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Old 01-02-2016, 10:27   #91
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Re: Hank On or Furling Head Sails

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Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
Deck sweepers have some minor performance perks, but we are talking cruising here, aren't we? These sails also have some serious drawbacks, such as hugely impairing forward visibility and chafing on the lifelines and stanchions . Dunno about your boat, but we don't have a bowman checking traffic or skirting the genoa whilst cruising...

jim
Yep
Personally I would probably go hank on up to 32 ft boat, but much above that I'd go furling. Big sails are a lot of work to wrestle around!
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Old 01-02-2016, 11:20   #92
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Re: Hank On or Furling Head Sails

Ok Paul, I got a pulpit for you! But these days around here you'd probably rather have warm beer and bangers.
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Old 01-02-2016, 11:42   #93
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Re: Hank On or Furling Head Sails

We had never liked roller furling and never trusted it. I think that was an opinion formed early on in our sailing years when roller furling was perhaps not as reliable as it is now, and none of the other cruising "old timers" that we followed and admired had it or thought well of it. We have purchased 3 boats that had it and quickly removed it from each one of them. When we removed the furler from our Cape Dory 28 we were actually able to track down a former owner that had the original jib boom and that was a pretty good arrangement for that boat. At least we had a jib we could reef.

However....that was then, this is now. Our Cape Dory 33 came with roller furling but we knew we were going to completely re-rig and the furling unit was original, 33 years old and past it's life span, so we found ourselves once again considering the roller furling issue. To be honest we went back and forth about it for over a year. It wasn't until we were actually ready to place the order for our rigging and our sails that we finally made our decision.

Our first inclination was to remove it and go to hank on sails, as we always had in the past. As a bonus, a simple forestay and hank on sail would have saved us a sizable amount of money. We have a friend, our age, also with a Cape Dory 33, who uses hank-ons and seems to have no problems, yet. But the reality is that we are starting out cruising fairly late in the game. I will be 62 (and have mild relapsing/remitting MS), my husband will be 66. Neither of us is as strong or agile as we used to be, and I have some minor balance issues, sometimes not so minor. The more people we talked to, especially people our own age, the more convinced we became that, although we might be okay with the hank-ons for awhile, the trips to the foredeck in rough seas may start to take their toll, and could potentially contribute to us not enjoying the cruising life as much as we might if things were a bit less challenging or even dangerous. We're willing to make whatever adaptations we need to in order to prevent that happening. As far as failures go, at this stage of the game any failure is more likely to be a human one rather than the gear. Our cruising plans are much more sedate than many here, as we plan on keeping close to shore and will always have the luxury of waiting for ideal weather, but we have seen a day turn unexpectedly snotty even right here in the Chesapeake. Some may welcome that challenge, but it's not about that for us.

So we are installing a Harken Unit 1 with a leg to raise it up off the deck 11" or so I think. One of the things we noticed with the original furling unit is that it made access to the ground tackle difficult. This will clear access to the anchor roller and also give us visibility below the sail. Our boat is notorious for being over canvassed in the first place so we only plan to go with a 115-120% jib. With a padded luff we shouldn't find ourselves sailing too often with bad sail form. Or at least that's the consensus we came to with our sailmaker. We plan to add a cruising gennaker at some point for light air. Unless our cruising plans change to include offshore passages we aren't too concerned about a storm sail at this point. Since we'll know the weather is coming we'll most likely be sitting in the marina watching it through the ports.

I don't know the OP's age. I may have missed it somewhere in the thread, but I would certainly take that into consideration. If he's 30, well then I say whatever "floats his boat." But even if he's 50 or 55 and still feeling very robust, the years pass quickly and as much as we may not want to acknowledge it, things that didn't seem particularly difficult to me a few years ago are noticeably more so now. FWIW
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Old 01-02-2016, 11:56   #94
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Re: Hank On or Furling Head Sails

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I don't know the OP's age. I may have missed it somewhere in the thread, but I would certainly take that into consideration. If he's 30, well then I say whatever "floats his boat." But even if he's 50 or 55 and still feeling very robust, the years pass quickly and as much as we may not want to acknowledge it, things that didn't seem particularly difficult to me a few years ago are noticeably more so now. FWIW
That's a good summary, Becky. When we set out in 1986, we were pretty fit and used to racing on SF bay in whatever weather came about. Foredeck work was natural and uneventful (emotionally). We didn't change to a roller until around 1992, and now, with advancing age(78 and 75) and a larger boat, I view the gear as essential. It hasn't ever failed us completely, but has needed servicing at times.

