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Old 13-09-2012, 09:22   #1
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S2 9.2A Poor Pointing Ability ??

Hello All,

I have recently purchased a 1983 S2 9.2A which is in great shape and hardly used. I love this boat. I am on Lake Superior and wind conditions vary greatly

She's rigged with a 150 Roller furling Genoa and full stock main both of which are newer and crisp.

My tack to tack inclusive angle when close-hauled seems to be excessive - in excess of 90 degrees (probably closer to 120-150) she seems to perform well - what can I do from a rigging / sail standpoint to be able to sail closer to the wind?

Would reefing the main help?
Change to a 110 Genoa?
Place the Genoa Sheet Blocks in different location - seems to be ok

Any ideas or suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks

Maisso - Lake Superior Sailor
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Old 13-09-2012, 09:59   #2
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Re: S2 9.2A Poor Pointing Ability ??

That is pretty much typical for most boats. 120 would be on the bad side. 90 is dreaming for all but deep draft racers. Alot of people think they do it, but you have to perform like you're racing....unless it's a perfect breeze, sail set and no chop. Are you using your gps/chart to determine this? or just the compass....
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Old 13-09-2012, 10:23   #3
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Re: S2 9.2A Poor Pointing Ability ??

Judging by the questions being asked in the OP, a course on sail trim would be beneficial. At the very least, there are excellent books on the subject.

Don't be mislead by the crispness of the sails. OEM sails or poorly cut sails from a discount sail loft could contribute to the type of problems you're experiencing.

A 150% genoa is never going to be a great-pointing sail because of how it backwinds the main when close-hauled. If a cruiser gets on this thread and claims to tack through 70 degrees with his #1, ignore him.
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Old 13-09-2012, 10:26   #4
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Re: S2 9.2A Poor Pointing Ability ??

The basic stuff too, eg make sure shrouds and stays are properly tensioned, particularly the back stay. A poorly tuned rig will have dramatic effects on pointing ability. It is worth playing with the blocks to see how a change effects the boat's performance as well as the leech line should you have one. Proper sail twist is also important. The main will luff a bit when your pointing high. How far inboard your genoa blocks are also has a very big effect on pointing ability.
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Old 13-09-2012, 10:35   #5
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Re: S2 9.2A Poor Pointing Ability ??

I second the comments above. Even though the sails look new, they could be stretched or just not well cut. You can consult with a sailmaker for an opinion. Rigging tension is also good to check. I would put as much or more emphasis on the headstay as that controls the luff and sag of the jib. The genoa is too large for good windward ability. Change to a non-overlapping jib, 100% LP, just enough to fill the fore triangle and you'll have better pointing ability. Yes, check the sheeting positions for both the jib sheets and the main sheets because they control the twist and set of the sails. Make sure your halyards are tight (giving tight luffs to both sails), that your downhaul on the main is tight, and that the outhaul on the main is tight. A book or course on sailing trim is highly recommended. Finally, if you have not already, check to make sure the bottom of the boat is clean (hard to get dirty in a fresh water lake). And the propeller--do you have a feathering or folding propeller? If not, then the propeller drag is holding you back.

I grew up on and learned to sail on Lake Superior also, and still have a home in Marquette, so I am familiar with your cruising grounds a little.

I hope that helps.

Eric
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Old 13-09-2012, 10:40   #6
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Re: S2 9.2A Poor Pointing Ability ??

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bash View Post
Judging by the questions being asked in the OP, a course on sail trim would be beneficial. At the very least, there are excellent books on the subject.
Excellent advice to start.

Because the problem could be mast rake, mast prebend, sails, (are they built to sail plan for the boat or to fill up the space made by boom and mast?), sail selection for the particular wind, sheet tension, traveler car position depending on wind speed, downhaul or cunningham tension (again depending on wind speed) outhaul tension, battens or no battens, batten tension for the particular wind, jib sheet tension, jib selection for the particular wind conditions, crew placement (for the particular wind) ...................and it goes on
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Old 13-09-2012, 11:30   #7
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Re: S2 9.2A Poor Pointing Ability ??

