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Old 17-01-2020, 14:04   #31
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Re: Twin headsails for trade wind sailing

Twin headsails can be a awesome downwind rig, if the boat is properly set up for it.

There are two arguments against it: it can be tough to reduce sail quickly when needed, and roll.

On our boat both of these are easily handled.

https://fetchinketch.net/2016/06/26/amel-downwind-sailing-rig/


For many years boat supplied by Amel included a second nylon sail of the same dimensions as the genoa that the French called a "ballooner." It is basically a second jib used for DDW work.

The entire rig is set up so when both head sails are flying, you have the ability to furl BOTH sails around the head stay. During a downwind run in the trades we leave 1600 Sq Ft of sail up--day and night. If a squall approaches, we can reduce, or completely furl, the head sails literally in seconds. Many (Most?) shorthanded cruising boats flying spinnakers in the trades douse that sail in anticipation of squally nights because it can be a handful for a shorthanded crew in the dark.

Roll can be very boat specific, but on our hull the roll STOPS if we slack the sheets on the twin jibs enough so that the top 10 to 15% of the sail luffs forward--looser than you would otherwise think correct. It's amazing to watch a wave roll the boat to one side, and the top of the jib on that side immediately fills and pushes back. Damping the roll before it gets started. If we tighten both sheets so the full sails draw, we can roll with the best of them! I KNOW that works on our boat... I assume it works on others.

This rig works from 155 to 180 AWA. We are comfortable flying the full downwind spread in 15 knots apparent, which is easily 23-24 knots true. At that point we'll roll up a bit to keep the speed under control.
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Old 17-01-2020, 14:32   #32
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Re: Twin headsails for trade wind sailing

I have a couple of telescoping poles which are hinged to the mast with outhauls running through the middles of the poles rather than beaks.

The outhauls allow me to work the pole from the cockpit by having both outhauls soft shackled to the genoa when I sail wing and wing.

This allows me to tack the genoa from the cockpit which is important for a geriatric single hander.

Unless I'm sailing a beam reach I often have the genoa poled out to stop it from unfilling and snap refilling so they get a lot of use even when not twin headsail sailing.

There is a permanent topping lift to hold the poles up against the mast when not in use and these also can be worked from the cockpit.
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Old 17-01-2020, 14:36   #33
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Re: Twin headsails for trade wind sailing

Looking from bow at hinge on mast (I was sailing with twin genakers the day this was taken)
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Old 17-01-2020, 14:39   #34
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Re: Twin headsails for trade wind sailing

Having made over 100,000 miles of trade wind passages wing on wing, I finally used twin genoas on a Transatlantic passage. I will use twin genoas again next time if the boat has them.

1. The genoas can be hoisted on the same furler, with a bit of lashing on the shorter luff to make the luff tension the same. For reaching I needed two sheet leads because they were not identical sails, but it was no big deal.

2. You only need a pole on the windward sail. When you drop the main the leeward sail was quite stable.

3. The rig is easier on the autopilot, because the center of effort is forward--the boat is being pulled, not pushed.

4. The rig is easier on the crew, because you can set your course parallel to the waves to minimize roll without fear of an accidental gybe. Aerodynamically, the twin rig is more stable than wing and wing, as it is balanced. My experience (and the experience of the circumnavigator who suggested I try it) was that roll was significantly reduced.

5. The sail area with two full 130% genoas is enough to push the boat at hull speed in 12 knots of wind. Because of the balance and stability of the rig, you can safely carry more sail carry more sail area when the wind picks up. I ended up having to reduce sail area because the crappy rudder was starting to vibrate badly at over 12 knots, not because the boat felt unstable.

6. When the black cloud comes up behind you, both sails can easily and safely be partially furled by one person. Simply ease off both sheets and roll in what you want. When the 40 knot squall rolls through at 0200, the twin jib is vastly superior to reefing the main on a wing and wing boat, or trying to snuff a raging spinnaker.