So, I think that your comments about aging as one cruises are quite apt, and something that any long termer should consider when outfitting their boat.

Jim
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Old 01-02-2016, 19:07   #95
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Re: Hank On or Furling Head Sails

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What issues do hanks have specifically? How does an entire hanked on sail fail exactly?



How are furlers more reliable than hanks specifically?



Furriers are sellers of fur btw.

In my first offshore passage the boat I was crewing on had a hank on jib, and the halyard jumped the sheave and jammed hard when lowering sail. The sail was now 1/4 down and useless. I had to be hoisted up mast in 25-30 and big atlantic swells to cut the halyard.
Rare/unlikely? Sure. But at least the furling drum is at deck level so any line issue is at ground level. Halyard doesn't get touched in normal use.
I am sure the odds are still weighted toward more failure modes in RF. But having wrestled hank on sails in building breeze, sure is nice to be able to roll up quickly. I like downwind sailing in trades with RF headsail with pole attached to tack eye, and adjusted exactly to length so that sail can be rolled up without removing pole. squall rolls through, just roll up part/allof sail.


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Old 01-02-2016, 19:22   #96
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Re: Hank On or Furling Head Sails

Anybody have "reefrite" furlers with "kiwi slides?" I have not seen them, only heard of them and seen them online. Any reviews? Are these really the best of both worlds?
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Old 03-02-2016, 00:47   #97
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Re: Hank On or Furling Head Sails

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Anybody have "reefrite" furlers with "kiwi slides?" I have not seen them, only heard of them and seen them online. Any reviews? Are these really the best of both worlds?
Don, we no longer have those items, but did have them on our previous boat... and I loved both of them.

The furler is bullet proof (this really means very, very sturdy compared with Profurl, Harken etc), uses common automotive bearings and seals which are literally available anywhere there are cars, and incorporates an internal ratchet,similar to a winch, which takes all the loads off of the reefing line when sailing reefed and prevents unwanted unfulrling when at rest.

The Kiwi slides worked well too. Their use means that when you drop the sail it is still contained, just like with hanks. You can load in another sail above the stored slides, say a storm jib, without worrying about the previous sail going overboard.

Bob Graham, the inventor of the gear is a driven innovator, who spouts new ideas before breakfast... a really nice and interesting chap (if he is still around... has been many years since we knew him in the BOI, NZ).

I'd surely consider one of his furlers if I needed to replace one these days.

Cheers,

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Old 03-02-2016, 14:17   #98
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Re: Hank On or Furling Head Sails

Thanks, Jim, that just may be the brand that brings me back around one day!
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Old 03-02-2016, 21:19   #99
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Re: Hank On or Furling Head Sails

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Originally Posted by ChrisnCate View Post
What issues do hanks have specifically? How does an entire hanked on sail fail exactly?

How are furlers more reliable than hanks specifically?

Furriers are sellers of fur btw.
Here's one way for hanks:

Part of a batten retainer high up on my hank-on staysail got loose. It's a loop of cord used for pulling out the batton and it's supposed to be buried deep in the pocket. Hard to notice and I didn't. When I lowered the sail it caught on the steaming light and prevented the sail from coming down.
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Old 19-02-2016, 04:19   #100
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Re: Hank On or Furling Head Sails

It seems the advantages of furlers outweigh the advantages of hank-on sails for regular cruising activity, and I can totally see why. One of the issues mentioned in this thread is pricing of the furler systems and connected new sails/ changes on old sails.

We have a 40ft boat, and the sails are a pain to handle and store. We are considering upgrading to a roller furler, but it's very expensive for us and might potentially shorten cruising time because of that.

