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Old 15-03-2024, 01:59   #31
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Re: What's faster, questions on balance while cruising long distance

I wish I had the "feel" but I'm not there yet in my sailing experience. The other change I've made lately is I locked the 3 bladed prop from spinning to get rid of the noise. I wonder if that could have made enough difference that the rudder became noticeably less effective, because I haven't been spurred to notice this until now. Another thing on the list to try next time the conditions are right.

When I search for "leeward jib pole" I don't really find much. Do you have a picture/link for what that would look like? I have a whisker pole that I use for wing on wing, never tried it to leeward. Might that also help to keep the jib from flapping every few wave cycles, when broad reaching? Last couple days have been broad reaching. I get more speed with the 130% jib up, but the sea state is bigger than the wind, so boat rocks now and then causing a huge flop of the jib and loud noises. The preventer on the main helps some, and it has more wind pressure on it anyway, but the jib has been free to do what it wants.
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Old 15-03-2024, 06:00   #32
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Re: What's faster, questions on balance while cruising long distance

With how close the prop and rudder are on the PSC 37 I wouldn't be surprised if the locked prop is causing enough turbulence to reduce rudder effectiveness. Plus, the locked prop adds more drag, so it's slowing you down as well.

Unless your transmission advises otherwise, it's better to let it freewheel and live with the noise or swap to a folding or feathering prop.
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Old 15-03-2024, 12:36   #33
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Re: What's faster, questions on balance while cruising long distance

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Originally Posted by markxengineerin View Post
I wish I had the "feel" but I'm not there yet in my sailing experience. The other change I've made lately is I locked the 3 bladed prop from spinning to get rid of the noise. I wonder if that could have made enough difference that the rudder became noticeably less effective, because I haven't been spurred to notice this until now. Another thing on the list to try next time the conditions are right.

When I search for "leeward jib pole" I don't really find much. Do you have a picture/link for what that would look like? I have a whisker pole that I use for wing on wing, never tried it to leeward. Might that also help to keep the jib from flapping every few wave cycles, when broad reaching? Last couple days have been broad reaching. I get more speed with the 130% jib up, but the sea state is bigger than the wind, so boat rocks now and then causing a huge flop of the jib and loud noises. The preventer on the main helps some, and it has more wind pressure on it anyway, but the jib has been free to do what it wants.
One time after being tired to constant flopping I sheeted the (furler) jib with booth sheets tight in the middle, the main eased all out against the shrouds (with preventer). Helped my ears considerably and certainly better for the sails. Dead down wind course.
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Old 15-03-2024, 18:36   #34
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Re: What's faster, questions on balance while cruising long distance

Don't use the whisker pole to leeward - it is a special race pole that is quite high for a blast reacher - just thinking that the full headsail may be a problem. A feathering prop a new main (if too full) and refaired rudder may be what is needed.
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Old 18-03-2024, 03:21   #35
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Re: What's faster, questions on balance while cruising long distance

None has mentioned the use of the vang yet. I see a lot of boats with over-sheeted sails during a broad reach. Try to ease the main sheet out more than what you're doing. Since the traveler will be too short to provide enough downforce, to prevent the boom from raising (baggy main) use the vang. Could be as simple as that.
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Old 18-03-2024, 05:02   #36
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Re: What's faster, questions on balance while cruising long distance

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None has mentioned the use of the vang yet. I see a lot of boats with over-sheeted sails during a broad reach. Try to ease the main sheet out more than what you're doing. Since the traveler will be too short to provide enough downforce, to prevent the boom from raising (baggy main) use the vang. Could be as simple as that.
If heel is causing the weather helm, adding vang will only exacerbate this problem as it will reduce the twist of the main giving more heeling force up top. If you want to reduce twist at large angles of attack the vang is the perfect solution. We use it in this fashion when going downwind to gain more drive from the main when the mainsheet is eased so far that it cannot pull down on the boom.
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Old 18-03-2024, 06:42   #37
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Re: What's faster, questions on balance while cruising long distance

Clearly the answer is simple. Having raced for nearly 50 years at a high level helmsman always steered with the least about of rudder deflection. One made the suggestion to ease the main off using the traveler. That is the first thing to do to ease the weather helm. If you think the boat knot meter says you are going far=st and the rudder is constantly moving you may be but not in a straight line. Therefore your Course made good is slower.

