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Old 01-04-2015, 04:29   #31
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Re: To jibe or not to jibe

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Originally Posted by contrail View Post
It's hard to do an accurate tally, as not everyone answered the OP's question, but it seems to me that, of the opinions that actually came from folks on cruising cats, as opposed to other types of boats, the vote was 6 to 2 in favor of gybing. Add my vote, in favor, and it's 7 to 2. You will note that almost everyone thinks it's likely there was too much sail up. And some have noted that coming round into the wind with too much sail up is likely to be a more hazardous maneuver than gybing, because you have to come beam on to the wind and seas.....the "zone of death". It's very easy to lose track of the true wind speed when you are going downwind. Finally, lots of folks have never gotten comfortable with the idea of gybing, no matter the boat or the conditions. Perhaps the training skipper was one of these. But, regardless of the ability of the crew, I would have gybed. It's not hard, even singlehanded.

Sorry for keeping quiet for such a long time. And thanks to everyone who responded.

My understanding from sailing small boats, beach cats and monohulls was and remains, that gybing is a safe manoever if done correctly. You have less apparent wind and I don't see how it would put too much load on the rigg.

Of course one has to reef in time. Thats probably the key point here, since the suggestion to chicken gybe was based several times on the assumption that you have too much mainsail.
What the training skipper said was "never gybe" which is simply wrong in my opinion.
And if the wind is too strong to gybe, you shouldn't have your main up.


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Old 01-04-2015, 04:30   #32
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Re: To jibe or not to jibe

Quote:
Originally Posted by contrail View Post
It's hard to do an accurate tally, as not everyone answered the OP's question, but it seems to me that, of the opinions that actually came from folks on cruising cats, as opposed to other types of boats, the vote was 6 to 2 in favor of gybing. Add my vote, in favor, and it's 7 to 2. You will note that almost everyone thinks it's likely there was too much sail up. And some have noted that coming round into the wind with too much sail up is likely to be a more hazardous maneuver than gybing, because you have to come beam on to the wind and seas.....the "zone of death". It's very easy to lose track of the true wind speed when you are going downwind. Finally, lots of folks have never gotten comfortable with the idea of gybing, no matter the boat or the conditions. Perhaps the training skipper was one of these. But, regardless of the ability of the crew, I would have gybed. It's not hard, even singlehanded.
That's what always happens when at the keyboard. Jibes are easy in 25 knots.
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Old 01-04-2015, 04:34   #33
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Re: To jibe or not to jibe

Originally Posted by contrail
It's hard to do an accurate tally, as not everyone answered the OP's question, but it seems to me that, of the opinions that actually came from folks on cruising cats, as opposed to other types of boats, the vote was 6 to 2 in favor of gybing. Add my vote, in favor, and it's 7 to 2. You will note that almost everyone thinks it's likely there was too much sail up. And some have noted that coming round into the wind with too much sail up is likely to be a more hazardous maneuver than gybing, because you have to come beam on to the wind and seas.....the "zone of death". It's very easy to lose track of the true wind speed when you are going downwind. Finally, lots of folks have never gotten comfortable with the idea of gybing, no matter the boat or the conditions. Perhaps the training skipper was one of these. But, regardless of the ability of the crew, I would have gybed. It's not hard, even singlehanded.






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Old 01-04-2015, 04:59   #34
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Re: To jibe or not to jibe

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Originally Posted by SwissMocha View Post
And if the wind is too strong to gybe, you shouldn't have your main up.
Or you should have "less main up".

Which brings us to the issue of what to do if you find yourself far too late on to reefing with climbing wind strength.

Now sea state is always relevant but lets say it is only wind affected and not current/tide/or tablemount affected disproportionately.

In my boat, although reefing at 20kts is recommened and the second at 30kts, the rig has coped with 30kts upwind briefly during a squall with full main provided the sheet was eased and there was lots of twist.

