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Old 23-07-2010, 16:19   #1
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Two or Three Reefs - Now, THAT's the Question !

Hello all. Just took possession of my new beta engine and now I have to get a new mainsail made. I have decided to go with Doyle sails but I am confused what to do. I originally was going with three reefs for my new caliber 28, but after talking to a few people they where telling me how small my mainsail plan was and pretty much told me when it gets as knarly, and you need three reefs, you might as well pull down the whole main. My sail plan relies on mainly me foresail and we do own a storm jib for the boat. So I am to the point of production for the sail and I am looking for some suggestions from what you think.


Thanks,

Jon
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Old 23-07-2010, 16:26   #2
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I'm going to guess that two reefs and a storm sail would be fine for 99.9 % of the sailing that you'd be doing.
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Old 23-07-2010, 16:34   #3
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what about the other 0.1% ?

why wouldn't you get a triple reefed main? just $$?
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Old 23-07-2010, 16:35   #4
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I had a huge three reef mainsail on a Saga 43. It was just too many lines running up and down to make sense. If I had to do it again I would install two deep reefs, so I could get the sail area with two reefs down near the three reef mainsail.

ISAF rules require that the mainsail reefing be able to reduce the luff by 40%. I would use that as a minimum guide.

And FWIW you don't need to worry about that kind of reefing unless you plan on going seriously offshore- the kind of passage where weather forecasts are worthless after 3-4 days. Anything less and you can usually predict really gnarly weather far enough in advance to stay in port.

But like everything in life, YMMV.

David
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Old 23-07-2010, 16:37   #5
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Is your boom rigged for three reefs? Regardless, most people don't like leaving that many reef lines rigged.

Personally, I would go with 2 reefs but make them pretty deep so that the second reef is the equivalent of what most people would make a 3rd reef. I often find that boats have more reefing adjustibility than I really need as long as I am not racing but I do like to have the option of reefing down for really heavy weather. On a 28 foot boat, having three reef points would mean that they were pretty close together.
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Old 23-07-2010, 16:40   #6
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Triple reef main is better than storm jib alone. If you are going offshore, you need the 3 reef. Coastal, you can skip them, watch the GRIBs.
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Old 23-07-2010, 16:41   #7
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Is your boom rigged for three reefs? Regardless, most people don't like leaving that many reef lines rigged.
It's just an extra cleat, right? Or being able to tie a hitch through the cringle to the boom.
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Old 23-07-2010, 16:50   #8
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We have three reef points, but only lines rigged for using two of them at any time. When we are coastal cruising or overnighting, we leave the lines in reefs #1 and 2. When offshore, we put the lines in reefs #2 and 3.

Mark
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Old 23-07-2010, 16:51   #9
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Two reefs are fine most of the time. However, on any offshore boat that has no dedicated trisail I would like to have the third reef. Just in case.

Sailed with 2 reef main EU to NZ and then with 3 reef main (and a tri) NZ to EU. Can't see any pros/cons of any of the two setups over the other one. My own boat 26'.

If, however, an extended voyage is planned, I would go for 3 reefs and make the top portion in storm orange. Also the storm jib (and tri, if you have one) should be orange. Not so easy to spot a small patch of white sail against whitecaps covered ocean.

Doyle sailmakers good choice.

b.
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Old 23-07-2010, 23:24   #10
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Best solution is a boom furler. Wish I had one. Infinitely reefable.

I have 2 reefs and a trysail with a separate track. The 2nd reef is deep, so I've never used the trysail.
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Old 23-07-2010, 23:37   #11
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You can always add the third reef later if it turns out you need it.
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Old 23-07-2010, 23:40   #12
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You're from Fresno?

Three.

This ain't Boston.
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Old 24-07-2010, 06:28   #13
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You can always add the third reef later if it turns out you need it.
It is essentially impossible to run the clew line for a reef at the time it is needed. If you are going to leave one undone either know your weather or make it the middle reef.
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Old 24-07-2010, 07:16   #14
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I have three reefs for my main. I only rig all three lines offshore; inshore I just run the first reef line.

I've spent more time than I would have liked with the third reef in offshore. Very glad to have it when I wanted it.
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Old 24-07-2010, 08:30   #15
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I like 3 reef points that reduce sail by 60% with a single line and snap hook for the clew. Dave
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