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Old 11-24-2007
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What went wrong?

I took my son out yesterday for the first time and was having an awesome day. Handling of the boat went very well and we even put the toe rail in the water briefly. Decided to drop the jib due to wind. As wind and wave started to settle, we put the jib back up and this is where the problem began.

We where in basically the same wind conditions as when we started out and we couldn't get the boat to hold course. One gust caught use, turned us and caused my mainsail to bust off all the slugs. With only the jib, it was almost impossible to control. A gust would come along and blow the boat 90 degrees off course. My first sail on this boat was with jib only and the boat handled fine. Unable to maintain control, we dropped the jib and motored home.

My boat is a 22 ft Hunter (being a Hunter is not the problem) with a swing keel. This was only my third time out in her. I don't believe I was in wind conditions beyond my limited experience.

What I believed happened was that the keel raised partially up some point between dropping and re-raising of the jib. My keel is not a weighted keel. My son did the lowering and the raising of the keel so I am not certain as to the position when we came back in. Never been in a sailboat without the keel lowered, so I am uncertain as to how it would react.

Any insight would be helpful.

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