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Old 11-01-2016, 14:11   #1
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Testing out hank-on sails

We currently have a Harken furler (not sure what model) and are thinking about switching to hank-ons.

Assuming we had a hank-on jib, would it be possible to remove the Harken and hank on a jib without making any other modifications to the forestay? I was thinking it might be a good way to test out using hank-ons without definitively committing.

Thanks.
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Old 11-01-2016, 14:27   #2
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Re: Testing out hank-on sails

You would have to remove the extrusions! I don't how Harkens are assembled, but on our Shaefer we have to dis-assemble the furling drum, then take off the staylock, to get the extrusions off. Seems like an awful lot of work, just to try something different!
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Old 11-01-2016, 14:34   #3
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Re: Testing out hank-on sails

Yes, you could remove and reinstall with no mods, but as posted, a lot of work just to test. Unless you plan to run an extended test...like maybe use hanked on for a few weeks/months before you decide.

Alternatively for a brief test maybe try this idea (an idea, not tested): Rig a long piece of low stretch line just behind the furler (parallel to the forestay. A long piece of dyneema or similar should work. Rig it to stand off the furler extrusions a bit so the hanks dont bang up the anodizing on the extrusions. Use it like a stay and hoist the hanked on sail on it. Sail removed from furler so you get cleaner air.
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Old 11-01-2016, 14:55   #4
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Re: Testing out hank-on sails

Why go to hank on sails? I have been using them for 20 years and this year am purchasing a Schaefer roller furler and will go through a mighty effort to convert.
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Old 11-01-2016, 14:59   #5
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Re: Testing out hank-on sails

If the lower terminal is a Sta-lok or similar mechanical fitting, it isn't so easy to get the foil sections off. Unscrewing the two halves of the fitting is easy, but you can't get the upper part off without removing the cone and straightening the bent up wires in the outer layup of the 1x19... and this is nigh unto impossible without cutting the wire. Only then can you slide the sections off, at least on all the furlers that I have owned.

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Old 11-01-2016, 15:50   #6
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Re: Testing out hank-on sails

Hmmm. I suspected it probably wouldn't be quite as easy as I had hoped. It definitely wouldn't be a one-sail test. More like at least a month. We don't have sta-loks or anythings similar - just standard swage terminals.

Guess I'll have to think about this one some more.

Thanks.
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Old 11-01-2016, 18:15   #7
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Re: Testing out hank-on sails

For small yachts, there are slides that are inserted in the extrusion, just like a boltrope, and have eyes to accept hanks. In fact, they are used to furl a hank-on headsail on a roller-furler. But with this system, you have the disadvantages of the furler and the hanks!

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Old 12-01-2016, 08:47   #8
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Re: Testing out hank-on sails

It would be easier (and more reversable should you decide you prefer furling better) to have a plain stay made to fit the current turnbuckle and head fittings than to take apart the furling gear.

If you have a boat with a long J measurement, however, going to hank ons can allow greater foresail area (deck sweepers) and improved pointing ability. How you deal with it depends on inventiveness and initiative in putting in bungees or netting to restrain the downed sail, and a downhaul to bring it on deck from the mast.

I have a 33 footer sloop with hank ons: I love them. I have a 41 foot cutter in steel that is four times the displacement: I have a furler for the Yankee jib, which would be difficult to run with hanks otherwise, but I've kept hanks on the staysail, because if it's blowing 40 knots, I don't want to deal with cranky furling on the only sail likely still out.
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Old 12-01-2016, 08:52   #9
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Re: Testing out hank-on sails

I have a related issue. Am thinking about adding a storm jib but am not enthusiastic about getting a sail to fit my Hood roller reefing and having to drop the jib to hoist the storm sail in lousy conditions. I have rigged to fly an asymmetric from my anchor roller so I'm thinking of flying the storm jib with rings on the spinnaker halyard or maybe just shackling the head and tack to my spinnaker lines. This would be strictly for extreme conditions where I fear a roller reefed genoa might not stand up, Comments anyone.
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Old 12-01-2016, 09:07   #10
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Re: Testing out hank-on sails