So down wind with a sudden realization that i was over powered generates two options:

1. Furl the headsail, turn on the engines, time a brisk turn to windward taking into consideration the wave action and gust/lulls and then reef, most likely agressively (go one more assuming worse is coming, maybe drop completely), turn down wind and unfurl the head sail, OR
2. Reef down wind.....

Now I have had success with the latter, but it is tricky and I'd be interested in others experiences and techniques.

I think the requisits are: good reliable ball bearing batton cars, a down haul, two line reefing system that allows both the reefing cringle at the luff to be tensions on a winch simultaneously with the reefling line at the leach.

I generally bring the boom toward cente and sheet in to improve the angle of force on the cars and get the battons well ++ off the shrouds. Then, inch by inch, bit by bit, loose the halyard. tension the leach, and then tension the luff, in that order. Where the control is needed in on the leach during the transitions as this controls the batton position and angle of force on the cars. This in turn makes the cars more likely to move gracefully and with less force being required on the luff reefing system. (I can do this by hand, rather than winch (not the leach reefing line!!).

Interested in other's ideas.

Cheers.
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Old 01-04-2015, 05:26   #35
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Re: To jibe or not to jibe

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Originally Posted by 2Wind View Post
Or you should have "less main up".

Which brings us to the issue of what to do if you find yourself far too late on to reefing with climbing wind strength.

Now sea state is always relevant but lets say it is only wind affected and not current/tide/or tablemount affected disproportionately.

In my boat, although reefing at 20kts is recommened and the second at 30kts, the rig has coped with 30kts upwind briefly during a squall with full main provided the sheet was eased and there was lots of twist.

So down wind with a sudden realization that i was over powered generates two options:

1. Furl the headsail, turn on the engines, time a brisk turn to windward taking into consideration the wave action and gust/lulls and then reef, most likely agressively (go one more assuming worse is coming, maybe drop completely), turn down wind and unfurl the head sail, OR
2. Reef down wind.....

Now I have had success with the latter, but it is tricky and I'd be interested in others experiences and techniques.

I think the requisits are: good reliable ball bearing batton cars, a down haul, two line reefing system that allows both the reefing cringle at the luff to be tensions on a winch simultaneously with the reefling line at the leach.

I generally bring the boom toward cente and sheet in to improve the angle of force on the cars and get the battons well ++ off the shrouds. Then, inch by inch, bit by bit, loose the halyard. tension the leach, and then tension the luff, in that order. Where the control is needed in on the leach during the transitions as this controls the batton position and angle of force on the cars. This in turn makes the cars more likely to move gracefully and with less force being required on the luff reefing system. (I can do this by hand, rather than winch (not the leach reefing line!!).

Interested in other's ideas.

Cheers.
I would add that "lifting" the boom a foot or so with the topping lift can make winching the leach down much easier, after which one brings the boom back down with gravity and the mainsheet, and then repeating the process until the reef is done, can make life easier on some boats.

Sometimes I wonder if simply letting the halyard go, all the way, might be easier, if the batten cars are good ones. I would never have thought this, but a few years ago I was crew on an FP 60, sailing downwind in heavy tradewinds. The halyard broke (!) and, to our shock, the sail was down on the boom in about two seconds! Never did that deliberately, but it's a thought.
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Old 01-04-2015, 05:44   #36
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Re: To jibe or not to jibe

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ulstue View Post
Originally Posted by contrail
It's hard to do an accurate tally, as not everyone answered the OP's question, but it seems to me that, of the opinions that actually came from folks on cruising cats, as opposed to other types of boats, the vote was 6 to 2 in favor of gybing. Add my vote, in favor, and it's 7 to 2. You will note that almost everyone thinks it's likely there was too much sail up. And some have noted that coming round into the wind with too much sail up is likely to be a more hazardous maneuver than gybing, because you have to come beam on to the wind and seas.....the "zone of death". It's very easy to lose track of the true wind speed when you are going downwind. Finally, lots of folks have never gotten comfortable with the idea of gybing, no matter the boat or the conditions. Perhaps the training skipper was one of these. But, regardless of the ability of the crew, I would have gybed. It's not hard, even singlehanded.