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maisso View Post
Hello All,

I have recently purchased a 1983 S2 9.2A which is in great shape and hardly used. I love this boat. I am on Lake Superior and wind conditions vary greatly

She's rigged with a 150 Roller furling Genoa and full stock main both of which are newer and crisp.

My tack to tack inclusive angle when close-hauled seems to be excessive - in excess of 90 degrees (probably closer to 120-150) she seems to perform well - what can I do from a rigging / sail standpoint to be able to sail closer to the wind?

Would reefing the main help?
Change to a 110 Genoa?
Place the Genoa Sheet Blocks in different location - seems to be ok

Any ideas or suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks

Maisso - Lake Superior Sailor
Reefing the main would help in wind say around 20. That 150 outta be okay in 5 knot winds though. There isn't much that doesn't change in sailboat racing. As the wind increases, sails get smaller (and are adjusted for less draft). Luff tension is increased with downhaul or cunningham adjustments as well as outhaul tension. (and the mast is raked more.....for upwind)
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Old 13-09-2012, 12:29   #8
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Re: S2 9.2A Poor Pointing Ability ??

We have an S2 CC 9.2 and always found that it sailed better to the wind (if above 7 -10 knots) with the smaller Jib than it did with the larger genoa....I think ours are 120 and 150 respectively.
Have you tried reeling the genoa in to see if it does better then?
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Old 07-09-2016, 18:59   #9
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Re: S2 9.2A Poor Pointing Ability ??

This is an old thread, but I'm finding it VERY pertinent to my present frustration with my S2 9.2A. I love it for cruising and day sailing. But racing I can't keep up with boats I should be able to keep up with, boats with similar Sail Area / Displacement (16.00 - 17.00). Pointing is the biggest problem, and indeed, I've been sailing with a 150 genoa, on the theory that a big heavy boat needs that big a sail in light to moderate wind. But often I'm overpowered, and dragging, and often the genoa backwinds the main no matter how hard I try to prevent that.

Questions (if anybody notices this post!): how much smaller a genny should I get? (I do want to keep a furler system, and only roll a few turns if necessary to reef); my genoa blocks are on the toe rail (NOT inboard like most racer/cruisers). Should I move the inboard by installing a track? Should I be reefing the main since it doesn't do much on this boat?

Thanks, and if you notice this post, you get a prize. Inquire for details......
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Old 07-09-2016, 20:56   #10
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Re: S2 9.2A Poor Pointing Ability ??

Try barberhauling in the jib sheets some. You can use carabiners with short lines attached to them for this, while experimenting.
This will mimic having jib leads led further inboard. And it'd pay to calculate your sheeting angles with that sail, period. As well as with your others. So that you can rule it out, or not. But generally 155's have decent sheeting angles. And all such angles for sails can be improved upon.

Retune your rig. Check your sails for shape & draft position.
Trim the main every time you trim the jib, as they work together.
Keep the boat flatter.
Use your traveler more than your helm. And use them together, as "rudder" is Latin for "drag inducing device". The more you use it, the slower you'll be.

Train yourself & your crew to both watch for, & call wind/puffs. So that you know ages in advance whether a puff is a lift or a header.
Even with 20/70 vision I can do this when they're 1/4-1/2 mile out. Further with contacts.

Having poor pointing & speed may just be the design, as your PHRF rating isn't exactly stellar. Especially when compared to other racer cruisers of her size. PHRF New England - Handicapping - Base Handicaps
Try digging up a copy of your polars, SIC.

It could be the keel (foil shape, or lack there of), could be something else with the hull or rudder. Again, see your polars. And compare yours to some of your competition. Most are available gratis online.
Which keel BTW?

