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Old 19-09-2020, 22:59   #1
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Top Down Asymmetrical Spinnaker Furler

I have an asym in a sock and Iím thinking Iíd likely get more use of it if I installed it on a furler. I have found it difficult managing the sock single handed. My wife wonít let me do it when itís just the two of us because she terrified watching me wrestle that thing on the pitching foredeck getting it up and down. My thoughts are:
1) top down furler (TDF) letís me use the sail more often and more easily
2) the sail is deployed and furled from the safety of the cockpit
3) our Wednesday night races typically have a 1-2 mile down wind leg, a TDF makes using it in these races possible.

4) single handed I can rig, deploy and furl myself. A sock is a crazy dance on the foredeck and nearly impossible alone.

5) will I need to install a bow spirt or can I mount the tack to my anchor roller as I do the socked asym?

What have I missed, what am I wrong about? And yes itís expensive, but money isnít an obstacle when getting to use the sail, with added safety and convenience is achieved.

Looking forward to your input.
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Old 19-09-2020, 23:52   #2
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Re: Top Down Asymmetrical Spinnaker Furler

Top down furlers are amazing until there not.

I have a harken reflex furler on a 53' boat with a very big spinnaker . When working properly it was easy to single hand the spinnaker. I used it about 5 times , until one day I needed to roll the spinnaker up in a hurry when the wind picked up. I accidentally rolled the spinnaker up while the sheet was still kind of tight. The spinnaker somehow back wrapped it's self . Long story short . 5 months later I still have a spinnaker which is rolled up in such a way it cannot be un rolled . It will un furl a small amount then the sail is rolled the opposite direction and begins to tighten. I have 20+ all day attempts on and off the boat trying to unfurl the sail. I've had people a lot smarter than me try to solve the puzzle with no luck

So now I have a $5k furler with a $5k sail that I will most likely end up cutting off the furler
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Old 20-09-2020, 00:01   #3
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Re: Top Down Asymmetrical Spinnaker Furler

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fbfisher View Post
I have an asym in a sock and Iím thinking Iíd likely get more use of it if I installed it on a furler. I have found it difficult managing the sock single handed. My wife wonít let me do it when itís just the two of us because she terrified watching me wrestle that thing on the pitching foredeck getting it up and down. My thoughts are:
1) top down furler (TDF) letís me use the sail more often and more easily
2) the sail is deployed and furled from the safety of the cockpit
3) our Wednesday night races typically have a 1-2 mile down wind leg, a TDF makes using it in these races possible.

4) single handed I can rig, deploy and furl myself. A sock is a crazy dance on the foredeck and nearly impossible alone.

5) will I need to install a bow spirt or can I mount the tack to my anchor roller as I do the socked asym?

What have I missed, what am I wrong about? And yes itís expensive, but money isnít an obstacle when getting to use the sail, with added safety and convenience is achieved.

Looking forward to your input.

Hi I am a curious as to how you have difficulty using the sock, blow the tack, the sail becomes a large flag behind the main, pull sock down over flapping sail, you end up with a large sausage up the mast, ease the sheet then lower the whole thing down into the usual stowage.
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Old 20-09-2020, 09:48   #4
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Re: Top Down Asymmetrical Spinnaker Furler

Quote:
Originally Posted by Islander53 View Post
Top down furlers are amazing until there not.

I have a harken reflex furler on a 53' boat with a very big spinnaker . When working properly it was easy to single hand the spinnaker. I used it about 5 times , until one day I needed to roll the spinnaker up in a hurry when the wind picked up. I accidentally rolled the spinnaker up while the sheet was still kind of tight. The spinnaker somehow back wrapped it's self . Long story short . 5 months later I still have a spinnaker which is rolled up in such a way it cannot be un rolled . It will un furl a small amount then the sail is rolled the opposite direction and begins to tighten. I have 20+ all day attempts on and off the boat trying to unfurl the sail. I've had people a lot smarter than me try to solve the puzzle with no luck

So now I have a $5k furler with a $5k sail that I will most likely end up cutting off the furler
Just wondering; have you called and talked to Harken about this?

I ask because it seems to me that a piece of fabric cannot, no matter how large the piece of fabric is, bind itself around the central core it's wrapped around.
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Old 21-09-2020, 07:47   #5
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Re: Top Down Asymmetrical Spinnaker Furler

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob_P View Post
Just wondering; have you called and talked to Harken about this?

I ask because it seems to me that a piece of fabric cannot, no matter how large the piece of fabric is, bind itself around the central core it's wrapped around.





