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  #21  
Old 07-15-2014
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Re: Single line reefing question

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Originally Posted by Alex W View Post
On my boat you can get the best (or worst?) of both worlds by using single line reefing and moving the cunningham hook to the reef tack cringle.

This lets me reef from the cockpit with a single line. Once the boat is reefed I can go forward and move the cunningham hook up to the new tack. Now my reef line is controlling the clew and the cunningham line is controlling the tack.
Alex,

What I don't understand, if you are already essentially using a two line reefing system, why bother with the higher friction and wear and tear on the sails from a single line system?

Jeff
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  #22  
Old 07-15-2014
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Re: Single line reefing question

It is one less clutch space than real two line reefing where I have a dedicated tack reef line. However it lets me get the reef in from the cockpit without having to go forward. Once the boat is better balanced I can go forward and move the Cunningham.
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Old 07-15-2014
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Re: Single line reefing question

I'm at a loss here. There are times when I want more draft even after I've reefed? I've always sought to flatten the sail as much as possible and have not encountered a time when I needed to "power up" to go over a wave. Usually it is the opposite – I need to power back to keep from launching off a crest. Wouldn’t using a strop strap do the same function? It will keep the clew on the boom, allowing for less tension on the reefing line?
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  #24  
Old 07-15-2014
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Re: Single line reefing question

I have single line reefing. It was originally rigged with line going through the cringles (per Catalina specifications), but it had too much friction. I attached blocks to both cringles - tack and clew - and it relived the friction greatly. However, because the clew requires so much more tension, I found that I was always pulling the tack BELOW the boom.

For me, the optimum balance was struck by removing the tack block and running the line through that cringle. That prevents the tack from being pulled below the boom, so I could tension the line sufficiently to get the clew cringle to the boom. I left the clew block in place to reduce the friction at that high tension area.

I also had a serious problem with fouling the cheek block on the mast. When the reef was released, the lack of tension would cause the line to fall off the block, requiring me to go to the mast whenever setting the reef (which defeats the purpose of single line reefing). I fixed it with a guide plate:





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  #25  
Old 07-16-2014
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Re: Single line reefing question

FWIW our Pearson 31-2 has the OEM single line reefing system and it works quite well. I have marked the reef points on the halyard so the luff is loose for setting the reef, after the reef is in, I re-tension the luff as desired. The single line system produces a nicely flat reef, however, there is a lot of reefing line to tail which means while the process is convenient and avoids leaving the cockpit, it takes a lot of tailing to complete a reef. I think the old gooseneck hook and reefing line system was quicker.

The key to this system working smoothly (if a bit slowly) is that there is a two block connection (the blocks being end-to-end) in the boom, which connect the forward line part of the reefing line to the aft part - as the tack hits the gooseneck and tightens up, the block system seamlessly directs the line load to the clew which then tightens equally.
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Last edited by sailingfool; 07-16-2014 at 09:01 AM.
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Old 07-16-2014
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Re: Single line reefing question

This my opinion, based on 'aerodynamics' and my own experiences, that Ive stated before; and, Ill state it again.

Single line reefing when used does not permit one to set the needed amount of draft to attain POWER (1st gear) when one is 'punching' through steep waves. Aerodynamically speaking flat (less drafted) sails are for speed sailing, powered up (full drafted) sails are for 'punching through'. Its usually better to reef deeper and then INCREASE the amount of draft when needing to 'punch though' - impossible to do with a single line reef system.

Reduction of sail area primarily reduces the amount of heel but unless the amount of draft is then increased (while in steep waves) one will be left with a very 'unpowerful' flat shape which will have a very narrow range of angle of attack and which will impede forward progress especially when beating or close reaching where ... FLAT shape is for speed; FULL shape is for power.
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Last edited by RichH; 07-16-2014 at 10:41 AM.
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Old 07-16-2014
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Re: Single line reefing question

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Originally Posted by GeorgeB View Post
I'm at a loss here. There are times when I want more draft even after I've reefed? I've always sought to flatten the sail as much as possible and have not encountered a time when I needed to "power up" to go over a wave. Usually it is the opposite – I need to power back to keep from launching off a crest. Wouldn’t using a strop strap do the same function? It will keep the clew on the boom, allowing for less tension on the reefing line?
There are certainly differences between different boats in terms of when to reef, and how flat the reefed sail needs to be. But as a broad generality there comes a point at which a flat-reefed sail does not produce enough drive, and a full sail produces too much heeling and/or insufficient balance and control. This is especially true when beating in big waves or a steep chop, or power reaching in gusty conditions.

The typical solution is to start by depowering the sails as much as possible. When that no longer cuts it, to switch to a reefed but powered up mainsail. As conditions continue to build the reefed sail is then depowered (flattened) until it builds to a time when its necessary to make a headsail change or go to a second reef.

My concern with adding a strop for the clew is that it requires a crew member to install it at the end of the boom in conditions that required a reef in the first place. But more simply, a strop is unnecessary with a properly rigged two line reefing system.

Jeff
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Last edited by Jeff_H; 07-16-2014 at 11:08 AM. Reason: Strops
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  #28  
Old 07-16-2014
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Re: Single line reefing question

I agree wholeheartedly on the single line reefing scenarios rich is talking about..

none have ever worked for me in attaining real good sail shape...

another unpopular setup for some reason are reefing hooks...I dont know why they arent liked more...but I like them.

I really dislike the mess too much reefing lines make...especially long ones that are lead back to the cockipt for example...whereas a hook for initial set and then use of downhaul and halyard and outhaul for the clew etc can all be tweaked later on.

on racing boats I LOVE the straps that attach the clew to the boom and slide effortlessly...

the less HARDWARE the better for me...

cheers
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  #29  
Old 07-16-2014
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Re: Single line reefing question

I think I might agree with you on the MESS from all those cockpit lines make in the cockpit for several reasons.
With from-the-cockpit-reefing one can never really see how the reef is taking shape. Being at the mast when reefing gives better visibility of the reefing process. Its really easier to 'bust' a sail if you dont see the 'whole' sail when reefing --- biminis and dodgers blocking your view.
Cockpit reefing will prevent you from going forward and youll eventually lose your 'dexterity and muscle memory' for when you 'really need to go forward' and when you do go forward in 'heavy conditions' youll spend much more time going and coming.
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Last edited by RichH; 07-16-2014 at 11:24 AM.
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Old 07-16-2014
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Re: Single line reefing question

Im a all lines at the mast guy too...but I understand thats not all that popular either.

simplicity equals safety in my eyes, especially cruising...
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