We had massive weatherhelm on the old girl to the extent that I've had her do a ninety degree turn that was uncontrollable and we very nearly t-boned another vessel. Old main sheet was very hard to let off under heavy load.
Anyway, asked rigger to look at it and we have since fitted a shorter forestay, new main sheet arrangement with extra purchase. We have actually fitted a complete new rig but that's got nothing to do with this thread.
Whereas previously we had considerable sag in the forestay it's now nice and tight and rigger has put a lot more tension on the backstay than previously.
Took her out for her first sail last weekend and...
Genoa comes off and refurls much more easily than previous. Good.
Extra bend in the mast means flatter main. Good.
Goes to windward with more power even in light airs. Good.
When it puffs what weather helm there is is very controllable. Good.
She also seems to go through waves much more smoothly with less hobby horsing. Good.
All in all it's all good but most importantly to this thread, on the riggers suggestion we did not fit a backstay adjuster. Thus far I think he is on the money.
Emphasise that we do very little if any racing. Maybe do some twilights but that would be about all.
Boat is a 34' steel VDS sloop, masthead rig.
So, Denise, I'd reckon you need to shorten your forestay and get that rig set up poperly. It's a bugger when you have a furler but to my mind it's worth the hassle.
“Life is a trick, and you get one chance to learn it.”
― Terry Pratchett, Nation