Originally Posted by tweitz
One useful thing many people don't use is a downhaul line on the main. Before I had a boat with an autopilot, the trickiest thing other than docking was to lower the main. Even though the halyard was led to the cockpit, I would turn into the wind, release the halyard, and I would then have to run to the mast to pull the sail down. The boat would drift off the wind and make things difficult. So I started to rig a downhaul line most of the way up on the main, led to a turning block at the base of the mast and then back to the cockpit. This enabled me to do most of the work from the cockpit and get the sail down most of the way without running up to the mast.
Something seems wrong here. Does your main have slugs, cars, or is it just a bolt rope? I don't think I've ever been on a boat that need a line to help get the main down. Of course if you're going downwind and the main is pressed against the spreaders, all bets are off.