Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 06-11-2015, 10:23   #1
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: fl- various marinas
Boat: morgan O/I 33' sloop
Posts: 1,093
Starting with an Asymmetric Spinnaker

I'm planning to rig for an asymmetric My inclination is to hold down the investment by starting with a used sail and dowsing sock. My fore-stay calculated at 42.7 and the block for the tack line will be on my anchor roller about a foot forward of the stay. Sail sites calculate 43.5' for my boat. First issue, if the sail has a luff of 42' and I fly the tack over the railing (3' minimum) would that be a problem? Just what are the limiting factors for luff as the sail generally will not be tight at the luff. Should I reduce the desired luff to clear the railing? Second issue is starting with a smaller sail to gain experience with this kind of sail a good or bad idea? I talking 600 sq. ft. at 35' luff vs the recommended 800 at 43'. My last question, assuming my used sail does not come with a dosing sock should I get a 43' sock to fit and future sail I might buy or would too long a sock cause short term problems with the smaller sail? Thanks all for your experienced advice..
__________________

__________________
Dave22q is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-2015, 11:21   #2
Registered User

Join Date: May 2013
Location: Mangareva, French Polynesia
Boat: Heritage West Indies 36
Posts: 513
Re: Starting with an Asymmetric Spinnaker

I think you've got the right idea in general. I'm a cruiser who also has a fair of experience racing yachts large and small. When I race I'm the bowman.

I'd say it is not worthwhile getting a smaller sail than would be ideal for your boat in order to learn. Instead get the right-sized sail but practice first only in very light wind.

Your luff lengths sound about right. There's more versatility with luff length with spinnakers than there is for a headsail. Unless you're racing, a foot here or there doesn't make much difference.

The reasons for not getting a small chute:

Once you get above the size of about a j24 chute it doesn't make much difference how big your chute is. If it's breezy, you won't be able to manhandle it so you'd better have the right technique. Therefore, you might as well have the right one.

A small chute will fly further off the deck than one that is appropriately-sized. Some people will say that you can compensate for this by not hoisting it all the way, but then you get terrible sail shape and a lot of chafe on the halyard as it moves around from side to side. Having a sail that's further off the deck means that it's harder to douse because you're straining to reach it. One that's properly-sized, although more powerful, is therefore often easier to handle.

Don't rely on that sock. The socks are great when they work but you need to know how to douse it conventionally as well so that when the thing tangles up and refuses to work you can still drop the chute safely. Even if you are single-handed, i would say get an old chute that's about the right size for you boat, with no sock and practice with that in order to learn. Start in air that is only just sufficient to actually set the chute (5 knots or so).

I cruise with 3 chutes - a cheap (well, free actually!) ex-racing symmetric, a cheap (free) ex-racing a-symmetric and an 'all purpose' asymmetric designed for my boat with a sock. Even single-handed i find myself using the racing asymmetric the most. It's from a J105. If you can find a production racing boat that carries spinnakers similar in size to what you need, try to get your hands on one of those. The racing classes usually replace their sails while there's still plenty of life left in them and can be got really nice and cheaply. I've heard 'Bacon Associates' is a good place to look.
__________________

__________________
DefinitelyMe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-2015, 11:41   #3
Registered User
 
Wainui's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Southern California
Boat: Cal 48 Wainui
Posts: 172
Re: Starting with an Asymmetric Spinnaker

Try this site for used sails
Used Sails
__________________
Wainui is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-2015, 20:13   #4
Registered User

Join Date: May 2013
Location: Mangareva, French Polynesia
Boat: Heritage West Indies 36
Posts: 513
Re: Starting with an Asymmetric Spinnaker

Oh, and regarding your questions about luff length; no don't reduce it to clear the railing. However, you should ideally (on a cruising boat) have the tack line set forward of the headstay but inside the rail. Inside the rail is important because it allows you to blow it without the tack line being trapped under the pulpit. It also means that if your bow roller or tack block go it won't rip off the pulpit. There's a reason a lot of racing boats have a split bow railing.

Regarding luff tension, it depends entirely on what kind of chute you want. There are probably more options for spinnaker design than there are for any other type of sail. Luff length an tension is important if you're looking for something that will allow you to go upwind in light air (like a code-zero) but a downwind chute will have a much looser luff with more play and larger tolerances for luff length. Be wary of 'áll purpose' spinnakers (yes, i know i just said i have one) because what they really mean is that they're not great at anything. If you want a kite for going downwind then get a downwind kite; it will set and fill more easily, carry deeper, give greater speed and actually douse more easily too, because you'll be able to carry it deeper before you trip it by sheeting it behind the mainsail to blanket it (i'm still assuming you don't have a sock, because as i've said i don't think you should ever rely on them).
__________________
DefinitelyMe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-11-2015, 12:50   #5
Registered User

Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 811
Re: Starting with an Asymmetric Spinnaker

