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Not sure about that. Assuming you reef at the proper time, it shouldn't make a difference whether you've got roller or hank-on headsails. And once the proper time has past, if you're planning on rolling up the jib instead of taking it down, now you have the weight/windage/unwinding problems to potentially deal with.
Hank-on fans might say that the ease of maintenance of a hank-on system outweighs the roller system's benefits
The more time I can stay off the bow the safer I am, especially in a blow while single handing. I regularly roll my furler in 35 knots of wind with no effort. Would not want to be on the bow changing sails with a hank on jib in that situation. To stay safe, I try to minimize risk, and one way is to minimize time spent in a potential dangerous situation, and the roller allows me to do that. It may fail at some point, but for me, dealing with its failure would be the same as hanking and raising (or taking down) a jib alone in 35 knot winds. As far as maintenance goes, I rather have a hank on, that would also allow me to do more inspections of the forestay, but overall, I will stay with the roller. BTW hank ons have problems too, once was raising a storm jib on an 85 foot boat and have the tack break, sail went all the way to the top of the mast. We had to use a winch to get her down. That was in 45 knots of wind. The capt of that boat is going to install a roller after sailing with hanks for the last 20 years.
Last edited by casey1999; 11-22-2011 at 04:58 PM.