I have not contacted harken. After so much effort trying to unfurl it and getting nowhere. It's hard to imagine someone being able to explain in words without seeing it in person, what I should do.. which has kept me from posting a thread here for advice. I truly believe there's nothing anyone can say that is going to get me to be able to un tangle it.

If anyone is in Morro Bay California and wants a shot at the worlds toughest sail puzzle I will reward them well if they can solve it.

There is a perfect spot at the tidelands park where I can string the furler tight between 2 trees
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Old 21-09-2020, 09:26   #6
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Re: Top Down Asymmetrical Spinnaker Furler

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob_P View Post
Just wondering; have you called and talked to Harken about this?

I ask because it seems to me that a piece of fabric cannot, no matter how large the piece of fabric is, bind itself around the central core it's wrapped around.
I have a Code Zero on a top down furler that always wraps around itself (big pain in the .....) until I sewn foam into the luff to make it bigger. Now I don't have a problem. Plus with the foam sewn into the luff, it wraps up a lot faster.
Definitely recommend foam sewn in the luff with endless loop furlers on light wind sails.
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Old 21-09-2020, 09:31   #7
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Re: Top Down Asymmetrical Spinnaker Furler

Use down furler on 46ft yacht sailing 2 handed. Works ok. Practice makes perfect. Create a system for working out how to furl, deep downwind, sheets eased. Furl early with increasing wind.. only good on race course with extra hands. Hard work in breeze. Talk to sail maker about cut of sail. Code zero on furler is fantastic and you should go there first.
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Old 21-09-2020, 09:36   #8
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Re: Top Down Asymmetrical Spinnaker Furler

Quote:
Originally Posted by Islander53 View Post
I have not contacted harken. After so much effort trying to unfurl it and getting nowhere. It's hard to imagine someone being able to explain in words without seeing it in person, what I should do.. which has kept me from posting a thread here for advice. I truly believe there's nothing anyone can say that is going to get me to be able to un tangle it.

If anyone is in Morro Bay California and wants a shot at the worlds toughest sail puzzle I will reward them well if they can solve it.

There is a perfect spot at the tidelands park where I can string the furler tight between 2 trees
The problem is the top and bottom roll up first but the larger "belly" of the sail wraps up slower and binds on it self by reverse rolling the belly into the top and bottom. The larger luff foam prevents this by making the middle roll up with the top and bottom. Plus the foam wraps up faster than the naked sail. Also, while rolling, you can't have any pressure on the sail. I had no guidance on the luff foam, just an experimentation. I took two layers of 11 oz. dacron and two 2" foam and a sailrite machine. Took me about 4 hours. Works much better than expected.
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Old 21-09-2020, 09:42   #9
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Re: Top Down Asymmetrical Spinnaker Furler

Quote:
Originally Posted by Islander53 View Post
Top down furlers are amazing until there not.

I have a harken reflex furler on a 53' boat with a very big spinnaker . When working properly it was easy to single hand the spinnaker. I used it about 5 times , until one day I needed to roll the spinnaker up in a hurry when the wind picked up. I accidentally rolled the spinnaker up while the sheet was still kind of tight. The spinnaker somehow back wrapped it's self . Long story short . 5 months later I still have a spinnaker which is rolled up in such a way it cannot be un rolled . It will un furl a small amount then the sail is rolled the opposite direction and begins to tighten. I have 20+ all day attempts on and off the boat trying to unfurl the sail. I've had people a lot smarter than me try to solve the puzzle with no luck

So now I have a $5k furler with a $5k sail that I will most likely end up cutting off the furler
We had the same problem, sailed rolled in a blow. We had to lay out on ground and pull the back rolled sail part out of the sail. It took about 3 hours and a lot of persistence. We had similar problems in the past. The next day I sewn the foam in the luff. No problems since. The foam was sewn in like on a genoa luff foam in 2" strips about 3-4' apart with 11 oz. dacron.
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Old 21-09-2020, 09:45   #10
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Re: Top Down Asymmetrical Spinnaker Furler

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingchiro View Post
I have a Code Zero on a top down furler that always wraps around itself (big pain in the .....) until I sewn foam into the luff to make it bigger. Now I don't have a problem. Plus with the foam sewn into the luff, it wraps up a lot faster.
Definitely recommend foam sewn in the luff with endless loop furlers on light wind sails.
Maybe I'm dumb, but I can't see this happening and being unrecoverable.

