I have just acquired a new mainsail for my Typhoon, which has a set of reefing cringles and points. What is the simplest way to set up reefing tackle so that the main can be reefed easily under way? Is there an article or book that explains how to do this?
Dan Dickison responds:
What you're after is actually pretty simple, but it wouldn't hurt to have a visual reference, and for that I recommend John Rousmaniere's Annapolis Book of Seamanship (which is available in the SailNet Store), and Mark Matthews article on Reefing Basics. In his chapter on heavy weather sailing, the Rousmaniere discusses various methods for reefing. For the Typhoon, a simple jiffy reefing system would be best. For that, you need a reefing line run through a block at the forward end of the boom and aft to a block near the end of the boom. From there the reefing line is led through the cringle in the leech of the mainsail and then down to the boom. It shoud be made fast at the aft end of the boom either through a bale or around the boom and knotted to itself. Then you can pull on the tail of this line to shorten sail and make that fast to a cleat either on the mast or on the deck. Of course you'll need a reefing cringle in the luff of the sail and that needs to be affixed to a hook on the gooseneck or if you have a similar line run through it, that needs to be tensioned so that the cringle can be pulled down toward the gooseneck, effectively shortening sail. I hope this information helps you and keeps you out of the water.