Simplist to me would make up a forestay, detach roller furler/forestay assembly and attach solid forestay. If you don't like it swap it back.
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Old 12-01-2016, 10:26   #11
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Re: Testing out hank-on sails

We have converted several boats from roller whatever to hank ons(piston types) for simplicity and safety(except for going forwards). Each time had to get the jibs recut and grommets fitted and secured. The grommets should be hand sewed, otherwise you may(no, will) end up with a torn jib.
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Old 12-01-2016, 11:24   #12
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Re: Testing out hank-on sails

We went from a furler to hank-ons on our sloop, a Nicholson 32. I removed the furler and had a forestay fitted in its place. I wouldn't go back to a furling headsail.
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Old 12-01-2016, 12:23   #13
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Re: Testing out hank-on sails

I think what belizesailor said is the easiest way to see how it is. But I can tell you (as a hank-on guy myself) the roller furler is sinfully convenient but never seems to have a good sail shape and can be hell in high winds if it gets away from you, depends on the design. Hank-on sails will have, or at least CAN have, better shape, better performance but you have the "hassle" of going forward and changing sails. I hear good things about reefrite and I suppose I could be swayed but I am so used to hanking and I love the sail shape/performance that I am content to stick with my old ways, for now. I think you can make a good argument for being able to point higher with a hanked on sail because they can have the foot closer to the deck. I also have a reefable jib which makes, potentially, one less sail change.
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Old 12-01-2016, 12:30   #14
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Re: Testing out hank-on sails

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave22q View Post
I have a related issue. Am thinking about adding a storm jib but am not enthusiastic about getting a sail to fit my Hood roller reefing and having to drop the jib to hoist the storm sail in lousy conditions. I have rigged to fly an asymmetric from my anchor roller so I'm thinking of flying the storm jib with rings on the spinnaker halyard or maybe just shackling the head and tack to my spinnaker lines. This would be strictly for extreme conditions where I fear a roller reefed genoa might not stand up, Comments anyone.
That could work, though some spinnaker blocks may not be up to it. If you are attaching the tack back on the deck I'd think you'd want to make sure the storm jib is cut for that shape. Makes a pretty skinny storm jib but it might be ok. Talk to a sailmaker. In the old days I used to see cruisers with two headstays, side by side, for just this situation, one for the storm jib or for flying two jibs wing and wing downwind. Haven't seen that in a while. Anybody do that anymore?
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Old 12-01-2016, 15:55   #15
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Re: Testing out hank-on sails

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave22q View Post
I have a related issue. Am thinking about adding a storm jib but am not enthusiastic about getting a sail to fit my Hood roller reefing and having to drop the jib to hoist the storm sail in lousy conditions. I have rigged to fly an asymmetric from my anchor roller so I'm thinking of flying the storm jib with rings on the spinnaker halyard or maybe just shackling the head and tack to my spinnaker lines. This would be strictly for extreme conditions where I fear a roller reefed genoa might not stand up, Comments anyone.
There are several drawbacks to your schemes:

Using the spinny halyard as a stay for the storm jib: Unfortunately, most spinnaker halyards are a bit stretchy for this application, and it will be impossible to keep the luff of the storm jib from sagging off badly. This, of course, has very bad effects on windward performance. Secondly, it is way better to have heavy weather jibs further aft than tacked at the anchor roller. A better solution is to have a removable stay that terminates somewhere a few feet aft of the headstay. If you have the top of it somewhere near the top of the mast one does not need running backs to keep the mast straight. This setup is called a "Solent stay", and works quite well.

Setting the storm jib flying (no stay, just a tack fitting and a halyard) is a disaster in high winds, either setting or striking the sail. And the problem of keeping the luff straight is even worse than when using the spinny halyard as a stay. All in all, totally unworkable as a storm setup.

Sorry to be so negative about your ideas, but until you have tried such schemes in anger, you can't believe how impractical they are!

Jim
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