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Old 15-05-2022, 02:18   #1
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Too many sails on too small a boat

Trauma Warning: I am a new sailor. To all the trolls who like to complain about stupid questions, lazy learners imagined hoaxes etc. I don't want to traumatize you. If you can't cope with my question, don't answer.

I have a 27' cutter. Onboard I have:
Yankee cut jib
Genoa
Cruising chute
Staysail
Storm Staysail
Mainsail

These are all nice to have, but consume ALL the space, ceiling to floor in my bow sail area, my toilet, and my dry locker. Basically 25% of my total interior space. I cant reach the chain locker and actually accessing the sails is a major moving operation, so access to sails is impeded.

I will be sailing within the Ria De Vigo, in Galicia Spain. This is my first season sailing, so simplicity is a definite goal in my learning curve.

1) After putting up the main (furling mast) I would ask Genoa (on roller furling) or yankee? Since I have furling, does reducing the Genoa not meet the same purpose as the yankee? Is a Genoa overkill and should I just put up the Yankee? I would leave one or the other ashore.

2) I would think using a staysail needs to be learned as soon as possible. So keeping it aboard seems to make sense to me. A storm staysail does not. I am not going out to sea, have no desire to sail in high wind. If high wind arises I am heading for the dock. Am I rational in my plan to leave it ashore?

3) The Cruising chute will be useful, but for my first season learning the Rudiments, I would think of it as optional. Reasonable?

This would move two sails into furling and out of the way, and a third in the sail bin.

I would appreciate constructive criticism and advice. Thank you for helping a noob.
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Old 15-05-2022, 03:01   #2
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Re: Too many sails on too small a boat

Probably leave the chute and storm sail behind. Also, you're not going to change your jib or genoa while underway. Pick one to put on the furler and leave the other behind. Keep the Genoa if where you sail has light winds; keep the yankee if there's usually too much wind.
Your boat will sail better in higher winds with a yankee, staysail, and reefed main than with a half-rolled genoa.
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Old 15-05-2022, 03:04   #3
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Re: Too many sails on too small a boat

Thank you Zartman! I appreciate your help and clear answer.
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Old 15-05-2022, 03:06   #4
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Re: Too many sails on too small a boat

Not all roller-furlers are capable of reefing.

With an efficient reefing/furling system, you can choose a primary genoa that allows the boat to sail efficiently in lighter air. You can generally roll a headsail up to 30% before it loses its effective flying shape.

A furler is only made up of a drum and a swivel, but without an aluminum profile, over the forestay. The connecting piece is a rope, or an anti torsion cable, integrated into the luff of the sail, and installed by your sailmaker. If your system consists of only the furling drum at the bottom, a swivel at the top, and the sail has a wire luff, then it was made for furling only.
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Old 15-05-2022, 03:07   #5
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Re: Too many sails on too small a boat

On a 27-footer, the storm sail should be relatively small.
Are you sure you can’t put it somewhere (on the boat) out of the way but accessible if you need it?
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Old 15-05-2022, 03:14   #6
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Re: Too many sails on too small a boat

Gord May, Here my ignorance is on display. This is a very old fashioned furling Mast system Kemp Reefin' mast and Reefin'+ Drum reefing. I can find no online information, not even a picture or diagram. Usually I am referred to Selden masts, as they seem to own the Kemp name.


The furler is a Selden Furlex 200 S. There is an aluminum covering over the forestay.
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Old 15-05-2022, 03:49   #7
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pirate Re: Too many sails on too small a boat

I would start with just the Genoa and mainsail and see how it goes, around this time of year in the past I have found winds to be generally light when I have sailed through this area S of Finisterre.
For Spring and Autumn you can switch to the Yankee, Stay and main to give you smaller sail areas to play with and better slots.
Its comes down to experimentation as to what suits best your sailing style in the end.
The cutter rig will give you better performance/efficiency upwind and the Genoa for beam and downwind sailing.
Beating up or down the Ria is different to pottering around the islands N of Baiona.
Enjoy your play time..
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Old 15-05-2022, 04:08   #8
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Re: Too many sails on too small a boat

Selden's "Furlex 200 S" [& 300 S] are REEFING Roller Furlers. The forestay extrusion features twin luff grooves, giving you the potential for fast sail changes.
Manual ➥ https://support.seldenmast.com/files/595-104-E.pdf
Or ➥ http://sailing.mit.edu/wikiupload/0/...00S_Furler.pdf
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Old 15-05-2022, 04:50   #9
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Re: Too many sails on too small a boat

You can leave the storm staysail at home if you'll always be close to shore. You can leave the cruising chute at home until you're ready for it.


