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Old 19-11-2005, 09:56   #1
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Sail Inventory

Hey there experts.

After a life of small boat sailing, I bought my first large boat this summer for cruising here in the NW, a Hinterhoeller Niagra 35.

She has nice new 130% genoa, on the roller, and a jib that also fits that head foil. She also has a solent stay, and a hank on 120% genoa.

Seems to me a sail inventory change is in order, but Id like some advice from those who know more.

It appears to me that the 120 genoa is needlessly duplicative. The 130 on the roller has foam edge, and can be rolled to 120 when I need that. Yes I know its not perfect shape, but I can live with it for cruising.

It also seems to me its the Jib I should put hanks on. When the wind blows, Id rather roll up the genoa, put out the solent stay, and hank the smaller jib on to that.

Seems to me that I need to dump the 120 genoa and add a hank on storm sail for when even that jib is too much, and then add some thing like a Gennaker for downwind run in our notoriously light summer air here on Puget Sound.

Thoughts? Alternative suggestions.

Dan
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Old 19-11-2005, 15:08   #2
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Niagra 35

That Niagra is a very roomy, comforable cruiser. As I recall (it's been a number of years), there were two plans below -- I'm not sure which you have. As with other boats of its period, it generally requires a larger headsail to get performance in lighter air -- however, when the wind pipes up, it really doesn't like that larger sail up there and gets a bit overpowered realatively quickly.

You'll have to reef the main sooner than I'd like in order to keep it comfortable unless you get a working jib.

We had a Pearson 35 of the same era. It didn't like a large genoa up a bit on the wind.

Therefore, I'd be concerned with the solent rig as a home for that sail. My tendancy was to put the 100 up when the wind was going to be over 12 knots or so. Then I'd use a drifter or asymetric chute with a snuffer if you're off the wind.

How's the mainsail reefed -- jiffy, lines lead back to the cockpit, or ?

Do you have a fully battened main, an hydraulic backstay, vang, etc?

If you don't flatten the main, you'll be be more likely to have to change down.
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Old 19-11-2005, 16:24   #3
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I wonder if the 120 is the old jenny, predating the furler. If so, it isn't worth much. I'm not sure what size the "jib" is so I can't say when I would be using it. It seems you are saying the previous owner would swap sails on the furler when they expected higher winds for a prolonged time - not a bad plan. Simply furling the 130 and setting a second sail behind it still leaves all that windage, but plenty of boats with double furling headstays do just that but one of those sails is usually much larger.
I have never sailed a Niagra. On my current boat, I reef the main first and keep the 130 full. After one season, I still think she balances well this way. Over twenty plus, I reduce the genoa with the furler. I am only 31 feet LOA and 11,200 disp.

I suggest you play with what you have and see how your boat goes with different options before assuming the last guy had it wrong and spending cash.

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Old 21-11-2005, 12:44   #4
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Thank to both of you for the ideas.

SG, you're right about the Niagra, its very comfortable cruiser. I have the classic plan, the one without a v-berth. But it has loads of storage and a workbench in that forward compartment. I love it.

You're comments about the Genoa on the solent are exactly that I've been thinking too. I don't like the idea. And Capt Lar may be right, it may just be the old original Genoa. I'd rather put the 100% Jib on the solent I need it. I do worry about the windage you mention Capt Lar, but still think it's the best way to go. But I'm going to play with reefing that main first in December...to find the balance.

SG, to answer your question about reefing, the Niagra has Clew Reef line run to the cockpit, but someone still has to go to the base of the mast to hood the reefing cringle to the Tack Horn. I'm thinking that adding another line for that forward reef might be in my future if I continue to do as much single handing as I have been lately. And to your other question, Yes to full battens in the main, but no backstay adjuster. All sail shape changes are done with vang, mainsheet, outhaul, etc.

Dan
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Old 21-11-2005, 14:00   #5
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Hi Dan

Don't know if you are aware that the one "real" cruising sail sailmaker is Schattauer Sails in Ballard (Seattle). They can advise you best (if you plan to go cruising) just what sail to put on that solent stay for winds higher than you should use with your existing headsail.

The idea is that when the winds really get pipping you can get your boat to foot well with a reefed main and staysl. If you stow a dinghy on deck you might want the staysl to have a high cut foot, maybe even on a pendant, which gives you good viewing ahead as well. Remember that with heavier winds you don't care about any slot effect from the sails or any deck effect to eke out the maximum possible pull of the sail.

With good footing your boat will not make bad leeway (if you are trimmed properly) when you really need to make good to windward.
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Old 21-11-2005, 14:15   #6
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Ive also heard other excellent reports on:
Schattauer Sails Inc
6010 Seaview Ave NW, Seattle, WA. 98107
Phone: (206) 783-2400 ~ FAX: (206)783-0173
Email: info@schattauersails.com
Web: http://www.schattauersails.com/
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Old 21-11-2005, 17:55   #7
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I used Carol Hasse at Port Townsend Sails for some repair work on my genoa. They build really good offshore sails.

http://www.porttownsendsails.com

Schattauer is good too.

I don't know if the Niagra was really designed as a cutter rig or if people just added these afterwards. The geometry may not work for a staysail. You get a lot of complexity on the foredeck. With Puget Sound the winds are light almost 85% of the time. I think your idea about a genaker or a good light air downwind sail may be excellent. But one of the sailmakers can give you good advice. Carol was a motherlode of info and she already had the sailplan of my boat and did sails for the previous owners.
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Old 22-11-2005, 00:03   #8
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See, I should have gone to see Carol while I was in Port Townsend last month having Ellen build me a new dodger. Thanks Chuck, and others.

I'll probably also go talk to Schattauer about what I'm looking for. I've seen their work, and it is first rate all the way.

Dan
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