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave22q View Post
I'm planning to rig for an asymmetric My inclination is to hold down the investment by starting with a used sail and dowsing sock. My fore-stay calculated at 42.7 and the block for the tack line will be on my anchor roller about a foot forward of the stay. Sail sites calculate 43.5' for my boat. First issue, if the sail has a luff of 42' and I fly the tack over the railing (3' minimum) would that be a problem? Just what are the limiting factors for luff as the sail generally will not be tight at the luff. Should I reduce the desired luff to clear the railing? Second issue is starting with a smaller sail to gain experience with this kind of sail a good or bad idea? I talking 600 sq. ft. at 35' luff vs the recommended 800 at 43'. My last question, assuming my used sail does not come with a dosing sock should I get a 43' sock to fit and future sail I might buy or would too long a sock cause short term problems with the smaller sail? Thanks all for your experienced advice..
No problem with having the foot of the asymmetric a little higher though they do flow out and away from the rail anyway. Higher at the foot does improve visibility. A smaller sail is a good idea for getting used to it and may be all you need. I have a bigger and a smaller one with similar luff length. My smaller one can easily be hoisted out of a purpose made flat bag clipped onto the lifelines with sail hanks. It can be dropped by pulling it back under the boom. One method is to release a snap shackle on the tack when you go off the wind with the sail behind the boom. Don't let the tack line run out or you will be kite sailing.
A little longer than necessary sock shouldn't be a problem.


My larger lighter asymmetric is on a Selden top down furler. Personally I didn't like socks very much, but that's just me. I still have one but I don't use it. I can easily handle the top down furler single handed but they are quire expensive.
__________________
GrahamHO is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-11-2015, 15:35   #6
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: fl- various marinas
Boat: morgan O/I 33' sloop
Posts: 1,093
Re: Starting with an Asymmetric Spinnaker

Thanks all for the good feedback. I wound up going for a luff of 95% of theoretical because the deal includes a sock at a nice price. Now I need to get the rigging done.
__________________
Dave22q is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2015, 09:39   #7
Registered User
 
cwyckham's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Vancouver, BC
Boat: Niagara 35
Posts: 1,870
Re: Starting with an Asymmetric Spinnaker

Hi Dave,

I love my sock, but the used one that came with my boat was junk. Upgrading to the ATN sock was a great investment and I highly recommend them.

Graham has it right as far as dousing. You don't douse by just pulling down the sock. I leave the sock control lines tied to the midships cleat. I then run deep, sheet in the asym behind the main and blow the tack.

I can then walk back and pull the sock down easily over the sail at midships where it's nice and safe and secure before lowering the socked sail on the foredeck. Very easy, no drama.
__________________
Chris
SailMentor.com - Become the Confident Skipper of Your Own Sailboat
cwyckham is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2015, 12:28   #8
Registered User

Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 811
Re: Starting with an Asymmetric Spinnaker

Quote:
Originally Posted by DefinitelyMe View Post
Oh, and regarding your questions about luff length; no don't reduce it to clear the railing. There's a reason a lot of racing boats have a split bow railing.
If you want a kite for going downwind then get a downwind kite; .
Years ago I got a handicap win in a national championship racing my 20' trailer sailer using a secondhand spinnaker from a Soling. It was so big on that boat that it was almost in the water. I had someone lying on the foredeck to watch where we were going as I couldn't see ahead. Visibility is an aspect to consider.

On my present boat I have modified my upper bow rail from the usual horizontal U around the front and made it a vertical U. In effect a split bow railing.

Many modern yachts go faster "downwind" by sailing a series of reaches and gybes with an asymmetric sail. Sailing directly downwind especially in light breezes the apparent wind decreases as you go faster. Sailing a reach, the apparent wind increases as your speed increases and you go faster. I can often see 8 knots boat speed with 8 knots apparent wind on a reach. That's probably 5 knots true wind speed. Going directly downwind the boat would go less than 5 knots.

But sailing directly downwind in a more traditional shaped boat can be the best way as their hulls can't go much faster on a reach. That is in the conditions a cruiser is likely to use a spinnaker or gennaker.
__________________
GrahamHO is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2015, 12:53   #9
Registered User
 
Reefmagnet's Avatar

Join Date: May 2008
Location: puɐןsuǝǝnb 'ʎɐʞɔɐɯ
Boat: Nantucket Island 33
Posts: 2,735
Re: Starting with an Asymmetric Spinnaker

I purchased a second hand asymmetric for our 33 footer a while back that included a sock. It came off a 38 foot nauticat. It's big - the largest size that could possibly fit on the boat - and manufactured out of the heavier 1.5 ounce material. Took the gamble 'cos the price was right. We love it. It's only real issue is storing it down below!

Just beware that the rigging for a sock adds about an extra foot or so to the length. As for attachment - because I have no intention of gybing it - I tie a block connected to a length of spectra to the appropriate rear cleat as needed and have a block mounted at the bow that the tack line passes through before being tied off at the bow cleat. Even though it's not supposed to be how it's done, I just adjust the spinnaker halyard to set the sail flying properly.

