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Old 17-01-2016, 00:28   #16
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Re: In Mast furling systems

Amels...one of the sweetest boats on the blue planet,IMO and many others, would they endorse in mast furling with their reputation put on the line ?
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Old 17-01-2016, 01:20   #17
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Re: In Mast furling systems

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Originally Posted by mackconsult View Post
Headsail furling is a completely different animal.
I think he knew that. He was just saying the discussion mirrors ones on furling headsails years ago.

Since you have such strong convictions on this, can you share what boats with in-mast furlers you've sailed offshore with and what the issues were with them?
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Old 17-01-2016, 01:32   #18
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Re: In Mast furling systems

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Originally Posted by nortonscove View Post
This all seems to mirror the thoughts about headsail furlers from the previous generation. Time and technology move on.
Headsail furlers have fewer disadvantages than in-mast furling, so it's an easier decision.

However, it is not true that headsail furlers have no disadvantages at all. Partially furled headsails have a terrible shape.

Last year, I acquired a smaller blade jib I could change to, in higher wind conditions, because of this problem.
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Old 17-01-2016, 03:28   #19
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Re: In Mast furling systems

we sail a Jeanneau DS40 that we purchased new in 2003 with Seldon inmast furling. We do not race but do like a bit of performance out of our boat. We have sailed the east coast of the USA 2 1/2 time, all the Bahamas twice from Florida to Mexico to Colombia to Jamaica to Trinidad to Antigua across the Atlantic and now just completed year 3 in the Med. We have probably over 30,000 miles in 8 years.

Our only issue is some times when the boom is not right it is a bit of an issue getting the sail our NEVER in. We also had a guy do some unauthorized work on our sail when we had an agreement on what he was to do and left the boat for a few weeks. He changed the shape of the sail just a bit and we eventually blew it out. We have a new one and wow does it work great, better than the original.

We do reef early as that is how our boat is designed but in our crossing we had winds in the 30-35k range with 3-4m seas and we really reefed the main and jib down to handkerchiefs and it was nicely balanced and sailed really well without overstressing the autopilot.

The real beauty is the infinite reefing possibilities. But unlike Dockhead we do not need 2 people to reef it. We figured it out on how one can do it. Takes a bit longer but I do it by myself.

As for speed - as I said we do not race but more than a few times we have outsailed boats a couple of feet bigger than us with conventional sails. But then again we have a great boat.

We would never ever go to a conventional sail.
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Old 17-01-2016, 08:55   #20
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Re: In Mast furling systems

We have a Selden in mast furling system. Our experiences are from coastal cruising, not from long passages.

For us mainsail furling is a simple one man task (with the assistance of the autopilot) from the safety of the cockpit. In principle we need to visit the deck only to put the ratchet on, if we want to reef. But we rarely reef the mainsail since we start by reefing the genoa, and that's usually enough (for a coastal cruiser that moves to some safer place if the weather is about to get really rough).

There are some small problems though. Our main sail is not brand new, and therefore a bit baggy. The mainsail is tightly packed inside the mast, and sometimes you need to try second time and pull the outhaul and furling lines a bit before you can get it start rolling out from the small sail chamber smoothly.

When you roll it in, you can sometimes get some folds in it, and that could mean that you can not furl it in completely. In that case you need to open it up a bit and furl it back in again. Also it sometimes happens that you have to visit the mast when you start furling the sail in, since it is possible that the low corner of the luff grabs something in our mast, and you need to flip the sail in.

All in all we are very happy with the in mast furling system. It is so easy to just furl the mainsail in and out (from the cockpit, by one person) whenever you feel like doing so. In our style of archipelago sailing you may need to furl the sails in and out many times per day because of the changing wind conditions and zigzag routing around the islands. The mentioned problems are a nuisance, but just a small nuisance.

In our system there is no big risk of getting the mainsail jammed when it is open. If you need to furl it in in a hurry, you might have some problems furling it all the way in (due to the folds), but that is not dangerous. The furling line to the mast is an endless loop, so it can not get stuck. Our genoa furling line is not an endless loop, and therefore it could get jammed easier (inside the drum) than the furling line of the mainsail.
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Old 17-01-2016, 09:22   #21
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Re: In Mast furling systems

[QUOTE=undercutter;2017584

Friends of ours have in boom furling and have constant problems. They have to get the boom angle exactly right, keep sufficient tension on the halyard when furling, and vice versa on the furling line when deploying, they have to turn exactly into the wind to furl or there is too much tension on the sail to furl and regardless it is a two person operation. [/QUOTE]

I'm not sure what kind of system your friends have but what you described sounds completely different than what my experiences is. I have a Schaefer boom furling system. I can furle on any point of sale. I'm a single handed sailor, & I can't think of a single piece of equipment on my boat that I value more. It's super easy to use and always a one man operation.