What to do with the Yankee and Genoa depends on their condition and cut. With a Furlex (they're nice, I had one on my last boat) it would be common to put a moderate-sized Genoa on the furler and sort of leave it there and roll it in a little when the winds come up. But if it's in bad shape, or if it's huge, you might be better off with the yankee.


Either way, I would think it to be unusual to change between a Yankee and a Genoa while sailing, on a boat with a headstay furler -- just pick one.
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Old 15-05-2022, 07:27   #10
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Re: Too many sails on too small a boat

Reefing a Genoa apparently can cause stretching damage, but I’m a nob too.
The previous owner had a number of sails in a sails locker. 1 seemed not to fit the boat. 1 was an anchor sail I’d heard of but never seen. I have no storm sails which I should have especially after last summers wild rides. The previous owner had put an oversized forsail on the boat and I put the original back on and the boat sails better.
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Old 15-05-2022, 07:58   #11
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Re: Too many sails on too small a boat

I'm assuming the inner stay for the staysail does not have a furler. Get a sail bag that allows you to leave the staysail hanked on while in its bag.
Put the genoa on the headstay then when the wind comes up furl the genoa and hoist the staysail. This also gets the staysail out of the cabin while stowed.
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Old 15-05-2022, 08:13   #12
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Re: Too many sails on too small a boat

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisJHC View Post
On a 27-footer, the storm sail should be relatively small.
Are you sure you can’t put it somewhere (on the boat) out of the way but accessible if you need it?
Welcome to the forum sepharad, and a great post, relevant questions. I hope that you have many more and gain benefits from your membership.

I've a 26 foot boat and when I started had similar questions as the OP. But I carried a (admittedly small storage space) storm job. And one day on a trip I had cause to use it. And it was useless, just too small, and we couldn't point at all. I discarded to the loft in my garage where it remains still.

With modern forecasting and the sorts of trips that the OP will do on a little boat the storm sail is just a waste of space.

But I share the OPS frustration with the space sails take up. I also devote the V-berth to storage of these. But for myself I still have 2 quarter berths and a saloon berth available. Very rare that I have more than two onboard anyway so I don't find it an issue.

Without having any experience with your boat OP (apart from a quick Google view) I'd suggest that your stay sail is really the answer for big winds. You don't say if this also has a furler. But in my own experience, when the wind does blow with awesome power, then it's nice to be able to just furl in the head sail and leave my (hanked on) stay sail alone to do its magic.
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Old 15-05-2022, 08:37   #13
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Re: Too many sails on too small a boat

Quote:
Originally Posted by sepharad View Post
Trauma Warning: I am a new sailor. To all the trolls who like to complain about stupid questions, lazy learners imagined hoaxes etc. I don't want to traumatize you. If you can't cope with my question, don't answer.

I have a 27' cutter. Onboard I have:
Yankee cut jib
Genoa
Cruising chute
Staysail
Storm Staysail
Mainsail

These are all nice to have, but consume ALL the space, ceiling to floor in my bow sail area, my toilet, and my dry locker. Basically 25% of my total interior space. I cant reach the chain locker and actually accessing the sails is a major moving operation, so access to sails is impeded.

I will be sailing within the Ria De Vigo, in Galicia Spain. This is my first season sailing, so simplicity is a definite goal in my learning curve.

1) After putting up the main (furling mast) I would ask Genoa (on roller furling) or yankee? Since I have furling, does reducing the Genoa not meet the same purpose as the yankee? Is a Genoa overkill and should I just put up the Yankee? I would leave one or the other ashore.

2) I would think using a staysail needs to be learned as soon as possible. So keeping it aboard seems to make sense to me. A storm staysail does not. I am not going out to sea, have no desire to sail in high wind. If high wind arises I am heading for the dock. Am I rational in my plan to leave it ashore?

3) The Cruising chute will be useful, but for my first season learning the Rudiments, I would think of it as optional. Reasonable?

This would move two sails into furling and out of the way, and a third in the sail bin.

I would appreciate constructive criticism and advice. Thank you for helping a noob.
Ria De Vigo, in Galicia Spain is unknown to many of us. But unless that estuary gets a lot of strong winds you likely just want a headsail and a main.
Probably the Genoa rather than the Yankee, but if it's a strong wind area, then the Yankee.
You dont need a storm sail, and it's very debatable if you even need a staysail at all. Although if you rig the staysail on the stay in a bag and ready to deploy, it gives you an option if you get a blustery day, as well as out of the boat.
Keep the sails, store them.
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Old 15-05-2022, 10:03   #14
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Re: Too many sails on too small a boat

These are the dumbest questions I have ever seen!

