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Old 04-09-2013, 12:41   #46
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Re: Sail management under 'high' wind

Remember, their jib furling line broke and they have a 130% genoa. Heaving-to with that large of a headsail may not be practical. Probably worth a try though.

Turning downwind is good advice, if there's sea room in that direction. That makes everything else easier. You probably don't need the engine running in that case.

Where did the furling line break? There may be enough line still on the spool to allow you to tie another line to the stub and furl your sail enough to take the pressure off. You won't be running the knotted lines through any pulleys or fairleads, but if you get on the foredeck and pull, it might work. If you can get it furled enough, you can continue sailing until it's more convenient to drop the headsail.

Otherwise, you needed to drop the headsail. Bring some sail ties to the foredeck with you to keep the loose sail under control.

Finally, find out what it was that chafed the furling line. That needs to be fixed ASAP.

It sounds like you handled it pretty well. These things are usually a clusterf---.
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Old 04-09-2013, 13:01   #47
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Re: Sail management under 'high' wind

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Originally Posted by Ann T. Cate View Post
Rakuflames:

Of course you can start your engine immediately, but honestly, I think you would be better served by teaching yourself to check first, for lines in the water. It only takes a moment. IMO, it's a preferable habit because it can serve one so much better, and the downside can be extreme. YMMV

Ann I think we've said that about umpty-ump times now. I suspect sailors on Mars have heard it by now.
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Old 04-09-2013, 13:01   #48
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Re: Sail management under 'high' wind

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Finally, find out what it was that chafed the furling line. That needs to be fixed ASAP.
Yeah. After reading this thread, the first thing I'm going to do when I get back to the boat is check the furling line. Mine has been on the boat since it was commissioned in 2006.

Maybe time for a new one?
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Old 04-09-2013, 13:04   #49
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Re: Sail management under 'high' wind

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Originally Posted by Paul Elliott View Post
Remember, their jib furling line broke and they have a 130% genoa. Heaving-to with that large of a headsail may not be practical. Probably worth a try though.

Turning downwind is good advice, if there's sea room in that direction. That makes everything else easier. You probably don't need the engine running in that case.

Where did the furling line break? There may be enough line still on the spool to allow you to tie another line to the stub and furl your sail enough to take the pressure off. You won't be running the knotted lines through any pulleys or fairleads, but if you get on the foredeck and pull, it might work. If you can get it furled enough, you can continue sailing until it's more convenient to drop the headsail.

Otherwise, you needed to drop the headsail. Bring some sail ties to the foredeck with you to keep the loose sail under control.

Finally, find out what it was that chafed the furling line. That needs to be fixed ASAP.

It sounds like you handled it pretty well. These things are usually a clusterf---.

My boat will sail sideways at a good 2k in moderate conditions heaved to with that much headsail out. Sideways isn't what I would want in such conditions.
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Old 04-09-2013, 13:07   #50
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Re: Sail management under 'high' wind

More important, check how the furling runs from the bow to the cockpit. Friend had his furling line part on a short cruise. Crew had snagged the line on something forward and owner hadn't noticed. The furling line parted in the middle of the night, of course, when winds piped up into the 30k range leading to many adventures trying to get the sail under control. Checking the run of the furling line should be a daily routine at sea. A furling should not part except from extreme age.
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Old 04-09-2013, 13:12   #51
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Re: Sail management under 'high' wind

Peak loads on a furling line are not all that high, so failure of one is often attributed to chafe. However, I've noted that many furling lines have the cover stripped, or sometimes the core removed, in order to avoid overloading the drum. This means that either the core or the cover must bear the whole load. With new line this is still quite all right, for the line is, when new, way more than twice as strong as it needs to be.

Now lets segue a few years onward... the line has now been exposed to UV damage as well as chafe, salt and dirt impregnation, perhaps some chemical abuse. A failure under load becomes much more likely. We are used to the longevity of double braid construction, where the cover takes the abuse and the core is protected and retains most of its new strength. When the line is reduced to a single layer, inner or outer, the life expectancy is no longer what we expect, even in the absence of chafe... so beware!

Cheers,

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Old 04-09-2013, 13:21   #52
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Re: Sail management under 'high' wind

Normally we sail with full sail up to 25 TW. Today it was 25 and we experimented with one reef in the main and different reefs on the furling Genoa. She sailed OK but pretty ugly jib shape like that. I was wondering how a roller furled sail effects the forestay. The load from the sheets pulls more in the centre of the stay so it places a lot of load on the forestay with a LOT of leverage. Anyone think thats an issue?
BTW I agree the best course of action would be to bear away till the main blankets the genoa and deal with it sailing downwind instead of upwind. Smoother ride, less pressure on the rig etc. Its hard to think of the best plan with the sails flogging in 25 K though!
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Old 04-09-2013, 13:28   #53
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Re: Sail management under 'high' wind

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Originally Posted by estarzinger View Post
Run off.

