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Old 28-12-2015, 09:09   #1
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In Boom Furling

I am about to go shopping for a boom furling system for my ketch. I know very little about them I would appreciate any advice from experienced users as to which system they recommend and why.
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Old 28-12-2015, 09:44   #2
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Re: In Boom Furling

OK we now know you 'may' need two booms as you tell us you have a ketch.....what size boat make and model too and sail areas might get you a sensible response.

BUT don't hold your breath
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Old 28-12-2015, 09:52   #3
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Re: In Boom Furling

I have a Pro Furl and love it, never had any issue with it. Some will tell you others are better.
PO bought it, I wouldn't have paid that kind of $. Buying two would I think make it even worse.
There are advantages and disadvantages of course, I will keep mine as I don't think the disadvantages are that bad.
My opinion is there are better uses for the considerable cash outlay.


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Old 28-12-2015, 10:18   #4
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Re: In Boom Furling

We own a Stevens 47 with in-boom furling....Pro-Furl. It came with the boat...

Cons- if you need parts, good luck. We waited over 13 weeks this year for a piece for the sail guide....and then we had to purchase the whole assembly, at a whopping $800 U.S. Unbelievable.
The seals on the boom vang are shot again....2x in 5 years...and I know of another Stevens 47 owner with the same issue with the boom vang. The previous owner of our boat had to contact the president of the company himself after waiting forever for replacement seals. They are under engineered. When I look at other systems, such as Schaeffer for example, or cylinder is half the size of that system. Not worth the money that you pay for it.

Pros - When this system is set up perfect, it works like a dream, even when furling or raising the mainsail in heavy seas. Easy to reef.

I would not purchase a Pro-Furl system.

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Old 29-12-2015, 11:12   #5
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Re: In Boom Furling

Recently was crew on an IP 27 with a Leisure Furl in boom
system. Not a fan for two reasons:
1.
System is very dependent on boom to mast angle for proper
functioning, off a few degrees and you will have problems
2.
Unless you're a body builder, figure in an Electric Winch

IMHO, save or spend your money elsewhere, these things are
Ridiculously Expensive
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Old 29-12-2015, 11:57   #6
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Re: In Boom Furling

Quote:
Originally Posted by Time2Go View Post
Recently was crew on an IP 27 with a Leisure Furl in boom
system. Not a fan for two reasons:
1.
System is very dependent on boom to mast angle for proper
functioning, off a few degrees and you will have problems

2.
Unless you're a body builder, figure in an Electric Winch

IMHO, save or spend your money elsewhere, these things are
Ridiculously Expensive
Cheers
I've got a Leisurefurl, and I think the boom angle "problem" is overstated. You do need to control the boom, but the precision required is much easier than "a few degrees". I've got my vang (forespar spring-loaded) set up to get the boom close enough and it works fine. I maintain a little halyard tension as I furl -- it just takes a bit of practice and then it's all second-nature.

Yes, you will want an electric winch if you have a big mast. The bolt-rope does create some friction.

The heavy boom and spring-leaded vang do let the boom bounce in heavy seas when the sail is furled. I don't have a lot of clearance between the boom and my solar panels, so I use a spare halyard / topping lift to keep the boom under control. I don't need the topping lift when the sail is hoisted.

It's a useful system, and I like it. My crew likes it. It is difficult to properly furl completely when running downwind in heavy air, but I can furl to the "third reef" position OK. If I want to furl 100% I need someone at the mast to help, or I turn upwind to complete the furl.

I don't know if I would install it again though. It's just a bit more fragile than a track / battcar system (although any system can have problems). Still, mine has gotten me through many miles and a few tough situations. I'm going to keep it.
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Old 29-12-2015, 14:01   #7
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Re: In Boom Furling

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Elliott View Post
I've got a Leisurefurl, and I think the boom angle "problem" is overstated. You do need to control the boom, but the precision required is much easier than "a few degrees". I've got my vang (forespar spring-loaded) set up to get the boom close enough and it works fine. I maintain a little halyard tension as I furl -- it just takes a bit of practice and then it's all second-nature.

Yes, you will want an electric winch if you have a big mast. The bolt-rope does create some friction.

The heavy boom and spring-leaded vang do let the boom bounce in heavy seas when the sail is furled. I don't have a lot of clearance between the boom and my solar panels, so I use a spare halyard / topping lift to keep the boom under control. I don't need the topping lift when the sail is hoisted.

It's a useful system, and I like it. My crew likes it. It is difficult to properly furl completely when running downwind in heavy air, but I can furl to the "third reef" position OK. If I want to furl 100% I need someone at the mast to help, or I turn upwind to complete the furl.

I don't know if I would install it again though. It's just a bit more fragile than a track / battcar system (although any system can have problems). Still, mine has gotten me through many miles and a few tough situations. I'm going to keep it.

Hi Paul,
I agree the system does offer some benifits, however
I don't think they warent the huge expense
There are two versions of this systems Coastal and Off Shore
My experience was with the Coastal Version.
We had huge problems which led me to the following research
on behalf of the owner. Also for you it would seem you could extend
the life of your vang by always having the topping lift on.

From Page 3 of the owners manual, Coastal Version

"In-boom furling systems require both a rigid boom vang and a traditional boom topping lift for safety and ease of sail trimming.

