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post #8 of Old 04-22-2011
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It is relative. I singlehand my C&C 30 most of the time (I'm singlehanding even when I have others aboard, since they're often not able to help) including racing. Having lines led back to the cockpit is helpful. But unless your traveler and primaries are back there, you still need to move around quite a bit. My primaries are actually workable from the helm, and my traveler is just forward of my pedestal, which I think is the perfect arrangement. I still use hank on headsails, but I have a downhaul also. The autopilot is the key. It allows you freedom of movement.
I need to leave the wheel, but not the cockpit, to raise or lower the headsail. I need to go forward to secure the headsail when it's dropped, or to reef the main (slab reefing with reef hook at the tack). Otherwise, I never leave the cockpit.
I'm so fond of the end-boom traveler I wouldn't have another boat without it.
Leaving and approaching a dock is the toughest part, since the autopilot doesn't help then. But you learn your own techniques.

Mark Smith
1977 C&C 30 Mk 1 hailing from Port Clinton, Ohio
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