Great Lakes Sailor
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Saginaw, MI
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Re: Whisker Pole?
I understand what you are after. Don't think you really need to pole out the 155 all the way, and I would settle for a pole for your size boat that goes from about 16-18 feet. If you are planning to be able to use this as a whisker pole for your entire range of headsails you will definitely need an adjustable pole, which may cost in the $400-600 range for a good pole.
On the other hand, look around and ask around your yacht club or local marina. Put an ad in the newsletters. I picked up a pretty nice adjustable aluminum pole for $50 from a guy that had 3 spinnaker poles and wanted to clear up space. Wasn't the exact size I needed, but I have never found it to be inadequate for my 34' boat, and the savings is pretty nice for a tool I use infrequently and probably need even less. Although it is a little short, I have been known to attach the pole to my shrouds with using the full 155 genoa on a downwind run just to hold the clew out and keep it from flopping.
*DISCLAIMER* I don't sail dead downwind much, however, so I don't do much wing-and-wing sailing, and usually use the spinnaker whenever sailing downwind. Therefore I may not be as experienced as some members.
I would defer to the other members that use whisker poles more often, but a little creative compromise can save you big $.
Saginaw Bay, Michigan
"The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails." - William Arthur Ward