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Old 07-12-2001
JEFryar JEFryar is offline
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Question on Roller Furling Jib

Rob,
I added a roller furler to my O''Day.
It''s a Harken that utilizes the same halyard and does not have any connection to the forestay. This is what I have learned.
1. The shape and cut of any jib you plan to use is critical to the performance of the system and how effective it will reef. My working jib is too full at the top and does not furl will. In fact in 20kt winds it will not roll.I end up with a balloon at the top which requires me to take it down. Not a pretty sight.
With a smaller jib which I use in winds over 18kts works very well and I can reef it to almost any desired size.
I still hank on my genoa because of the afore mentioned experience.
2. The shape of a reefed jib... well... pretty much suckes. It does not have the shape of and will not preform as a smaller jib.
3. This system does make it a whole lot easier to take down and change jibs. This is my primary reason for adding it because I single hand my boat most of the time.

With all of that said. I still change to a smaller jib early and do not rely on the system at all in critical situations as a squall.If I had the resources I would buy new headsails cut specifically for roller furling/reefing.I suggest you discuss this issue with whomever you plan to purchase the system. The properly cut foresail will have an extra sail cloth to protect the rolled cloth from the dreded UV''s and some sort of foam to help maintain a more useful shape when reefed.
Good sailing
Jeffrey
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