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Old 18-01-2016, 18:15   #22
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Wink Re: In Mast furling systems

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Originally Posted by Peter Laser View Post
What is your view on in mast Easy Reef furling systems in open Ocean Cruising ? Does anyone have personal experience with it ? We tried one furling system once and were not really convinced, but this one looks pretty simple and sturdy ( on a Kaufman 47 Cutter )
Thanks for everyone's inputs !
Cheers
Peter
When we committed to our new yacht back in 2011, we were advised it had in-mast furling.
Never in a fit would I have had in-mast furling by choice - all the issues one hears about such as jamming, the weight aloft causing more rolling (especially at anchor), and the loss of sail area with the roach gone.
However being the last model available, we had no choice - take it or leave it.
I did a lot of web trawling. I never managed to find a single case of an in-mast system jamming when furling - only a few jamming when un-furling, and in all cases it was due to a loose furl causing bunching of the sail in the slot.
The dealer told us we could order a normal mast, but advised "try it first - it will become your friend".

So we decided to go for it. The system is Selden, on a 15m / 50' mono.

1. The extra rolling at anchor is not an issue - when there is swell around, there are many that roll a lot more than us.
2. I have only noticed lack of sail area once so far when a smaller yacht was overtaking us - then the wind came in, and we rocketed ahead of them. So, if we are fussed, we need to get a Code zero or similar, but frankly, I don't think we are bothered at the moment anyway. Reaching at 9.8 in 14 true is good enough for us.
3. The system is dead easy to use - single-handed. A little off the wind to maintain some tension, one hand on the winch, one on the boom outhaul, and the sail is furled before you know it (especially if the winch you use is electric). Out is similar, and at least as easy.
4. We very quickly came to realise that for a couple in their sixties, the main on a 50' yacht is quite a handful, and there would be many occasions when we would just sail under headsail to avoid the hassle of unzipping/zipping a boom-bag, hoisting/reefing etc, then flaking back properly into the bag. Bad enough at the end of season getting the thing flaked on the boom, then off and folded. Sailing is supposed to be more pleasure than work.
5. We see an awful lot of yachts 40'-55' with in-mast these days.
6. We see a few with in-boom furling, but it seems more reserved for larger yachts, and seems to be standard for super-yachts. That's a big heavy boom to swing around, and from what we hear, they are very fussy about having the angle just right, or you are in trouble with the furl.

In our experience, the dealer was correct - it 'became our friend' very quickly, and frankly, we would not consider a yacht without now, but for a fully crewed yacht, with performance in mind, then that's a totally different story.
Hope that helps
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Old 19-01-2016, 07:57   #23
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Re: In Mast furling systems

[QUOTE=David B;
Hope that helps[/QUOTE]

Excellent post. It does help. Thank you.
Joe
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Old 19-01-2016, 16:12   #24
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Re: In Mast furling systems

All this comes down to is a matter of choice. Some people have had bad experiences with them and some good, but nobody has the experience I have with my home made roller furling system.
(Apologies to Peter for slightly changing the question).
My in-yard furling system works a dream, and we roll it up and down from the cockpit at a whim, particularly down wind.
Just my two pennyworth.
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Old 27-01-2016, 03:42   #25
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Re: In Mast furling systems

Thanks everyone, much appreciated. We bought th eboat and will be soon out in the ocean. See you somewhere sometime !
Peter
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Old 27-01-2016, 04:29   #26
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Re: In Mast furling systems

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
This is an old discussion which has been done about 500 times on here. You can get all the information you want by going through the archives.

Opinions vary (naturally!), but you should pay most attention to people who actually have in-mast furling.

A very brief summary of the main points:

1. Not all in-mast furling systems are alike. Some are crap (Stowaway); some are really well engineered (Selden).

2. In-mast furling definitely hurts sailing performance. That's because you can't have normal battens and so you can't have roach (or much of it), which is the most important part of the mainsail.

3. In-mast furling is not actually all that easy to operate, needing two people to really do it well and easily.

4. In-mast furling allows you to reef in infinite increments, and on any point of sail, a huge plus in higher wind conditions. This even makes up for some of the performance lost from lack of roach, because it is so much easier to have just the right amount of sail up at all times. Obviously in lighter wind conditions, none of this is of any use.

5. In-mast furling offers ideal storage of the sail inside the mast, extending sail life, and saving a great deal of labor (flaking, putting cover on, etc.).

6. A decently engineered in-mast furling, if used with reasonable skill, is extremely reliable, so the nightmare jamming scenarios which sailors who haven't used in-mast furling worry about, don't generally happen.


