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Old 06-06-2020, 09:16   #1
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Genoa sheet - another attempt

I have a problem with my huge 155 Genoa - the lazy sheet hangs every tack on the standing rigging and fair leads. It's 44' monohull and this big sail and this can get ugly in a breeze single-handing.

Two issues: 1) the sheet diameter is huge - 1" double braid - its stiff, heavy, and way too big -real tugboat rope. 2) The clew knots - they hang on the shrouds during the tack - every time. I have tried a couple of different knots, but any knot in these huge sheets is a problem.

So... I built this (see pics)

I got a scrap 15 ft piece of Dyneena (the gray stuff), cut it in half, and built two 7' pendants. I eye-spliced one end of each pendant (brummel splices), and then spiced the whole 6 ft pendant tail into the core of this new 9/16" polyester double braid. I use an off-the-shelf dyneena soft shackle (red line) to secure both pendants to the genoa clew cringle. The idea is to have a totally smooth, zero-obstruction single-piece line passing across the standing rigging during a tack.

9/16 is plenty big enough for line handling and cleating on my no. 54 self-tailing winches. The dyneema is really strong.

I worry the tail of the pendant might work its way out of the core of the polyester double braid. There is 6 feet in there. I tapered it. I might sew it in a few places to prevent that. Or get it wet and tighten down the sheath some more. Ideas here are welcome.

I worry the dyneema will chafe (the shackle rubbing against the pendants).

I worry the soft shackle will just open up when the sail is flogging (yep - happens sometimes ).

Q: whaddaya think?

I'll report back, if anyone is interested.

Cheers and thanks in advance for your critique.
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Old 06-06-2020, 09:34   #2
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Re: Genoa sheet - another attempt

There is only one way to tell... use it. Seems like a reasonable, if a bit complex, solution to the problem.

If you are having trouble with the soft shackle flogging loose, there is something wrong with the way you are making it.

You'll have no short term trouble with chafe where the soft shakle meets the spliced loops. These materials are really slippery.

Slippery means you MIGHT have trouble with the dyneema buried in the double braid. Be sure to stitch it in well so it doesn't creep under low loads.

I see a LOT of oversized jib sheets, but I wonder if 9/16 might be a bit too far in the other direction, just from a handling perspective, not strength. But that's for you to decide with what works for you.

If it was me, I'd just double cow hitch the sheet to the soft shackle and save a lot of work and fuss. Basically a Prussic knot.. sort of
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Old 06-06-2020, 10:46   #3
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Re: Genoa sheet - another attempt

I had one continuous piece of line, loop it in the middle and run the rest through the loop, no knots.
It’s since been cut and I have two pieces but when I replace it I’m going back to the no knot, single piece of line, I figure if nothing else no knots means nothing to hit you in the head or whatever.
Mine is also oversized, nice in your hands but it’s a lot of heavy line that I wonder if it’s really needed, my Code Zero sheets are much, much smaller and yet seem to handle just as well.
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Old 06-06-2020, 11:03   #4
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Re: Genoa sheet - another attempt

A well done soft shackle will not open.


Test it. Let us know how it works.


imho - if the geno is so big, is it possibly TOO big?


I have noticed big heavy genoas are one of the recurring challenges we get here.



(PS Yes, I too cut our 155% genoa back to 135% half way thru our adventure. It made a huge positive inpact on our sailability and my ability to handle the sail!)



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Old 06-06-2020, 19:13   #5
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Re: Genoa sheet - another attempt

Hi, derfy:

Jim always sews his splices. Belts and suspenders...galluses to some.

We have eye splices in our genoa sheets, and use a home made soft shackle made from 8 mm dyneema. The splices do not hang up like the knots of bowlines. However, even with bowlines, you can tie them either direction, and they hang less when the tail is not available for hanging.



Ann
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Old 07-06-2020, 05:37   #6
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Re: Genoa sheet - another attempt

Dear All, thanks for the considered replies. I really appreciate it.

I will report back after my boat gets back in the water (she's on the hard, right now - hence I have the time to do stuff like this).

I heeded SVHarmonie's advice and added about 1 foot of stitching behind the splices using my awl and New England Ropes whipping thread. It is not pretty but might keep the cores from slipping.

The reason that any clew knot or sheet obstruction is such an issue (on my boat) is that I have two lower shrouds on each side - a fore and aft shroud - and the port and starboard forward lower shrouds (some call them baby stays) are real clew-catchers. I would use simple eye splices and soft shackles if not for these baby stays.

BTW, the reported best knot for a single-line sheet is a butterfly knot. Less drag than an cow hitch. If a soft shackle is used, the sheet can be easily removed from the sail. Lots of reference articles out there on this knot.

The lowest resistance knot I have found (if you have two sheet lines) is a fisherman's knot, tied thru the clew cringle. Way better than a bowline, but it's permanent and comes off only with a knife. If a bowline is used, the orientation of the tail makes a big difference. But bowlines are almost always a disaster for tacks. Two eye-spliced sheet lines, each with soft shackle, is probably the best way to go for low resistance and flexibility. You can change head sails on the fly and use the same sheets. But for my boat, I think even that would hang on the baby stays.

I appreciate the suggestion about ditching the 155 for something smaller. I have sure considered it, and may yet do so. It is a great sail in light and medium air, which we get often enough. But we also get brisk breeze here and a smaller genie or jib would be the ticket. Better yet would be an inner forestay and staysail ... stuff I would really love to add, but very costly to do well on my boat, which is an old IOR design. They all had overlapping genoas and small mains, due to handicap rule incentives. You gotta have a lot of head sail to move these boats.

