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Old 14-09-2019, 16:22   #1
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Placing tracks for a staysail

Hi all,

My boat was originally fitted with a club foot boom on the staysail. I do not use it, it is horrible. Instead, I have been using a combination of blocks on the deckhouse and mast base to get a decent sail shape.

This is not a great solution either, so a while back I bought some tracks and blocks, now I would like to fit them.

With my deck layout, they can go anywhere.

So, is there a formula or simple method of determining the correct location for them? I wondered if there was something along the lines of measuring the sail foot length and then maybe multiplying by something else? Maybe a calculated angle from the clew?

I have some pencil marks from what felt right when I measured on a totally calm day, but I donít entirely trust my judgment there.

Matt
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Old 14-09-2019, 16:42   #2
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Re: Placing tracks for a staysail

I'm doing some similar planning, but have decided against tracks. Instead, low-friction rings with dyneema strops would be a better plan. As long as you have two strops on each ring, one leading inboard (say near the centreline) and one outboard (either edge of the coachroof or further out from the toerail) you will be able to pull the ring wherever you need it, and adjust the sheet lead to get the best shape. Best of all you don't need to go to all the trouble of attaching tracks and blocks, nor worry about where they are, when you stub your toes on them, and you have better control of the sheet.
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Old 14-09-2019, 16:44   #3
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Re: Placing tracks for a staysail

I'd start by extending the LP line of the sail to the side deck and center the track around it.
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Old 14-09-2019, 17:55   #4
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Re: Placing tracks for a staysail

Matt, for our Solent I installed tracks at some nominal average angle from the center line (don't remember, but any sail trim bok will offer ideas) and where there was good support for the loads (in the coach roof). Then I had the sail cut to fit the design.

So, it works ok, but in fact they are too far outboard for real close hauled trim, and definitely too far inboard for reaching angles. Damn! I will someday put barber haulers with LFRs to correct both flaws... you might well consider such a setup from the start!

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Old 14-09-2019, 19:42   #5
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Re: Placing tracks for a staysail

Can't remember how I determined where the staysail sheet track should go on our Westsail but it worked. Probably best to take the boat out in moderate conditions, put up the staysail and physically hold the sheet in various positions while the boat is on different points of sail. Should be able to come up with a good place to locate the track.
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Old 14-09-2019, 19:48   #6
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Re: Placing tracks for a staysail

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul L View Post
I'd start by extending the LP line of the sail to the side deck and center the track around it.


Paul,

Thank you, that makes sense. Am I correct in interpreting the LP line as perpendicular to the jib luff?

Matt
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Old 14-09-2019, 19:57   #7
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Re: Placing tracks for a staysail

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Can't remember how I determined where the staysail sheet track should go but it worked. Probably best to take the boat out in moderate conditions, put up the staysail and physically hold the sheet in various positions while the boat is on different points of sail. Should be able to come up with a good place to locate the track.
Darn it, but this was the approach I took last time. And it did seem to work though I didn't entirely trust my tests. I felt like there should be some nice infallible mathematical method.

Paul's approach does feel suitably mathematical, though it does not help so much with the distance from the center-line of the boat.
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Old 14-09-2019, 19:59   #8
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Re: Placing tracks for a staysail

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tillsbury View Post
I'm doing some similar planning, but have decided against tracks. Instead, low-friction rings with dyneema strops would be a better plan. As long as you have two strops on each ring, one leading inboard (say near the centreline) and one outboard (either edge of the coachroof or further out from the toerail) you will be able to pull the ring wherever you need it, and adjust the sheet lead to get the best shape. Best of all you don't need to go to all the trouble of attaching tracks and blocks, nor worry about where they are, when you stub your toes on them, and you have better control of the sheet.
This is a good approach, and I will use if if I have to, but I have an unusual situation with my boat where on the one hand, deck space is totally abundant (so stubbing toes LESS of an issue, though still a consideration) but getting lines back to the cockpit is darn near impossible. So if I can avoid running lines it will be a good thing.

I think if I were a racer I would use this approach, there's no doubt you'd get the best possible sail shape.
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Old 14-09-2019, 20:02   #9
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Re: Placing tracks for a staysail

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
Matt, for our Solent I installed tracks at some nominal average angle from the center line (don't remember, but any sail trim bok will offer ideas) and where there was good support for the loads (in the coach roof). Then I had the sail cut to fit the design.

So, it works ok, but in fact they are too far outboard for real close hauled trim, and definitely too far inboard for reaching angles. Damn! I will someday put barber haulers with LFRs to correct both flaws... you might well consider such a setup from the start!

Jim
See my previous post about the difficulty of running lines aft, but I hear you on the compromise of reaching vs pointing.

