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Old 16-08-2016, 04:16   #1
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Who uses an outhaul?

I have the clue of my roachy full batten main tied off with the foot relatively taught but not "tight". I do not use an outhaul.

Nevertheless, I could easily do so as my third reef line sits lazy at the boom end. (I only rig it when going to sea for a few days or more when forecasts start to get hazy).

So the question is, does anyone else actively use an outhaul on their multi?

I suppose it might result in a small degree of flattening if the wind was very strong, but I generally deal with this effectively by reefing or easing the traveller and sheet. Perhaps, I might get a little more body in light wind by easing it.

Has anyone found this to be a useful tool?

Heading north in September, so I thought I might just see first hand, as I will have some time to play.
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Old 16-08-2016, 05:25   #2
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Re: Who uses an outhaul?

Our Snell Easy cat does not have a roachy main, but it is loose footed. When hoisting the sail at the start of the day, I always consider the expected conditions and adjust the outhaul accordingly. If running off the wind in light conditions, I'll ease it before the sail goes up. When going to windward and wanting a flat sail for pointing ability, or if the wind gets up during the day and I want it flatter, putting a bit of tension on the outhaul is one of the first tweeks I go for. It's an easy adjustment, so I make the most of it.
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Old 16-08-2016, 05:46   #3
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Re: Who uses an outhaul?

Absolutely use it, draft on a sail is critical to performance both in light and heavy air, in all winds an outhaul will give better pointing and in heavy winds more speed as you flatten the sail, in light air easing the outhaul will give more power.

See here for Doyle Sails guide to it. Outhaul Given you have a spare line why not just try it and see if it makes a difference.
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Old 16-08-2016, 06:07   #4
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Re: Who uses an outhaul?

Never use it other than putting the sail on the boom. Set and forget I am a cruiser not a racer. If you feel the need to play with the out haul for that tiny bit of performance your pushing your boat too hard .

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Old 16-08-2016, 06:14   #5
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Re: Who uses an outhaul?

While I don't own a cruising cat, I do adjust the out haul all the time on our cruising mono. Huge difference in performance weather!!


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Old 16-08-2016, 06:35   #6
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Re: Who uses an outhaul?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SimonV View Post
Never use it other than putting the sail on the boom. Set and forget I am a cruiser not a racer. If you feel the need to play with the out haul for that tiny bit of performance your pushing your boat too hard .

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I respectfully disagree, if a cruiser can get half a Knot and point a degree or two higher over the course of a days cruising up the coast, it can make the difference between arriving at the anchorage in daylight not dark. Good sail control is important to a cruising boat
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Old 16-08-2016, 07:15   #7
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Re: Who uses an outhaul?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Factor View Post
I respectfully disagree, if a cruiser can get half a Knot and point a degree or two higher over the course of a days cruising up the coast, it can make the difference between arriving at the anchorage in daylight not dark. Good sail control is important to a cruising boat
Of course I use the outhaul. Not for every little tack or jibe, but every time I will be on a course for more than a few miles. its part of sailing well, which to most sailors has aesthetic value.

For the lazy, better sail trim also means fewer tacks and jibes, since the boat points higher and goes deeper. It means a better motion.

The argument that speed and trim does not matter is silly and hypocritical, at least to most sailors. Why clean the bottom? Why buy a multihull (one of several reasons)? Why chose sail over power? The question is how often to tweak trim, not whether it matters.
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Old 16-08-2016, 07:25   #8
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Re: Who uses an outhaul?

2Wind: I picked up my 380 last fall, put it away for the winter, in bringing it to it's summer home I am looking at the sail and thinking there is way too much draft here. I look to see where the outhaul is, and to my surprise, there is no outhaul!

My last boats had roller furling mains so it always had an outhaul.

I asked the Lagoon dealer about no outhaul on a new boat, something was missing. He said nope, no outhaul provided.

I took some extra line, and went from clew to eyepad that topping lift attaches to and pulled the sail back a few inches. BTW, you cannot do this with the sail in the stack pack, ask me how I know this. So pick a light wind day.

I actually went out and purchased a block etc, but in the end I just used the line and eyepad and clew, doubled or tripled the line and tied it off. I set it more for heavier air, my thoughts being; if it is under 8 knots and i need to get somewhere, I am motoring or motorsailing. If it is about 22kts, I am reefing. So I set it about 15kts. YMMV.
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Old 16-08-2016, 07:49   #9
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Re: Who uses an outhaul?

I use one to move the draft fore or aft.... it cleated off at the end of the boom.
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Old 16-08-2016, 09:29   #10
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Re: Who uses an outhaul?

i use every sail shaping line on the boat. it's what sailing is all about. to me anyway.
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Old 16-08-2016, 09:44   #11
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Re: Who uses an outhaul?

Honestly I set it in Florida and removed it in NZ. Played around with the draft once and was a waste of time. 50' Cat, big main.
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Old 16-08-2016, 09:47   #12
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Re: Who uses an outhaul?

Besides all the good reasons given above to use the outhaul to adjust sail shape etc., it's also a good idea to slack it whenever taking the sail down. This not only cuts wear / stretch and lengthens the life of the sail, but also on many boats makes it easier to lower (and then raise) the sail. Once the sail is set it comes naturally to tension for the expected conditions....
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Old 16-08-2016, 09:49   #13
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Re: Who uses an outhaul?

First thing I do as soon as the main is up is set the outhaul for the conditions.

If my point of sail or wind conditions change during a trip, I trim it accordingly.

It certainly makes as difference as Factor says in his second post.
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Old 16-08-2016, 10:02   #14
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Re: Who uses an outhaul?

Is this a trick question? The only time I don't use it is on a day sail on someone's boat which doesn't have one. And even then, I'm likely to rig one up. Here's just a few options Harken
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Old 16-08-2016, 10:11   #15
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Re: Who uses an outhaul?

its not all about yanking the sail as flat as possible and trying to sail up cliff walls of water ya know..lol

with respect, you are not exactly "pushing your boat too hard" in 10-15kts of wind, and managing the outhaul can make a nice improvement in speed.. and as a cruiser, that speed can add up to serious time off the leg of a trip

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Never use it other than putting the sail on the boom. Set and forget I am a cruiser not a racer. If you feel the need to play with the out haul for that tiny bit of performance your pushing your boat too hard .

Sent from my GT-N7105T using Cruisers Sailing Forum mobile app
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