Do you leave your reefing lines rigged all the time? - SailNet Community

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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 07-07-2009
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Do you leave your reefing lines rigged all the time?

Do you leave your reefing lines rigged at all times? I am going to re-rig my two line reefing system and I am wondering if these lines stay rigged.

It seems from all the talk about reefing from the cockpit that they would stay rigged, but it seems that having reefing lines running from the aft end of the boom up the leech of the sail would interfere with air flow?
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Old 07-07-2009
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They should be kept rigged all the time. It is nearly impossible to pass the line through the eye on the leech when you need it.
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Old 07-07-2009
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Leave em rigged

As a test, try rigging the lines when you're tied up at the dock. Then imagine trying to do that when the wind kicks up enough to make reefing necessary. You're right, they do interfere a bit with the air flow but you gotta have them ready when you need them.
You might also practice reefing the main on a nice calm day to a point where you and your crew can practically reef in your sleep. Better than trying to learn in a 30-kt wind and a choppy sea.
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Old 07-07-2009
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Yes... if you really want to clean up the air flow, get higher tech lines of a smaller diameter for the reefing lines. 3/8" polyester double braid, which is commonly used on many boats up to about 35' LOA has a breaking strength of about 4000-4400 lbs. 1/4" T-900 has the same breaking strength but far less windage and weight aloft.
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Old 07-07-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bloodhunter View Post
As a test, try rigging the lines when you're tied up at the dock.
Bloodhunter is right on. Once you can do it at the dock try it without leaving the cockpit - then try it when you have a beautiful day with 5 - 10 knot winds. Then try it all by yourself with no help.

When practicing - try it in your foul weather gear with harness and tether.

When that storm comes up from behind, catches you by surprise and the winds and rain are coming at you sideways - it is a PITA to try and figure out a seldom used system.

Me - it is easy - the commodore looks out before we leave and sometimes says - "please put a reef in."

I have found:
  1. life is much nicer when I listen to her and comply
  2. it is much easier to shake a reef out than to put one in

We have left harbour with a "not needed" reef in on more than one occasion, but Linda is also quick to realize we did not need it and to suggest we take the reef out.

Cheers

Rik
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Old 07-07-2009
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I am having trouble with this tread. Lets get real, just how much speed can reef lines cost you. Worrying about disturbing the air flow of your sail by reef lines, are you that good of a sail trimmer that this would make a deference.

I sail with 2 jiffy reef lines that always rigged and beat boats with better PHRF's than my boat. If my reef lines cost me a 1/10 of knot (which I doubt) so be it. I do know that when I need to take in a reef, I am not thinking about that 1/10th.
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I race regularly on 2 different boats.

First boat has 2 reef points in the main. We keep the first reef point rigged all the time. The 2nd reef line has a stopper knot tied at the end of the boom so that it just needs to be attached to the sail if needed.

Second boat is a OD racer. They remove the reefing lines and replace them with very light weight lines that can be used to fish the proper reefing lines through when required. This lowers weight and windage on the sail plan. But I think it is getting a little picky. Then again, they tend to win a lot of races, so......
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Old 07-07-2009
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Our boat, an Alerion Express 28, has two sets of reef points, with single line reefing set up for the first reef only.
We leave the line in place.
Paul
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Old 07-07-2009
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On the J24 i allways have then IN as the wife does not like heeling

On the 35' boat i also race on the race main does NOT even have reef points BUT we only use that sail on short races and have a HD main for distance racing
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Old 07-07-2009
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I keep them rigged in the boom w/ high tech/light weight line and hooks pliced to the ends. When it pipes up, unload the sail, hook onto the horn at the tack, then hook in the reefing line at the clew. Easy to do with your eyes closed, no windage and low weight.
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