When I was a kid we used to play with a cargo parachute when it was windy. Sometimes there were up to 20 kids holding on when it would lift us off the ground. (Good times!) Occasionally the chute would trap someone inside when the wind gust died and it started collapsing and flapping. It wasn't that difficult to unwrap and free them even when the chute was twisted around itself. It took time and some thought, but we could do it. Never had to resort to cutting the parachute. Not only did we not have a knife, but the idea was terrible because it was the only parachute we had to play with.
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Old 21-09-2020, 09:47   #11
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Re: Top Down Asymmetrical Spinnaker Furler

#1 Top down furler need space to not interfere with headstay/genoa furler
#2 There is one, only ONE brand that you can rely on and that is SPinex / Profurl. They have kind of balls that increase the diameter from approx 10 mm to approx 45 mm - and you can easily understand the benefit on that when it comes to a) speed to furl and even more important b) eliminating risk described in provious comment
#3 Top-down is only needed for assymetric spinnakers. For code sails with straight line luff (more or less like a genua) you better use a normal furler.
#4 I uesd to have a top down for my 125 sqm assymetric A2 but I found the space between this and the code0 (on separat 2:1 halyard) was to small and b) it took to long time to furl it so I sold the top-down furling and got a sock. Well I don't use it single handed but I do use it with unexperienced crew.
#5 Bowsprit is not necessary although it improves the downwing performance on deep reaches..

Most important advise: Don't concider any other equipment than SPINEX (or other brand if they have copied the "balls"..)..
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Old 21-09-2020, 09:51   #12
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Re: Top Down Asymmetrical Spinnaker Furler

Quote:
Originally Posted by Islander53 View Post
I have not contacted harken. After so much effort trying to unfurl it and getting nowhere. It's hard to imagine someone being able to explain in words without seeing it in person, what I should do.. which has kept me from posting a thread here for advice. I truly believe there's nothing anyone can say that is going to get me to be able to un tangle it.

If anyone is in Morro Bay California and wants a shot at the worlds toughest sail puzzle I will reward them well if they can solve it.

There is a perfect spot at the tidelands park where I can string the furler tight between 2 trees
We didn't have the furler tight but loose on the ground in order to make sail completely loose. The sail material then is slowly loosened at the reverse wrap until the sail is wound the correct way, then unroll all the way. Then tighten the furler between two trees or whatever to roller it back up while sail is loose or you can hang is from you halyard.
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Old 21-09-2020, 10:00   #13
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Re: Top Down Asymmetrical Spinnaker Furler

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob_P View Post
Maybe I'm dumb, but I can't see this happening and being unrecoverable.

When I was a kid we used to play with a cargo parachute when it was windy. Sometimes there were up to 20 kids holding on when it would lift us off the ground. (Good times!) Occasionally the chute would trap someone inside when the wind gust died and it started collapsing and flapping. It wasn't that difficult to unwrap and free them even when the chute was twisted around itself. It took time and some thought, but we could do it. Never had to resort to cutting the parachute. Not only did we not have a knife, but the idea was terrible because it was the only parachute we had to play with.
We were able to recover ours just fine but in the previous posts defense, it does wrap up very tight. It does take time. I had my obsessive daughter work on it for several hours.
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Old 21-09-2020, 10:37   #14
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Re: Top Down Asymmetrical Spinnaker Furler

I think top down furlers for the asym are more trouble than what they are worth, especially in case of an A2 (Code 0's are a different story).
At the end, they generate dire situations more often than an asym in the sock, as you often end up battling with a partially furled or unfurled sail and/or a stuck furling line and/or a furler that refuses to spin (even the high-end, $5,000 top down furlers are somewhat unreliable).

As others have said, a better approach may be to refine the technique using the sock. It should not require to have somebody on the foredeck fighting with the spi, by blowing the tack appropriately, everything is controllable while kneeling next to the mast, or even aft of the mast; once in the sock, the spi can be doused near the cockpit (I see even people dousing the whole thing in the companionway, although I think it is a bit of an overdoing...).

When single-handed, you need to work out the timing a bit and perhaps mark the sheets and the tack line, but it is very doable and overall safer than a top down furler.
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Old 21-09-2020, 10:49   #15
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Re: Top Down Asymmetrical Spinnaker Furler

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Originally Posted by Uncle Bob View Post
Hi I am a curious as to how you have difficulty using the sock, blow the tack, the sail becomes a large flag behind the main, pull sock down over flapping sail, you end up with a large sausage up the mast, ease the sheet then lower the whole thing down into the usual stowage.
These shackles are designed to be released under load.

https://www.tylaska.com/product-cate...ease-shackles/
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