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Old 15-05-2024, 04:22   #1
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Why no mainsheet traveller?

I was looking at a Hanse 301 advert. It is in great original condition, and has no mainsheet traveller which I presume is form factory.

Curious as to why this might be, given the utility of a traveller. Is this an example of comfort and simplicity over function, providing more room in cockpit and one less thing to manage?
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Old 15-05-2024, 04:27   #2
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Re: Why no mainsheet traveller?

I have this "German sheeting system" on my boat and don't miss not having a traveller, I can adjust the mainsail to any angle/curve I need. Also, using this system the loads on the boom are better distributed to avoid a single point of stress/failure.
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Old 15-05-2024, 05:11   #3
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Re: Why no mainsheet traveller?

The main not having a traveler and the self tacking jib are getting more and more common. I suppose it reduces costs and makes sailing less complex for the older crowd who can afford new boats in the first place. Personally, I find a traveler and larger headsail to be a selling point, but I don't spend much time in the slip or entertaining.
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Old 15-05-2024, 05:30   #4
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Re: Why no mainsheet traveller?

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The main not having a traveler and the self tacking jib are getting more and more common. I suppose it reduces costs and makes sailing less complex for the older crowd who can afford new boats in the first place. Personally, I find a traveler and larger headsail to be a selling point, but I don't spend much time in the slip or entertaining.

^^ Exactly.


Sail cockpits haven't suddenly been improved; the market has changed. If you want a traditional sailing layout you buy a used boat or a racing boat. If you want, and can afford a nice dock/anchorage queen, you buy new.


If the average owner is now in his mid- to late-sixties, the average new boat buyer is older probably older than that, and wants something that is big, easy to sail, with minimal heel. Thus, most have minimal tweaks and two electric winches.



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Old 15-05-2024, 05:32   #5
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Re: Why no mainsheet traveller?

Crumbs, this is the year for me then! I just turned 44...
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Old 15-05-2024, 11:15   #6
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Re: Why no mainsheet traveller?

I just looked up the Hanse 31, it looks like there is a boom traveler in the schematic on saiboatdata.com. The PO may have removed it, I would put it back. I would also add a boom vang if the one you tar looking at does not have it.
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Old 15-05-2024, 11:18   #7
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Re: Why no mainsheet traveller?

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I just looked up the Hanse 31, it looks like there is a boom traveler in the schematic on saiboatdata.com. The PO may have removed it, I would put it back. I would also add a boom vang if the one you tar looking at does not have it.
hanse 301 not 31
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Old 15-05-2024, 12:16   #8
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Re: Why no mainsheet traveller?

I am looking on Hanse 301 on sale at boats.com and see out of 3 for sale : 2 have the traveler and one is not. So that is probably optional thing and you can install it if you want.
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Old 15-05-2024, 12:36   #9
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Re: Why no mainsheet traveller?

Having owned a boat with a German-system mainsheet, I will express an opinion that this is vastly worse than a good traveler.

"Good traveler" is not every example -- you need enough travel for it to work well. Some are too narrow, some don't allow end-boom sheeting.

The traveler is one of the most important sail controls -- direct, pure control of the angle of attack of the mainsail. The German system -- in my humble opinion -- muddles this with different vectors of pull. Give me a good, long traveler with ball bearing track and dedicated winches, and a good, strong vang for separate leech tension control when the boom gets beyond the end of the traveler. I would hate to sail without this.
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Old 15-05-2024, 13:17   #10
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Re: Why no mainsheet traveller?

Many older boats didn't have travelers either.

The 1974 Bristol 27 I have now is the first boat I've had without a traveler.

All the beach cats I raced had a traveler of about 7' or so.
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Old 15-05-2024, 15:04   #11
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Re: Why no mainsheet traveller?

For sail trim, the traveller is a nice to have. For cockpit ergonomics, not quite so.


Have sailed both styles never noticed any shortcomings. Maybe just that in racing boats the traveller is very nice to get the sailshape to what you want it and quickly so.


In the cruising context, i would rather have no traveller (in the cockpit).



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Old 15-05-2024, 16:35   #12
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Re: Why no mainsheet traveller?

Back in my racing days I used a traveler to wring every ounce of speed by constantly tweaking sail trim. Now that I am an old cruiser I don't need or have one on my Challenger 32. 86 and still sailing!
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Old 15-05-2024, 17:17   #13
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Re: Why no mainsheet traveller?

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Back in my racing days I used a traveler to wring every ounce of speed by constantly tweaking sail trim. Now that I am an old cruiser I don't need or have one on my Challenger 32. 86 and still sailing!
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Ha! I'm 86 too and still enjoy the use of my traveller (and vang and outhaul) every time we go sailing. On our mainsail-driven boat such tweaks are pretty essential.

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Old 15-05-2024, 17:35   #14
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Re: Why no mainsheet traveller?

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hanse 301 not 31
Yes, typo, both have travelers. The 301 and the 311,. 315, actually every model and boom vangs as well.

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Old 17-05-2024, 03:57   #15
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Re: Why no mainsheet traveller?

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Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
For sail trim, the traveller is a nice to have. For cockpit ergonomics, not quite so.

Have sailed both styles never noticed any shortcomings. Maybe just that in racing boats the traveller is very nice to get the sailshape to what you want it and quickly so.

In the cruising context, i would rather have no traveller (in the cockpit).

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Big advantage of center cockpit -- really big advantage -- is that the traveler can go behind and outside of the cockpit, to work with end-boom sheeting. I agree that having a traveler inside the cockpit is a PITA. You can put it on top of the coachroof, but then you've got mid-boom sheeting with its own disadvantages.

Classic Swans had two different cockpits -- one for lounging, one for working. The traveler ran between them -- also a good arrangement.

Without a traveler, assuming you have a proper German system sheeting, you can still get the sail shape you want. The whole problem with German sheeting is different -- you can't change the angle of attack without changing the shape of the sail, so you start all over trimming it.

With a traveler, you dial in the right leech and foot tension, the right shape and draft, then you can adjust angle of attack with the traveler WITHOUT CHANGING ANYTHING ELSE. This is invaluable for anyone who cares much about sail trim.
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