It's kind of tough (& expensive) to fight design issues. There's a LOT of useful/helpful info at www.L-36.com & www.forums.SailingAnarchy.com Including this insightful article Small Things Big Wins

Bottom line, how much do you want to spend in time & money in a quest for speed (& pointing ability)? Especially as at some point it's cheaper & more satisfying to switch boat types, to one which inherently sails better, & is also more responsive to tuning efforts as well.


Okay, in terms of prizes, a case of good rum works Something dark, aged, & or, spiced.
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Old 07-09-2016, 21:03   #11
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Re: S2 9.2A Poor Pointing Ability ??

Quote:
Originally Posted by JIvories View Post
This is an old thread, but I'm finding it VERY pertinent to my present frustration with my S2 9.2A. I love it for cruising and day sailing. But racing I can't keep up with boats I should be able to keep up with, boats with similar Sail Area / Displacement (16.00 - 17.00). Pointing is the biggest problem, and indeed, I've been sailing with a 150 genoa, on the theory that a big heavy boat needs that big a sail in light to moderate wind. But often I'm overpowered, and dragging, and often the genoa backwinds the main no matter how hard I try to prevent that.

Questions (if anybody notices this post!): how much smaller a genny should I get? (I do want to keep a furler system, and only roll a few turns if necessary to reef); my genoa blocks are on the toe rail (NOT inboard like most racer/cruisers). Should I move the inboard by installing a track? Should I be reefing the main since it doesn't do much on this boat?

Thanks, and if you notice this post, you get a prize. Inquire for details......
Don't know if this is still of interest but...
I have a 135% yankee cut genoa on a Harken furler and love it.
You might try moving the genoa blocks farther aft. That helped mine set better. Experiment: the more aft, the more you power down the sail and flatten it. More tension on the jib halyard helps as well. Good luck!
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Old 08-09-2016, 09:28   #12
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Re: S2 9.2A Poor Pointing Ability ??

I'll second trying the Barber Hauler and see if it helps. But how old is your 150? Those big Genoas can get pretty ugly shape over time, if your competition has newer sails it makes a huge difference.
If you are backwinding the main you are losing drive and pointing ability. The main is a big part of pointing well.
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Old 10-09-2016, 19:36   #13
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Re: S2 9.2A Poor Pointing Ability ??

Many thanks for all these great suggestions. I'm working on Uncivilized's advice about getting Polars and comparing. Looks as though you can purchase them from US Sailing.

I did get out on afternoon solo after reading these suggestions, especially trying to Barber haul the genoa, to see if inboard works better. I managed to put a block on some hardware well inboard of the toe rail just to see. I had interference with the winch handle, and the life lines, but got it to work, and do not think it helped. I think the toerail is the place b/c the spreaders limit how far inboard it can go. Otherwise you end up twisting sail at leeech. And not much room between chainplates and lifelines or rail.

It's true, I think I'm looking for more performance than this boat was built for. It's HEAVY, and the keel has a surprising thickness, like 5" even where it begins under foredeck--which must not help. The genoa is getting old, but I do think the shape still works, I can get it pretty flat with draft forward.

I'm leaning toward selling the boat, getting one that's designed to race and cruise. But fear losing a lot in the sale, and then still have to purchase something of greater value.

I think I'll prep it for the market, but try in the meantime to get it to sail to its numbers. I'd be happy if I could just get it to be competitive in its group. I mean I'm competing with boats with similar SA/D and PHRF, but not coming close. Something's wrong.

My plan: really tune rigging; get the bottom really smooth, it needs a stripping; get a real traveler (it's pull pins on the transom!); get a smaller newer genoa, 135 or 140, I'm often overpowered and getting too much helm, with rudder at 45 degrees... bad. Use traveller to keep boat flatter, and reef main if necessary, as genoa does most of the work on S2; get crew to practice with me, and get more guys on the rail to help flatten boat.

Will let you know how it goes!
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Old 10-09-2016, 23:15   #14
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Re: S2 9.2A Poor Pointing Ability ??

