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  #1  
Old 05-22-2008
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What size asymmetric spinnaker?

Considering picking up an asymmetric for my Pearson 30 and am interested in opinions on optimal luff size. My 'I' measurement is 39' and my 'J' is 12' 8". Cruising Direct (North Sails-owned) is suggesting a 39' luff which sounds good, but... I have an opportunity to buy a slightly smaller (36' 9" luff) radial drifter from Lee Sails in excellent condition at half the cost. The PO used it on a Rawson 30, for which I can't find the specs for comparison purposes. The leech on the smaller used sail is 1 foot shorter but the foot is actually the same. For what it's worth, I replaced my old #1 genoa this winter which, as measured by Doyle, had a 37' 1" luff plus a 10" pendant -- given *that*, the smaller aspin sounds adequate, no?

Don't want to be penny-wise/pound foolish but don't want to walk away from a bargain either. Thoughts or suggestions?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 05-22-2008
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What's the foot size on the chute? Ya need a 20' foot for the chute to work right with your J measurement. The luff is gonna hurt ya if ya plan to race.
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Old 05-22-2008
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The smaller one will probably work. You will lose some speed vs the larger one being quoted.

When I bought my AS, I purposely bought one that was 85-90% of max size, so if I got caught in higher winds, I would not overpower the boat as quick. Yes in lighter winds I lose .5-1 knot, but I still gain vs using my big genoa. If you race, you will probably get up to a 6 sec credit if the sail is smaller than max. IE I have what is called a code 3 spin, so I get 6 sec added to my time vs a code 5, which is the max per say, a code 4 you get a 3 sec credit.

In the end it is up to you, you could go smaller, learn on that one if you have not flown a kite before, get settled with it, then sell it for a bigger one, or buy a bigger one or supplement it with a larger symetric as I am going to do for racing, and if you need to go more straight down wind than a AS will allow. This is why I went with a smaller chute initially.

Not a right or wrong answer here.

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Old 05-22-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CLucas View Post
Considering picking up an asymmetric for my Pearson 30 and am interested in opinions on optimal luff size. My 'I' measurement is 39' and my 'J' is 12' 8". Cruising Direct (North Sails-owned) is suggesting a 39' luff which sounds good, but... I have an opportunity to buy a slightly smaller (36' 9" luff) radial drifter from Lee Sails in excellent condition at half the cost. The PO used it on a Rawson 30, for which I can't find the specs for comparison purposes. The leech on the smaller used sail is 1 foot shorter but the foot is actually the same. For what it's worth, I replaced my old #1 genoa this winter which, as measured by Doyle, had a 37' 1" luff plus a 10" pendant -- given *that*, the smaller aspin sounds adequate, no?

Don't want to be penny-wise/pound foolish but don't want to walk away from a bargain either. Thoughts or suggestions?

Thanks in advance.
it might be helpful to know how you intend to use this sail.
i have an asymm for racing/cruising purposes. it is broad in the shoulders and iirc is 705 sq ft. i have the tack set up on a sprit to make gybing less painful.
if you sail shorthanded, or have spinnaker novices aboard, i'd suggest a 'sock'.atn or chutescoop are the two two i have. consider a tacking set-up (atn makes one that clamps around your roller furled jib.it will keep you from running over your spin sheets.(ok, lessen the chance)
one thing to consider is the wind conditions you intend to fly said kite.
because i drive my sail in 15+ conditions, i have a 1.5 oz luff/foot, the rest of the kite is.75 oz. having all control lines led to the cockpit will save you immense stress.
i learned a few things last time i sailed w/ the chute. first, if you have a snap shackle and sock system, wrap the shackle w/ vinyl tape. mine pulled a 'harry houdini,' and opened at the masthead. (mental note to self, avoid this if at all possible).
even with just my novice spouse, i'm able to scream along using a bigger sail.
if slowly cruising along is your goal, and the sail isn't offensive looking remember you get to stare at this sail for a long time.do you really want bart simpson or a color scheme that borders on hideous? then the used sail is not as big a value.
i bought my sis & b-i-l's spinnaker for downwind use. although 'new' it is butt ugly. think halloween colors...however, i can live with it, given the great deal i got on a spin and pole.
north sails has an online video to show you how to properly rig your asymm. it has some tips for making sure your tackline and spin sheets are run properly.
for those of us who suffer through light air days on the chesapeake, this sail is a Godsend.
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Old 05-22-2008
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CLucas,

