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Old 14-04-2016, 10:08   #31
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Re: Lazy Jacks - do I REALLY need them?

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Originally Posted by Stu Jackson View Post
Lazy Jack Trick
Many folks----- spend a lot of time moving BOTH sides of the lazy jacks to the mast.

We developed an easier way with our lazy jacks.

We have a small cleat on the forward starboard side of the boom. When we put the halyard on the headboard, we move ONLY the starboard side of the lazy jacks forward and snug them under the forward side of the horn of this cleat.

Then, when we raise the mainsail, instead of going exactly head to wind, we bear off a tad to starboard so the wind is coming from the port side of the bow.

We then raise the mainsail and it doesn't get hooked on the lazy jacks even though the port side jacks are still there.

Been working for 17 years.
-----
Good idea. Might not work as well if you can't use the word "we" when describing your crew lol.
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Old 14-04-2016, 10:29   #32
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Re: Lazy Jacks - do I REALLY need them?

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Originally Posted by FSMike View Post
Interesting. The lazy jacks on my gaffer were instaiied on the mast a bit above the the mainsail, and ran almost to the end of the boom. When I had them tightened to lower the main they did a good job of controlling the gaff by the time it got down to head level.

Not familiar with a "gaff vang" - got a picture?
Our LJ are installed on the foremast similar to your description and one leg is close to the end of the boom--they go under the boom and one side can be loosened while the other side tightened up to act as sort of a topping lift as well. They do a wonderful job with the sail but in a rolling seaway if dropping the sail whilst not pointed into the wind (and we seldom actually seem to point into the wind whilst dropping sail, LOL) the gaff boom wants to be all over the place. On a schooner, the gaff foresail has a gaff vang which is attached to the very end of the gaff boom and runs to a block high up on the main mast (at the point where the Triatic stay comes across) and allows for control of that 4th corner of the sail. It behaves like a sheet does for the lower boom on the sail--you can keep it tight and the gaff boom will stay close to centerline. You slowly let it out as you're dropping the sail--so three strings to manage if you've let the sheet go loose you'll be managing throat and peak halyards while also letting out the gaff vang. The vang also makes accidental jibes not nearly so devastating because the boom can't carry all the way over and smack the shrouds on the other side--unless you've let the vang be loose enough that is.

On the aft-most sail, the gaff vang (I am told by people who sail gaff cutters) is really two gaff vangs, one on each side. They can be sheeted forward to a block on a shroud or to an aft quarter. Their attachment cannot be close to the mast the sail is rigged on or their purpose is defeated. I've no experience with them though, only the easy sort of single gaff vang that we have on the schooner for the gaff foresail.
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Old 14-04-2016, 10:37   #33
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Re: Lazy Jacks - do I REALLY need them?

We had a sailcradle from Sail Care on our B285. We loved it. Several have described the concept of lazyjack from bungy to the mast while sailing.

Sail Cradle MK IV from Sail Care
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Old 14-04-2016, 10:55   #34
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Re: Lazy Jacks - do I REALLY need them?

..."with lazy-jacks, but it just seems like another could-do-without, and less lines in the way."

They are a life changer especially if it is blowing 15+ knts. We installed retractable lazy jacks so they tuck away and are not an issue while raising the main AND very inexpensive to build. Just deploy when its time to drop the main and retract when done. A marine head is "another could-do-without" and use a bucket instead.......but life is better with the convenience.
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Old 14-04-2016, 11:16   #35
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Re: Lazy Jacks - do I REALLY need them?

No, you don't "need" them, they're a convenience, especially when single handing.
My current boat has a 16 foot boom, a 400 sq ft offshore main, and is bloody difficult to deal with for a single handed, 65 year old, 145 lb ocean sailor!
The two biggest benefits;1) stowing the main at the end of the day. 2) capturing all the folds when I reef it.
I also made sure I could stow them alongside the boom, with a small hook to capture them near the goose-neck. If you don't want to make them yourself, Port Townsend Rigging have an excellent kit which you can them install yourself. Very nice. Worked really well for me on a recent trip out to Hawaii & back.
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Old 14-04-2016, 11:20   #36
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Re: Lazy Jacks - do I REALLY need them?

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I've been thinking of getting something for our Catalina 30. I saw a few posts here and there about a Dutchman Flaking System. In theory it will not only keep your sail on the boom, but will automatically flake it into a nice neat bundle. (After some setup and tweaking).

More expensive, but it seem like the issues of catching and chaffing are reduced/eliminated.