Ok that was a joke.

I am in the same boat as you in a way, similar size boat with many sail bags, BUT I don't have any roller furling. I think Cal40John is right to hank on the staysail, cover it and just leave it till needed, which you probably won't. The chute doesn't (shouldn't) take up much space and can make a nice pillow BUT deploying it when you are new to things can be problematic. I would wait until you are totally comfortable with that and leave it at home for now, the Genoa should be sufficient for most light air applications. And you can reef it a bit, which, true, is not so good for the sail, and does not yield the best shape, but for your purposes is fine until it is too windy and then you furl it and go with staysail. So the Yankee could stay home if needed. The storm sail can stay home. BUT, are the sails all flaked well (folded?) If they are not, sails can occupy a lot more space than needed. The Yankee will, (or should) perform much better than the Genoa for upwind sailing, so if it were me I'd think of finding some way to keep it if possible. Also, I would scrutinize your roller furling for your main very well. I do not know the brand at all, and maybe it is fool proof and bomb proof, but if not I'd consider switching it out, BUT that is just me. I have seen, twice, folks on other boats have a good deal of trouble with roller furling mains, enough so that I am in no hurry to get one. Good luck in your adventures! I'd love to sail around that part of the world some day!
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Old 15-05-2022, 10:55   #15
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Re: Too many sails on too small a boat

Sepharad:

Welcome to CF :-)

Your little boat is indeed a “go anywhere” boat in the hands of a competent skipper. FWIW I knew Bob Harris, the designer, quite well half a century ago when he designed it :-) The boat is rather heavy for her size, and her Sail Area to Displacement ratio, being low, is appropriate for a boat that Bob intended to be able to deal with “difficult” waters, yet it is enough that in competent hands the boat performs reasonably well in light airs.

The sail inventory you enumerate indicates that the PO of your boat had dreams/intentions commensurate with the design's purpose. The inventory is, IMO, far in excess of what you need to learn to sail and to learn to be a skipper in the Vigo estuary. So let's see if we can rationalize things a bit so you can decide what to leave ashore :-)

Firstly, here is a link you will find useful:

https://windy.app/forecast2/spot/139...+Vigo%2C+Spain .

Scroll down till you come to the “Live Wind Map”. Study it! As I write, the wind in the bay is 9m/s from the south. 9m/s is roughly 17 knots. As a rule of thumb just double the number to go from meters per second to knots. That's close enuff :-) Play with the Live Wind Map every time to intend to go out, and get a notion of what is in store for you. I don't know Vigo from personal experience, but I would expect that at 15 or 20 knots of wind, the wave action will be enuff to make you uncomfortable in a Vancouver 27. The boat can certainly take it. The question will be whether you can :-)! Boatman can give you guidance here.

Shift your gaze now: All boats of this sort will sail best and most comfortably when they are heeled 12º or so. So your job, just now as a noob, is to determine what canvas to wear on a beam reach in the given wind conditions. That amount of canvas should heel you about 12º. If she heels more, you should reduce canvas. If she heels less, you can add a bit of canvas.

So here is the practical side: Wearing a full main and your yankee, come to a beam reach. Ease both sheets until both sails JUST luff, then harden sheets again till both sails are JUST full. Now read you clinometer. If you are between 10º and 15º you are good. Now note your tiller position in relation to the ships centreline. If your tiller requires just a LITTLE pull to the weather side, your sail plan is correctly balanced. If the tiller does NOT require a light pull “to weather” to hold course, you are wearing too much headsail. If the tiller requires a HEAVY pull to weather to hold course you are wearing too little headsail. So, in summary: If, on a beam reach, with main and yankee just full, you are heeling about 12º and you have a suggestion of weather helm, Bob's yer uncle!

As you learn, you will learn to deviate from this basic condition when, and as, wind and wave dictate. But that is for the future.

While you are learning to sail, and indeed while you are learning the ship, you should wear the full main. If the wind – as per the link above – is too much to permit you wear the full main, hang in there for a better day :-). Leave all headsails, other than the yankee, ashore, and learn to maximize the boat's performance using those two sails, main and yankee. Once you have learned all you can from that combination, you can begin to experiment with other sail combinations in other kinds of weather, both very light and very heavy, and you can begin to learn to employ the roller furls to the degree that they are suitable for REEFING – which is a kettle of fish of a different colour from FURLING!

But get the fundamentals under your belt using only main and yankee, and always, always let the boat's degree of heel, and the “balance” of the helm, be your guide, as set out above.

Come back to us when you are ready to “kick it up a notch” :-)

Bonne chance,

TrentePieds
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