My thinking on the below deck furler had to do with issues with the interaction between ground tackle and the furler drum as well as being able to use deck sweeper headsails. The drum (as well as the windlass) would be accessible through the rope locker lid. This was a coastal cruiser and so I wanted to be able to use sails optimized for coastal use. This description was probably written roughly 10 years ago. There are somethings that I might do differently today.
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Curmudgeon at Large- and rhinestone in the rough, sailing my Farr 11.6 on the Chesapeake Bay