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Old 20-08-2014, 07:43   #16
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Re: self tacking jib

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
Mine has a traveler, but no way to move the sheeting angle back or forwards, so you have no control over the relative tension in luff and foot.

The only way I've seen this dealt with in boomless self-tacking jibs is with large clew plates with holes which allows you to slightly change the angle.

Maybe there are other systems, but I haven't seen one.


It's true that this question might be less important on cats with huge roachy mainsails, since not all that much will be expected of the headsails. But if the problem bothers me for a staysail which is only 10% or so of my sail plan, then I reckon it could bother the OP, when we're talking about his principle headsail.
some of you folks need to broaden your horizons, I have raced a Abbott 33 for 15 years using the self-tacking blade jib and won more then my share of races. even use a self tacking staysail on my Corbin 39, for a jib sheet I use a 3:1 purchase vang setup, off the wind I use a regular jib sheet. never a second thought about it not working, works great
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Old 20-08-2014, 08:09   #17
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Re: Self Tacking Jib

Our Catana 50 has the self tacking head sail option and we love it. Tacking the genoa around it means furling and unfurling each time which can be a pain, and if we have enough sea room sailing the big genoa at 40 degs apparent is definitely quicker than sailing the self tacking solent at 30............. but we don't always have the sea room. On balance, another gear between the two would be nice, but then sailing is a constant compromise.
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Old 20-08-2014, 09:32   #18
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Re: Self Tacking Jib

The old fashioned way of rigging a self tacking jib is to use a boom. They attach to the deck a short distance behind the tack to add more camber as you head offwind and of course the clew tension can be varied at the boom end to control sail shape. They work really well and don't need sail track. Cross trimarans had them on the plans for the working jib.
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Old 20-08-2014, 10:38   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailr69 View Post

some of you folks need to broaden your horizons, I have raced a Abbott 33 for 15 years using the self-tacking blade jib and won more then my share of races. even use a self tacking staysail on my Corbin 39, for a jib sheet I use a 3:1 purchase vang setup, off the wind I use a regular jib sheet. never a second thought about it not working, works great
It would be interesting to know more about your exact setup.
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Old 20-08-2014, 11:45   #20
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Re: Self Tacking Jib

I've got a self-tacking jib with a traveler.
  • Shape control of the wind is poor; can't move sheet far enough forward.
  • Inadequate sail area.
For a stay sail, sure. Few down sides, since off the wind it will either be rolled up or not out too far, and the it won't overlap anyway.

A boat-specific issue is that my boat's keel is far forward; it balances better with more jib. With the slef-tacker the balance is poor unless a reef is in, regardless of wind strength. While this is boat-specific, the correlary is this; changing to a sail for which the boat is not designed can change a lot; no factor can be viewed in isolation, and the right answer for one may be wrong for another. Put a large jib on a boat designed for a smaller one (my Stiletto was like this) and the boat will likely develop lee helm unless some very careful trimming is emploied to balance this out.

But they are nice tacking up wind single handed in a breeze.
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Old 20-08-2014, 13:12   #21
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Re: Self Tacking Jib

I think many of you have gone a different direction with my original question. I wondered why there aren't more boats designed to have a self tacking jib. While Dockhead may be the vigorous ever energetic sailor who would never consider steaming the final bit instead of throwing in a few more tacks, I can tell you that he is not necessarily the norm (this is born out by looking around Drake's Passage and seeing all the cats steaming upwind). I was perfectly happy to tack up the narrows, something I would not have done if I had to get the wife to tack the jib over every one of those 6 tacks. I was "cruising" (on vacation)! We would have steamed upwind until we were through the narrow section and then set sail. I have a sneaking suspicion I am not the only one. I felt it to be very pleasant experience.

With regards to performance, there is no doubt that a boat designed to sail with a self tacking jib, can perform every bit as well as one with an overlapping foresail. For Christ sake, ETNZ's AC 72 was self tacking. So are the new Gunboats, Outremer 5x as a host of other smaller performance cats and monohulls ( friend has a VX one,-it performs!)

That being said, I believe I will favor a design with a self tacking jib. It makes for an enjoyable experience. The performance piece is already assumed.
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Old 20-08-2014, 13:22   #22
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Re: Self Tacking Jib

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With regards to performance, there is no doubt that a boat designed to sail with a self tacking jib, can perform every bit as well as one with an overlapping foresail.
I don't agree. I have raced on couple of different designs of monohulls that used a self tacking headsail in one design races (because the class rules stipulated that this was the only option), but in open events where they were no longer restricted they switched to a non self tacking jib.

Why go the expense of purchasing a different sail and associated equipment, including additional winches, if there was no performance gain?
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Old 20-08-2014, 16:09   #23
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Re: Self Tacking Jib

Reality check time.