I'm with Marty on this one. We have a maxed-out asym and I wish it were smaller, for sailing with family and kids. We'd use it more often too. As it is right now, we tend to only use it when wind is very light. With a smaller sail, we'd fly it downwind in the mid-range too.

Another question is the material weight. Is it 0.6 oz, 0.75 oz, 1.5 oz ? I would think you'd want a 0.6 or 0.75 oz chute for general purpose sailing.

The less expensive smaller sail (assuming good condition and proper weight) sounds like a good value. Use the money saved to invest in a spinnaker sock if one is not included with the sail. Good luck.
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Old 05-22-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CharlieCobra View Post
What's the foot size on the chute? Ya need a 20' foot for the chute to work right with your J measurement. The luff is gonna hurt ya if ya plan to race.
Foot is 20', luff is 36' 9" and leech is 34' 6" and is .75oz cloth. I predominantly cruise and daysail with occasional weekend racing and beercanning (is that a verb?). I figure I'll continue to race in the non-spin division as I'm not likely to keep up with the big boys and their huge symmetrical kites.
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That's a good sized A-sail for your boat. Do yourself a favor and get an ATN sock. It makes ALL the difference in the world when flying single or shorthanded.
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A Sail

Big difference between a used radial cut drifter and tri radial a-sail. I don't think they make radial cut asymetrics any longer and I suspect the sail you are considering is over 10 years old and perhaps much older. So you might consider asking how old it is? The dimensions will work fine for your boat but it will never fly as nice or be as fast as a tri-radial purpose built.

For your intended use, it should work great and I suggest as others have a sock. Perhaps you can swing a deal with Lee. If the sail is as old as I suspect, even if it is in great condition as most of these are as they are seldom used, the nylon degrades...even in the bag and the sail becomes worth a lot less than half the price of the new one.

Good luck!
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Old 05-22-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 121Guy View Post
Big difference between a used radial cut drifter and tri radial a-sail. I don't think they make radial cut asymetrics any longer and I suspect the sail you are considering is over 10 years old and perhaps much older. So you might consider asking how old it is? The dimensions will work fine for your boat but it will never fly as nice or be as fast as a tri-radial purpose built.

For your intended use, it should work great and I suggest as others have a sock. Perhaps you can swing a deal with Lee. If the sail is as old as I suspect, even if it is in great condition as most of these are as they are seldom used, the nylon degrades...even in the bag and the sail becomes worth a lot less than half the price of the new one.

Good luck!
The sail was bought new in 2004 and is Lee Sails' Radial Head Drifter. Owner is selling with a sock and claims both are in excellent condition (photos look good).
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For what it is worth, my AS, I have flown in mid 20 knot winds, that is about as high as I would like to go with this size. I know if I had a full size 100% max chute, 15-20 would be max, and not always as much fun. My current one is a blast when it is 15-20 knots, 6-7+ knots, ie hull speed for my 25'WL 30 LOA rig.

As mentioned, a sock is nice too, I have one for my setup. But, my next ownwin sail will be a full symetric for racing etc, use the smaller AS for daysail/cruises etc. Yeah, an expensive way to go, but one needs sails for different needs, and away you go. Someday, I may even get a 1.5oz smallish sym chute for the 15-30 knot days too! But that will be after the new 155 and main to replace the 22 yr old dacs I have.

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