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Sure, it's always good to have a bunch of trainees gybing at 25 knots especially if they know the difference between a tack and a gybe and where the wind really is........

The instructor was correct. Just don't gybe.
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Old 01-04-2015, 05:46   #37
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Re: To jibe or not to jibe

With the "dump the halyard" strategy, the risk lies in broken battens and broken lazy jacks, I might have thought. Still, I haven't tried it, so don;t really know....
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Old 01-04-2015, 06:15   #38
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Re: To jibe or not to jibe

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Sure, it's always good to have a bunch of trainees gybing at 25 knots especially if they know the difference between a tack and a gybe and where the wind really is........

The instructor was correct. Just don't gybe.

The trainees were probably no greenhorns on a sailboat, only on a cruiser cat.

But sorry, at 25 knots on a 44 cruiser cat there is not really a problem with a gybe, especially not with a reefed main. More or less the instructor should be able to gybe alone, no realy trainee needed, perhaps to handle the sheet of the foresail on comand.


To tack could be more difficult in stronger winds, because of the risk of standing in the wind. But not really a problem, if necessary you have support of engine. But if there where a problem with greenhorns, it would be in a tack.

Perhaps, before you write back. Think over if you really have experience with cruising catamarans of this size, or speculate only because of your experiences with smaller boats.
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Old 01-04-2015, 06:27   #39
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Re: To jibe or not to jibe

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Originally Posted by Ulstue View Post
The trainees were probably no greenhorns on a sailboat, only on a cruiser cat.

But sorry, at 25 knots on a 44 cruiser cat there is not really a problem with a gybe, especially not with a reefed main. More or less the instructor should be able to gybe alone, no realy trainee needed, perhaps to handle the sheet of the foresail on comand.


To tack could be more difficult in stronger winds, because of the risk of standing in the wind. But not really a problem, if necessary you have support of engine. If there where a problem with the Trainees, a tack would be more difficult.

Perhaps, before you write back. Think over if you really have experience with cruising catamarans of this size, or speculate only because of your experiences with smaller boats.

The trainees were experienced monohull sailors😃


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Old 01-04-2015, 07:04   #40
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Re: To jibe or not to jibe

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Sure, it's always good to have a bunch of trainees gybing at 25 knots especially if they know the difference between a tack and a gybe and where the wind really is........

The instructor was correct. Just don't gybe.

The instructor might be right not to gybe with a bunch of rookies, but that was not the case. He stated in principal not to gybe a Helia 44 above 15 knots of true wind. So, was he correct? I don't think so.


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Old 01-04-2015, 07:45   #41
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Re: To jibe or not to jibe

I'm about to buy a catamaran, Helia is on the short list. If this is true, I would never buy a Helia!
No jibe from 15 knots? That must be nonsense. No problems with jibes on Bahia 46 and Lagoon 400, 421 and 450.

In fact, only with increasing wind strength cats play out their speed potential over the monos, because hardly heeling they can be reefed later. If you don't want to be gentle to the material.

Where was your training? Mallorca? I am warned.

Greetings from Bern
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Old 01-04-2015, 07:57   #42
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Re: To jibe or not to jibe

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I'm about to buy a catamaran, Helia is on the short list. If this is true, I would never buy a Helia!
No jibe from 15 knots? That must be nonsense. No problems with jibes on Bahia 46 and Lagoon 400, 421 and 450.

In fact, only with increasing wind strength cats play out their speed potential over the monos, because hardly heeling they can be reefed later. If you don't want to be gentle to the material.

Where was your training? Mallorca? I am warned.

