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Old 30-06-2022, 09:15   #1
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First time taking down the jib by myself. Tips? Hints? Recommendations?

I have a 2011 Jeanneau SO409 and there's a rip in the sail (see photos). Honestly, the jib is probably on its way out, but I'd like to get a little more time out of it. I have a family friend who has the equipment to stitch it up but I need to deliver the jib to him.

It'll be my first time taking it down by myself. Any tips? Recommendations?

How much does it weigh (approximately?) and can I do it myself?

Take photos of how everything is tied up? Make a marking on the jib halyard to see how far it is right now? I have zero issues right with it right now, other than the rips.

Any help will be appreciated!
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Old 30-06-2022, 09:24   #2
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Re: First time taking down the jib by myself. Tips? Hints? Recommendations?

I just removed the headsail on my 43ft catamaran in prep for hurricane season. I did it by myself. I'm 6'2" tall and could be described as moderately fit/strong.

You'll need to pick a calm day and take your time. Get your tools ready to remove any pins and have a couple of pairs of meaty pliers to undo any knots that have locked up.

You won't be able to move to sail around "easily" until it is folded up. So you'll probably need to be next to a dock and pull the sail in stages onto the ground. Make sure your lifelines have nothing that could snag the sail. Same goes for the dock or ground, nothing that can cut the sail. Wash the dock if it is dirty before hand. Try not to step on the sail.

Lay it out and fold it up and then get a line around it or get it in a sailbag if you have one.

Have a beer.
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Old 30-06-2022, 09:26   #3
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Re: First time taking down the jib by myself. Tips? Hints? Recommendations?

You should have no problem getting that down and moving it. Just pick a calm time and get it onto the deck - once there “flake” it by folding it back and forth, then fold the flaked sail into quarters or thirds and tie with a sail tie or rope or whatever. If it’s heavy just use the halyard to lift it into the dingy or doc but a headsail for a 40 foot boat should be no problem.
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Old 30-06-2022, 09:26   #4
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Re: First time taking down the jib by myself. Tips? Hints? Recommendations?

Try to lower it onto the deck, wet sails are heavier.
Weight is dependent on the thickness of the cloth.
You can make a mark on the halyard if you want. I guess I'm different than a lot of people. I ease the halyard when not sailing to not stretch the cloth. I look at the draft position of the sail while sailing and adjust the halyard tension as needed. Dacron sails stretch over time, so the halyard position changes as well.
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Old 30-06-2022, 10:05   #5
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Re: First time taking down the jib by myself. Tips? Hints? Recommendations?

My little boat has much smaller sails but also a much smaller deck
I drop to the deck and do the best I can there then refold on the lawn

That so far has helped to keep the sail out of the water if a gust comes along
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Old 30-06-2022, 10:23   #6
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Re: First time taking down the jib by myself. Tips? Hints? Recommendations?

First, you do not have a tear in you sail, you have a tear in the sun cover. This is is pretty common, and a sailmaker will replace the entire cover for a fraction of the cost of a new sail. Make sure you specify Sunbrella or equivalent acrylic material for the cover and Tenara thread for the stitching, because they are far more sun resistant than other materials.

Taking down and folding (flaking) the sail can be done by one person, but is far faster and easier with two.

See

The sail will weigh on the order of 6-70 lbs, depending on its construction. If you can't find its sailbag, put a sail tie around the middle of the folded sail and tie it really tight.
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Old 30-06-2022, 11:11   #7
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Re: First time taking down the jib by myself. Tips? Hints? Recommendations?

Agree with Don it just appears to be the sunband, last one I had replaced was $600 but that was a while ago and if it's like everything else probably twice that now.
The first couple feet coming down are usually slow but at some point it will all suddenly drop so it's good to have the halyard under control.
You should be able to carry it off the boat but I'd sure want a dock cart the rest of the way to the truck.
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Old 30-06-2022, 11:18   #8
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Re: First time taking down the jib by myself. Tips? Hints? Recommendations?

Don't forget to mark your furler line where it enters the drum after unfurling the sail and before taking it off. This way, you know exactly how much line you need to have furled up when you put your sail back up.

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Old 30-06-2022, 11:38   #9
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Re: First time taking down the jib by myself. Tips? Hints? Recommendations?

For easier folding of your sail take it down and remove totally from the groove. Now hoist it again OUTSIDE of the furler groove and now lower it in stages, allowing you to fold it easier then when getting it out of the furler groove. Do it on a day without wind or rain.
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Old 30-06-2022, 11:57   #10
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Re: First time taking down the jib by myself. Tips? Hints? Recommendations?

Wow! Thank you so much for all the posts, guys!! Wrote down all your recommendations in my notebook and will go out there after the 4th of July to take it down. I'll take before and after photos.

Thank you again to all of you!
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Old 30-06-2022, 14:53   #11
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Re: First time taking down the jib by myself. Tips? Hints? Recommendations?

Hi, Cool Hand Luke,

Just wanted to say the sail is pretty near finished. You might want to save some $$ by just hand sewing the Sunbrella. If it were me, I'd candle the Sunbrella if necessary (carefully). Then, use a herringbone stitch and heavy (#92) dacron thread and a fine sail needle or even a glover's needle. It will not take long and can be done sitting on the cabin top. It will take your hands a while to get comfortable with the stitch, but it allows you to be outdoors, doing something useful and saving $$.

Ann
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Old 01-07-2022, 15:52   #12
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Re: First time taking down the jib by myself. Tips? Hints? Recommendations?

How about using the beer to lure a second hand to lower and fold the sail? I have done on the boat many times if a dock is not available. As always, calm weather is best.

Stretch the sail along the deck, fold it in a 2 ft width starting at the foot and ending with the head. Pick up the sail at 1/3 of the foot length from the clew and carry the fold to the tack. Then roll/fold the sail in 3 foot lengths until you have a single package. Fold the 3 foot package in half and tightly secure it with a sail tie, Two if they are handy.

Bring two beers, one for you.
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Old 01-07-2022, 17:02   #13
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Re: First time taking down the jib by myself. Tips? Hints? Recommendations?

If it hasn't already been said, head the boat into the wind before taking down the sail. (Well, someone might not know)
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Old 01-07-2022, 17:33   #14
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Re: First time taking down the jib by myself. Tips? Hints? Recommendations?


You have received good advice so I will add
early morning - no wind
Have tools ready
Mark jib halyard marked so you know tensioning
Ensure halyard untangled for ease of drop
Ensure stopper knot / figure of eight is in the end of the halyard so it doesn’t disappear up the mast secure drum and furler line so things don’t change
Once sail removed secure top swivel with short line and lightly tension halyard from banging
Inspect fresh water wash furler drum and swivel and lubricate
Before raising head sail
Inspect halyard condition and replace if necessary
Spray luff of headsail with trackfast or similar
Get friend on standby to assist with either feeding headsail into track or winching you can get head sail feeder but on yr own it’s still a challenge
Allow twice as much time to do the job as you thought it was going to take.
Good luck
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Old 01-07-2022, 17:35   #15
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Re: First time taking down the jib by myself. Tips? Hints? Recommendations?

Sorry weight is 50-60 lbs
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