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Old 21-10-2008, 13:11   #1
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Cutter rigging advice

I have a 40ft Lavranos Crossbow cutter. On Sunday I tried the staysail for the first time on the flying forestay. The forestay is fixed at a point of approximately 3 foot from the roller furling genoa. All went well until we tacked and I could not pull the genoa sheet around the staysail - it kept getting caught - any tips ?
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Old 21-10-2008, 13:15   #2
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Backwind the headsail, and let the wind pull it through. Sometimes I have to walk the sail through in light air. It is usually the bowline knot hanging up, but I refuse to use any other way of attatching the sheets.......i2f
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Old 21-10-2008, 13:29   #3
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Alan, 3 feet is a pretty small window between the forestay and the staysail stay - my current cutter (Prout) rig has a gap slightly over 6 feet and even that slows down one's ability to tack the genny, especially when she is completely unfurled.

By your description of a 'flying forestay' for the staysail, I assume we are talking about a detachable stay, or what is commonly called a 'Solent' rig. Typically these rigs are designed to fly the staysail/storm jib only when conditions are too extreme for the full jib - inotherwords, you are expected to furl up the genny before deploying it. That will, of course, eliminate the problem as you will not be tacking the jib when the staysail is up.

You could, of course, partially furl the jib prior to tacking; a nuisance, to say the least. Still, if you are unable, even when backwinded, to pull the jib through the gap between stays, then I can see no alternative.

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Old 21-10-2008, 13:36   #4
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That's one of those persistent problems with a double headsail rig so don't feel alone in having it nag at you. If your yankee or jib is roller furling then just furl it a bit before you tack or have a "deck ape" walk the clew around for you. The other problem with a cutter is when to rig your running backstays. I don't do it in less than 15k winds unless I'll be on the same tack for a long time. Whenever consistent numerous whitecaps appear I rig the running backstays.
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Old 21-10-2008, 13:41   #5
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Imagine to Frolic is correct, you do need to backwind the foresail and yes, the bowline can get caught up if you are tacking with a fully deployed genoa in very light air. In those conditions you can indeed safely 'walk it through', as he says, by walking up on the (now) windward side and lifting the unburdened sheet enough for the bowline to clear. I wouldn't do that in anything above about 8 knots of wind, however, as the speed with which the unburdened sheet will run after it has been freed could cause injury to your hand.

Brad
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Old 21-10-2008, 15:21   #6
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If your bowline is catching you may have the knot backwards. You should tie the knot so that the smooth side contacts the stay or shroud.
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Old 21-10-2008, 15:58   #7
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attachment that won't hang

Instead of two sheets, go to a single sheet (twice as long, of course) and attach it in the middle to the clew with a lark's head/cow hitch.
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Old 21-10-2008, 16:25   #8
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Originally Posted by rtbates View Post
Instead of two sheets, go to a single sheet (twice as long, of course) and attach it in the middle to the clew with a lark's head/cow hitch.
That's the knot I've always used on any headsail I use, of course with a single sheet. I've used a bunch of different techniques and this is by far the best. It's also very fast to rig.

I also agree that backwinding is the best way to pull the jib by the babystay.
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Old 21-10-2008, 16:36   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rtbates View Post
Instead of two sheets, go to a single sheet (twice as long, of course) and attach it in the middle to the clew with a lark's head/cow hitch.
That's the knot that I have on my genoa, and it goes through the slot with no issues. Unless the breeze is below 5 knots. And then I've usually got the gennaker up or engine on, anyway.

There is a little "technique" to get it through in light air.
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Old 21-10-2008, 17:48   #10
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Since running backstays have been mentioned can someone explain their use and purpose? Are they only found on cutter rigs?
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Old 21-10-2008, 21:10   #11
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By the time my clew has got that far its a done deal, convincing it to get that far is the fun bit. Alan - what's getting caught and on what?
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Old 21-10-2008, 21:54   #12
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Thanks for all the tips - I am going sailing tonight and will try backwinding the headsail - I also think the single sheet with a larks head / cow hitch sounds a great idea. When it caught I ended up walking it through the slot however in most cases it was the bowline that caught and thus the advice from Rick (Vasco) will also be applied "smooth side" over the stay.
The distance of 3ft being tight as mentioned by Brad (Southern Star) was queried with the boat builder as I was also of the view that the detachable forestay (Solent rig - thanks for the name - new to a lot of this) was intended only for heavy weather. However the boat builder advised that being a cutter it would fly both headsails under most conditions except heavy weather.

Anyway the forecast is 25kt winds from 16:00 to 20:00 tonight and I will try all this great advice and let you know ! many thanks so far
Alan
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Old 21-10-2008, 21:54   #13
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Aloha Bmiller,
Yes, many fractional sloops have running backstays. One of the first boats I crewed on during a race was a Soling and they had running bactstays.
Kind regards,
JohnL
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Old 21-10-2008, 22:21   #14
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What it the purpose of the running backstay?
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Old 21-10-2008, 22:38   #15
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a running backstay is to balance the pull (load) put on the mast by the staysail. In most staysail set ups the runners are fastened at the sides of the mast opposite the inner forestay tang, the bottom of the stay is clipped when not in use at or near the aft lower stays, they are deployed only when the staysail is flown, mostly they have either a pulley or highfield lever system to tension them. They can be made redundant by taking the inner forestay up to near the top of the mast, this transfers any load to the backstay, therefore the runners are no longer needed.
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