Again it's hard to know how easy or difficult my main is compared to others because I simply don't have experience with comparable sized mains. But here are some of my thoughts:
A little bit of wind
causing the sail to move about aids in raising it.
I find no binding or problems associated with excessive loading and friction at the Shaefer cars.
I think the problems with rasing the main are:
It's weight for starters. Just hauling the bag around is difficult so lifting it with some friction has got to be WORK. Since the first few hundred feet go up with little problem, I think it's the weight and cumulative friction from the slides.
The Dutchman doesn't add much friction at all in raising the sail.
I suspect lubricated sail slugs might help, but when I spray silicone there is little difference.
Slab reefing lines need to be completely slack. Even so hauling them up is added weight.
The shaeffer cars are not high tech but have two slugs per which makes sense because of the loading of the batten. You want leech loaded battens.
Reefing with the Dutchman.
You want to use slab reefs
. I use 2 lines for each reef, one for the tack and one for the clew. Mine run aft to the cockpit
and are marked so I can tighten them without having to look up. I cannot reef unless the sail is not under load so I have to head
into the wind
, tension the topping lift
(and dutchman lines) drop the halyard
to a marked location and then pull in the reef lines and finish them off with a winch. Then release the topping lift
and bear off. I usually have the motor
on and the autplilot because I am single
handing and this work well. If I want I can tie up the unused sail with reef lines and knots
I think it is logical and simple system, but I don't know others.