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Old 29-03-2015, 09:50   #16
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Re: what pole: Spinaker, or Whisker ?

There is no reason whatsoever to have a spinnaker pole or whisker pole on a cat. None. The beam provides the "pole". This doesn't mean you can't spend the money and carry the extra rigging and weight of a pole, you just don't need to. Maybe in some really light winds a pole could help hold open a spi or hold out a genoa or reacher, but any time there's enough wind to keep those sails working a pole would be extraneous. An easy trick to use a genoa deep downwind on the opposite side of the main (wing and wing) is to sheet it well outboard and aft outside the shroud. This is as good as a whisker pole and easier and cheaper and lighter.

Dave
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Old 29-03-2015, 11:58   #17
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Re: what pole: Spinaker, or Whisker ?

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Originally Posted by 2Hulls View Post
There is no reason whatsoever to have a spinnaker pole or whisker pole on a cat. None. The beam provides the "pole". This doesn't mean you can't spend the money and carry the extra rigging and weight of a pole, you just don't need to. Maybe in some really light winds a pole could help hold open a spi or hold out a genoa or reacher, but any time there's enough wind to keep those sails working a pole would be extraneous. An easy trick to use a genoa deep downwind on the opposite side of the main (wing and wing) is to sheet it well outboard and aft outside the shroud. This is as good as a whisker pole and easier and cheaper and lighter.

Dave

Have to disagree, sailing dead downwind or close to it in trade wind conditions (20-35 knots) having the jib poled out to the windward side will prevent a lot of wear and tear when the jib collapses. And it will when your surfing down the big waves. It allows you to avoid tacking downwind when the wind is off your stern enough that the jib is useless behind the main but will collapse if you put it out to the windward side without a pole. Now in lighter conditions you pop the kite where I agree no pole is needed. A carbon non adjustable pole is best for trouble free service. I could maneuver the 22' pole anywhere with one hand on my last boat. I know the real cat sailors tack downwind but I love the ride when the waves are square on my stern and the 200 miles I cover is directly towards my destination.


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Old 29-03-2015, 14:15   #18
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Re: what pole: Spinaker, or Whisker ?

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Have to disagree, sailing dead downwind or close to it in trade wind conditions (20-35 knots) having the jib poled out to the windward side will prevent a lot of wear and tear when the jib collapses. And it will when your surfing down the big waves.
Hmmmm, windward dead downwind?

I've never had a "wear and tear" problem on my genoas from this. But the only time I have the genny on the windward side is when doing wing & wing dead down wind in which case "windward" is just a few degrees. If it's blowing 20-35 (your example) and not racing I'd just as soon not have the main up at all, in which case the genny is to leeward.

Quote:
It allows you to avoid tacking downwind when the wind is off your stern enough that the jib is useless behind the main but will collapse if you put it out to the windward side without a pole.
If a cat is light enough to make better VMG downwind by gybing (very few cruising cats are) you're not doing it correctly if the jib/genny is not working full time.

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I know the real cat sailors tack downwind...
The only "real" cat sailors that gybe downwind for better VMG are those on boats light enough (fast enough) to bring the apparent wind far enough forward to make it worthwhile. Very few cruising cats can do this. Mine won't. The boat has to be very, very, very light. Beach cats can do it routinely. Those cruising cat sailors who think they are doing it are "unreal".

Dave
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Old 29-03-2015, 16:05   #19
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Re: what pole: Spinaker, or Whisker ?

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Originally Posted by 2Hulls View Post
There is no reason whatsoever to have a spinnaker pole or whisker pole on a cat. None. The beam provides the "pole". This doesn't mean you can't spend the money and carry the extra rigging and weight of a pole, you just don't need to. Maybe in some really light winds a pole could help hold open a spi or hold out a genoa or reacher, but any time there's enough wind to keep those sails working a pole would be extraneous. An easy trick to use a genoa deep downwind on the opposite side of the main (wing and wing) is to sheet it well outboard and aft outside the shroud. This is as good as a whisker pole and easier and cheaper and lighter.

Dave
I disagree, unless the beam is extreme sheeting the jib to the rail does not project near as much sail area or offer as much stability as a whisker pole would. Most very experienced cat cruisers I know carry a whisker pole for the jib and use it far more than spinnakers.
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Old 29-03-2015, 16:07   #20
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Re: what pole: Spinaker, or Whisker ?

