Originally Posted by Dinghy101
My boat is a 14' Vagabond. 110sq ft of sail area. Not sure what else you would need to know about the boat.
At this point, im not looking to race
, just looking to find out what is the least amount of wind speed needed to even get her going and what is too much and i should stay at home.
Thanks for all your comments!
Like this one?
Vagabond 14 sailboat for sale
If you have the same boat, I don't see any sail controls other than halyards and sheets
. This means you can't "depower" in windy conditions by changing the shape of your sails
... making them "flatter".
As has been pointed out, you want to sail the boat flat by putting yourself and your crew on the weather rail. You can also "feather" the boat by sailing closer to the wind... this has the effect of reducing the wind pressure on the sails so the boat is less likely to be overpowered. But it's a tricky thing to do, especially in shifty winds, so you want to try it first when you are fully in control just to see how it works. If you feather up too much you risk getting the jib
backwinded which would be a real problem unless you release the jib sheet.
Otherwise what you have to do when there is too much wind is drop either the mainsail
, or jib, or both. Learn to sail the boat with only one sail up and under bare poles... see what works best in different wind conditions.
In general, until you become more familiar with the boat, I would agree that you want to stay ashore when the wind is above 20 knots. Maybe even 15 knots.
You could add some sail controls like a vang and a main cunningham to flatten the main. Not too hard to do if you know what you're doing, but if it were me, I'd rather sail a Laser which is a single
sail boat that has the sail controls (vang, outhaul
, cunningham) you need to really learn how to sail small boats.
If there are any Lasers where you sail, try to take a look at one out on the water
to see what I mean.
The boat in the link uses a small outboard
, I noted. Probably 2 or 4hp. But you can actually move your boat a pretty good distance when there is no wind without an outboard
... but that would take a while to explain. One easy alternative to an outboard is a canoe paddle! Just have to stow it somewhere secure.
And of course if there are any other Vagabond sailors where you are, pick their brains.