As I said, will report back in a couple of weeks. Thanks again for the advice. Always good on CF.

Cheers
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Old 07-06-2020, 05:46   #7
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Re: Genoa sheet - another attempt

I think it looks pretty good


For whatever it may be worth, a few comments:


1. Do you really like that 155 genoa? Such sails were fashionable for about 10 years and then not. Because they suck upwind, suck when reefed, and are really hard to tack and handle. I would really consider ditching that or having it recut as a 120 at most. I have a 120 yankee jib (our boat is cutter rigged) and a 95% blade, and use the blade 90% of the time.



2. Your solution looks fine in general, but why are you using poly sheets? Double braid dyneema splices much better to the dyneema single braid, is lighter, and stronger. When I went to dyneema sheets, I downsized from 16mm poly originals to 14mm racing dyneema, which is about half the weight per meter and much stronger. On your boat 12mm would be fine, and would be a delight to handle, so light and flexible. The other advantage of dyneema is extremely low stretch, so much better control over sail shape, no panting, etc.


3. I like very much the way your solution will run over your inner forestay or whatever you have to run it over when tacking. Very clever


4. Soft shackle is bulletproof. Don't worry about. I have been using nothing but soft shackles to attach sheets to various sails, for many years. Never a moment of worry about them.


5. If you are doing the kind of splicing we seen in your photos, then you can for damn sure make your own soft shackles. It's easy and fun and a lot cheaper than store boughten ones.


Good luck and let us know how you get on!
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Old 07-06-2020, 10:54   #8
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Re: Genoa sheet - another attempt

Instead of cutting the sheet, we folded it in half, put the bight through the clue, pass the 2 bitter ends thru the bight, tighten. (2 half hitches) Too easy>
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Old 07-06-2020, 11:12   #9
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Re: Genoa sheet - another attempt

I went to two separate sheets with eye splices in each end and a single soft shackle attachment to the clew. Eliminated 98% of the hang-up problems. If your worried about the soft shackle, add a Velcro strap to hold the knot close to the clew.
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Old 07-06-2020, 11:31   #10
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Re: Genoa sheet - another attempt

I agree with earlier posts that a 155 is more hassle than its worth. Aside from that, soft shackles work fine. I have a Catalina 30 with which one of my biggest complaints is the forward lower shroud is so far forward that sheets ride up against it, creating friction which slows tacks and chews up the sheets and sail. Since I sail on a narrow lake , I do a lot of tacking. I couldn't find bamboo shroud rollers, I went to my hardware store and bought some 3/4" pvc pipe and made my own. I put a stainless washer above the turnbuckle on which the pipe rested. Works fairly well and doesn't trap water.
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Old 07-06-2020, 13:50   #11
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Re: Genoa sheet - another attempt

I personally like a 155. Depending on the boat, you can use it in most winds without the main. I'm assuming you have a roller furler, so when the wind pipes up just roll up the jib until the boat balances.

That said I used a single line secured at the clue with no knots to catch on the shrouds.

I've also used shroud rollers with good success. They might be a lower cost solution than buying new sheets.
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Old 07-06-2020, 13:57   #12
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Re: Genoa sheet - another attempt

A Baby Stay is a small inner forestry, it is on the centreline, forward of the mast. Fwd lowers are just that, Fwd lowers.
I added 1inch pvc pressure pipe as rollers on my shrouds to minimise chafe and eliminate hang ups.
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Old 07-06-2020, 15:40   #13
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Re: Genoa sheet - another attempt

I saw a slick thing to basically build a soft shackle into the end of a Dyneema cored double braid line. Might do that next time I replace my sheets. I carry both a 155 and a 110, so need to be able to switch sheets. The cowhitch makes that much harder.
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Old 07-06-2020, 18:28   #14
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Re: Genoa sheet - another attempt

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tillerjockey View Post
I personally like a 155. Depending on the boat, you can use it in most winds without the main. I'm assuming you have a roller furler, so when the wind pipes up just roll up the jib until the boat balances.

That said I used a single line secured at the clue with no knots to catch on the shrouds.

I've also used shroud rollers with good success. They might be a lower cost solution than buying new sheets.

Yep. I see.



I am talking of something a bit different though.


Many people buy (or inherit) big and heavy genoas. Such sails (big and heavy) are next to useless then. Because a big sail needs be light, otherwise it refuses to work fine in light conditions.


So then that big heavy genoa gets furled because now it is blowing say 20kts. Now this furled sail is again sub-optimal. It may not work too well upwind due to shape loss in furling.


If you sail with genoa up only then I see you may like a different take, off course.


btw my solution to sheets catching on the shrouds is no ring in the clew. Use webbing and long spectra leaders.


Cheers,
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Old 07-06-2020, 21:32   #15
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Re: Genoa sheet - another attempt

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveSadler View Post
Instead of cutting the sheet, we folded it in half, put the bight through the clue, pass the 2 bitter ends thru the bight, tighten. (2 half hitches) Too easy>
I think You're describing a Larks Head (Larkshead?) Knot. Only downside is they are PITA to untie. With a soft shackle between the knot and the clew, it is much easier to change sails and use the same sheets, or to remove and replace them with a furler pennant at the end of the day and store your nice new and expensive sheets in a dry, UV protected locker. Here in the PNW, sheets left lying on the deck or coiled around winches eventually turn green.
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