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Old 14-02-2010, 03:25   #1
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Folding Sails on Board

I'm pretty new, but getting there.Got the No. 1 and 2 reefs well sorted, and now I can change foresails as the wind gets up.

But what do I do with the sail after I haul it down thru the forehatch? My boat's only a 28 footer, so I don't feel like surrendering the forecabin entirely to the redundant sail.


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Old 14-02-2010, 03:29   #2
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HI Lockie - we often flake the headsails when we drop them along the side of the boat - if you keep the sheet in as you drop it it almost flakes itself on the inside of the safety lines - better if you have the long bags!

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Old 14-02-2010, 04:42   #3
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When folding on deck keep the sheet tight and the tack attached to the horn or you can fold it over the boom. You'll get a tighter brick if you fold it ashore though.
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Old 14-02-2010, 05:20   #4
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I like to flake my headsails while they are on the forestay.I leave the sheets attached,coil them up and place them near the clew.Then fold the sail from the clew to the forestay,remove the hanks and tie a sail tie around the sail.This way when I bring it back on deck the hanks are right there to be hooked up.Works great with Dacron sails.

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Old 14-02-2010, 15:46   #5
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Flake them when still on the deck. Fold (or not, if acing sails) and drop down the hatch.

A flaked and protected sail can be kept on deck, but many skippers prefer to drag then aft, to avoid the white water taking them overboard.

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Old 15-02-2010, 22:31   #6
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Assuming these are hank-on jibs? The best option is to have two forestays, side by side. You use a couple of stainless steel triangles to attach both stays to the single fitting on deck and at the masthead.

Now you can attach two foresails. Tie those shock-cord thingies to your lifelines that hold the jib that isn't in use. I've used this system for 17 years on a 30 footer and it works very good. There's even a nice trick to it: With the sail flaked on deck (still attached to the stay of course) with two people, you can wrap the foot of the sail around the flaked bundle before putting the shock cord thinghies on (how are those called anyway?). This isn't just for good looks, it also prevents water coming in.

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Old 15-02-2010, 23:22   #7
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Folding jib

My jib's on a furler, so a second forestay is not an option.

I like the idea of flaking it on the deck between the topsides and the lifelines - I'll give that a go.

In real life though, when I'm single-handed, the wind is up, the auto-pilot is holding course, and I've got to drop the big'un and put up the No. 2 or whatever, with 20 or more knots whistling around, it must be pretty hard to do much more than stuff it down the hatch!

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Old 16-02-2010, 03:50   #8
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This is a single hander's nightmare... another one of them. I have never successfully found a way to neatly fold my genoa or the main on my deck despite it being relatively flush and clear.

The problems encountered are wind of course. But if you attempt to take a sail down and fold it up to bag it and there is no wind, you have the problem of trying to provide tension so that it can be properly flaked. Of it's soft and or has flake memory you might not have the struggles I have, but with a relatively large and stiff mainsail getting the flakes correct and having them stay there so I can go to the next one takes forever. And then there is that huge bit of sail which is usually in a disorganized and often twisted "pile" waiting to be pulled over and flaked.

I would love to learn any tricks other single handers have because getting this done alone is about 100x more difficult then with even the most unskilled crew.

If I am lucky I can mange to get the sail into a small enough package to fit into the sail bag. It should be noted that it does get easier to flake as you come to the skinny side and have to deal with less mess. The middle bits are a nightmare.

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Old 16-02-2010, 05:26   #9
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When changing headsails, do you have 2 halyards and foil grooves ? If so, raise the new jib before you drop the old one. Then you can drop the old sail and have it partially contained by the sheeted in new jib. If single handed, I would flake the luff of the sail as it comes down the forestay, keeping the luff together. Let the rest of the sail take care of itself. then roll/brick the sail back towards the clew.
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Old 16-02-2010, 05:54   #10
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I have rings fitted to the deck and sail ties fitted to the rings, (poor man deck sail bag), bad for the toes but I wear shoes. When I flake the headsails I lash them to the deck. If I have to bag them I undo progressively the ties. Yes it is hard work.
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Old 16-02-2010, 08:05   #11
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IF your headsail's on a furler you're half way there. Make it a reefer as well and you're set. Any sailmaker can advise. Basically you'll pad the luff amd maybe flatten the sail. A 130% caqn be reefed to 90 and still go to windward. Mine does.


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