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Old 14-05-2012, 22:56   #61
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Re: "Reefing Point" for Roller Furled Headsail?

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Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
A storm jib not supported by a stay and especially if hung from a spinny halyard (usually not low-stretch cordage) will be way too baggy to work to windward. The head will simply blow away to leeward...

Guys, this is a problem that all of us who go offshore have considered in depth. IMO there is simply no reasonable substitute for a conventional storm jib supported by some sort of very tight stay (removable is ok). The "Gale sail" which is often prescribed as a substitute doesn't have many supporters who have actually tried to use one in heavy conditions (lots of discussion previously on CF).

The OP's plan seems unlikely to produce a good sail shape, and really, in storm conditions one doesn't want to be depending on a mickey mouse setup.

YMMV, but as one who has done a lot of miles using a storm jib and triple-reefed main, I tend to be pretty conservative on this subject.

Cheers,

Jim
I agree 100%, and as noted, I don't see this as any replacement for a proper storm jib.

I'm considering this approach as a "light storm jib" or perhaps better to simply call it a reefing point to more robustly and securely reduce sail area of a roller furled headsail.

It is only for situations where one would not yet need to switch to a proper storm jib (reasonable prudence and caution taken into consideration) where, due to the roller furler in question, the choices otherwise are (a) switch to storm jib, or smaller headsail, or (b) do without any headsail.

It is just one of many options that might be available, to be selected when it is the better option than moving to the proper storm jib.
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Old 14-05-2012, 23:07   #62
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Re: "Reefing Point" for Roller Furled Headsail?

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So your drawing shows a dyneema stay attached at the mast head and stem head left loose most of the time. Your words say, in front of the furler.

You would tension this after furling to some point.

You can't add a stay behind the furler due the dinghy.

With these limits, why not just add a real stay in front of the furler, a real storm sail in a bag at the pulpit. Furl all the way in when you need to and hoist the storm sail. A lot less complex and other than opening the bag no need to be on a bouncing foredeck in a blow.
Adding a second permanent forestay both increases the cost/weight/complexity/stresses on the entire rig 100% of the time and tensioning of dual forestays is always tricky. Not to mention that the cost of adding an entirle second forestay is quite a bit more than simply sewing a loop of Dyneema into the headsail.

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The disatvantage of this is you would really like the storm sail aft and closer to the mast. The advantage over what you are proposing is the sail center of effort will be a lot lower than the reefed (and what appears to be yankee cut) headsail.

The other sort of crappy issue is that on one tack the sail will fly fine. On the other tack it will lay across the furled headsail as there is no room to tack inside the forward stay.
But not really much different from the furled headsail alone. The performance/behavior isn't going to be notably different than just using the partially furled headsail. This is mostly about having a solution that is more robust and secure, and also addresses the risk of the partially furled headsail unfurling catastrophically at the worst possible moment, as it removes the forces on the furler and furled sail that would lead to failure of the furling line.

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Another, out of the box thought. What if you made a "bridle" that attached at the toerails that joined just over the top, and stradles the dinghy. Then the single inner forestay goes the the top or as up near the spreaders somewhere. This could be stowed and rigged when conditions are forecast. The advantage over the above solutions is it gets the storm sail aft. The disadvantage is that the stormsail may have to fly higher off the deck than you want.
That's a good idea to consider. Though I think you are right that in order to get reasonable angles on the bridle, the storm jib would end up essentially where the partially furled headsail would, so little benefit other than it being slightly further aft (which isn't such a benefit for me, having a ketch -- and in fact, moving the storm jib aft from the bow may very well be detrimental to the balance of the boat when sailing jib and jigger.
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Old 14-05-2012, 23:18   #63
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Re: "Reefing Point" for Roller Furled Headsail?

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A storm jib not supported by a stay and especially if hung from a spinny halyard (usually not low-stretch cordage) will be way too baggy to work to windward. The head will simply blow away to leeward...
The proposal, however, was to use Spectra or Dyneema throughout, so that, when combined with the reefing point, if done right, would work as a secondary forestay, and could be tensioned sufficiently tight such that it would not be blown to leeward.

And again, this is not a replacement for a "proper" storm jib, but complimentary to it.
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Old 14-05-2012, 23:37   #64
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Re: "Reefing Point" for Roller Furled Headsail?

