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  #41  
Old 01-18-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duster View Post
mennewaska,

thanks for the info...what brand furling system do you have?

thanks
The mast is made by Selden, so I assume that is who makes the in-mast furling inside it. The genoa furler is made by ProFurl.
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  #42  
Old 01-19-2011
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For the past 2+ years I've been living with my first in-mast furling mainsail. There are plusses and minuses, to be sure. That said, I think some of the more vociferous criticism seems to come from people who don't actually have the system. Here's my take on it, FWIW:

1. You definitely lose some performance, both because of size and also because of roach. It's not nearly as bad as it is being made out here. We have vertical battens, so we don't have negative roach. I wouldn't say we have too much roach at all, but it's there. The lack of sail area is something though. It's hard to "measure" because I haven't pulled our rig and replaced it with a standard mast and mainsail to figure out exactly how much more weatherly we would be, but it is my sense that we're not pointing as high or are as fast as I expect at times, and I'm attributing that to the main (because it certainly can't be my fault!).

2. You do have plenty of sail controls with an in-mast furling main. They are just different from a conventional main and you have to learn that. You certainly can have a cunningham, though granted most don't seem to be equipped that way. Likewise, you can effect draft with the outhaul and furling line. I have to say, you actually have a little bit more control and I can get my furling mainsail flatter than any other mainsail I've had. By playing the furling line, outhaul, vang and sheet, you can push, pull and stretch the sail just about any way you want it. If someone thinks there's a sail control for a main that you can't apply with a furling main, please speak up (seriously), as I'd be curious to see if I could pull it off.

3. I've taken ours offshore, and it has never given us a moment's problem. This was my BIGGEST concern about going to a furling main. I was very concerned about reliability, and what do I do if the main gets stuck halfway out (can't get it in, can't get it out to drop it). That fear still remains somewhat, but our system hasn't come close to giving us a problem on that front. Though the lines are led to winches, I have yet to be unable to furl or deploy the sail by hand. I probably just jinxed myelf, but there you have it.

4. The ease of use just can't be beat. CruisingDad one time advised me that we'll use our mainsail more because it's easier to use and put away. He was so right, and then some. Not only is it easier to use, but from a safety and performance standpoint, I am MUCH more likely to reef early, shake out a reef, adjust draft, etc., because it's so easy. The worst thing about changing gears with this thing is that it's too easy so I feel compelled to do it, yet I still have to put down my beer to make it happen, whereas with a traditional main I had the excuse of it being a hassle, so I could just keep on sippin'.

5. As I mentioned, we've had ours for about 2.5 years, and we don't see any more wear and tear than I would expect from a traditional main. And that includes some offshore trips with constant use. I'm not sure I see the point some make about the sail getting more wear because it's rolled. I sure don't seem to be experiencing that.

6. You do go through telltales. We seem to need to replace them every year, and sometimes in-season. I guess they don't tolerate getting rolled up too well.

As to the point some have made about requiring that everything on the boat be susceptible to being handled by one person alone, I'm not sure I'm buying that at all, and you would be concluding that a very large percentage of boats out there shouldn't be sailed because they require crew. FWIW (I know, "nothing"), I pretty much singlehand our boat all the time, but there in fact are some things with which I need help. I don't think that means our boat is "too big," but I guess others may disagree.

DG
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  #43  
Old 01-19-2011
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Can your wife singlehand the boat? If not, what happens if you get knocked overboard or hit in the head by the boom??? Exactly what is she supposed to do then? This is why I advocate having a boat that the smallest full-time adult crew can singlehand.

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Originally Posted by danielgoldberg View Post
As to the point some have made about requiring that everything on the boat be susceptible to being handled by one person alone, I'm not sure I'm buying that at all, and you would be concluding that a very large percentage of boats out there shouldn't be sailed because they require crew. FWIW (I know, "nothing"), I pretty much singlehand our boat all the time, but there in fact are some things with which I need help. I don't think that means our boat is "too big," but I guess others may disagree.