Greetings from Bern

Yes Mallorca😊
Greetings from Zurich


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Old 01-04-2015, 08:30   #43
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Re: To jibe or not to jibe

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Originally Posted by contrail View Post
It's hard to do an accurate tally, as not everyone answered the OP's question, but it seems to me that, of the opinions that actually came from folks on cruising cats, as opposed to other types of boats, the vote was 6 to 2 in favor of gybing. Add my vote, in favor, and it's 7 to 2. You will note that almost everyone thinks it's likely there was too much sail up. And some have noted that coming round into the wind with too much sail up is likely to be a more hazardous maneuver than gybing, because you have to come beam on to the wind and seas.....the "zone of death". It's very easy to lose track of the true wind speed when you are going downwind. Finally, lots of folks have never gotten comfortable with the idea of gybing, no matter the boat or the conditions. Perhaps the training skipper was one of these. But, regardless of the ability of the crew, I would have gybed. It's not hard, even singlehanded.
Make that 8 to 2. Lots of opinions here from people with experience on boats that are not at all like the original poster's. The question was for a 45' cruising catamaran. If you're sailing off the wind, you should be able to gybe in control for all the reasons given above - long traveler base, short main sheet, resistance to broach, ... . If you can't you almost certainly have too much main up, and rounding up into the wind is just likely to cause more problems because the apparent wind will go up quickly. In that case you need to get some main down while off the wind, using the methods outlined above, which may not be pretty.

With two Atlantic crossings and two seasons in the Med on our Catana 48, and a lot of time talking with other cruising catamaran sailors, I can say with confidence that the idea that you should tack rather than gybe a 45' cruising catamaran in anything over 15 knots does not align with what experienced catamaran cruisers believe or do in general.

Interestingly what you will also see, is lots of those cruisers have the main down when off the wind in a breeze, which makes the gybe much easier. In my exerience, the main on most cruising catamarans is a fantastic sail except when well off the wind, in which case headsails (jib, reacher, spinnaker) are the way to go.
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Old 01-04-2015, 10:52   #44
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Re: To jibe or not to jibe

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Originally Posted by Ulstue View Post
I'm about to buy a catamaran, Helia is on the short list. If this is true, I would never buy a Helia!
No jibe from 15 knots? That must be nonsense. No problems with jibes on Bahia 46 and Lagoon 400, 421 and 450.

In fact, only with increasing wind strength cats play out their speed potential over the monos, because hardly heeling they can be reefed later. If you don't want to be gentle to the material.

Where was your training? Mallorca? I am warned.

Greetings from Bern
I would assume this story relates to the instructor not the boat, so I wouldn't assume anything negative about the Hella from this, not that I have sailed one.

Also, I would be very careful about assuming you can reef later on a cruising catamaran than a mono-hull. In general one reefs earlier rather than later, because the cat doesn't heel in a gust to dissipate the forces. The widely held rule of thumb in a catamaran is to reef for the gusts (i.e. reef to the highest wind speed you are expecting and sail somewhat under-powered most of the time but fully powered in the gusts) and in a mono-hull one tends to reef for the lulls, (i.e. sail fully powered up and over-powered in the gusts).

My experience in our boat (a Catana 48) in terms of performance while cruising has been different than yours with respect to wind strength. We are typically much faster in light winds (5 to 12 knots) than a similar sized mono-hull, somewhat faster in medium winds (12 to 25?) but once the wind picks up (25+ knots) we end up sailing more conservatively than the mono-hull to maintain comfort and some safety margin, and end up about the same speed (8 to 10 knots). Sea-state tends to end up being the limiting factor, not available wind strength. Of course this all very dependent on the sailor and the boat and the sails available. I am referring to cruising offshore in roughly 50' boats, not inshore or day sailing where one might sail a lot more aggressively.
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Old 01-04-2015, 15:42   #45
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Re: To jibe or not to jibe

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Sure, it's always good to have a bunch of trainees gybing at 25 knots especially if they know the difference between a tack and a gybe and where the wind really is........

The instructor was correct. Just don't gybe.
So don't gybe.... ever?

Isn't the whole idea of sail training to teach people how to sail?

Isn't gybing part of sailing?

The fact is, this guy stuffed up. He had too much sail up for the conditions. Left himself in a position where gybing might be (but in reality probably wasn't) risky.

More of an instructor in what NOT to do, IMO.
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