Genoa trimming..... - SailNet Community

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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest Forums > Gear & Maintenance
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Old 06-13-2008
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Genoa trimming.....

I'm having real issues with my genoa and wondered whether it is time to bin it and have a new one made up. It came with the boat and has seen better days. I'm finding it impossible to trim it properly so that it makes a good slot with the main. No matter where the sheet leads are positioned it never seems to sit right.
Also it seems to always be too tight in the leech causing the mainsail to stall in the luff area (backwinded). Even with the leech line running free it still has a curl on the leech.
Am I flogging a dead horse here and be better off using it as a sea anchor ??
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Old 06-13-2008
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If its too tight in the leech, then you can't get the lead far enough aft. If you're at the end of the track then it's likely this sail was not meant for your boat in the first place. The tight leech is also probably responsible for the leech curl.

Unless you can experiment further with lead positions, it probably won't look any better.

If you can swing it, you'll be happiest with a new sail designed to fit.
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Old 06-13-2008
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Note my self-proclaimed "nautical newbie" status and consider my comments in that light .

ISTM "has seen better days" and the too-tight leech is an unusual complaint? I had thought that when sails aged, became "blown," the problem was generally one of not being able to get the leech tight enough? It hadn't occurred to me the problem was the sail might not have been designed for your boat, as Faster suggests.

In general terms: Drawing a line from mid-way up the luff, through the clew, will show you a reasonable starting-point for your genoa cars. Then you adjust from there, based on whether you need more twist at the top (move cars back) or less (move cars forward). This is determined by observing sail shape and telltales, and behaviour of the helm. It will change depending on tack and wind strength. From the starting point, you should have adequate track, both fore and aft, for tuning. Otherwise, as Faster suggests, perhaps that sail wasn't really designed for your boat?

How does the sail's luff look? Do you have, can you get, adequate forestay and halyard tension?

Jim
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Old 06-13-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bettyswollocks View Post
I'm having real issues with my genoa ... I'm finding it impossible to trim it properly so that it makes a good slot with the main. No matter where the sheet leads are positioned it never seems to sit right...??
I assume yuou are referencing an an overlapping genoa, have you trimmed it properly, i.e. so the luff breaks evenly, and as close inboard as it set well (typically 2" off the sreader tip)? You don't really trim a genoa for a "good" slot, the slot is whatever it is - backwinding of the main with an overlapping genoa, is normal and expected. As you reach the upper limits of a 150% you can expect up to 50% of the main to be backwinded, that is ok, it's fast. Don't worry about it.

If your genoa a is trimmed properly and you have a cupped leech not caused by the leech cord, then your jib needs to be recut or replaced, see a sailmaker if you want help deciding.
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Last edited by sailingfool; 06-13-2008 at 04:52 PM.
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Yes I think that is the case. Trimming the actual sail on it's own is not a problem. I'm familiar with setting sails and I can get the tell tales all flying fine from top to bottom, it's when looked at in conjunction with the main that there is this problem in how they interact.
The leech IS cupped even with no cord tension but thanks you for raising the point that a certain amount of backwinding is enevitable. This hadn't occured to me but is fairly obvious when you think about it.
I guess the best bet would be to get a sailmaker to look at it.
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Old 06-13-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SEMIJim View Post
Note my self-proclaimed "nautical newbie" status and consider my comments in that light .

ISTM "has seen better days" and the too-tight leech is an unusual complaint? I had thought that when sails aged, became "blown," the problem was generally one of not being able to get the leech tight enough? It hadn't occurred to me the problem was the sail might not have been designed for your boat, as Faster suggests.

In general terms: Drawing a line from mid-way up the luff, through the clew, will show you a reasonable starting-point for your genoa cars. Then you adjust from there, based on whether you need more twist at the top (move cars back) or less (move cars forward). This is determined by observing sail shape and telltales, and behaviour of the helm. It will change depending on tack and wind strength. From the starting point, you should have adequate track, both fore and aft, for tuning. Otherwise, as Faster suggests, perhaps that sail wasn't really designed for your boat?

How does the sail's luff look? Do you have, can you get, adequate forestay and halyard tension?

Jim
Depending on sail construction and design the leech, luff and foot are often the most reinforced areas and are made of multiple layers of cloth that may be entirely different from the working part of the sail. As the Dacron in the central part of the sail stretches the "edges" of the sail don't stretch as much. This means that when the sheet is led properly, the halyard is tightened appropriately and the sail is full it is tight on all edges but has a deep belly in the middle. When this happens the sail is past it's useful life for all points of wind forward of the beam.

If it's just the leech that's tight perhaps you have a leech line that could be loosened? Perhaps the sheet should be led further aft? I like to experiment with sail shape on a moderate wind day by going forward and manually pulling on the sheet or clew to see how the shape looks when there is more downward sheet force (car forward) or more aft pull (car aft).

Of course if you're just dying to buy a new sail than I will proclaim, with great confidence, that your sail is toast and you should replace it immediately.

The bad news is that you have to go sailing again to figure all this out...

Medsailor
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