Does anyone have experience or ideas on the furler type where the whole forestay spins? There are a few local producers here in Scandinavia making these for comparatively cheap, and I think I saw something like that in the pro furl catalogue. Advantage: we can keep our existing hank-ons without the need to change for luff tape. Disadvantage: We cannot reef the headsail, since the hanks inside the roll will break the sail when a lot of force is applied.

Unknown: is this a safe system for a 40ft steel boat? Safe as in forestay failures and in operation of the whole system. Any advice appreciated!
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Old 20-02-2016, 19:02   #101
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Re: Hank On or Furling Head Sails

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Originally Posted by phipseml View Post
It seems the advantages of furlers outweigh the advantages of hank-on sails for regular cruising activity, and I can totally see why. One of the issues mentioned in this thread is pricing of the furler systems and connected new sails/ changes on old sails.

We have a 40ft boat, and the sails are a pain to handle and store. We are considering upgrading to a roller furler, but it's very expensive for us and might potentially shorten cruising time because of that.

Does anyone have experience or ideas on the furler type where the whole forestay spins? There are a few local producers here in Scandinavia making these for comparatively cheap, and I think I saw something like that in the pro furl catalogue. Advantage: we can keep our existing hank-ons without the need to change for luff tape. Disadvantage: We cannot reef the headsail, since the hanks inside the roll will break the sail when a lot of force is applied.

Unknown: is this a safe system for a 40ft steel boat? Safe as in forestay failures and in operation of the whole system. Any advice appreciated!
Not sure if you saw Jim's post there, but anytime someone describes a furling system as "bullet proof," I am listening! I'd check this system:
Reef-Rite Headsail Furlers and Accessories
I think perhaps you could take off your hanks and replace them with "Kiwi slides."
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Old 02-04-2016, 11:57   #102
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Re: Hank On or Furling Head Sails

Jim - I agree with you. When we each raced on SF Bay in 22' boats and age in the mid 30s hank on jibs were fine. But when I got my Cal 39 in 1978 it had Famet roller furling and I used it for a few years. In late 1980 my son was sailing it back from Hawaii and a turnbuckle failed and the mast came down - destroying the Famet. With the new mast I was using hank on jibs. Even then, at less than 50 years of age I found the effort of bagging the hanked on jib to almost referse the pleasure of an afternoon on the bay. And at sea, working on a bouncing foredeck with my balance issues wasn't pleasurable. Anchoring with the jib up and flopping was harrying, and trying to work around a lowered jib on deck was daunting. I got a Superfurl from Pacific Marine Rope Co., Inc., 1879 West Commonwealth, Unit E(8), Fullerton, CA 92833. I was extremely happy with it. I sold the boat a few weeks ago with the Superfurl still working fine, including 4 years cruising around the Sea of Cortez. Most nights were at anchor and the foredeck was clear for handling the ground tackle with the sail furled rather than with a lowered jib laying on it.
For what it's worth, I was a delivery skipper from 1976 through 2002 and delivered MANY different boats (to and from San Francisco Bay, either coastally between Cabo San Lucas and Puget Sound or Hawaii) most with headsail furlers of various makes. I noticed no great difference in the operation of any. The installation had more to do with how well they operated than the make of the furler.
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Old 02-04-2016, 12:14   #103
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pirate Re: Hank On or Furling Head Sails

I've used Slug slides successfully to convert hank on sails to a furler set-up.. budget constraints dictate improvisations from time to time.. type 1 is the cheapest
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Old 02-04-2016, 12:51   #104
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Re: Hank On or Furling Head Sails

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Originally Posted by phipseml View Post
It seems the advantages of furlers outweigh the advantages of hank-on sails for regular cruising activity, and I can totally see why. One of the issues mentioned in this thread is pricing of the furler systems and connected new sails/ changes on old sails.

We have a 40ft boat, and the sails are a pain to handle and store. We are considering upgrading to a roller furler, but it's very expensive for us and might potentially shorten cruising time because of that.

