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Old 04-12-2022, 18:19   #1
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heaving-to dilemma

I practiced heaving-to recently & was shocked to see my headsail sheet bar-tight laid against my upper shroud as a point load.

I could not image doing that for hours in heavy weather!

Is this what they never tell you in all these expert articles on heavy weather tactics?

Particularly the ďall you have to do is tack the boat backwinding the jib, & adjust the main a littleĒ.

BS.

I would have to run a second sheet inside the shrouds to possibly get a lead angle that does not try to push the whole rig down with the side loads on the shrouds.

So then I would have sketchy work on the foredeck & 3 sheets on the clew threatening to scramble them into a macrame knot from hell if they are not tended perfectly during deployment.

How do those that have actually done this in heavy weather succeed at it?

Thanks.
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Old 04-12-2022, 18:32   #2
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Re: heaving-to dilemma

Not done in heavy weather. But in rough weather.

My understanding is that there are no firm rules each boat behaving differently. What you describe is just a starting point, adjust as required. I agree most descriptions leave a lot to the imagination.

From what I read some boats don’t need any foresail, and some fin keel boats won’t heave to at all.

Maybe just try it with only a deeply reefed main and then add headsail as needed?

Maybe add a temporary “dutchman” as an alternative to an additional jib sheet. A dutchman being a attachment to the rail or cleat to backwind the sail. Or at least that is how I understand it.

On my 33’ cutter I have installed a full traveller for the staysail, so I can backwind the sail from the cockpit. I like the arrangement but have not seen it elsewhere.
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Old 04-12-2022, 18:34   #3
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Re: heaving-to dilemma

I've wondered about this too. If your headsail is >100% and un-reefed, then it is going to ride on the shrouds and possibly spreaders, chafing the sail. If it's reefed or <100% then the sheet will ride against the shroud. I would imagine that, in general, you'll be reefed if you're heaving to. So maybe some sort of chafe protection that can be slipped onto the sheet after heaving to?
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Old 04-12-2022, 18:38   #4
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Re: heaving-to dilemma

Just today I was up the mast adding chafe guards.

They sell slit poly tubing to be “slipped” over the rigging.

Boat is starting to look like I have huge white shrouds.
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Old 04-12-2022, 18:48   #5
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Re: heaving-to dilemma

If the sheet isn't against the shrouds (like if you ran it inside) the the jib would not be held to windward.
This awkward setting of the jib creates drag and balances with the main, which tries to propel the boat forward, and together the boat is stable without much motion.
Anyway, the sail or sheet will be on the rigging, that can't really be avoided. But if hove to they shouldn't be moving back and forth, so chafe should not be an issue.
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Old 04-12-2022, 19:17   #6
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Re: heaving-to dilemma

It would help if you said what sort of boat you have: hull shape and rig. Some boats heave-to just fine with only a sheeted-in main; others need a backed headsail to keep the main from driving forward and even tacking repeatedly. Different conditions require different sail combinations, and finally, expectations about how the boat will behave when hove to have to be managed.
One guy I sailed with recently wanted the boat to just stop in place rock-solid without any drift--clearly his wish was disappointed.
As for sheets against shrouds--well, this illustrates the failure of design of rigs and hulls that simply don't heave-to nicely. You shouldn't have to heave-to with a huge jib or genoa: you need a decent staysail to do it with. If your boat has the wrong hull and the wrong rig, heaving-to will simply be less than ideal, and lots of modern boats are just that.
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Old 04-12-2022, 19:27   #7
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Re: heaving-to dilemma

I don’t think it’s common for a jib sheet (or even 110 genoa) to be run outside the topshroud. I think it’s more common for a 150+ or other light air reacher/downwind sail.
What kind of boat?
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Old 04-12-2022, 19:51   #8
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Re: heaving-to dilemma

Boat is a Bob Perry design 1979 Valiant Esprit 37 sloop I have sailed for 40 years.

Still getting to know it I guess.

My 110% genoa as well as all other head sails definitely sheet outside all shrouds.

That inner stay is just for a storm jib (maybe). I sail it as a sloop and do not want to mess with a staysail. So my question is all about the lead to the 110% genoa clew for heaving-to.

I have a hard time believing it is "seaman-like" to heave to with a big side load on the top shroud 4 feet above the deck.