DG
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  #44  
Old 01-19-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
Can your wife singlehand the boat? If not, what happens if you get knocked overboard or hit in the head by the boom??? Exactly what is she supposed to do then? This is why I advocate having a boat that the smallest full-time adult crew can singlehand.
It depends on the circumstances. Under most, she could manage to get the boat into port. But if everything goes wrong and the situation turns very ugly, and all the things go wrong that could go wrong, then who knows, to be candid. But the same holds true for me under a variety of circumstances. If you are going to cruise with kids, the practical reality is that there always are going to be theoretical circumstances where those on the boat might need help. That's just the reality, and it's the case just about every day on the water with, I dare say, the majority of the boats out there.

Are you suggesting that only boats that can be single-handed should be sailed? Really?
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Last edited by danielgoldberg; 01-19-2011 at 08:54 PM.
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  #45  
Old 01-19-2011
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No, but that should be a major consideration when looking at larger boats. Many larger boats become a huge problem if the primary sailor is injured or incapacitated in some way. There have been quite a few stories about boats having to be abandoned when one person out of the couple sailing aboard her was injured or incapacitated.

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Originally Posted by danielgoldberg View Post
It depends on the circumstances. Under most, she could manage to get the boat into port. But if everything goes wrong and the situation turns very ugly, and all the things go wrong that could go wrong, then who knows, to be candid. But the same holds true for me under a variety of circumstances. If you are going to cruise with kids, the practical reality is that there always are going to be theoretical circumstances where those on the boat might need help. That's just the reality, and it's the case just about every day on the water with, I dare say, the majority of the boats out there.

Are you suggesting that only boats that can be single-handed should be sailed? Really?
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
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  #46  
Old 01-20-2011
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in mast furling debate (war of the roses)

I have been sailing for 20+ years. When I say sailing I mean not being "alongside" and out on the ocean. My boat is faster than yours and my boat does this and yours doesn't is really getting tired. Being on the water is something to behold and enjoyed!
They make all kinds of boats and gear for different folks! Power boaters think wind power is slow and sailors think they are purists.
Opinions of systems should always consider the users ambitions.
Enjoy the journey.

By the way I am a sailor. I have enjoyed all the valid points, just think the constructive criticism on this topic was being lost.

Last edited by bosn181; 01-20-2011 at 02:43 AM. Reason: addition
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  #47  
Old 01-23-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bosn181 View Post
By the way I am a sailor. I have enjoyed all the valid points, just think the constructive criticism on this topic was being lost.
You're not trying to bring rationality into a religious discussion are you?

I recently moved to a boat with a furling main. I do miss the sail shape of even the old, blown out main on my last boat. I love the convenience and we sail more than we used to. For how I use the boat, and where we sail, in-mast furling is wonderful. If I lived elsewhere, raced again, did blue-water cruising, I would not only use a different system but would have a different boat.

I'm sold on in-mast and will never go back unless there is a better solution for my needs developed.
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  #48  
Old 01-25-2011
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Wink In Mast furler

Once again I have learned a lot from reading a sailnet thread.
I am fortunate that we bought our present 37 foot yacht set up with Harkan Batcars & a very good single line reefing system for the main.It enables me to put in reefs without leaving the cockpit and at any point of sail.
Just before Christmas we were on a 60 mile coastal sail when our forecast 15 knots (on a broad reach) went to 30knots and gusted up to 40 knots.I put 3 reefs in without drama while my wife steered downwind.A couple of rolls in the headsail and comfortable sailing at up to 8.5 knots.
We are looking for our next yacht which will be bigger and many of those available have in mast furling.
What I have learned from this forum has reinforced my previous views that, for me,single line reefing is essential. It also rules out any yacht that has in mast furling because of the cost to change over.
This is a personal decision of mine and no reflection of anyone elses choice.
Thanks again for your contributions and advice.
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  #49  
Old 01-26-2011
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One point. A double line reefing system is actually a lot better in terms of being able to control sail shape. This is especially the case as the sails get larger. With a single line system you can not control the tension on the foot of the sail as well and can't control the sail shape as easily as you can with a double line system.