Quote:
I think I'll prep it for the market, but try in the meantime to get it to sail to its numbers. I'd be happy if I could just get it to be competitive in its group. I mean I'm competing with boats with similar SA/D and PHRF, but not coming close. Something's wrong.

My plan: really tune rigging; get the bottom really smooth, it needs a stripping; get a real traveler (it's pull pins on the transom!); get a smaller newer genoa, 135 or 140, I'm often overpowered and getting too much helm, with rudder at 45 degrees... bad. Use traveller to keep boat flatter, and reef main if necessary, as genoa does most of the work on S2; get crew to practice with me, and get more guys on the rail to help flatten boat.
Your plan is exactly w hat folks do when prepping a boat for racing... you have picked some very important areas to improve, and I think you willl be astonished at the ease with which you move up in the fleet when you have accomplished your list.

A lot of those things are sorta synergistic. Like the genoa really being blown out, and thus causing big heel angles and big weather helm angles. If you were serious about 45 degree angles, it is surprising that your boat has finished before dark (as it were)! That will cause enormous drag as well as control problems. When you replace the genoa with a good one, you will likely find less need for dropping the traveller (but having one is still a good thing). A good bottom will improve your performance in lighter airs to a surprising degree. And a crew that knows their job will free you up as helmsman so that you can concentrate on your own job and do it better.

Finally, if you are racing under PHRF rules, you don't need a better boat, for the handicap takes all that into account. What you need for success in PHRF is having the equipment and the skills to sail the boat up to its rating. Do that and the pickle dishes will soon be littering your mantle.

Go on with your plan and enjoy the ride. Moving up in a fleet is really gratifying!

Jim
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Old 10-09-2016, 23:44   #15
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Re: S2 9.2A Poor Pointing Ability ??

Not to dissuade you, but before you put $5k or 1,000hrs of labor into her, take a look into used racers, such as over on Sailing Anarchy's Classifieds. They can be incredibly cheap. Meaning sometimes $5-$10k for a tricked out 30'er with a full suite of racing sails. Which can make swapping boats a real bargain if that's the kind of sailing you want to do. And the boats in question are fine coastal cruisers.

Basically just make a loose spread sheet is what I'm saying. Comparing the cost of a different boat vs. the upgrades you're looking at. Sails & rigging aren't cheap! Though used ones are if you know what to look for & at.

The other thing is though, the more you work on your boat, & other boats, such as via your proposed changes & the like, the better a sailor you become. Which makes it easier to do well even on a mildly tuned boat. As well as it being easier for you to determine what needs doing to a boat, & what will make the biggest difference when it comes to spending time or money on them.

Also it helps to treat your crew well, & make everyone part of your program. As the more part of a team they feel, the better team you'll have. And they'll do their own homework on things sailing too. Which, of course results in... More fun, better results (which are fun), etc.

Nobody starts out doing well racing, & time on the water, along with good studying, as well as coaching, is what pays dividends. But if you focus on it, the changes come pretty quickly. And it sounds like you're commited to it. Plus you'll have a lot of fun, & make some great friends & memories.

Good luck!


Edit: There are websites online that have the Polars for hundreds of boats, gratis. Though perhaps part of the "trick" in finding them is to look for them via a "sailor's" computer. One that you've looked up a lot of sailing stuff on, especially via a few ISP's consistently, so that the "auto-tuning search engines" are more set up towards looking for sailing stuff. AKA borrow Paul Cayard's tablet.

As for example when I told an acquaintance what position I commonly did onboard, the search results that they got were pretty poor. But when I sent them my search results, there were pages of good stuff. Probably because I read too much about sailing
Just a "think".

PS: Also, it helps to do too much reading on sailing. Both online, & via print media. As well as taking notes on boat your sailing, & your reading. Just as with studying anything else seriously. Which is something that the A-List'ers & Pro's do... it's how you get to that level. Or one tool anyway.
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