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I am with you on this. Its not simply hanging a smaller bit of sail cloth. It is hanging the right cut cloth at the right place with the right shape to make the boat handle well.

The only other thought I had is that I have a spin topping lift at 1/2 to 5/8 mast height. Not ideal but what about replacing the cordage with some super, no stretch stuff, attaching the lift to a pad eye and then hanking on a normal storm sail. Its basically the same as an inner stay but cord instead of wire and the advantage that rigging it is simply hooking the eye and winching the topper until the tension is good.

The real disadvantage to this is probably chafe.

(edit - doh... The other disadvantage with this is if using the topper for a stay there is no halyard - Doh....)
I'd worry about sufficient mast support (i.e. lack of backstay(s)) if using that halyard as a forestay.

I have a baby forestay at approx. the same position and it definitely cannot be used as a forestay for a headsail as there is no back or side support to the mast at that point.
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Old 15-05-2012, 00:08   #65
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Originally Posted by rhumbunctious
.

But not really much different from the furled headsail alone. The performance/behavior isn't going to be notably different than just using the partially furled headsail. This is mostly about having a solution that is more robust and secure, and also addresses the risk of the partially furled headsail unfurling catastrophically at the worst possible moment, as it removes the forces on the furler and furled sail that would lead to failure of the furling line.
.
Interesting discussion and it sounds like you know how you will proceed. Let us know how it performs.

In regards to the furler unit unfurling, I am a bit unclear. I have a profurl and I have sailed many times in 40 knots with about 50% genny and one reef in the main. The furling line is cleated and other than a line break is zero chance of unfurling, I dont hace provision for and current sailing doesn't dictate the need for a storm sail.

As far as sail shape on a furled sail it is a bit of a red herring. If you are making boat speed a little flow separation at the leading edge is no big deal. You lose a little pointing but on mine with 3 pad luff I lose little pointing when furled.

The idea about forces on the furler is also confusing. At X heel angle there is basically Y force. You reduce headsail (furl) to reduce heel and Y. Also a common error is to "winch" the headsail up. This puts the loads on the furling drum and should not be done. Hoist snug, which also reduces halyard wrap, potential and leave be. This lets the forces remain on the foil, bolt rope and forestay.

Last Saturday we started out in 12 knots and full genny. At one point I started seeing white caps ahead and in 15 seconds we were furled to 100% and continued on close hauled at 5 1/2 knots in probably 18 knots. We can get the main reef in in one minute and can get the genny to 50% in another 15 seconds. This sail combo works all the way to 40 knots with a balanced helm. I have never stuck in the second main reef.

Here's a photo broad reaching, furled to 100% in about 15 knots of wind. We furled only because we had newbies on board and had no reason to push. Note the baggy shape. We have since replaced this genny and strictly we'll move the genny cars forward when we are serious.
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Old 15-05-2012, 09:19   #66
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Re: "Reefing Point" for Roller Furled Headsail?

rhumbuntious, you have been given over 5 dozen suggestions on this thread. Plan A to plan B and everything in between. I have 2 more. #1 get an old time Rigger/Sailmaker out to your boat to evaluate the problem. #2 get a different dinghy so you dont have an insurmountable road block to any fix. ____Good Luck____Grant.
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Old 15-05-2012, 09:25   #67
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Re: "Reefing Point" for Roller Furled Headsail?

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rhumbuntious, you have been given over 5 dozen suggestions on this thread. Plan A to plan B and everything in between.
And all of them are appreciated.

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I have 2 more. #1 get an old time Rigger/Sailmaker out to your boat to evaluate the problem.
I'm not really looking at this as a problem. I can use the roller furler as-is in most cases, and I have a good storm jib. I just like "belt and suspenders" systems when it comes to heavy weather, and have long been thinking about this approach as something useful to augment other options. I can live very well without it.

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#2 get a different dinghy so you dont have an insurmountable road block to any fix. ____Good Luck____Grant.
My dinghy is also my self-rescue lifeboat and most certainly won't be changed out for anything else, nor stored anywhere less secure (e.g. davits). And, as noted before in this thread, I don't need a removable forestay, as I have a ketch, and having the storm jib at the bow does not cause the same balance issues that one would have with a sloop flying a trysail. My boat sails very nicely with reefed mizzen and storm jib on the front stay.