Next time I will try heaving-to with just the main. But note that is is an IOR high aspect mainsail as was the rage back then. Do you think that will make it harder or easier to heave-to with just the main?
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Old 04-12-2022, 20:28   #9
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Re: heaving-to dilemma

I tried searching online but didn’t see any pictures of your type boat with foredeck details. The one you show is low resolution and hides the foredeck with that huge genoa. That’s not a jib, nor even a 110% genoa. It’s probably more like 120-150, and it’s sheeted pretty well aft (as it should be for that size sail).
If that’s what you have I can understand why it isn’t well suited for heaving-to. Sloops rigged for a jib usually are sheeted to the cabin top anywhere from just forward of the mast to slightly aft of the mast, often with a jib sheet track to allow adjustments of the sheeting angle based on the length of jib/genoa foot. The attachment point is generally about midway between the centerline and outer deck, so the sheets would be run inside the top shroud.
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Old 04-12-2022, 20:38   #10
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Re: heaving-to dilemma

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Originally Posted by SailFastTri View Post
I tried searching online but didnít see any pictures of your type boat with foredeck details. The one you show is low resolution and hides the foredeck with that huge genoa. Thatís not a jib, nor even a 110% genoa. Itís probably more like 120-150, and itís sheeted pretty well aft (as it should be for that size sail).
If thatís what you have I can understand why it isnít well suited for heaving-to. Sloops rigged for a jib usually are sheeted to the cabin top anywhere from just forward of the mast to slightly aft of the mast, often with a jib sheet track to allow adjustments of the sheeting angle based on the length of jib/genoa foot. The attachment point is generally about midway between the centerline and outer deck, so the sheets would be run inside the top shroud.
I sail with a 110% not that big geeny, see the sail plan.
No cabin top tracks.
Just a long side deck track down each side that accomodates anything from a 150 to a fully reefed 100%.
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Old 04-12-2022, 21:10   #11
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Re: heaving-to dilemma

Got it. It is what it is (smile).
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Old 04-12-2022, 23:17   #12
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Re: heaving-to dilemma

Journeyman,

Not to he argumentative but Sailboatdata among others not that the Bob Perry Valient 37 is a CUTTER not a sloop.

That you sail her as a sloop is just fine. No complaints.

OTOH, you leave a lot behind if you treat her as a sloop when entering heavy weather. And heaving to is one time when I would surely turn to my staysail.

We find that our staysail is our most used sail. But our average wind may well be heavier than yours as we are in the Eastern Caribbean where we seldom see under 15 knots other than behind islands. So there is that.

We frequently have both head sails up in lighter wind. As the wind builds we reef the stow the working jib while maintaining the hanked on staysail. Even the staysail has a reef point though I’ve only used it once. But, we have a 44’ boat with a 5’ sprit, so our sail plan is balanced different than yours.

We hove to overnight a few years ago. Not terribly bad weather, about 15-20 knots, sloppy and we needed to let a system pass in front of us. We just used a double reefed main sheeted in. Worked fine. We slept well. Noisy. Made about 2 knots, but we were in a Gulf Stream eddy, so 1 knot was current.
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Old 04-12-2022, 23:18   #13
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Re: heaving-to dilemma

I too have worried about the sheet of the backwinded jib laying against the shrouds.

The sail itself would not extend that far aft so it is only the jib sheet which would be pressed against the windward shroud. (the jib should be reduced in size so as not to hit the shroud).

Because in the hove-to position the jib is completely stalled I think the pressure on the shroud and the wear on the sheet should be tolerable. I have not done it for extended periods of time but I think it is OK to do this, but watch it!

Remember that the mainsail is trying to drive the boat upwind and the backwinded jib is only there to hold the boat down On my fin keel race boat, and most fin keel boats, this is a very gentle position, it should not cause undue wear on the jib sheet.
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Old 05-12-2022, 00:06   #14
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Re: heaving-to dilemma

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Originally Posted by wingssail View Post
I too have worried about the sheet of the backwinded jib laying against the shrouds.

The sail itself would not extend that far aft so it is only the jib sheet which would be pressed against the windward shroud. (the jib should be reduced in size so as not to hit the shroud).

Because in the hove-to position the jib is completely stalled I think the pressure on the shroud and the wear on the sheet should be tolerable. I have not done it for extended periods of time but I think it is OK to do this, but watch it!

Remember that the mainsail is trying to drive the boat upwind and the backwinded jib is only there to hold the boat down On my fin keel race boat, and most fin keel boats, this is a very gentle position, it should not cause undue wear on the jib sheet.
This.
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Old 05-12-2022, 01:28   #15
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Re: heaving-to dilemma

We have hove to at sea in our previous boat a PJ Standfast 36 sloop. It was challengine to find where to move the sheet lead to, it was quite forward, and having a perforated toe rail, we used a snatch block for the sheet block. The boat lay quietly, and rest was obtainable, with the fairly constant heel angle.

Our present boat, with a narrower (fore & aft) fin keel, prefers to forereach, slowly.

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