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Old 03-15-2013
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Re: Mostly singlehanded...what lines should I run aft?

I predominantly single-hand in coastal waters and have for nearly 50 years. I tend to sail my boats in conditions that most people do not, enjoy keeping my boat properly trimmed and up to speed, and I also race my boat single-hand.

Because of that I typically set my boats up with all halyards and sheets run aft, the boom vang run aft, the outhaul and at least one reef run aft, and the pole lift and foreguy run aft. I also have my jib sheet leads run aft. I don't use the cunningham when single-handed since it does so little that cannot be done with the main halyard. In large part I do this to clear the winches and cleats off the mast, boom and deck forward since I firmly believe that fouling sheets on these is a bigger hazard to a single-hander than having to go to the mast to reef. I also run my backstay adjuster to the helm, which in your case may mean bringing your baby stay adjuster to the helm.

But beyond that, I believe that people adjust the control lines that they can easily reach. If you are single-handing and you need to leave the helm to make an adjustment, you will not adjust halyard tension, outhaul, or vang. This can make a huge difference in performance or be a big nuisance.

I must admit that running everything aft did not come free. I had to add a number of Garhauer blocks at the mast base, and a rack of stoppers and also cam cleats where they made more sense. I regularly use 6 of the 12 aft stoppers on my boat (9 when the chute is up since the pole lift and foreguy are run aft as well). On a boat your size you might get by with small cam cleats for the majority of minor control lines, with only stoppers for the halyards.

If you were only going to run one line aft, I would suggest that it should be the main halyard. To some extent, on most boats, if you can get the mainsail up, the boat will short tack upwind with the mainsheet cleated and the helm loosely tied amidships allowing you to raise and adjust the jib at leisure.

Jeff
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Curmudgeon at Large- and rhinestone in the rough, sailing my Farr 11.6 on the Chesapeake Bay and part-time purveyor of marine supplies
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