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post #4 of Old 05-11-2008
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Maybe you need to clarify in your mind what sails and sizes you want in various conditions such as you expect to encounter.
This will depend somewhat on the boat and your knowledge of it.
As a working guide your standard sails would be set for about 15 knots say may be 12-18. A number one may go 0-6 and a number 2 7-11 roughly.
As the wind strength doubles the force on the sail goes up as the square ie 4 x.
Therefore reefing a 130 extends the range from 7-18 max.
If your sail area is say 800, by 30 knots you want to be down to 200 sq ft. Maybe it could take a little more but remember there will be gusts to 40.
If you have a staysail you may prefer to use this with the mizzen in strong conditions and in preference to a reefed genoa because of better shape and because in the 20-25 range you will have cut sail area substantially.
You may then find a single deep reef in the main may be enough.
Some boats may only reef at 25 others at 15. It depends on how much you want to stretch the sails, how stiff the boat is and how much you want to fiddle.
Once you are clear in your own mind you can then go over it with the sailmaker bearing in mind you are cruising not racing.
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