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Have to disagree, sailing dead downwind or close to it in trade wind conditions (20-35 knots) having the jib poled out to the windward side will prevent a lot of wear and tear when the jib collapses. And it will when your surfing down the big waves. It allows you to avoid tacking downwind when the wind is off your stern enough that the jib is useless behind the main but will collapse if you put it out to the windward side without a pole. Now in lighter conditions you pop the kite where I agree no pole is needed. A carbon non adjustable pole is best for trouble free service. I could maneuver the 22' pole anywhere with one hand on my last boat. I know the real cat sailors tack downwind but I love the ride when the waves are square on my stern and the 200 miles I cover is directly towards my destination.


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Well said grasshopper
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Old 30-03-2015, 00:27   #21
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Re: what pole: Spinaker, or Whisker ?

Dave from Maxing Out used twin poles mounted from the headsail tack. He's on the board if you search.
double headsail
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Old 30-03-2015, 03:18   #22
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Re: what pole: Spinaker, or Whisker ?

Overtaking a Catana 471 in the 130 n.m Silverrudder race. The Catana did not have a spinnaker pole
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Old 30-03-2015, 04:22   #23
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Re: what pole: Spinaker, or Whisker ?

OK, you guys win. Go ahead and use your poles all you want. But I think you are confusing "need" and "want". There are no reasons to "need" a pole on a multi like the monohull "need". As I said in my original response, this doesn't mean you can't use one if you want. And I am familiar with a twin headsail setup using two poles. I'm sure it works effectively as a special setup but it's still not "needed".

Dave
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Old 30-03-2015, 06:57   #24
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Re: what pole: Spinaker, or Whisker ?

I for one would like to see a picture of your boat sailing at 130-150 degrees apparent with jib and main and see how you do it without excessive twist or keep it flying to windward without a pole. As Dave said it is not something you use for day sailing but is of value when sailing long passages with seas and your destination is down wind. Jibing and sailing angles can be faster, but maybe not when you deviate far from the rumbline, one missed windshift and you have sailed a long way out of your way! The most experienced liveaboard catamaran cruisers I know, who have been doing it for years, have whisker poles. They have figured out the simplest way to get where they are going is a straight line. The only exception would be very high performance boats that sail high double digits and keep the apparent wind on the beam when sailing downwind.
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Old 30-03-2015, 15:54   #25
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Re: what pole: Spinaker, or Whisker ?

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I for one would like to see a picture of your boat sailing at 130-150 degrees apparent with jib and main and see how you do it without excessive twist or keep it flying to windward without a pole.
I will look to see if I have any photos from another boat that will show this, but at those angles I would not be using a genoa and would instead use my reacher out on the sprit to leeward in true winds up to about 15 kts. Any deeper or even before and I'd be using a sym spi witout the main or with a deep reefed main to avoid hindering the spi - fully raise the main to help dousing the spi. No pole for the spi needed, again up to about 15 kts true. Above that I'd use the reacher or genoa alone w/o main until very deep when I can fly the genoa to windward with main wing on wing. We only do this racing when we don't want the complication and rating penalty of using the spi.

None of the many cruising cat sailors I know use a pole for genoa or spi.

Poleless Dave
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Old 30-03-2015, 16:31   #26
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Re: what pole: Spinaker, or Whisker ?

It is like the old saying, "You cant miss what you never had". Lots of cat owners haven't used the whisker pole to fully understand the advantages. I have found the performance is remarkably close to asymmetric spinnakers that are struggling on a centerline sprit at anything deeper than 90 degrees, unless they, as you, take the main down. Raising and lowering the main off the wind can be very difficult even with the best track systems. Also if you get caught with too much wind dowsing or rolling the spinnaker could be quite difficult and dangerous without the main to blanket it. Frankly a centerline sprit is far from the Panacea it has been sold as, to the cruising market. If your boat is fast enough to keep the wind on the beam or just slightly aft of the beam, as with racing boats and your willing to jibe a lot ok. But for cruising cats and their slower speeds, with limited crew usually, jibing a lot and trying raise and lower the main off wind is far from ideal. I developed a bridle system between the bows on cruising cats for spinnakers, that lead to the cockpit to allow short handed crews to pull the tack to windward as they sailed deeper angles. On later designs I actually put a telescoping sprit in each bow with a bridle between that offered more fore and aft separation and the ability to sail deep angles without worrying about the main blanketing. Forespar and others have developed centerline sprits that can be articulated to windward to allow sailing deeper angles as well. Articulating sprits are actually penalized under rating systems because of the superior vmg they offer at deeper angles with asymmetric spinnakers.