Then either fix furling line, or drop sail and go home.
smart thing to do - boat will be more stable, apparent wind less. but you did alright. don't knock yourself
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Old 04-09-2013, 13:30   #54
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Re: Sail management under 'high' wind

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Peak loads on a furling line are not all that high, so failure of one is often attributed to chafe.

[reminder that it could have failed due to basic UV exposure, etc]
This is true of course. I've had to deal with chafe though. The furling drum on my Harken furler has sharp edges where the line feeds in. Normally, the slot for the line is large enough that there is no contact with the sharp slot edges, but if the feed pulley shifts, or the drum cover rotates, or if you let the line bunch up, the edges can chafe the line. I've learned to regularly check for these problems, but have had the line chafe through before. I did my first doublebraid end-to-end constant-diameter splice 1000 miles from land!

It would be good if Harken had a smooth no-chafe feed on the furler. Some makes do, and Harken might now.
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Old 04-09-2013, 13:32   #55
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Re: Sail management under 'high' wind

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I was wondering how a roller furled sail effects the forestay. The load from the sheets pulls more in the centre of the stay so it places a lot of load on the forestay with a LOT of leverage. Anyone think thats an issue?
G'Day Monte,

Yes, I think that this is one of the reasons that forestays with furlers have a shorter lifetime than those without. Wire failure just at the exit point from the terminal is quite common. I believe that a likely cause is that when a sail is used on the wind and rolled to a deep reef there is indeed a concentrated load on the wire rather than one distributed over the full luff length. This induces greater sag in the wire, and I suspect that the toggling is not adequate for the angle and the wire thus bends at the exit point with resulting fatigue.

The other factor is the considerable motion seen when the boat rolls about at anchor... the mass of the furled sail causes the wire to be cycled back and forth incessantly, also adding to fatigue. I've discussed these ideas with a couple of riggers, and they agree in principle.

As a result, I now replace my forestay after around five years (heavy) usage, rather than the ten year interval generally quoted for s/s rigging wire. (Had one break whilst in Vanuatu a few years ago, so I'm a little paranoid perhaps!)

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 04-09-2013, 13:39   #56
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Re: Sail management under 'high' wind

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Hmm, are you a fractional rig maybe? I've never seen a boat behave the way you describe. My boat heaves to better if the headsail is not reefed down -- she tends to forereach if I don't have enough headsail up. My previous boat, a very different rig and keel design, was exactly the same
No, it is an IOR-inspired rig with larger foretriangle and smaller main - hence the main will not counteract the force from the jib unless the foresail is furled down.
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Old 04-09-2013, 13:50   #57
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Re: Sail management under 'high' wind

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Originally Posted by monte View Post
Normally we sail with full sail up to 25 TW. Today it was 25 and we experimented with one reef in the main and different reefs on the furling Genoa. She sailed OK but pretty ugly jib shape like that. I was wondering how a roller furled sail effects the forestay. The load from the sheets pulls more in the centre of the stay so it places a lot of load on the forestay with a LOT of leverage. Anyone think thats an issue?
BTW I agree the best course of action would be to bear away till the main blankets the genoa and deal with it sailing downwind instead of upwind. Smoother ride, less pressure on the rig etc. Its hard to think of the best plan with the sails flogging in 25 K though!

The forestay is pretty stout and I doubt that would be a problem unless it were already close to a state of failure.

The the problem with sail shape really isn't anything to laugh at. In addition, over time it will distort the entire sail shape. This is another reason to leave with a smaller headsail up if the wind is going to be on the heavy side.

I keep drifting toward an ATN. I like the idea of not having to take down my very large headsail.
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Old 04-09-2013, 14:04   #58
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I'd bear off and take the genny down. Less apparent wind, easier sea state, and the main can blanket the force on the foresail.
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Old 04-09-2013, 14:40   #59
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Re: Sail management under 'high' wind

Bearing off and sheeting in seems like a prudent thing to do allowing the main to blanket the head sail. Someone mentioned diving overboard to free up lines wraped around the prop. Never ever do that in the conditions described even if you're a navy seal.
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Old 04-09-2013, 14:57   #60
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Re: Sail management under 'high' wind

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No, it is an IOR-inspired rig with larger foretriangle and smaller main - hence the main will not counteract the force from the jib unless the foresail is furled down.
Ah, ok. That makes sense.

Note that your experience then is not typical. Most boats will stop dead in their tracks if you just put the helm over without tacking the headsail, then fiddle a bit if necessary for balance. Full headsail is, for most boats, quite all right hove to in winds far greater than you would want to sail in without reefing.
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