Currently my wife takes the helm while I grab and stuff the main with bungee cords until we get to the slip. Then I undo it and manually flake the sail and put on the sail cover.
The dutchman does indeed flake the sail well. I can't use one 'cause I don't have a topping lift. (solid vang instead). I also don't like the sailcover mods, and a few of the other things needed to use a dutchman system.

With retractable jacks, there is no issue with chafing. My sail flakes pretty nicely in the jacks. Clean it up a bit at the dock, put some sail ties around the sail, and retract the jacks. The only time I have them out is dropping the sail.

I deploy them maybe 1/4 mile from the harbor with crew, a little further out if I'm singlehanding. Then when we're inside the harbor, turn up into the wind and just let the halyard rip.

C-30, standard rig. As I mentioned before I made em out of paracord, 'cause it was cheap cheap cheap. Lasted 2 years so far and they're easy to replace.
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Old 14-04-2016, 12:11   #37
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Re: Lazy Jacks - do I REALLY need them?

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Great question and good answers. I face the same decision. With 600 SF main I think I should get them, but what type? What maker? Mack Pack? There is also the Dutchman type, but I don't like the idea of putting holes in the sail. Comments? Photos? Thanks.
Your mainsail is similar sized to ours. When we decided on LJ we just spent a day at anchor rigging ours up. Because the style of our boat is traditional, we used ordinary 1/4" 3 strand line (you could use much smaller amsteel or another more techy line) and it took more time to splice the ends of the various legs than any thing else. There are lazyjack plans available online. We just did a google search and then made something that looked like that which was illustrated in our boat's rigging plan. There were already two blocks mounted on the spreaders for lazy jacks. You'll have to figure out where to mount those blocks in your rig, of course. None of this is hard. Deciding where to place things along the boom so the jacks don't interfere with your other rigging on the boom (ours is all external) takes a minute but nothing overwhelming.

The more modern stack-pack type sail covers that include a lazy jack feature are very nice. We cannot use this because of the nature of our boom 1-want to cover the varnished boom from the sunshine/uv and 2-all outhaul, reefing, and topping lift lines run along the boom and access to them needed while underway--the fabric of the stack-pack and all seems like it would get in the way of some function there. So--ours are the old style lazy jacks.

I hope this information is useful to you.
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Old 14-04-2016, 12:28   #38
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Re: Lazy Jacks - do I REALLY need them?

Schooner Chandlery -
Thanks for the info.
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Old 14-04-2016, 13:29   #39
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Re: Lazy Jacks - do I REALLY need them?

Answer... Yep! Phil
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Old 14-04-2016, 14:00   #40
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Re: Lazy Jacks - do I REALLY need them?

Some good advice above. I'll add 2 things:


1) No chafe if you install them outboard on the spreaders (at least 2 feet away from the mast).


2) They add safety. Ever step on a sail that was laying on the deck? Definitely a hazard.
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Old 14-04-2016, 15:05   #41
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Re: Lazy Jacks - do I REALLY need them?

just install them- they cost nothing and they are extremely useful
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Old 14-04-2016, 16:03   #42
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Re: Lazy Jacks - do I REALLY need them?

No. You don't need them.


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Old 14-04-2016, 16:32   #43
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Re: Lazy Jacks - do I REALLY need them?

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1) No chafe if you install them outboard on the spreaders (at least 2 feet away from the .

Always wondered what would happen if the topping lift or halyard failed, putting the weight on the spreaders. Okay if your cap shrouds are discontinuous, if not ...?
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Old 14-04-2016, 18:11   #44
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Re: Lazy Jacks - do I REALLY need them?

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Always wondered what would happen if the topping lift or halyard failed, putting the weight on the spreaders. Okay if your cap shrouds are discontinuous, if not ...?

Pre-spreader days (yup we gaff rigged boats don't always need spreaders) blocks were just seized onto the shrouds up high-allowing the lazy jacks (then called boom lifts I believe) to be about 1/8 of the beam or so away from the mast. One could choose to do this today onto the aft lowers on many boats if worried about loading the spreaders. Our mainsail lazy jacks would not hold the weight of the boom. Luckily the boom gallows do. Our foresail lazy jacks are true boom lifts and can be used as such. Of course on a gaff sail there is no topping lift. Just the peak halyard. 😚




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Old 14-04-2016, 18:13   #45
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Re: Lazy Jacks - do I REALLY need them?

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Always wondered what would happen if the topping lift or halyard failed, putting the weight on the spreaders. Okay if your cap shrouds are discontinuous, if not ...?
You should use some kind of retainer on the shroud just under the spreader tip to keep them from dropping. In addition to providing support in the situation you describe this will keep the spreader at the correct position to hold the angle of the spreader to the shroud that is equal top and bottom.

A stainless u-bolt will do the job.
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