Re: In-mast furling
Having sailed both systems in mast & slab for 1000's of offshore miles on boats form 40 to 85ft. I've only had 1 furling issue and when I reviewed the problem it was do to inproper out haul tension. The older I get the more I appreciate in mast furling. I have had a # of clients ask or want to change systems when they are buying boats. I always answer if they buy a boat with in mast to sail it at least a year before changing. In mast is easier to use so mains will be used more & reefed easier. The 1 thing I found on boats that sail with the main reefed for long period that the sails wear out because there are no reinforcement patches at reef points. I did have a torn sail at a point were a charter captian always reefed @ the same place. This can be avoided by altering reefing locations. You also sacrifice windward performance with in mast. The only ones I've seen converted had been very custom boats that owners became more & more intrested in speed after a couple of burmuda races. So if your crusing go with a in mast if your a racer or performance crazed go with the slab. Finnaly recently priced a change on a 47ft cruiser from furling to slab in carbon fiber. It was right @ 100K complete. A aluminum section would probably be 40k less. So make your choice and get what fits your style in the first place.
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May you weather all storms