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post #8 of Old 06-13-2002
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Storm Jibs


If you bothered to read posts before you blew your stack and tried to trash them, I think your posts would be of greater value to this community. In waltzingmatilda''s posts, he clarified that he was looking for a sail that could be carried in winds of 50 knots. I suggested that he would probably be better off with a a shallower reef in his mainsail and no jib at that windspeed than with a deeper reef in his mainsail and a storm jib. As you and I both seemed to agree storm jibs were sized somewhere more or less around 50% of his foretriangle. On a 26 footer that is a very small sail and when cut appropriately flat is hard to get to fly properly in a blow.

I have actually weathered a blow in my 26 foot 1939 Stadel Cutter (which was a full keel boat) under a storm staysail and found that the windage of this small sail made it very hard to tack through the wind or find a comfortable angle of attack. The windage of the foresail tried to pull the bow off to leeward but did not seem to provide any real useful drive. When we struck the foresail we were able to thread our way much more easily. I had a similar experience with my 1949 25 foot Folkboat. Although she had a similar hull form to the Cape Dory 26, she was a fractional rig and so does not provide the best example.

My comments intended to be helpful and were based on my own experience owning 6 boats between 25 and 28 feet, full keel, modified fin and fin keelers in a variety of cutter and sloop rigs, you are right that a person who has actually ridden out a 50 mph storm on a Cape Dory 26 with a storm jib would be a more valid source of information. In that regard I would agree that ndsailor''s comments are quite relevant to the discussion. It would be helpful to the discussion if ndsailor could mention in a little more detail the percent of foretriangle of his storm jib and how it is cut and where his sheet leads are located.

As to back pedaling, in my post I suggested that a heavy weather sail sized at 70% to 80% of the foretriangle might work well in windspeeds significantly less than the 50 mph winds waltzingmatilda was concerned with. This is a very different sail for a very different circumstance than the approximately 50% foretriangle storm jib that waltzingmatilda was asking about.


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