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Old 29-01-2013, 21:03   #1
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Single Head Stay Sail Handling

Any folks making long passages with a roller furler? What do you do in gale conditions when you need to reef beyond the point that your sail is efficient? Gale Sail velcrowed around the furled genny? Unfurl all the way and haul the thing down and hoist a storm sail on the same track? Stormsail on a solent rig?
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Old 29-01-2013, 22:08   #2
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I furl the genoa and put the third reef in the main.

I am not a big fan of furling headsails. I consider them to have the wrong sail about 70 percent of find time. And when furled the drag aloft is huge in my case. But I am picky.

But the alternatives on a large boat are unattractive too. On my 36 foot sloop the hank on sails are perfect. I'll simply swap between the four headsails as conditions change. One can remain for a time hanked on below the other and tied to the rail.

Almost all cruising boats now use furling headsails. If one is doing the downwind coconut run it is a nearly perfect solution. Upwind, not so great.
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Old 29-01-2013, 23:40   #3
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In a quite nasty blow I kept pulling the roller jib in on the furler. It was enough for me that we had headway and all the nasty **** waves that came from weird directions had allowed us way.I had spent most of my shift time trying to get the boat quartered up so we weren't killed. Then the crazy swede would take over. He obviously did not like a furled jib. Most sleep was done in a mid air moment between hull and deck.
Crazy swede would yell yahoo you can sail in this see. Us below could hear the groan of the winch as it resisted yet let out sail. IT Swede unfurled some jib see yea sash. Yahhhwhoooo.
Now had we had a number 1 fixed no furler jib. Swede would have been all let's get some main up dudes . And me I might have slept.. But I doubt it. What do we call the tummy things? Kiss me Kate's?
Any idea what I said?
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Old 30-01-2013, 00:30   #4
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Re: Single Head Stay Sail Handling

On my furling I have several extra wraps on the drum. If the wind picks up so high as to need to pull it all the way in. I make sure it's a pretty snug furl and allow several wraps of the genoa sheets to wrap around the clew section.

If they are not tight they can start to bag out and start whipping. If I were expecting a hurricane Then I'd pull it down/stow it. I've seen so many videos of boats in hurricanes with the furling torn and flopping away getting ripped apart.
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Old 30-01-2013, 04:52   #5
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Re: Single Head Stay Sail Handling

I think Del's comment about the extra wraps is critical. Don't leave home without it.
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Old 30-01-2013, 16:54   #6
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Re: Single Head Stay Sail Handling

It seems like most of the options, with the exception of Daddle's, leave you headsail-less in a blow. I don't really like the idea of sailing deep off the wind with a main up regardless of how well reefed down I am. I don't know. Its all a big compromise I guess. I really just like a cutter rig.
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Old 30-01-2013, 17:02   #7
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Re: Single Head Stay Sail Handling

A lot depends on the boat and the rig. Some boats have a really big main and a very small jib, and by the time you've got that jib rolled up all the way you probably don't want any sail up. I've found that the rolled up jib all by itself provides a fair bit of sail area when you're headed downwind in an offshore gale, and with that much wind I'm not usually inclined to set sail anyway. Yes, I have had a cutter rig, and it is great in heavy conditions because you can snug down to a small staysail and a heavily reefed main. I had a tough 30-footer with a nice inboard cutter rig and several times we went to windward with 35-40 knots over the deck, but it was a very rough ride. Most people wouldn't want to do that for long, but if the chips were down you could. My guess is that 95+% of world cruisers with a sloop rig and a roller furler never use anything but the main and roller genny, with some use of a light-air drifter or spinnaker. Put triple reefs in your main.
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Old 30-01-2013, 17:37   #8
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Re: Single Head Stay Sail Handling

As a coastal cruiser, I've compromised with a foam-luffed roller Genoa that'll go down to about 90% effectively. After that, and though I don't like the windage of a furled headsail, I've chosen to go with an ATN galesail that snaps on over the furled headsail. Hope I don't have to use it but it works and looks good up and Practical Sailor has given it a qualified endorsement. But, like I said, I am a coastal cruiser.
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