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post #17 of Old 12-15-2012
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Netherlands
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Re: Heavy winds?

Btw, i am pretty new to sailing and have a question:

-How do you decide when you need to reef your sail, where is the limit ?

I have just recently gotten myself a boat and have sailed it from guatemala to cozumel this far. On the road i got into some pretty winds a few times. The first time as i was going sharp into the wind, it got really strong, it scared me and i took the sail down just(didnt yet know how to reef so took it down completely) Probably the boat bouncing like an idiot, sprays of water reaching into the cockpit and me getting seasick helped create my fear more than any objective observations.

A few days later i had a wonderfull SE wind when going from san pedro, belize to cozumel on a beam reach. I made 8,5 knots while my hullspeed is 7 knots. I figured that must be ok because there is supposed to be a 2 knot current helping me and i kept the sails up. But stil l must admit i hade some slight doubts if this was being a good thing for my boat and sails. So where should i draw the line ?
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