Here's a vid of it in action: https://youtu.be/Y9QLerjReSE

With autopilot and the sock, it's a non issue to fly single handed.
__________________
Reefmagnet is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2015, 13:03   #10
Registered User
 
Privilege's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Bermuda
Boat: Privilege 435
Posts: 362
Images: 12
Re: Starting with an Asymmetric Spinnaker

I too am in the market for an asymm and have been wading through the internet trying to decide on a size. It seems that there is lots of guidance on other sails but not so much on spinnakers. I originally purchased an old used sail so that I could make my mistakes on it. As per one recommendation that I had read, I went with a sail as big as possible but not so big that it can reach the water. The luff on the sail is 5' longer than the measured luff. This doesn't present any problems when sailing downwind but as I can't tighten the luff, it's not so good sailing forward of a beam reach. I originally used a sock but have now upgraded and installed a continuous line furler (which I love; rolling up the screecher, even in wind, is child's play). As I have now discovered, the extra luff length on the asym causes a problem when using the furler. When the top starts to furl and the bottom of the sail starts to drop, it gets tangled in the furler. Therefore, my new spinnaker will be equal to or just a bit longer than the torsion rope. The proper way to measure is x1.03 of the measured luff length. It won't be so effective downwind, but it will furl better and sail closer to the wind.
__________________
Privilege is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2015, 13:04   #11
Registered User

Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 811
Re: Starting with an Asymmetric Spinnaker

Quote:
Originally Posted by Reefmagnet View Post
I purchased a second hand asymmetric for our 33 footer a while back that included a sock. It came off a 38 foot nauticat. It's big - the largest size that could possibly fit on the boat - and manufactured out of the heavier 1.5 ounce material. Took the gamble 'cos the price was right. We love it. It's only real issue is storing it down below!

Just beware that the rigging for a sock adds about an extra foot or so to the length. As for attachment - because I have no intention of gybing it - I tie a block connected to a length of spectra to the appropriate rear cleat as needed and have a block mounted at the bow that the tack line passes through before being tied off at the bow cleat. Even though it's not supposed to be how it's done, I just adjust the spinnaker halyard to set the sail flying properly.

Here's a vid of it in action: https://youtu.be/Y9QLerjReSE

With autopilot and the sock, it's a non issue to fly single handed.
Nice video. Nothing wrong with attaching it that way at the tack. Unless you are racing, / gybing which you aren't.
__________________
GrahamHO is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2015, 13:17   #12
Registered User
 
Reefmagnet's Avatar

Join Date: May 2008
Location: puɐןsuǝǝnb 'ʎɐʞɔɐɯ
Boat: Nantucket Island 33
Posts: 2,735
Re: Starting with an Asymmetric Spinnaker

Quote:
Originally Posted by GrahamHO View Post
Nice video. Nothing wrong with attaching it that way at the tack. Unless you are racing, / gybing which you aren't.
Cheers. I meant to mention also that in the vid we were going just about as close to the wind as we could so had the luff pulled in tight.
__________________
Reefmagnet is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2015, 13:42   #13
Registered User
 
CS Cruiser's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: PCYC Toronto
Boat: CS36T
Posts: 310
Images: 10
Re: Starting with an Asymmetric Spinnaker

Hey great looking ASYM
__________________
Paul
s/v TENACITY - CS36T
CS Cruiser is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2015, 13:56   #14
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: north wales uk
Boat: Ker 33 IRC
Posts: 70
Re: Starting with an Asymmetric Spinnaker

I agree with DefinitelyMe

i too ride bow - did it for many many years before i bought my boat and still do -- go with the sail size as recommended for your boat. if you go for one with a sock then get used to where the dousing lines are going to go. find a place for your tack line to run through unhindered and use a block on your anchor roller to help in gybes. the kite itself - get used to handling it when sat on your mooring so you know how everything works.

as for the sail itself it will sit above your rails anyways as the clew is normally cut pretty high up and it flies away from the boat in any case. where the dousing is concerned - i douse into a custom bag that sits on the sliding hatch rails and launch/recover are done from the cockpit and entry/exit is under the boom -- means that there's no walking up and down to do stuff - also means that using one single handed is easy.
__________________
ruby tuesday is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-11-2015, 14:05   #15
Registered User

Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 811
Re: Starting with an Asymmetric Spinnaker

Quote:
Originally Posted by Reefmagnet View Post
Cheers. I meant to mention also that in the vid we were going just about as close to the wind as we could so had the luff pulled in tight.
Yes I could see the top of the luff just starting to curl going close.
__________________

__________________
GrahamHO is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
asymmetric, spinnaker

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
For Sale or Trade: Cruising Spinnaker (Asymmetric) for 28' boat Cutaway Classifieds Archive 7 17-12-2012 21:09
For Sale: Spinnaker/Asymmetric Gennaker Snuffer Maxima Classifieds Archive 0 25-08-2012 02:22
Asymmetric Spinnaker Without a Bowsprit ? barrett bondon Monohull Sailboats 25 12-08-2012 10:45
Spinnaker Symmetric or Asymmetric olliric Multihull Sailboats 30 11-04-2012 16:53
Asymmetric Spinnaker Weight / Rigging CHM General Sailing Forum 4 03-02-2012 04:34



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 06:05.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.