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Old 18-03-2020, 21:39   #1
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Junk Rigging

I have checked the forums and most of the posts regarding junk rigging are many years old. Hoping for some fresh input.

Just curious how many folks have converted over to junk rigging. I have spent quite a bit of time on the junk rigging asoc. website...really not as good as I would have expected for a pay service. Alot of opinion about which vessels can be or not converted over.

Ordered the Annie Hill book "Voyaging on a Small Income" and cant wait til it arrives!
I think the junk rigging is perfect for me. I appreciate the simplicity and ability to more easily maintain/make my own. ( thanks Mike Oreilly)

I know people here may have a tendency to debate the merits of such rigging..but If anyone can speak to actual conversions and vessels they did it on I would be most appreciative.

Thinking that while I am out boat testing/shopping this summer that I would be able to include vessels that are not rigged up and have her junk rigged. No sense in worrying about cracked chainplates if I am gonna replace the style anyhow.

Thanks for any info!
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Old 19-03-2020, 18:26   #2
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Re: Junk Rigging

This blog may be of interest to you. I met this fascinating single-hander in Bermuda a couple years ago. Speedwell of Hong Kong


Here she is leaving St. Georgeís through the cut.
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Old 19-03-2020, 19:12   #3
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Re: Junk Rigging

Right on.. thanks for taking a moment to share. I will go check it out.


I was was inspired to investigate junk rigging from another thread that delved a bit into them. Hopefully I can find a "list" of boats or make a list that can be easily converted over.
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Old 19-03-2020, 23:58   #4
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Re: Junk Rigging

I converted a Roberts 25 to Junk Rig. I was not that impressed with her light air performance. I am the sort of sailor that likes to put a kite up and move. (I know a Roberts is a caravan on the water but they can still sail better than it was.) But with the junk once that sail is up in certain winds you may as well get out your book and make a coffee because thats it as far as the amount of rag you can fly.
As for the BS about easy to handle. Single line reefing and roller furling on the forestay on a sloop rig blows that BS out of the water. Last week on a Dufour sea trial the owner easily reefed the main and headsail from the cockpit and did not end up with 20 feet of line in the cockpit which junk rigs all have.
It also cost a bit of money to convert since I could not find a free standing mast and junk sail. So it all had to be custom made, which was not cheap.
If you like trying to sail around with a ton of lines and blocks while the hand brake is on then maybe the junk is for you.


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Old 20-03-2020, 05:21   #5
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Re: Junk Rigging

My father bought a hurricane wrecked Alberg 37 and is in the process of converting it to junk rigging. He's gotten it to the point of almost sailing. He also had to put a lot of work into converting it. He re-positioned the mast fwd and made all his own blocks for the rigging. Message me if you want more details about his build and I can get them for you. His mindset for doing a junk rig very closely correlate to your description. Simplicity and reduced cost.
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Old 20-03-2020, 05:39   #6
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Re: Junk Rigging

Ah interesting thread. To be clear, I have zero experience with junk rigs. The closest I've come to sailing one is with my lateen rig on my portaboate, so not very close.

I love Annie Hill's approach to low-cost cruising. And as most know, she is a big fan of the junk rig. She claims it is much cheaper to maintain, and also describes how much easier it is to manage with a small crew. I assume she knows what she's talking about, but I have no direct experience.

As I mentioned in a previous thread, there is no realistic way for me to convert my cutter into a junk. I think it would cost more than the boat is likely worth at this point. Nor do I have any particular desire to do so. I like my cutter just fine.

But if I was starting from scratch building a new boat, I'd definitely consider a junk rig. They're never going to be particularly efficient as upwind sailors, but neither is my current boat . The drive is simplicity and inexpensiveness.
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Old 20-03-2020, 06:23   #7
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Re: Junk Rigging

Assuming you don't have the boat yet, buy one with recent rigging and sails. Plenty around. I would maybe use a junk rig as an auxiliary rig on a trawler or something but not to make a boat properly sail.
Or buy an existing junk rig boat after you are satisfied with the sea trial
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Old 20-03-2020, 12:27   #8
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Re: Junk Rigging

Thanks for the input folks!
Can't wait for Annie's book to arrive...seems like she is quite the authority and a lady I could spend hours up hours picking her brain.



I have seen a few boats down Cali that are already rigged up as junk. It sounds as tho getting a vessel already set would be the way to go. I do not think I honestly would have the desire or time to do a whole conversion and re configuring the whole boat..maybe one day..but I am not getting any younger and really just want to hit the seas now..err..yesterday..


Thanks for putting in a few words everyone!
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