ASA and PSIA Instructor
Join Date: Apr 2000
Thanked 25 Times in 25 Posts
Rep Power: 16
The tension on the forestay should be applied by tightening the backstay. You adjust the length of the forestay and backstay primarily to create the proper rake in the mast. The proper rake is that which provides minimal weather helm.
When the boat is at rest there can be little or no tension on the forestay...depends on whether you have an adjustable backstay. At rest you release the adjuster. Adjuster or not, adjust the backstay so there is adequate tension to minimize luff sag ubder upwind load, to say 6" on a 50' luff.
Certified...in several regards...