7. Not only was it more comfortable and less stressful, the average boat speed went up. Going wing and wing, I would put one or two reefs in the main at sunset to avoid doing it at night. With the twin rig I could wait till the squalls got close, and I averaged over 200 miles a day.
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Old 17-01-2020, 15:51   #35
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Re: Twin headsails for trade wind sailing

Based on Don's experience, maybe the OP will choose to trial the twin headsails.

Our setups have been different. On our first Insatiable, with a fairly small high aspect mainsail, we did many miles downwind with the main over-trimmed, to limit rolling, the genoa poled out to windward, and the staysail just out to leeward: obviously not exactly downwind twins. However, it always worked well.

This boat, 7/8 fractional rig, fin keel, with a proportionally much larger mainsail, we sail with the 120% genoa poled out and however much main we want (slab reefing)...and it is difficult for the autopilot in the open ocean's sea waves. If it is light air, we sometimes add the staysail (about a #4) to this mix and it adds up to 1 k boat speed.

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Old 17-01-2020, 22:43   #36
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Re: Twin headsails for trade wind sailing

Years back we did the Cape Town to Rio in a Roberts 53 and 80 % of the time it was with main, genoa on the same side as the main and a poled out no 1 jib which seemed to deflect the wind onto the genoa.

She ran true with little rolling and a good speed on a direct course.
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Old 18-01-2020, 04:41   #37
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Re: Twin headsails for trade wind sailing

How important is it that twins are matched in size? I am thinking of a 110 and a 155 setup.
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Old 18-01-2020, 04:56   #38
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Re: Twin headsails for trade wind sailing

Quote:
Originally Posted by tarian View Post
Lots of people wing on wing ,crossing the Pond and many more with mains sail out on a preventer ,not seen many with a spinnaker of a cruising shute , too light material for the winds , it might be the case of just getting out and practising both methods to find out how your boat deals with this, all boats are different and many will swear by one to the other but only you will know because it is your boat.
Reefing down a main is not to bad short handed , as always reef her in at night ,to be safe and then you can always judge in daylight and see the weather ahead if you need to reef early.
For chafe maybe putting some good chafe protection on the wire will help.

Hmmm. On my crossing in December the spinnaker was worth it. I have over 7 days in winds of less than 10 knts. Sometimes it was too light to even fly the spinnaker.


Quote:
Originally Posted by DEAN2140 View Post
Lots of roll, possible pole dip in the water, difficult to deal with squalls. Where is the upside?
Twin headsails is great for dealing with squalls since both reef nicely together at the same time.

What bad happens when the pole touches the water? Happened a few times when I having to take it down to move it to the other side (cutter rig)
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Old 18-01-2020, 05:12   #39
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Re: Twin headsails for trade wind sailing

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Originally Posted by JPA Cate View Post
Based on Don's experience, maybe the OP will choose to trial the twin headsails.

Our setups have been different. On our first Insatiable, with a fairly small high aspect mainsail, we did many miles downwind with the main over-trimmed, to limit rolling, the genoa poled out to windward, and the staysail just out to leeward: obviously not exactly downwind twins. However, it always worked well.

This boat, 7/8 fractional rig, fin keel, with a proportionally much larger mainsail, we sail with the 120% genoa poled out and however much main we want (slab reefing)...and it is difficult for the autopilot in the open ocean's sea waves. If it is light air, we sometimes add the staysail (about a #4) to this mix and it adds up to 1 k boat speed.

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Thatís always the challenge ...autopilot wear when broad reaching
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Old 18-01-2020, 05:54   #40
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Re: Twin headsails for trade wind sailing

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Originally Posted by sanibel sailor View Post
How important is it that twins are matched in size? I am thinking of a 110 and a 155 setup.
The primary poled out headsail should be short on the leach and non overlap
Genoaís , long leach sails, donít pole well because itís difficult to develope leach tension without overloading the pole . They are limited to dead downwind..not reaching angles

Working jib, blast reacher, yankee...these non overlap, short leach sails seem to have many names
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Old 18-01-2020, 07:32   #41
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Re: Twin headsails for trade wind sailing

Don,

On that boat, how did you deal with the haylard of the second sail when you furled both sails around the foil? It sounds like you might have hoisted both sails on one haylard attached to the swivel? A good solution... but a bit of a pain taking both sails down--at the same time--when it it time to change course.
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Old 18-01-2020, 08:05   #42
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Re: Twin headsails for trade wind sailing

We used double headsails downwind pretty much whenever we could - it is a tremendous set-up. The technique is obscured by the fact the racing crowd dominates 'sail discussion' and they don't use it much. But it used to be 'the standard' technique for downwind oceanic cruising before strong autopilots (it makes wind vane and self-steering much more practical).