When furling or reefing, the boom should be adjusted to the required 87o angle and held at that angle with the support of the boom vang during the furling process. In heavy weather the boom topping lift should be used to arrest the motion of the boom during furling.

When the boat is moored a boom topping lift will extend the life of your boom vang, no matter what type; spring, pneumatic, hydraulic or electric"

All of our issues, jams on raising and lowering were traced to and caused by
not maintaining the exact requirement of 87 degrees.
Back tension on either the furling line and halyard are absolutley needed.
On the coastal version the furling drum is on the aft end of the boom
on the off shore version it is forward of the mast. This aft drum configuration causes the furling line to make quit a round about trip
thru many blocks and leads. This might have an effect on the overall
operation of the systems. I think for the same money as two systems
(ketch) the OP could repower, replace the standing riging, buy new sails
and have money left over.
I have no experience on ketches so I might sound stupid here But do they
have Hard Vangs and Topping Lifts on the mizzen?
Would it require 2 electric winches?
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Old 29-12-2015, 18:28   #8
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Re: In Boom Furling

I furl mine with a Milwaukee drill and is does it easily, but it would get old fast doing it manually, you don't have to have an electric winch, although I'd like one.
I had all kinds of issues with mine until I discovered the 87 or so degree thing, after that it has been fine. Once adjusted, the adjustment stays, it doesn't change.
One advantage is it allows full battens and lots of roach, my main is so efficient I have to have it reefed a little for my boat to be balanced with the 110% Genoa and staysail, I'm getting a 125% and assume it will balance then with main fully up.

Even if the system completely gets torn up, you can still raise and drop the sail once you get the sail out.


Like everything else, if it was so great, you would see thousands of the things, and you don't, but I think that is due to the expense more than anything else.


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Old 31-12-2015, 02:39   #9
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Re: In Boom Furling

Thanks very much for some very interesting angles of thought. The main reason for getting this system is for short handed sailing or with inexperienced crew. Am I right to assume that the manual furling of these systems needs 2 people (one keeping the tension) and one controlling? My main boom is 6m with a rigid vang. No vang on the mizzen.
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Old 31-12-2015, 02:51   #10
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In Boom Furling

I have Leisure Furl on my Lagoon 450 and like it a lot for ease of use. I think you will need a vang on each boom and new main sails as they are a specialist fit. Doyle's did a great job. One person operation up and down, with electric winch and snubbing either the halyard or reefing line. No lazy jacks to snag the battens, and get rid of 100m of reefing lines that tangle at the wrong time. Fully battened and infinite reefing.

By the way Forespar are wrong in how they say to reef downwind - boom towards the centre. Obviously they have not tried it in 20 kts + as it cannot be done that way. I have spoken to the NZ designers and the boom must go out as far as possible and raise slightly to prevent the sail from gathering forward. This worked well for me.

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Old 31-12-2015, 05:25   #11
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Re: In Boom Furling

Quote:
Originally Posted by eric42 View Post
Thanks very much for some very interesting angles of thought. The main reason for getting this system is for short handed sailing or with inexperienced crew. Am I right to assume that the manual furling of these systems needs 2 people (one keeping the tension) and one controlling? My main boom is 6m with a rigid vang. No vang on the mizzen.
We have a Leisure Furl on a Sabre 426 mkII. At first I hated the system because on two occasions the luff rope ripped away from the sail near the top batton. A very expensive sail repair since the entire luff rope had to be replaced. Leisure Fail blamed it on operator error and failure to maintain the proper boom angle. This turned out to be false! We eventually determined (using a GoPro to monitor the raising and lowering of the sail) that the furling line sometimes wound up slightly unevenly on the drum when hoisting the sail and that caused it to bind the shell that surrounds the furling drum - The end result was a bound furling line and sufficient pressure on the halyard when using the electric winch to cause the luff rope to part from the sail. I think this happened because the mast on a 426 is taller than Leisure Furl anticipated and hence more line needed to wind up on the drum leading when raising the sail and that in turn led to the furling line jamming against the shell. The solution was simple - we installed a lighter weight furling line. Since that modification we have had no problems. We depend upon the toping lift to set the proper boom angle and the boom angle only needs to be close - it tolerates deviation from 87 degrees.
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Old 31-12-2015, 12:20   #12
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Re: In Boom Furling

I have a Leisurefurl on my Hylas 49 (since 2007) and am very happy with it. Never had a problem with the bolt rope or any other aspect of the system. I have gone thru a sun cover on the boom (easy enough to replace), but nothing more. Full batten, large roach, tri-radial main from Quantum RI works well and it rolls up just fine.

I have electric winches and that certainly makes it easier to go up and down, but if you simply put a little teflon spray inside the track things drop quickly and go up without much friction.

The "angle of the boom" problem is overstated. I simply raise the aft end of the boom a bit by releasing the mainsheet or vang and its fine. I didn't do this initially and it causes the bolt rope to chafe against the mast. Not that big a deal, but easy enough to prevent.

Rick
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Old 02-01-2016, 22:08   #13
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Re: In Boom Furling

We have a profurl on our Macintosh 47. We do well with it. It came with the boat, so we didn't have to pay for it. But I'd never consider putting one on a boat. The costs are $20-25K (new sail, luff track, system, new boom, rigid vang, electric winch) and the benefits just aren't worth it.


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