There is no doubt in my mind my boat is faster with a self tacking jib. But then I am a single hander and messing around with a jib sheet and a screecher sheet and a main sheet when I tack is a tall order.

On the other hand if I had plenty of deck apes to pull the lines and follow orders to the second in a Bristol manner I might have a different opinion. This is a cruisers forum and probably most of us are cruisers, even if we race every boat with in a mile of us.

For a short handed cruiser with a working jib that does not reach past the main mast a self tacking jib seems like a no brainer to me.
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Old 20-08-2014, 16:11   #24
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Re: Self Tacking Jib

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Originally Posted by noelex 77 View Post
I don't agree. I have raced on couple of different designs of monohulls that used a self tacking headsail in one design races (because the class rules stipulated that this was the only option), but in open events where they were no longer restricted they switched to a non self tacking jib.

Why go the expense of purchasing a different sail and associated equipment, including additional winches, if there was no performance gain?
+1.

The main advantage of the self tacker is just that," Self Tacking", unfortunately
this is not always an advantage on a catamaran when backing of the jib is required to complete a tack in a seaway. Extra lines need to be rigged for this jib backing function which can negate the systems simplicity. If performance is required through adjustment then go and have a look at what the modern racers are using, not the older one design classes like Tornadoes and Solings.

The self tacker is well suited to boats like Seawinds where performance appears secondary to priorities like simple to use for those new to sailing for instance.
Quite obviously they have a place on some cruising boats.
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Old 20-08-2014, 17:04   #25
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Re: Self Tacking Jib

Quote: The self tacker is well suited to boats like Seawinds where performance appears secondary to priorities like simple to use for those new to sailing for instance.


Uhhhh,..........did I mention Gunboat, Outremer, Alibi, and Tag. Almost every modern performance oriented cat has one. Explain that with the "performance is secondary", or "new to sailing" statements.

Anyway, I can see this is one of those topics that people have dug there heels in. Don't see any resolution in sight.
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Old 20-08-2014, 17:16   #26
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Re: Self Tacking Jib

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Uhhhh,..........did I mention Gunboat, Outremer, Alibi, and Tag. Almost every modern performance oriented cat has one. Explain that with the "performance is secondary",
:
You seem to forget that in the larger size cruisers, potential maximum performance will always be secondary to being easily handled by a small crew. Tacking something the size of a Gunboat up a confined channel with only mum an dad as crew is going to be 'FUN' with out a self tacker.
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Old 20-08-2014, 17:32   #27
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Re: Self Tacking Jib

Out with Mum and Dad on our SeaSlug. Glad we got the low performing tractor with the self tacker

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Old 20-08-2014, 17:45   #28
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Re: Self Tacking Jib

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Originally Posted by Seaslug Caravan View Post
You seem to forget that in the larger size cruisers, potential maximum performance will always be secondary to being easily handled by a small crew.
True story Not a racer or cruiser yet, but vacations always lead me to this conclusion
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Old 21-08-2014, 06:04   #29
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Re: Self Tacking Jib

I've sailed many mono's and cats with a self tacking jib; provided that you have a decent main sail with battens, upwind they perform parity if not better. Most of the performance cats and mono's have either self tacking or relatively small jibs (105 % max)
The problem starts if the wind is aft the beam.. You then definately need to have something else as a fore sail. (spi of any kind, parasailor, code zero, crusing chute or schreecher or whatever..)

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Old 21-08-2014, 19:39   #30
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Re: Self Tacking Jib

I think all cruising boats should be designed for a self-tacking arrangement for all the obvious reasons; ease of handling safety etc. Today there are a number of choices; a curved traveler, traditional club foot, Camber spar, or Hoyt boom.

I will eliminate the old club foot immediately since it has no easy way to control twist when the sail is eased out.

A curved or radiused traveler to match the arc of the sail is the cleanest way, but for controlling twist, is limited to the width of the traveler. Technically if it does not go rail to rail, there will be twist at wider apparent sailing angles. Having the ability to change the shape or fullness of the sail is really a minor consideration even on racing boats. If the sail is properly designed and the traveler is at the right radius you can have excellent sail trim to the extent of the width of the traveler.

On the other hand the Camber Spar (as mentioned earlier with photos) and the Hoyt boom, can offer twist control with good sail shape on any point of sail including dead downwind. The sail on the Hoyt boom can be furled where the Camber Spar needs to be hoisted.

The Camber Spar unfortunately is no longer being made, so all things considered today, if the design allowed one to position the curved jib traveler where it could go rail to rail, I would go with that as a self-tacking arrangement, if not probably Hoyt boom.
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