I found a very small percentage of my owners would use the spinnakers and other large off wind sails that required hoisting after the novelty wore off and they discovered wing on wind sailing with the jib be it with a device like the Camber spar or Hoyt boom, or an actual whisker pole, particularly offshore with trade winds and in waves.


P.S. you will win a lot more races when sailing your boat wing on wing with the jib if you stick a pole in it.
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Old 30-03-2015, 17:46   #27
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Re: what pole: Spinaker, or Whisker ?

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P.S. you will win a lot more races when sailing your boat wing on wing with the jib if you stick a pole in it.
Well, we'll never know.

When racing we've approached the dead down wind legs wing on wing with our 140% genoa sheeted outboard with a spinnaker sheet running outside the shroud. We can hold 180* +/- about 8* either side before either sail wants to back. So it's like a virtual whisker pole that doesn't need to be gybed and is one less thing to manage with a short handed crew. Gybes, if needed to gain a starboard tack advantage, are quick and easy and no fussing with a pole. We carry the DDW angle until we know we can gybe one of the sails and harden up a bit to lay the next mark and have the genny start working to leeward. Utilizing a whisker pole could get us a few more degrees but at the expense of needing to gybe it sooner or later with the potential of making a mistake which costs time, not to mention hoisting it and putting it away for the ensuing reach or upwind leg. Simply not worth it. Recreational races are won by those making the fewest mistakes. The fewest mistakes are made with the fewest deck maneuvers. Keep it simple stupid.

As for cruising needs deep down wind, a pole less sym spi is the way to go for cats until the wind gets too high for small crews, like the Admiral and me. We can carry our sym spi as high as 90* apparent if we want to work at it. When we expect higher winds we don't deploy it at all but on occasion we have and have kept the main in reserve at a deep reef and can raise it more on the centerline then sheet out to blanket the spi when the time comes to get it down This is feasible with good hardware and practice. I see no advantage to using a pole with a sym spi and indeed see disadvantages. Just another opportunity to screw it all up.

Dave
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Old 30-03-2015, 17:56   #28
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Re: what pole: Spinaker, or Whisker ?

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I for one would like to see a picture of your boat sailing at 130-150 degrees apparent with jib and main and see how you do it without excessive twist or keep it flying to windward without a pole.

We can sail down to 130-135 apparent without a pole. That's about 150-155 true.

And we can sail with the headsail to windward by about 10 degrees. ie 170 degrees apparent with good stability.

We don't get excessive sail twist, because the tweaker (outboard sheet) is led right out at the gunwales.

I guess that does leave a 15 degree "no sail" area, where a pole might be of use.

But it's only 15 degree window and only in less than around 15 knots wind.
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Old 30-03-2015, 17:59   #29
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Re: what pole: Spinaker, or Whisker ?

I have no problem with symmetrical or asymmetrical spinnakers flown from the bows, as I explained with the adjustable bridle system. As far as the jib you can get by without one, but it will not be as fast or stable as it would be with a pole. Downwind it is all about projected area and I can assure you, you are not getting it by trimming to the rail, the difference in speed would be noticeable with two similar boats. Offshore the stability of the sail and lack of collapse and fill as the boat rolled would be vastly superior.
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Old 30-03-2015, 18:06   #30
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Re: what pole: Spinaker, or Whisker ?

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We can sail down to 130-135 apparent without a pole. That's about 150-155 true.

And we can sail with the headsail to windward by about 10 degrees. ie 170 degrees apparent with good stability.

We don't get excessive sail twist, because the tweaker (outboard sheet) is led right out at the gunwales.

I guess that does leave a 15 degree "no sail" area, where a pole might be of use.

But it's only 15 degree window and only in less than around 15 knots wind.
I have never seen any cat sail well at that apparent angle with a jib and main, without the jib getting blanketed to a degree, even on the outboard rail you are living with a very round shape and more twist than ideal. However we are mostly talking about sailing many miles downwind in seas and higher winds and that is where the whisker pole pays dividends, unless of course you have wishbone boom, Camber Spar or Hoyt boom.
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