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Old 23-10-2009, 05:11   #31
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Sailing a boat is a game of balance.

Reefing is part of it but there are other arrows in the quiver. You can bow the rig, ease the traveler down, move leads back and out, keep the draft forward, board out the sails... Need power? Go the other way, add draft, sag off the rig, leads forward, rig straight........

Our current set up is full main and a #3. The boat had a taller mast installed in the 80's so we don't use lapping sails unless we are racing. With a taller rig we don't need the horsepower provided by overlap and tacking a non lapper is a breeze. I look at many newer cruising boats with short rigs and big overlap and wonder why. Add more stick and loose the overlap. It makes life easier for the crew.

We typically sail with 10-12 degree of heel, zero or light helm, and powered up as needed to match the conditions.

My wife and I making a short jump, tws 18-22, boat speed in the low teens. We've twisted off the top of the main but have not yet had to open the leach of the jib, backstay is on medium hard.

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Old 23-10-2009, 07:20   #32
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We're not into racng. That's not to say that we aren't interested in a good turn of speed, but comfort is important to us. Given that, I let the boat tell me when it's time to reef. When she gets to a sustained heel of around 15 degrees,, it's time to shorten sail.
I agree with a previous comment that sailing on your ear (15+ degrees) is just not fun. On several occassions we've made hull speed at 12 degrees and she's very comforatable at that speed,,,,, and so are we
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Old 23-10-2009, 08:00   #33
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Originally Posted by Sailor954 View Post
When she gets to a sustained heel of around 15 degrees,, it's time to shorten sail.
I agree with a previous comment that sailing on your ear (15+ degrees) is just not fun.
If only . "Sailing level" is about 15 degrees for us. Rail down is closer to 30. Proof you can get used to just about anything.
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Old 23-10-2009, 10:19   #34
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We have marks on our wheel at 8 degrees of rudder angle and usually reef then. We have an inclinometer and usually reef at about 20 degrees. If the autopilot or vane have trouble steering streight we reef.

If the weather is forecast to get worse we reef early because its easier then than later. We also often reef very early and very deeply if we see frontal looking clouds with lightening even if the forecast calls for nothing.

But sometimes we need to push thru without reefing in order to get better positioned later. Coming down the Argentine coast we have to push fast thru 30kt headwinds (and only put a single reef in) in order to get into harbor before a 55kt front came thru. We were the only boat of 5 cruising boats that made it in and the others sat out hove to for several days.
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Old 23-10-2009, 10:26   #35
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I had to overcome the macho inclination to hold off and just put a reef in at about 15-18kts. The Tayana 37 is surprisingly tender and the boat just performs much better when you put the first reef in early. That would typically correspond to about 15 degrees of heel.
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Old 23-10-2009, 11:05   #36
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I disagree with putting a reef in at sunset. It makes the night watch boring. Like driving on the 110kmph motorway at 60kms. Get bored, go to sleep and goodnight world...

Sailing at night we try to make it exactly the same as in the day... for a start we don't use decklights or torches for sail setting trying to use night vision. We are comptetative about who does more miles per watch and it doesnt matter if its midnight or midday. We tuck in and shake out reefs according to wind etc.

If you guys are active and comfortable like that, I think you're good to go. But imagine back in the early days of your sailing, when you'd leave the less-experienced person on deck in the middle of the night while the other person went and got some shut eye.

It's nice to know that if a little squal comes through, or even just some puffs, that the less-experienced crewmember won't have that spooky feeling of the boat getting overpowered.

I value my sleep a lot, and generally for reefing I get woken up. So I want to set the sails so I can forget about them and get some shut eye knowing that we're maybe losing 1kt, tops.

One day we'll be as good as you guys
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Old 23-10-2009, 11:29   #37
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I agree with Rebel. If the wind is even close to a reef need do it before night. I would espesially reef the main at night if the wind is going to be close around 15 knots. The speed loss is minor compared to the other issues around comfort/sleep. I guess my boredom doesn't know the difference between 6.5 knots and 6.8 knots.

Guess I didn't realize Mark was such a dare devil, guess I'm going to have to filter his advise now :-) (you know I'm kidding Mark don't get worked up)
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Old 23-10-2009, 15:10   #38
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I agree with Rebel. If the wind is even close to a reef need do it before night. I would espesially reef the main at night if the wind is going to be close around 15 knots. The speed loss is minor compared to the other issues around comfort/sleep. I guess my boredom doesn't know the difference between 6.5 knots and 6.8 knots.

Guess I didn't realize Mark was such a dare devil, guess I'm going to have to filter his advise now :-) (you know I'm kidding Mark don't get worked up)
They probably only allow themselves to sit on the leeward side of the cockpit as well. Squeeze out another few feet/hour.
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Old 23-10-2009, 15:56   #39
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?? about Flying a Spinnaker

I'm about to rig my new (used) spinnaker for the first time and am getting conflicting advice (of course) about a couple of things.
I'm seeking:
Advice on best length for the sheet(s)?
Pluses and minuses of having two sheets? Or one long sheet centered at the clew?
And finally, weight/gauge of sheet? I.E. light weight spectra-like, or ???

This is a dbl head sail rig, with the midstay only a couple of feet aft of the headstay (51' Formosa ketch, was a cutter rig).

I'll be using a new sock/snuffer.
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Old 23-10-2009, 16:36   #40
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I would reef earlier at night, but not necessarily at sunset. Another nice reason for radar, you can tell if something's headed your way other than a more gradual change in the wind....
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Old 23-10-2009, 18:03   #41
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you'd leave the less-experienced person on deck in the middle of the night
If you treat the other person as a cretin they will learn more slowly.

Her first watch at night was 2 hours on our first over nighter.... my final words to her were: "..... and don't wake me up!"

The less experienced person has to learn themselves by being treated as a full watch commander.

That was her only 2 hour watch. Now all watches are 4 or more hours.

She is NOT allowed to wake me up unless there is an obvious weather change or prearranged action on wind speed, rudder angle etc.

She decides if a reef is necessary and furls the genoa heavily (by herself) as a first action.

She is expected to shake out mainsail reefs by her self.

That way I get some sleep

By the way we have a wireless door bell that the helmsman has in their pocket or at the wheel and the sleeper has next to them. Any trouble I get Greensleves. While I am getting up she is getting rid of the Genoa.

That way I get my full nights sleep. Ahhhhh the bliss of an ocean passage!

Mark
PS By the way, her first 2 hour night watch she didn't wake me up! She sat there scared $hitless for the first hour and then began to enjoy it during the second hour!
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Old 24-10-2009, 16:40   #42
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Spinnaker sheets

Quote:
Originally Posted by Geoff H. View Post
Advice on best length for the sheet(s)?
Pluses and minuses of having two sheets? Or one long sheet centered at the clew?
And finally, weight/gauge of sheet? I.E. light weight spectra-like, or ???
Geoff,
I understand that your spinnaker is asymmetrical. I would suggest 2 separate sheets, each with a separate knot or snapshackle. The main reason is that it's easier to untangle in case of trouble. Another reason is that in case of severe chafe on one sheet, you don't have to buy the full length.

For the length, I would suggest at least one boat length an a half for each sheet.

For the weight, I would suggest to sets: one the same as your genoa sheets (for comfort in handling), the other much lighter and cheaper (for light winds).

Alain
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