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Old 19-02-2010, 07:20   #31
sitting on the dock of the bay

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the only way the admiral will steer is close hauled with the boat heeled over .. that's what she calls sailing.

sometimes the things that may or may not be true are the things a man needs to believe in the most.
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Old 19-02-2010, 08:34   #32
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You have it easy with such an admiral, gonesail, don't loose your position!
Years ago I used to race and teach racing. So much ow windward work depends on your boat, rig, sails, tide current, wave moment and other variables, even within a 'one design' class. Gennerally, my boat worked well close to the wind while my main competator's did far better off a point or two. As his would scream downwind, I had to do it on the upwind leg. During 'club champs' where it was a round robin and everyone used every boat, you had to figure out a new boat for a race. It really came down to who could figure out how to make it happen and quite a few of us learned a thing or two about our own boats by watching other's race them.
That aside, with the thread being about why some cruisers are opposed to (close) beating, it can be more comfortable, depending on conditions and length of time endured (even with the propper admiral ) to ease a point or two and not nescessarily impact your time to your destination adversely (if your destination is to windward).

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Old 19-02-2010, 09:04   #33
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In the last few years I've had a bit of "sailing to windward" experience -- returning to San Francisco from Hawaii a few times, and attempting to sail north from San Francisco to Seattle. This is definitely less comfortable than going downwind!

Leaving Hawaii is an exercise in VMG and sail trim. You have the tradewinds and the big tradewind swells coming in from the NW, and you are trying to head north (you've got to get around the Pacific High before turning east). Your crew probably doesn't have their sea legs yet. I typically foot off a bit to the west, which doesn't lose any VMG and makes the ride a bit softer as it brings the seas off of the bow. I also usually reef down more than necessary for a couple of days, which does slow us down, but makes everyone less miserable. We can't reduce sail too much or the waves stop us dead.

After a few days or so, the wind and seas lighten up and start moving aft. Once over the top of the high we begain aiming for San Fransicso. The winds and seas can pick up dramatically as we approach the coast (this is typically a "squash zone"), but unless things get really hairy the sailing is much more pleasant. 25-30 Kts of wind, 10-15 ft seas, but they are on the port quarter and with the boat properly trimmed the motion is quite tolerable.

Heading north to Seattle was brutal -- Wind 20-25 kts, 10-12 ft seas, both on the nose. Broad tacking angles (I could only dream of 45 degrees to the wind), and very slow VMG. White water was constantly across the decks and sloshing around in the cockpit. After a couple of days I gave in and started motorsailing, but it was still tough. I turned around before we got a third of the way. We could have made it, but the approaching weather would have compelled me to wait it out in port at Eureka, and my schedule wasn't going to tolerate any further delays. Running south, downwind in the exact same conditions was a joy! Fast, comfortable, and dry.

I guess that's why gentlemen don't sail to weather! I'll do it again if I need to...
Paul Elliott, S/V VALIS - Pacific Seacraft 44 #16 - Friday Harbor, WA
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Old 19-02-2010, 09:13   #34
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Good point about motoring directly into the wind. Sometimes it can be even more uncomfortable and harder on equiptment without the steadying effect of the sails. Anther good point about shcedual constraints as a variable. As with so much sailing, having alternate plans is always a good to remember.
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Old 19-02-2010, 18:26   #35
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Our boat sails great to winward and we love this point of sail (we have a 'koster' - something similar to a HCH, only better (;-)).

The point is, it is 1.4142 the distance and three times the time as compared with the run ... so ...


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