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  #1  
Old 07-26-2011
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Stack pack cover vs traditional

I was watching a sailrite vid on you tube on how to make one.. it actually looks easier then making a traditional sail cover.

The advantages of an open top cover are obvious, what are the disadvantages?
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Old 07-26-2011
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I'm also interested in this. One question I have is about reefing. It seems that reefing would be difficult with the stack pack. I don't have much to back that up, but any comments would be helpful.
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Old 07-26-2011
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My boat has a Mack Pack. While handy, a fixed sail cover is in the way when sailing. There can also be chafe issues.

I'm looking at doing away with the Mack Pack and going back to a traditional sail cover with easy to remove lazy jacks.
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Old 07-26-2011
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DeniseO30, not sure if you're looking to replace a sail cover or improve sail handling (or both). We wanted to improve sail handling on our Sabre 34, which when we bought it had no mainsail handling gear. We considered the Sailrite option or a Mack Pack, but ended up making our own lazy jacks--modeled after ezjax to some degree. They are retractable, so they don't get in the way or chafe while sailing, and they have made handling the sail a lot easier. We didn't need to modify our cover either.

We've never used anything like a Mack Pack, so I'm not saying there's anything wrong with them. Just saying we did our own lazy jacks for--I don't know--maybe $150 and called it a day. Of course, our goal was sail handling, so I'm not sure if this helps you at all.
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Old 07-26-2011
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Denise,
Great topic, as I am considering the same thing. I added lazy jacks to my C30 and thought it was the best upgrade (of MANY) that I added. My current boat, a C36 has a really nice but large, sailcover which takes a few minutes to remove and re-install. It also has "Dutchman" style furling for the main, which I am not that crazy about. I just returned from a bareboat charter in the BVIs on a large cat that had the sail pack and lazy jacks. It certainly made dealing with the sail much easier. I think it is a good way to go. Most reefing systems will work fine with it, and you shouldn't have to secure the middle of the foot when reefing.

I am also considering the Sailrite kit, and will be very interested in the replies to your post. Has anybody here actually made the stackpack kit?

Cheers, Bill
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Old 07-26-2011
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I have lazy jacks and they are the best thing to have when solo. I've been thinking of the bungee cord on them to have less lines to tie and untie. I agree that reefing could be a prob.
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Old 07-26-2011
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The Doyle Stack Pak is a bit different than other "Stack Paks". With the Doyle, there is a membrane sewn from the sail to the cover. When the sail is raised, this pulls and holds the cover against the bottom of the sail, so that, in essence, the cover becomes part of the sail. Not good for racing, but fine for cruising.

Oh, and not only does it not interfere with reefing, there is no need to tie off the lowered portion of the sail as it goes into the cover.
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Old 07-26-2011
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I have a stack pack with lazy jacks and love it. I also have a jiffy reefing system, two single lines (one for each reef). Absolutely a perfect setup.
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Old 07-26-2011
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Our current boat came with a rotten conventional main cover so we elected to have a new stack type cover made to simplify the on and off routine. First the good: it's a breeze to use, just unzip and attach the halyard and your ready to raise the main. When dropping the main you only need to do a little tidying up of the sail and stow the reefing lines inside and zip it up. We used to not bother putting the cover on at the end of each day on an extended cruise and now it's so easy that we do, so I'm sure we will extend the life of the sail. I always hated taking off/putting on the main cover for some reason, and I know there were times that I sailed with genny alone because I didn't want to bother with the cover thing if it was only going to be a short sail. Now it's so easy I don't even think about it. The bad: when sailing the cover tends to "bag" out on the windward side which I am sure doesn't help our sailing performance (I'm trying to figure out a way to improve this). If I move the lazy jacks (we used the same lazy jack system that we had to support the new cover) forward to the mast the cover hangs down below the mast and flops around and blocks visibility so it's not really an option (also tying to figure out a way to make this work). For offshore use I would want to move the lazy jacks to reduce chafe so wouldn't want this kind of cover. The top of the cover tends to trap crab and fish skeletons that the bald eagles haul up there to eat after stealing them from the otters (this is a local problem, probably not a big concern in most locations :-))
We were lured by a cheap price from a local canvas shop instead of having Doyle or Mack make the cover, big mistake in hindsight, you want it done right if you are going to have one. We've had to make several modifications to ours (PITA) to make it function properly.
Overall- we love it even with all the minuses.
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When I want my lazy jacks out of the way for raising the sail, I do so before leaving the dock or anchor site. Once the sails are up, I then move them back to the normal position. Then they are ready for when I drop the sail, without having to re-position them at the time I want to drop the sail.
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