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Old 09-06-2014, 18:55   #31
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Re: When to Reef

Originally Posted by Tayana42 View Post
My boat is a 42 ft 30,000 lb cutter with 12.5 ft beam and a moderate fin keel with skeg hung rudder, yankee, staysail, and main with three reef points. At 18 knots of wind I tuck in the first reef. At 25 I furl the yankee. She sails beautifully with staysail and reefed main. At 30-35 knots depending on sea state, I tuck in the second reef. I've never had to use the third reef yet. But I have sailed at hull speed (7.5ish) with the staysail alone in 45+ on the beam. She was as happy as a duck on a pond although the skipper was a little scared.

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Yep, cutter rigs are very handy as the breeze picks up.

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Old 09-06-2014, 19:49   #32
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Re: When to Reef

I have to admit I broke rule #1 on reefing yesterday on SF BAy, and enjoyed every minute.
After a nice light air beat from Richmond up Raccoon straits, we entered the Slot and the wind picked up to over 25. Instead of reefing, we headed down to Pt Blunt with the wind on the quarter, then on the stern. My brother's old Catalina 27 really picked up her skirts and were were doing 9k over the bottom with the tide against us. A chicken gybe in the Berkely circle got us going back up toward Richmond, were the wind died and we had to motor the last half mile. Nobody got wet and nothing broke, but the quarterwake looked like a Swan's and there were a few control issues in the steep chop.

Would have I done that in the OP's situation--Hell no! I would have had the main down and the genoa rolled in enough to give me good speed in comfort. SF bay is not offshore sailing--help is 10 minutes away if you use your VHF instead of your Epirb.

All the talk about reefed genoa shape is baloney off the wind--the boat is much more stable being pulled than pushed-but you do need to move the lead forward like Robertsailor says.

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