Thanks anyway for your suggestions. All suggestions, ideas, and even criticisms are welcome.
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Old 30-05-2012, 12:55   #68
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Re: "Reefing Point" for Roller Furled Headsail?

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Originally Posted by Ex-Calif View Post
In regards to the furler unit unfurling, I am a bit unclear. I have a profurl and I have sailed many times in 40 knots with about 50% genny and one reef in the main. The furling line is cleated and other than a line break is zero chance of unfurling,
While reefing lines parting isn't common, we have one customer who has sailed about 60,000 miles since we started working with him that has had two occasions where the furling line parted and the genoa became unfurled in a gale. On one of those occasions it was the last part of a voyage from NZ to California and the line was brand new when it left HI, failing somewhere in between there and the mainland. I don't know why that line was so short-lived.

The first time the line parted was somewhere near NZ. The customer emailed to let me know what had occurred and sent me a photo of some minor damage that resulted. The second time it happened (HI to CA), the sail had a lot of miles on it so it was time to replace rather than repair.

Sailing with a reefed furling headsail should be the exception, not the rule in my opinion. The sail should be sized so that it is used unfurled the majority of the time. Purpose built light air sails will far out-perform the typical furling genoa and are a great way to avoid the damage done to furling sails from being reefed frequently.
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Old 30-05-2012, 13:15   #69
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Re: "Reefing Point" for Roller Furled Headsail?

Yeah, it's one of the faults of the furled headsail... if you reef it at all, you have this huge round "headstay" creating windage and ruining air flow. I enjoyed the cutter rig with a fair size staysail. Still, there was a bit of a gap between headsail and staysail coverage. i would likey go with a solent rig were I to do it again. ... kind of like a bigger staysail....
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Old 30-05-2012, 14:11   #70
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Re: "Reefing Point" for Roller Furled Headsail?

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Sailing with a reefed furling headsail should be the exception, not the rule in my opinion. The sail should be sized so that it is used unfurled the majority of the time. Purpose built light air sails will far out-perform the typical furling genoa and are a great way to avoid the damage done to furling sails from being reefed frequently.
I've got a fairly heavy boat and am used to sailing with a 150. It's pretty much done for, in fact I took it off the boat and put on a 110 (my guess as to both sizes). I rarely have to reef in summer, we get stronger winds in winter, but I have been trying to decide whether to replace the big gennie or start using the asym. It seems the asymmetrical is a lot less utilitarian and I sail solo a lot so, without a furler, may pose some challenges.
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Old 30-05-2012, 18:30   #71
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Quote:
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While reefing lines parting isn't common, we have one customer who has sailed about 60,000 miles since we started working with him that has had two occasions where the furling line parted and the genoa became unfurled in a gale. On one of those occasions it was the last part of a voyage from NZ to California and the line was brand new when it left HI, failing somewhere in between there and the mainland. I don't know why that line was so short-lived.

The first time the line parted was somewhere near NZ. The customer emailed to let me know what had occurred and sent me a photo of some minor damage that resulted. The second time it happened (HI to CA), the sail had a lot of miles on it so it was time to replace rather than repair.

Sailing with a reefed furling headsail should be the exception, not the rule in my opinion. The sail should be sized so that it is used unfurled the majority of the time. Purpose built light air sails will far out-perform the typical furling genoa and are a great way to avoid the damage done to furling sails from being reefed frequently.
One can argue that all lines can part and all lines are important. It is very important the furling line is in good shape, led properly to avoid chafe and when furled is secured appropriately. I take your point.

In regards to luff shape, when you are furleld you have lots of power so speed is not an issue and perfect airflow is not as important. You probably lose a little pointing ability but for my boat it is not really noticeable, all other things considered.

Hunningway - the size of the genny is pretty key and depends on your prevailing conditions. If you are constanty reefed a 150 is probably too big. If you are constantly underpowered a 110 may be too small. In my neck of the woods most guys size up when replacing foresails as I would guess our yearly average wind speed is 10 knots. I reef fornthunderstorms and perhaps 20 times a year during the NE monsoon.