Does anyone have experience or ideas on the furler type where the whole forestay spins? There are a few local producers here in Scandinavia making these for comparatively cheap, and I think I saw something like that in the pro furl catalogue. Advantage: we can keep our existing hank-ons without the need to change for luff tape. Disadvantage: We cannot reef the headsail, since the hanks inside the roll will break the sail when a lot of force is applied.

Unknown: is this a safe system for a 40ft steel boat? Safe as in forestay failures and in operation of the whole system. Any advice appreciated!
The Superfurl from Pacific Marine Rope Co., Inc., 1879 West Commonwealth, Unit E(8), Fullerton, CA 92833, satisfies your "advantage" without your "disadvantage". The hanks on the jib are replaced by sail slides that slide in a track that surrounds the existing forestay and that the sail wraps around. There is very little of the sail slide that protrudes from the track. Definatley not enough to stress the sail when sailing with a partially furled headsail, even in very strong winds (40+ knots). You can install it yourself with no changes in your forestay. The only change in the sail that MAY be required is if you have a luff length of the jib that is "full hoist" it MAY have to be shortened a few inches.
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Old 02-04-2016, 17:59   #105
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Re: Hank On or Furling Head Sails

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Originally Posted by phipseml View Post

Does anyone have experience or ideas on the furler type where the whole forestay spins? There are a few local producers here in Scandinavia making these for comparatively cheap, and I think I saw something like that in the pro furl catalogue. Advantage: we can keep our existing hank-ons without the need to change for luff tape. Disadvantage: We cannot reef the headsail, since the hanks inside the roll will break the sail when a lot of force is applied.

Unknown: is this a safe system for a 40ft steel boat? Safe as in forestay failures and in operation of the whole system. Any advice appreciated!
Furlers have been around forever -- late 1800's there are photos of boats with furlers. These are not foil-base reefing furlers, just basic wire luff furlers. There's a pic of my boat underway in 1932 with a jib on a wire luff furler. That is close to what you're looking for. You don't sew on a luff tape, you just make sure your existing luff wire is strong enough or you replace your luff rope with dyneema of sufficient strength. Not difficult. All our hanked on sails have strong wire rope luffs so we (or you if you have similar hanked on sails) could choose to use a wire luff furler (Code 0 type furler is the same principle) with any of our jibs. I hope that information is helpful to you.

Our boat came with a bunch of headsails, all hanked on. We use them. We're happy with them. With the combination of a downhaul and tricing line it always works out fine for us to have the hanked on jib out on the end of an 11 ft bowsprit. Our smallest jib is 250+SF and the largest one (besides the light air sails) is 400+SF. Our staysail is a little under 200 SF and being on deck rather than the 'sprit, we find it easy to take down or put up w/o downhaul. We do sail a schooner with about 1650 sf sail overall so we have more choice of sails than a sloop or cutter--when we want to reef, we might take down the jib entirely, reef the main for balance, and leave staysail and foresail up.

We do sail in conditions that most folks seem to not want to be on the foredeck in. We're ok with it. Maybe we're just dumb. Who knows. It's all good as far I as am concerned. Fat, dumb, and happy works for me. We've been doing the hanked on sail thing since our 20's. I'm 53 and my husband 55 this year. We're not so quick nor so spry as we used to be--but sailing with hanks still works just fine.

Someday we'll get around to a traditional wire luff furler (doesn't reef, it is just a furler) for our classic boat. One that looks just like the one that was on the boat as it sailed back in 1932. We'll do it for authenticity--not because we think furling is going to work out any better than hanks for us and the way we use our vessel.

The sort of traditional wire luff furler we'd get is like this one that we carry in the Schooner Chandlery:



To each of you, enjoy what you have! And if you want a furler, get one, if you like hanks, keep them.

Someone should bring up the topic of using running backstays to tension the forestay with a furling foil on the headstay. My understanding, from listening to rigger Brion Toss talk about it, no sailboat with a furler over the forestay should be sailing to windward with out running backstays-- and overall, no sailboat running downwind should be without running backstays (IMO). Why do we keep up with the "hanked vs furled" conversation when the forestay tension using hydraulic backstay or running backstays is the REAL conversation worth having?
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