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Old 09-02-2011, 14:48   #1
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I can´t believe I don´t know this, but...

We´ve been sailing downwind a lot lately, and I guess I just don´t have that much experience on that point of sail, and I continually blanket the jib (or drifter) with the main.

So, again, I´m embarassed to have to ask, but what´s the best sail plan when heading on a run? Should I drop the main entirely? Wing on wing seems a little stressful, even though we always use a preventer.
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Old 09-02-2011, 14:51   #2
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Drop the main.... if you can rig a 2nd headsail great... otherwise just use the genoa...
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Old 09-02-2011, 15:04   #3
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Head up, it's faster. More comfortable. Put the wind at 160 degrees. Ignore the rants of the navigator.
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Old 09-02-2011, 15:13   #4
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I am pretty lazy at times and our main has not been easy to raise or lower. When cruising down wind, I often sheet the main in hard amidships so that it doesn't blanket the fores'l but is up and handy when I turn onto a broad reach.

George
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Old 09-02-2011, 16:48   #5
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Head up, it's faster. More comfortable. Put the wind at 160 degrees. Ignore the rants of the navigator.
Ditto!
I've tested this out several times and one actually gains more ground in a time period. Every time the sail luffs one loses speed, and direction messing with the sails.

160º is a good reference but keep both sails on the same side and point up just enough to keep the sails full. And learn to jibe safely. Use a system and stick with it in jibe'n.

I use a boom brake.
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Old 09-02-2011, 16:53   #6
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Ditto!
I've tested this out several times and one actually gains more ground in a time period. Every time the sail luffs one loses speed, and direction messing with the sails.

160º is a good reference but keep both sails on the same side and point up just enough to to keep the sails full. And learn to jibe safely. Use a system and stick with it in jibe'n.

I use a boom brake.
+1

Broad reach and gybe. Faster, more comfortable, better feel on the helm, safer, less wallowing (fin keel).

Bear away until the genoa starts to collapse (watch the clew). Then head up slightly.

My main is allows up on a sloop.
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Old 09-02-2011, 16:56   #7
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The other day, not having the pole onboard, I just rolled up the genoa and left the full main up. Conditions were moderate and I was surprised that the boat still steered fine on the wind vane - very relaxing sailing.
Regards, Richard.
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Old 13-02-2011, 20:33   #8
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As mentioned above, dead downwind is a pain in the ass way to sail. Keep the wind on your quarter, drop the main, and let your jib pull you along. If you have a drifter try to take that down before the wind gets to 10k apparent.
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Old 19-02-2011, 08:19   #9
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thanks all.

FYI, the last stretch was all downwind. i threw up the drifter and dropped the main (about 10 knots apparent) and headed on a dead run. the boat behaved perfectly and we averaged 6kts. calm seas and perfect conditions though...
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