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Re: Low friction rings for single-line reefing
Clew outhaul tension, whether for a 'full up' or reefed mainsail sets the amount of camber / draft. The general rule is FLAT sail for 'light winds' and flat water and full drafted for moderate winds and bigger waves. FLAT is a 'speed' shape, well-drafted is a 'power' shape - high gear, low gear.
The real question is HOW TO CORRECTLY SET THE AMOUNT OF DRAFT (and with disregard of wholly non-intuitive aerodynamics)
• In 'normal' conditions (typically less than 15kts.), and after attaining a reasonably perfect set/shape of your mainsail via its tell-tales, etc., go close-hauled and then ..... simply adjust the amount of draft by outhaul tension until you get the MAXIMUM output reading on your SPEEDO (or maximum VMG to be more precise).
This will automatically correct for various wind/wave conditions, as you cant get any better than 'optimum'.
You'll notice by doing this 'watch the SPEEDO' when setting the outhaul that the amount of draft will be flattish (hihg gear) for those 'light and flukey' days, and for when at full design windstrength (about 15kts.); and quite full drafted between 10-15kts. You'll also note that 'the higher the waves' the more amount of draft will be needed (power setting or 2nd gear). Setting the amount of draft by watching the speedo is quick and easy. If the wind/wave conditions change during the day, simply readjust!!!!!
You'll also notice over time that since the sail is set for 'optimum' draft you wont be surprised as much by sudden 'power-ups'. .... and no 'aerodynamics' required!!!!
To put this another way, your outhaul is equivalent to the gear shift on the transmission on a car ... and you dont want to always driving around in 'low' or 2nd gear unless of course youre going up a steep hill.
FWIW - I think a 6:1 or 8:1 outhaul system is the minimum.
Last edited by RichH; 01-11-2014 at 12:02 PM.