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post #1 of 7 Old 03-23-2013 Thread Starter
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Sail stack system

One of the boats we are considering has a Doyle sailstack system for the mainsail. A couple of questions:
- does this system work as easily as it is billed?
- does it affect sail performance while under sail? The pictures show the sides of the sailstack partially blocking the lower part of the mainsail.

It sure looks a lot easier than flaking a large sail.
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post #2 of 7 Old 03-23-2013
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Re: Sail stack system

Essentially you still have to 'flake' the sail.. these things are really just lazyjacks with a built-in sailcover. If you don't flake the sail to reduce the bulk the cover can be very difficult to close.

I don't like the way the covers flop around on the sail while sailing... it is possible to roll and secure the 'cover' sections rather than let them stand there, but then you need to adjust the lazyjack portions each time. Our friends' last boat came with that arrangement (they island-hop in the Caribbean each winter).. FWIW they did not keep it when they bought a new mainsail. They still have lazyjacks, but use a conventional sailcover.


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post #3 of 7 Old 03-24-2013
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Re: Sail stack system

I put a Mack Stack Pack on our C36 and consider it among the best improvements we've made to the boat. I agree it is not exactly the "Drop-Zip" proposition that seems to be implied by everyone making these things, but it made what used to be several minutes of work requiring both my wife and I to a process taking less than 1/2 the time and allows either of us to complete the task single handed. This greatly decreases the stress of trying to drop the sail in choppy windy conditions while approaching a narrow channel as one of us can remain 100% focused on the helm while the other can manage the sail alone with minimal effort.

As far as performance, I'm a cruiser with a racers heart so I pay attention to sail trim and don't see a huge impact in performance leaving the cover in place. The Mack's lazy jacks are designed to allow them to be slacked and rolled into the cover along side the boom. This removes any potential loss of performance and likely more importantly elminates any chance of chafe. I normally leave the jacks/bag in place for day sailing and only roll them up if we'll be doing an overnight (not all that often).

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Last edited by PalmettoSailor; 03-24-2013 at 08:10 AM.
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post #4 of 7 Old 03-24-2013
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Re: Sail stack system

Stack packs, lazy jacks, etc are necessary evils, if you have a large main and are shorthanded. If you have a battened main, they can make it a real pain to raise it, but you do get used to it and learn some tricks.

I'm not sure you would call it the halyard, but the line that comes down the mast that you use to adjust tension and hold them up is the one if find most likely on the boat to slap the mast at anchor.

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post #5 of 7 Old 03-24-2013
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Re: Sail stack system

I have a Mack pack on my 44footer with full length battens. It makes dropping sail a doddle. Just go head to wind and release the halyard. The sail drops neatly into the lazy jacks and I then zip up the pack after anchoring.

I always slacken the lazy jacks and bungee them forward to the mast before raising sail to avoid the battens getting caught and leave them there while sailing to avoid chafe.

Lazy jacks are a single handers friend.
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post #6 of 7 Old 03-24-2013
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Sail stack system

I have a Doyle stack pack and, while its not quite as easy as shown in the ads, it is quite convenient, especially when shorthanded. I have not noticed any negative effect on sail trim. I would get it again.
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post #7 of 7 Old 03-24-2013
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Re: Sail stack system

Lazy Jacks, anyone?

Stu Jackson, Catalina 34, 1986, M25 engine, Rocna 10 (22#), Maple Bay, BC, Canada
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