around my parts do. Also make sure that what ever you are cleating the furling line to is up to the task. I have seen many use a harken carbo ratchet block on a stanchion mount with a cam cleat. Tiny little 3/16" pin holding all the furler load when reefed down. I like a dedicated clutch for the furler line.

3. Already mentioned but check for halyard wrap. Personally Im not a fan of the profurl puck as I have yet to see one actually prevent halyard wrap except in a case where it would never occur anyway. Use a pennant at the bottom or proper halyard restrainer to get the lead right.

4. Or simply get a Furlex and upgrade to the hydraulic unit...
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Old 23-09-2010, 06:29   #10
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Sorry, folks. When I wrote about the headstay and backstay tensions, I had it totally backwards. From the Harken Mkiii Manual:

--A furling system will work best if the headstay is tight.
--A loose headstay is difficult to rotate and can cause
unusual wear on the foil joints.
-- Backstay adjusters allow headstay tension to be varied to change sail shape to match the conditions... Remember to keep the headstay tight for best performance when furling or reefing.

There are some other notes in the manual about headstay and backstay tension. Obviously you'll want to check for your make and model.
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Old 23-09-2010, 06:45   #11
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I definitely agree with furling on a broad reach to keep the jib from flogging and get a good wrap without a barberpole. I typically let "otto" steer, my mate eases the sheet as I furl.

If the seas aren't too bad, I like to head up to the bow and furl from there, as it eliminates the friction from all the furling line fairleads. I have 7/16" Sta-set on a Harken Mk III and it works well. One time I got a wrap was when the halyard tension was too loose, so be careful of that. One advantage of being on the bow is you can see everything well.

Good luck!
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