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post #1 of Old 06-25-2011 Thread Starter
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Trimming old Dacron sails

Hello all, I've been lurking for some time now and I love the forums. Thanks for all the great advice.

I have a question about trimming old Dacron sails. I'm the main sail trimmer on my boat, and I'm usually trimming for very light winds (less than 10 knots). Initially, I did all the things I thought you were supposed to do - traveler up for twist, outhaul loosened 2/3 inches, no backstay. But when I trim the sails this way, it gets a huge belly, and sometimes the luff will actually backwind. After thinking about it, I'm guessing that the old (3 or 4 years) sails are stretched out; so sailling with everything so loose is not giving the right shape. I've begun leaving the traveler a little lower (and sheeting in) and keeping the outhaul very tight, and I think it sails a little better. I'm still not sure how to stop the luff from backwinding. I know that is killing our speed.

Any help is appreciated.
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