Everyones's mileage may now vary...
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Old 30-05-2012, 19:45   #72
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Re: "Reefing Point" for Roller Furled Headsail?

There is no way a 3/8" or larger reefing/furling line is going to break as a roller furling line from dynamic or static tension on an under 40' boat. The sail and reefing gear just can't generate those kind of forces. That's assuming the line hasn't been severely compromised by UV. I'd be looking for chafe points that may not be obvious when there is no tension on the reefing line(s) if you are having problems with the furling line parting.
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Old 30-05-2012, 21:13   #73
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Re: "Reefing Point" for Roller Furled Headsail?

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Originally Posted by islandplanet View Post
While reefing lines parting isn't common, we have one customer who has sailed about 60,000 miles since we started working with him that has had two occasions where the furling line parted and the genoa became unfurled in a gale. On one of those occasions it was the last part of a voyage from NZ to California and the line was brand new when it left HI, failing somewhere in between there and the mainland. I don't know why that line was so short-lived.

The first time the line parted was somewhere near NZ. The customer emailed to let me know what had occurred and sent me a photo of some minor damage that resulted. The second time it happened (HI to CA), the sail had a lot of miles on it so it was time to replace rather than repair.

Sailing with a reefed furling headsail should be the exception, not the rule in my opinion. The sail should be sized so that it is used unfurled the majority of the time. Purpose built light air sails will far out-perform the typical furling genoa and are a great way to avoid the damage done to furling sails from being reefed frequently.
Interesting comments, IP... Do you happen to know just where in the length of the furling line the breaks occurred? I must agree with the above post in that an uncompromised furling line of normal size (ie 8-10 mm on most normal yachts) is not likely to break. Thus it would be of interest to know where the break(s) happened, and if there was a chafe point nearby.

And your point on not relying upon a furled genoa for medium to heavy winds is spot on. We installed a roller Solent jib inside our genoa... something like a #4 or blade, and we will switch to it rather than reef the gennie as the wind gets up, especially to windward. The lighter genoa that we now can fit is much better than the previous one which was built of elephant hide weight dacron. Tacking the genoa with the Solent rig is a PITA, but the advantages outweigh the downsides, at least for us.

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 30-05-2012, 22:54   #74
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Re: "Reefing Point" for Roller Furled Headsail?

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One can argue that all lines can part and all lines are important. It is very important the furling line is in good shape, led properly to avoid chafe and when furled is secured appropriately. I take your point.
Some line failures create bigger problems than others. Not only can a furler line fail, but also, getting a headsail off a foil when it is being whipped about in a blow can be quite a challenge.

I feel I have the best of both worlds with my furler designed for hank-on sails. It works fine as a reefing furler up to 20 knots, and makes for easy storage of my primary headsail, but in heavy weather I can reef or change the headsails "old school" and both keep the headsail lower to the deck where it belongs. And if needed, I can drop it quickly and not be left with a big tube around my forestay.

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In regards to luff shape, when you are furleld you have lots of power so speed is not an issue and perfect airflow is not as important. You probably lose a little pointing ability but for my boat it is not really noticeable, all other things considered.
True, but as you roll up a headsail on a reefing furler, the remaining sail is higher and higher up the forestay, so the more you need to furl it, the more you need it lower down near the deck.
....[/QUOTE]
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Old 31-05-2012, 00:52   #75
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rhumbunctious

Some line failures create bigger problems than others. Not only can a furler line fail, but also, getting a headsail off a foil when it is being whipped about in a blow can be quite a challenge.

I feel I have the best of both worlds with my furler designed for hank-on sails. It works fine as a reefing furler up to 20 knots, and makes for easy storage of my primary headsail, but in heavy weather I can reef or change the headsails "old school" and both keep the headsail lower to the deck where it belongs. And if needed, I can drop it quickly and not be left with a big tube around my forestay.

True, but as you roll up a headsail on a reefing furler, the remaining sail is higher and higher up the forestay, so the more you need to furl it, the more you need it lower down near the deck.
....
[/QUOTE]

Agree that eventually you want a storm sail. But I run the furled sail up to 40 knots. I think beyond that we are in the realm of specific storm tactics and all kinds of things need to be different on the boat.
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