On a boat much like the Cate's (fractional sloop, fin keel, spade rudder, decently wide) we hoisted the second jib on a spin halyard furled on a code zero furler. WE actually had three sails we could hoist on that zero furler depending on the area we wanted. It was easy to handle and manipulate. In very strong winds we would switch to using the staysail stay for the second sail.

Our previous boat was rigged with the 'classic' twin side by side head stays - one had a furler on it and we ran various hank-ons on the other stay. This was a little less flexible because when using two sails you could only really use the hand-ons to port and the furler to std. (note: the stays were set side by side rather than fore-aft so that when running only one jib you could tack or jybe from either stay).

The sails don't need to be matched. If you are square to the wind it is optimal they be matched, but if you are a ways off square then it is better to have a shorter foot poled to windward.

The loads on these sails a pretty low and they can be quite light fabric - 3 or 4oz dacron or 1.5 oz nylon were quite standard - which makes them lighter and easier to handle and to stow. Ideally, the clews are decently high.

You can get by with one pole, but two makes it all rather easier. You want the poles 'set/fixed' in place (by themselves, not dependent on support from the sail or its sheet) - with a bridle or two guys and a topping lift - you dont want them flopping around if the sail is flogging or being furled.

There are some 'advanced' double jib techniques, and some alternatives (we have known a couple of boats who carried and used square sails for downwind - yes with an extra spar hoisted up a Bermudian sloop) but these all seemed more extra trouble than they gained.
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Old 18-01-2020, 08:35   #43
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Re: Twin headsails for trade wind sailing

Quote:
Originally Posted by sanibel sailor View Post
How important is it that twins are matched in size? I am thinking of a 110 and a 155 setup.
I agree with Breaking Waves in post #42 above. It is optimal but not necessary. I made a dozen or so voyages with mismatched jibs before I had a matching foresail made. I only had to carry a little countering rudder to compensate for the asymmetry. It's a bit like flying a twin engine airplane with mismatched engine thrust. Just add some rudder and account for a little athwart "translating tendency," which you may not even notice.

If you have two jibs that are similar, as you describe, I suggest giving it a try. You may need one or two whisker poles. Since my main was taken in, I used my main boom to "pole out" one jib during my experiments before I committed to having a matching foresail made.
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Old 18-01-2020, 09:00   #44
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Re: Twin headsails for trade wind sailing

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Originally Posted by billknny View Post
Don,

On that boat, how did you deal with the haylard of the second sail when you furled both sails around the foil? It sounds like you might have hoisted both sails on one haylard attached to the swivel? A good solution... but a bit of a pain taking both sails down--at the same time--when it it time to change course.

You use one halyard but w/another smaller separate block attached to hoist the second sail. In this way, can lower the 2nd sail w/o messing w/ the other sail.
A "Simbo" rig is the more current set up for twin headsails.


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Old 18-01-2020, 09:49   #45
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Re: Twin headsails for trade wind sailing

All rigs have their pros/cons, but wouldn't it be fair to say that...at least from a comfort standpoint...that the twizzle would provide a better ride than the simbo? The simbo keeps the whiskers to the mast where the twizzle connects the inboard ends together hanging from a halyard...former ordinarily torques on the mast, latter less much so.

Simbo:
https://www.rhbell.com/Simbo/simbo-d...d-sailing.html
Twizzle:
https://www.simetric.co.uk/twizzle_rig/
Prior discussion:
http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/...zle-54982.html
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