I had hoped to alleviate this a little by putting the tracks at an angle of about 45 degrees to the center-line, so that bringing the blocks forward on the track would also bring them closer to the center of the boat.
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Old 14-09-2019, 20:17   #10
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Re: Placing tracks for a staysail

Quote:
I had hoped to alleviate this a little by putting the tracks at an angle of about 45 degrees to the center-line, so that bringing the blocks forward on the track would also bring them closer to the center of the boat.
_
But Matt, that's opposite to what ya wanna do, isn't it? Normally you need to have the lead further aft when close hauled and inboard as well.

What we've been doing if on a long reaching leg is to rig a second sheet via a snatch block on the toe rail,getting it outboard and forward. Really helps with the genoa, and a bit with the Solent.

Jim
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Old 14-09-2019, 20:36   #11
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Re: Placing tracks for a staysail

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Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
But Matt, that's opposite to what ya wanna do, isn't it? Normally you need to have the lead further aft when close hauled and inboard as well.

What we've been doing if on a long reaching leg is to rig a second sheet via a snatch block on the toe rail,getting it outboard and forward. Really helps with the genoa, and a bit with the Solent.

Jim
Umm.... sh-t. Now I am confused. I don't doubt you for a moment, except... I simply cannot get this to work in my head.

I'm gonna have to do as RoverHi has suggested and go for a sail.


Edit: Yep, your interpretation is backup up by the guys at Quantum Sails.

https://www.quantumsails.com/en/reso...ail-trim-guide
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Old 15-09-2019, 05:00   #12
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Re: Placing tracks for a staysail

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Paul,

Thank you, that makes sense. Am I correct in interpreting the LP line as perpendicular to the jib luff?

Matt
Yep...
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Old 15-09-2019, 10:46   #13
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Re: Placing tracks for a staysail

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tillsbury View Post
I'm doing some similar planning, but have decided against tracks. Instead, low-friction rings with dyneema strops would be a better plan. As long as you have two strops on each ring, one leading inboard (say near the centreline) and one outboard (either edge of the coachroof or further out from the toerail) you will be able to pull the ring wherever you need it, and adjust the sheet lead to get the best shape. Best of all you don't need to go to all the trouble of attaching tracks and blocks, nor worry about where they are, when you stub your toes on them, and you have better control of the sheet.
Hard to see how this can cive both lateral and fore-aft adjustment with only 2 attachment points, Need to add a barberhauler? As a temporary measure this is OK but would get messy in eveyday use IMHO.

I added staysail tracks to my boat, Just raised the sail at the dock. the wind was just right to fill the sail but light so I got the track position by seeing where the sheet would be when sail would fit best wirhout striking the shrouds. and giving a range of sheet angles to adjust leech vs foot tension. If you have any experience in setting sails it is not rocket science.

But I have seen a few tracks in<correcfly installed, being aligned in line wtih boat fore and aft. Instead the track needs to have an outward angle as you move the block aft. I would say the track should point almost directly at the tack of the staysail.
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Old 15-09-2019, 14:35   #14
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Re: Placing tracks for a staysail

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But I have seen a few tracks in<correcfly installed, being aligned in line wtih boat fore and aft. Instead the track needs to have an outward angle as you move the block aft. I would say the track should point almost directly at the tack of the staysail.
This is exactly how I FELT it should be from my last set of experiments, but Jim disagrees!

How do I reconcile the two different theories?
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Old 15-09-2019, 22:41   #15
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Re: Placing tracks for a staysail

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Originally Posted by waterman46 View Post
Hard to see how this can cive both lateral and fore-aft adjustment with only 2 attachment points, Need to add a barberhauler? As a temporary measure this is OK but would get messy in eveyday use IMHO.

I added staysail tracks to my boat, Just raised the sail at the dock. the wind was just right to fill the sail but light so I got the track position by seeing where the sheet would be when sail would fit best wirhout striking the shrouds. and giving a range of sheet angles to adjust leech vs foot tension. If you have any experience in setting sails it is not rocket science.

But I have seen a few tracks in<correcfly installed, being aligned in line wtih boat fore and aft. Instead the track needs to have an outward angle as you move the block aft. I would say the track should point almost directly at the tack of the staysail.
If you have infinitely adjustable sheet lead position vertically and horizontally, you don't need it to be adjustable fore and aft. Fore and aft adjustment is just a compromise solution to give vertical adjustment. The sheet lead just needs to be forward enough that you can adjust it to the lowest position you'll ever need. Letting it off gives you height, which is the equivalent of moving a track aft. But you can also move it inboard and outboard, giving you the equivalent of two barber haulers built in. And the whole lot doesn't get in the way when you're not using the sail.
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