Quote:
Originally Posted by robfox View Post
Once again I have learned a lot from reading a sailnet thread.
I am fortunate that we bought our present 37 foot yacht set up with Harkan Batcars & a very good single line reefing system for the main.It enables me to put in reefs without leaving the cockpit and at any point of sail.
Just before Christmas we were on a 60 mile coastal sail when our forecast 15 knots (on a broad reach) went to 30knots and gusted up to 40 knots.I put 3 reefs in without drama while my wife steered downwind.A couple of rolls in the headsail and comfortable sailing at up to 8.5 knots.
We are looking for our next yacht which will be bigger and many of those available have in mast furling.
What I have learned from this forum has reinforced my previous views that, for me,single line reefing is essential. It also rules out any yacht that has in mast furling because of the cost to change over.
This is a personal decision of mine and no reflection of anyone elses choice.
Thanks again for your contributions and advice.
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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  #50  
Old 01-26-2011
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There's a 'functional' problem with in-mast furlers as most discussions of the in-mast 'furlers' only dwell on the 'mechanicals' ... and there is a vastly more important consideration - SAIL SHAPE. The following will hopefully explain why in-mast reefing is of very LOW BENEFIT, (beyond 'ease of use' and disregarding entirely the reliability, etc. issues of the 'hardware') in controlling the all important sail SHAPE: ...

Sails are not 'flat sheets of cloth', they are quasi-spherical 3 dimensional shapes ... for a damn good reason: aerodynamics. Just about any sail has most of its camber or position of max. draft (POMD) at somewhere near mid-cord of the full-up sail; the 'approach or entry shapes' to the POMD will usually be found to begin @~15-20% of cord length. Most sails that are roller reefed are left FLAT, essentially NO GOOD for 'aerodynamic flow' and typically when beyond 30% 'roll-up' are no longer or greatly reduced 'aerodynamic shapes' .... and simply cannot be used effectively when beyond the 30% 'roll-up'.

Plus, when in conditions that require one to reef you usually (when in non-FLAT water) need a 'full drafted' sail for the POWER it supplies for punching into waves and steep chop; when roller reefing (beyond ~30%) all you're going to get is a distorted FLAT (the panel shape aft of the mid-cord is ~'FLAT') and that 'flatness' is for SPEED SAILING in FLAT WATER and definitely NOT the 'shape' you want for *PUNCHING THROUGH" and over waves and steep chop. If you roller-reef beyond that ~30% then all you're going to have aloft is something akin to an NON-aerodynamic 'flat sheet of plywood --- something with very much LESS than the 3 dimensional shape of a 'sail', although it may 'look like' a sail because its 'triangular'.
With a roller boom or slab reefed sail you can always 'move' the important POMB back and forth via halyard and/or cunningham tension .... try that with a in-mast furler and you will JAM the furler and without any change in POMD because it can be thus trapped deep within the 'roll' !!!!! therefore NO change in the POMB fore/aft location. With inmast roller reefing, you can adjust the outhaul until you have a spinnaker like shape or a flat as a sheet of plywood shape .... but NOTHING that you can do with an in-mast roller furler-reefer will change the position of the POMB!!!!!!!!!!! (the position of the POMB is the functional item that has the GREATEST effect on 'balancing the helm pressure' and much more effect than the amount of sail area exposed !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)

Roller BOOM reefing, or better - slab reefing, will keep the POMD where it belongs, AND, you can power-up or power-down by changing the luff tension (via halyard or cunningham strain), etc. to change the location of Point of Max. Draft POMD to where its 'most effective' for the present wind and seastate conditions .... and can do this POMD relocation when single reefed, double reefed or 'deeper'.

So, If your cruising plans include venues wherein you might possibly be beating instead of ~100% of the time 'going downhill', then that FUNCTIONAL REQUIREMENT to have an aerodynamic shape aloft in high wind range conditions would almost entirely, ... or should, EXCLUDE an in-mast furler.
If however your intended venue is only for 'moderate' conditions that almost all of the time will only need a maximum 'single reef', then in-mast furling/reefing will be 'fine' .... (and with NO comments about 'reliability').

My emphasis here is SAFETY, not 'performance' as if you cant 'point' when you 'really NEED' to ... you're now vulnerable and 'dangerous'.

;-)

Last edited by RichH; 01-27-2011 at 07:59 PM.
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