So if you want my opinion about it:

* In-mast furling makes no sense for boats used for mostly coastal sailing in mild latitudes, like the Med, Florida, Caribbean, etc.

* In-mast furling makes a lot of sense in higher latitudes with a lot of wind, PROVIDED you are willing to give up a little performance.

* In-mast furling makes more sense, the larger the boat.

In Northern Europe, it is almost impossible to buy a cruising boat over about 50 feet, made in the last 20 years, without in-mast furling -- that should tell you something.
I usually am in close accord with your posts, Dockhead, but we will have to disagree a little on some points here.

Your points 4 to 6 above we are on the same page. And to flesh out a little, particularly of note is the idea that so many seem to have that inmast reefing jams. It doesn't any more than hoisting sail jams, as it can also easily do for a host of reasons, most common being halliard jumping the sheave and a track car failing and jamming in the track. Hoisting sails on a larger boat are just VERY much harder to handle shorthanded, in general, to the extent that they are a significant hazard.

Ok, so far so good. But points 1 to 3? Point 1, while I agree to some degree, wrt variability, but as someone who has sailed around 35,000 miles under specifically Hood Stoway spars alone (and lots and lots more under many other types and sizes of rig), I can't agree with your words on Stoways (I presume you meant the Hoods, now Formula?). I find them generally excellent and reliable, with most gripes relating to top bearings for the foil (no longer an issue as can be easily converted to the essentially trouble free, bearingless "reed" system) and issues with the gear seals, which is basic maintenance. In all that time I have encountered no catastrophic issues with these spars, and like them a lot in general. I suppose YMMV.

Point 2. Yes, performance suffers, but not IMHO very much. There are also benefits which cannot be had from a conventional rig, some of which you mention, but others not, such as being able to fly the main like a headsail with big belly when deep reaching, well off the boom, as the sail is loose footed and the outhaul is unlimited variability. Further, you don't have all the disruption of the big messy, airflow disrupting slabs hanging around the boom when reefed.

Point 3. Even on larger craft I have never had an issue operating inmast reefing singlehanded, and can reef, set and trim a 30 meter mast singlehanded in seconds. Further one can go from a full rig to nothing in perhaps 30 seconds, from a standing start behind the wheel, and likely rather faster than that with practise. This is not a boast as I reckon this would apply to anyone with a wee bit practise.

As to your three conclusions, I agree with the second and third. Your assertion that inmast "makes no sense" for what you term "mild" latitudes makes no sense to me! Those "mild" latitudes sure can be fierce, and are MORE likely to produce unpredicted wind shifts and increases through four or five Beaufort forces in seconds, because of the prevalence of convective winds and squalls.

This sudden and unpredictable scenario means that for shorthanding, inmasts make ideal sense for tropical and subtropical latitudes likewise.
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Old 27-01-2016, 05:55   #27
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Re: In Mast furling systems

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We have in mast furling on both the main & mizzen.
In mast means you will not have any batons and the sail will have negative roach.
You will never take the sail down nor will you need to hoist or put a sail cover on it.


In boom will give you positive roach and batons. You will have a main cover and will need to hoist & drop.

Our in mast has vertical battons and a positive roach, although not much. We (especially her) love to maximize speed and sometimes wonder if a traditional main would gain us some speed. But I gotta tell you, we're pretty dang happy with the boats performance. And I'll take rolling it over dropping it any day. There's a bit of a learning curve that resulted in a jam or two. But we worked it out and sailed on.
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Old 27-01-2016, 06:42   #28
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Re: In Mast furling systems

You know I am actually happy this came up again as it was something I had to deal with just last night. I went out for a race on a club owned boat that has in mast furling. It came out ok, but getting it back in was the devil. It jammed once and we had to start over and then I could get it in only so far and wasn't strong enough, or didn't have enough weight behind me, to get it in all the way. It took the yacht club employee to get it in after a fellow male crew mate believed it was stuck also. Probably two factors involved...an old sail and a system other than selden.


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Old 27-01-2016, 08:19   #29
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Re: In Mast furling systems

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Originally Posted by Peter Laser View Post
Thanks everyone, much appreciated. We bought th eboat and will be soon out in the ocean. See you somewhere sometime !
Peter
Congratulations Peter. I presume the boat has in-mast furling, so perhaps you would let us all know how you get on with it, and how near the various opinion are to your experience.
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Old 28-01-2016, 01:57   #30
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Re: In Mast furling systems

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Thanks everyone, much appreciated. We bought th eboat and will be soon out in the ocean. See you somewhere sometime !
Peter

Well done Peter -- see you out here. come join the fun.
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