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Old 09-06-2024, 17:29   #1
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Wind gust control

Hey all.
Easing the main when hit by a gust of wind was what I would do on laser or hobby cat. It was super easy and quick
What can I do on my 42’ ?
It takes too long IMO to reach the winch, open the block and release.

I also find it difficult to get closer to the wind to slow down, which I used to do also used to do

Tips welcome!:-)

Thx all
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Old 09-06-2024, 17:33   #2
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Re: Wind gust control

Do you have a traveler to let down? That will be faster than the main sheet. You may be over canvases for the conditions. Yes you will be under powered when the not in a gust but not over powered in gusts.

Also with a big Genoa that is a lot of power keeping you bow down so reefing the Genoa will help with the ability to point up to reduce healing in gusts.
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Old 09-06-2024, 17:52   #3
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Re: Wind gust control

Where does the mainsheet come out in the cockpit on your boat?

I think your only option then is to round up... and then reef.
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Old 09-06-2024, 18:04   #4
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Re: Wind gust control

Release the mainsheet or let down the traveler.

Our mainsheet is on a self-tailer, no clutch in between, if we expect big gusts we take 3-4 turns on the winch and someone holds the tail to release during gusts, even a slight release will backwind the main and depower it pretty quickly. We also play with the traveler but it’s mostly set for the conditions, we make greater use of the mainsheet than the traveler.
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Old 09-06-2024, 18:05   #5
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Re: Wind gust control

I find easing the vang and letting the traveler down helps. Getting the boat balance is key so you can come up and feather the boat and fall off as the gust passes.
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Old 09-06-2024, 19:41   #6
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Re: Wind gust control

Quote:
I also find it difficult to get closer to the wind to slow down
Do you mean you find it hard to turn into the wind when you are hit by a gust? Is the boat trying to turn away from the wind?
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Old 09-06-2024, 20:56   #7
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Re: Wind gust control

What you learn on a Laser or a Hobie Cat doesn't have a lot of relevance on a 42-footer.

Item #1 is this: A Laser has no headsail, just a main, so a Laser doesn't teach you about "balance". If you find it hard to head up in your Jeanneau, it is likely because you haven't learned to handle headsails, and in your Jeanneau you are carrying too much headsail for too long.

You have twin wheels positioned so far aft that you cannot conveniently reach the essential bits of running rigging from the wheel position. We can work around that later :-)

On a nice day, say 12 knots (not 15, 12!), come to a beam reach. Now set your rudders midships and see what the boat does. If her head falls off you are carrying too much head sail relative to the mainsail, and you need to reduce area. Roll in the headsail until the boat, with rudders midships, holds her course without falling off or heading up. Mark that setting on you furling line.

Now roll in some more until the boat heads up. Now gradually roll it out again until the boat holds course. That is the proper size of headsail for THAT wind. Other wind strengths require different areas of headsail, but we can come back to that.

If the boat holds course with rudders midships, you have a "balanced" boat. which is what you want. Hard to tell tho, with all that steering gear! The wheel will not give you proper feedback, but not much you can do about that, other than live with it!

The Jeanneau wants to sail flat, say 12º of heal regardless of wind strength, so play with the sail areas till that (12º) is what she heals. Your clinometer will tell you when you've got it right. Then muck about with the headsail again till she is balanced.

Now, at different wind strengths reduce TOTAL sail area, while keeping her balanced, by adjusting the area of the headsail relative to that of the mainsail, until she stays within the target 12º of heal.

There is nothing to it really. You just have to stay focused on the physics of it. So keep a notebook, a "log" of wind strengths and appropriate areas of main and headsail for those strengths. Do that till you come to know subconsciously what your sail areas should be for the wind strengths you come to know by looking into the wind and feeling its strength on your cheeks and in your ears. :-)

All the best

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Old 09-06-2024, 21:00   #8
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Re: Wind gust control

Why would you even care about a wind gust on a 42’ boat?

I sail a Bristol 27 and am usually on autopilot so don’t even worry about it.

When I sailed and raced beach cats, I’d turn into the gust and if necessary ease the main.
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Old 10-06-2024, 05:28   #9
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Re: Wind gust control

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Originally Posted by thomm225 View Post
Why would you even care about a wind gust on a 42’ boat?

I sail a Bristol 27 and am usually on autopilot so don’t even worry about it.

When I sailed and raced beach cats, I’d turn into the gust and if necessary ease the main.
When you probably should have reefed an hour ago or you're sailing like a racer and trying to push the boat, the gusts can become a challenge. If you're reefed for the gusts like a typical cruising scenario, then it's not much of a concern.
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Old 10-06-2024, 05:34   #10
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Re: Wind gust control

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Originally Posted by hlev00 View Post
Do you have a traveler to let down? That will be faster than the main sheet. You may be over canvases for the conditions. Yes you will be under powered when the not in a gust but not over powered in gusts.

Also with a big Genoa that is a lot of power keeping you bow down so reefing the Genoa will help with the ability to point up to reduce healing in gusts.
I do have a traveler but it’s out of direct/immediate reach….

Under powering is also a great tip actually

Thx!!
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Old 10-06-2024, 05:43   #11
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Re: Wind gust control

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Originally Posted by rslifkin View Post
When you probably should have reefed an hour ago or you're sailing like a racer and trying to push the boat, the gusts can become a challenge. If you're reefed for the gusts like a typical cruising scenario, then it's not much of a concern.
I see…
I was probably pushing too much
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Old 10-06-2024, 05:44   #12
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Re: Wind gust control

Your use of the word "underpowering" bespeaks a need for you to throw overboard a mindset that typically grows in the soil of fascination with motor cars - particularly with what we used to call "muscle cars".

What you do when you reef your sailboat as the wind increases is CORRECTLY powering your boat - NOT "underpowering" it.

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Old 10-06-2024, 05:45   #13
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Re: Wind gust control

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Originally Posted by TrentePieds View Post
What you learn on a Laser or a Hobie Cat doesn't have a lot of relevance on a 42-footer.
into the wind and feeling its strength on your cheeks and in your ears. :-)

All the best

TrentePieds
Thank you so much!!!
I’ll definitely save this and apply it!!!
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Old 10-06-2024, 05:46   #14
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Re: Wind gust control

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Originally Posted by Xavierp View Post
I see…
I was probably pushing too much
Next time try reducing sail a bit and see if everything behaves better. Or if you want to push the boat harder, make sure you've got another person on board and have them man the traveler, dropping it a bit in gusts to unload the main a bit (and if you're heading upwind you can also pinch up a little to unload the boat if getting overpowered).
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Old 10-06-2024, 05:47   #15
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Re: Wind gust control

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Originally Posted by leecea View Post
Do you mean you find it hard to turn into the wind when you are hit by a gust? Is the boat trying to turn away from the wind?
If I try to turn into the wind to slow down, the boat heels even more. Rudder is super hard to control.
I was heeling at 8-10 already
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