A wind vane steering is far faster if the winds are reasonably steady. The boat will sail to the Apparent Wind Angle. You may very a bit on compass course but if you are going a long distance every hour or so your may want to adjust your course to maintain optimal course. An auto pilot will steer you to a compass course (unless you have a very sophisticated system) thus your sails will be out of trim more often as the wind shifts about.
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Old 18-03-2024, 06:59   #38
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Re: What's faster, questions on balance while cruising long distance

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A wind vane steering is far faster if the winds are reasonably steady. The boat will sail to the Apparent Wind Angle. You may very a bit on compass course but if you are going a long distance every hour or so your may want to adjust your course to maintain optimal course. An auto pilot will steer you to a compass course (unless you have a very sophisticated system) thus your sails will be out of trim more often as the wind shifts about.
Many modern-ish autopilots can steer to a wind angle if desired as long as there's wind data available to the autopilot.
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Old 18-03-2024, 07:10   #39
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Re: What's faster, questions on balance while cruising long distance

It seems the "problem" is gone. I changed a number of things at once, so I'm not 100% sure, but I think the biggest impact was un-fixing the propeller. The rudder works noticeably better and doesn't need so much input to make a correction. I also noticed excessive slack in the windvane control lines that could have contributed to zig zag style sailing, and have been proceeding with 2nd reef in main, traveller out, full 130% genoa, wind slightly aft vs. my original post. Rudder angle is near zero. I also think the sea state was contributing to my prior issues- there was more waves than wind, making it difficult to figure out what was going on. Thanks for all the help, definitely learned a thing or two.
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Old 18-03-2024, 07:47   #40
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Re: What's faster, questions on balance while cruising long distance

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Many modern-ish autopilots can steer to a wind angle if desired as long as there's wind data available to the autopilot.
In parenthesis I said more sophisticated auto pilots can steer to the apparent wind. It adds complexity to a system that in my opinion isnít warranted.
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Old 18-03-2024, 08:34   #41
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Re: What's faster, questions on balance while cruising long distance

Have you looked into the question of "center of effort" on your mainsail??

I had pretty heavy action on my helm, almost too much at times, and discovered, through research, that I could rake my mast aft to move the center of effort aft as well, and I was pleasantly surprised at the results, everything balanced out a lot better and my Hydrovane self-steering system worked flawlessly in most positions now except directly downwind, and when the wind was very light...but a marked improvement on the heavy helm...
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Old 18-03-2024, 08:44   #42
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Re: What's faster, questions on balance while cruising long distance

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When you add rake to the mast, you tilt the whole sail plan aft. This, in turn, shifts the power aft, pushing more load on the stern and forcing the bow up into the wind, creating weather helm.
From quantum sails, so I think you have it backwards ?
In any case, arent' we talking inches here? It seems negligible on a 37' boat to move the center of effort by inches.
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Old 18-03-2024, 08:46   #43
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Re: What's faster, questions on balance while cruising long distance

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From quantum sails, so I think you have it backwards ?
In any case, arent' we talking inches here? It seems negligible on a 37' boat to move the center of effort by inches.
It sounds negligible, but what matters is the center of effort of the sail plan vs the center of lateral resistance of the hull and keel. The difference between the CoE being 2" aft of the CLR vs it being 4" aft is there being twice as much upwind turning force from the sail plan (if I'm not mistaken).
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Old 18-03-2024, 08:51   #44
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Re: What's faster, questions on balance while cruising long distance

Fair enough, but compared to the force of the rudder, it just doesn't seem like it'd be much influence.
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Old 18-03-2024, 08:54   #45
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Re: What's faster, questions on balance while cruising long distance

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Fair enough, but compared to the force of the rudder, it just doesn't seem like it'd be much influence.
With how much skeg structure is in the water to help shift the CLR aft, I'd expect the PSC 37 to be less sensitive than some boats to shifts in the CoE of the sail plan. It would take quite a bit to overcome the rudder and make the boat unmanageable, but it doesn't necessarily take a lot for you to need a little bit of extra rudder angle to produce the counteracting force.
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