Old Roller Furler (a.k.a. "To Furl, or Not To Furl...") - Page 2 - SailNet Community
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post #11 of 35 Old 02-07-2008
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To much negativity

I too used to use hank on sails, but my boat came with a brand new CDI furler with a brand new 135% Island sails Genoa. (go ahead and make fun of the CDI) Me and a buddy installed it in a few hours and I just have to say I won't go back to hank on. It's like going from a stick shift car to an automatic. As far as changing sails, no big deal, as far as being in the sunlight, just remove it if your worried about it. And as far as many hear put down the CDI, Well it probably would not have been my first choice but it cam with the boat and have to say I would do it again.

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Columbia River, Wa

Last edited by Catalina274me; 02-07-2008 at 08:45 PM.
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post #12 of 35 Old 02-07-2008
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How did the CDI install. Ive got a CDI on Lola and want to uninstall it soon. It looks like i can just undo the forstay and it will slip right off.


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post #13 of 35 Old 02-08-2008
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Check their website. I think they have a installation manual you can download and print off. Woek backwards from there.

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post #14 of 35 Old 02-08-2008
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Having sailed

Having spent 16 years sailing with hank on sails and 18 years sailing with roller furlers I find there is NO comparison other than slight sail shape. Sail changes are very, very easy and I've done it in 35+ knots and big seas on more than one occasion.

The benefits of a furler, the simplicity, ease of reefing and reliability over 18 years is far superior to that of hanks. These are NOT complicated systems. In fact they are about as simple to use and similar, in concept, to a window shade..

I don't under stand why SV Distant Star's sail "un-rolled" as he said it did. The only reason for a furled sail to un-roll is improper securing of the drum, worn out drum line or sheets or a broken furler. Sails don't usually un-furl unless there is a problem or user error. Eighteen of furler use years and I've never had that happen once..

In well over 30,000 nm I've yet to have a major problem with a furler and I've owned many brands including Hood, Schaefer, Furlex, Harken and CDI (I did have some minor annoyance issues with this unit) to name a few. Furlers are very, very reliable and far easier to use than hanks IMHO.

I think it's premature for you to yank the furler until you've at least spent a couple of months with it before making your decision.

I always find it's best to sail a boat for a season or more before making major rig adjustments or changes. Case in point, is my cockpit mounted main sheet. When I bought the boat my first thought was to change it to a cabin top traveler. After sailing her for a full season the thought of changing to a cabin top traveler is GONE...

Try it for a while, I think you'll like it, as thousands and thousands of sailors do and if you don't then yank it.

One more thing to consider is re-sale! If you remove the furler and get two-foot-itus you have just reduced the value of your vessel for perhaps the 99% of sailors out there who do like and use head sail furlers..

P.S. While continuous line furlers like the one pictured on your boat are no longer the fad many of those Hoods have thousands & thousands of trouble free miles on them and Pompanette/Hood still support them. Usually the only thing that needs to be replaced is the line. If you have a continuous line furler it's important to always secure the drum and not rely 100% on the line to prevent un-furling. Perhaps this is what happened to SV Distant Star?

This Hood Furler was over 17 years old when the photo was taken. The current owner of that boat is still using it to this day with no problems.

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Last edited by Maine Sail; 02-08-2008 at 07:23 AM.
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post #15 of 35 Old 02-08-2008
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Having sailed with both, I prefer having a furler. Since I bought a new headsail, I had it made with the foam luff, which flattens it out much better when reefed.

John
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post #16 of 35 Old 02-08-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hartley18 View Post
At the risk of serious over-simplification:

"Real Sailors Don't Use Furlers"!

Ya, and they think betamax is making a comeback!


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post #17 of 35 Old 02-08-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by supergrade View Post
our boat has an old, decrepit Seafurl roller furler. I've never have a headsail furler before, and to be honest, I don't understand them.
If your headsail is also old and decrepit you will have even worse shape if you reef it in a bit as the extra belly will just make a wrinkly mess. As PB mentioned a foam luff pad is Needed if you hope to keep some shape when reefed to suck in some of that extra belly even on a good sail. I had a foam luff on my last boat with a 135 and it was decent down to around 110ish. Now I have North Sails which instead of foam use rope with the idea that foam compresses over the years. My 125 is good down to 100ish. One thing that is very critical when you are reefing is to keep even more than the normal pressure on your genoa sheet when you are pulling in the furling line (fight yourself to really wrap it tight) to get the smallest tightest wrap possible because... Yes the bulge on the foil is an aerodynamic weakness.

Stan
'Christy Leigh'
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Wickford/Narragansett Bay RI

Last edited by christyleigh; 02-11-2008 at 07:51 AM. Reason: correct furling line to genoa sheet & Hood to North
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post #18 of 35 Old 02-08-2008
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Keep in mind that a foam luff can easily be added even to older sails. ( I think you could add the rope luff after the fact as well.)

The ability of a headsail to maintain shape while partially furled on a roller furler is more an issue with the cut of the sail than the quality/ability of the furler.

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post #19 of 35 Old 02-08-2008
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I would second Halekai's recommendation to not be hasty in removing the furling unit without at least trying it for a while. Modern headsail furlers are pretty well proven equipment and pretty bulletproof. If they weren't, they wouldn't be using them on the giant record setting single-handed boats like Ellen McArthur's B&Q.

A properly installed and maintained furling unit is really useful, especially if you sail shorthanded. That's the key though...it has to be properly maintained and installed, and also properly used. Misused, they're a serious danger.

Sailingdog

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post #20 of 35 Old 02-08-2008
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I don't think there is any question about the reliability or usefulness of roller furling. They really do make sailing much easier. Sometimes, however, when they are installed on older boats, the extra weight aloft adversely affects stability. They are also a challenge when you want to down size head sails and the wind is howling. Because the sail is only attached to the boat by the head, tack and clew (once it is out of the track) they can become a nightmare. Putting a storm jib up over a furled genoa is not going to work properly either.

Having myriad sails on furlers like Ellen McArthur is the right way to do it. But she had three or four furlers all with different sized sails. She also had Code Zero type furlers with spectra luffs so the entire furling system came down with the sail. The boat was also designed with the weight of the furlers in the plan.

If I had a boat with a furler, I would leave it that way unless something was wrong with it. If I had one with hanks I would also leave it that way unless I had some basic challenges getting the sails up and down. In the long run, hanks just seem to be tougher and I like that.

Gaz

There is a tide in the affairs of men,
Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune;
Omitted, all the voyage of their life
Is bound in shallows and in miseries.
Shakespeare, Julius Caesar IV, iii, 217
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