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  #1  
Old 09-29-2013
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My first REAL sail! Lots of questions...

This was on a 1976 Chrysler 22 Sandpiper

Besides the maiden voyage there has never been any wind the two times I have gone out. All last week I was watching the weather and it had been calling for 10-15 mph winds all weekend so I was excited to go out. Saturday morning rolls around and it is overcast, drizzling and my wife was not looking forward to our trip. I live about 30 minutes away from my boat and the trees were barely blowing so I was starting to loose excitement as well.

Pulling up to the ramp to start rigging the boat you could barely see flags flying in the marina and the water looked pretty calm in the bay. As we were launching a Sunfish was coming in and he said the wind was great out in the river once you got out of the bay, and boy was he right. Wind had to have been a steady 20 mph with gusts probably up to 30 mph and I had a completely novice crew and I am not very experienced myself.

I don't know the percentage of our Genoa but it is pretty big headsail. I wasn't expecting such high winds so I had rigged up the genoa instead of the storm jib, but I didn't want to change sails so I could get a good learning experience in heavier winds. Luckily my crew wasn't a bunch of pansies and they were only slightly anxious at the high level of heel we had with such high winds. I did learn quite a bit about how the boat behaves in high winds.

I certainly learned that my homemade rudder (My HDPE Rudder...) is not great at countering the sail/heel steering in high winds. It is just too thin to create a good enough airfoil shape so it looses efficiency real fast if you have to turn it much. I need to look into getting a thicker piece of HDPE to shape or make one out of wood. I had a blast in the high winds and I want to do it every chance I get so I want to build a rudder that can handle it. Would making it taller than OEM help?

Leading car blocks for the genoa... Where do you guys place them? I had mine just stern of the back window and I don't think they were far enough back to get a really flat sail. I certainly did not need the power from a deep camber but I couldn't get it to flatten out.
Also do you run your sheets on the outside of the life line so it goes straight to the leading car block or do you make the sheet come over the lifeline then down to the block?

How do you keep your sheets from overlapping themselves on the winch? If I wrap it 2 times and pull the sheet during a tack it stays nice and flat on the winch but if I wrap it 3+ times the sheets try to overlap themselves and get into a knot on the winch. In order for my winch to even grab the sheet while using the winch handle it has to be wrapped 4+ times and even then you have to pull on the sheet while using the handle for it not to slip. These are brand new 3/8" sheets (not cheap) so I was hoping they would grip better. When it is wrapped that many times you can only get about two revolutions of the handle before the sheets create a knot.

Also I found it hard to work the winch in high winds because the crew had to be on the leeward side of the boat to counteract the heeling, and to get to the working sheets you had to jump to the low side to turn the handle. Do you guys run the sheet up to the windward winch and just bypass it and work the sheet from the leeward winch so you can stay on the high side?

I have to run but I have more questions to ask. I appreciate any comments and advice you can provide.

Thanks,
Zac
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  #2  
Old 09-29-2013
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Re: My first REAL sail! Lots of questions...

Well, I'm not good on rudder shape questions so will pass on that one.

In general, place your jibsheet block so when close-hauled, all the way in, the angle of the sheet from block and mythically continued forward and upward, intersects the headstay and jib luff (same thing really) about halfway up the jib luff, or maybe 5 to 10 degrees "higher up" than mid-way.

Now I'm going to assume the "lead" of the sheet from the block to the winch drum is okay. It seems you have a how-to-wrap-and-winch question, and it's likely you need to keep it to two wraps initially while the sail is easily trimmed (meaning not full of wind yet) and the "new" sheet is still sort of slack or at least not carrying much load yet, and the jib not "filled" completely yet. Slack is easy on your arms, but it's also the friend of winch overrides, it's just too hard to keep 4 wraps alongside each other rather than on top of each other.

Once you have heaved in what you can by hand with two wraps (no handle yet) while you have a little slack and lighter load, THEN once you begin to get the heavier load, add the 3rd and 4th wraps stick the handle in, and crank away with one hand and the other tailing (pulling the sheet enough to keep friction on the winch drum). Or, if the force is strong (as Darth Vader would say), then hand the sheet to someone else to tail and use two gorilla hands on the handle. With a heavier load from the jib (and assuming the lead-angle from block to winch is good), this tension will tend to keep all 3 or 4 wraps in place on the drum.

This may sound like a lot to remember but it becomes second-nature real fast.

And yeah, in heavy air upwind, you don't want to sent anyone to leeward on a lightweight boat. So take maybe one, or two max, wraps on leeward winch, then take it up to windward winch, a couple of wraps there, and crankity-crank while you are all up on the windward rail. You need fairly long sheets for this.

These are excellent first-sail questions! Keep 'em coming and best of luck.

Last edited by nolatom; 09-29-2013 at 07:51 PM.
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Old 09-29-2013
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Re: My first REAL sail! Lots of questions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by nolatom View Post

And yeah, in heavy air upwind, you don't want to sent anyone to leeward on a lightweight boat. So take maybe one, or two max, wraps on leeward winch, then take it up to windward winch, a couple of wraps there, and crankity-crank while you are all up on the windward rail. You need fairly long sheets for this.
I learned this trick a couple weekend ago and it works very well, even single handed
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Old 09-29-2013
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Re: My first REAL sail! Lots of questions...

" but I didn't want to change sails so I could get a good learning experience in heavier winds. Luckily my crew wasn't a bunch of pansies and they were only slightly anxious at the high level of heel we had with such high winds. I did learn quite a bit about how the boat behaves in high winds."

I"m trying.. really trying to be kind but I don't think I'll win a kindness award for this;

Clearly, your little jaunt was more about ego then learning to sail. The "first real sail" should have been about your guests, (crew) handling the boat, handling sails, reefing, motoring, not about a Genoa you can't/don't know how to control that is hard to flatten even in light air.

The wind was probably no where near 20 and 30 gusts. You would have been knocked down or worse, that little 22. Do you know the first advice anyone gets? "when in doubt let out"

I don't think if I were a friend of yours, I'd be back for more abuse.

No mention of the main sail....was it up? locked and centered, I'm guessing?

Next time.. (you may find yourself "suddenly solo") Suggestion, you apologize to your friends, (and wife?) for not considering their comfort level first.
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Old 09-29-2013
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Re: My first REAL sail! Lots of questions...

Thinking same about wind speed as returning Sunfish's description
of wind would certainly have had a few adjectives thrown in if
was gusting to 30.

You may very well have to reexamine your rudder, however
next outing with brisk wind see how boat reacts when you try sailing with less heel...smaller jib, flatten sails, lower traveler,
reefed main. Rudders are not at their most efficient
with extreme heel. If still not right look up weather helm, which has been discussed here at great length.
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  #6  
Old 09-30-2013
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Re: My first REAL sail! Lots of questions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by nolatom View Post
Well, I'm not good on rudder shape questions so will pass on that one.

In general, place your jibsheet block so when close-hauled, all the way in, the angle of the sheet from block and mythically continued forward and upward, intersects the headstay and jib luff (same thing really) about halfway up the jib luff, or maybe 5 to 10 degrees "higher up" than mid-way.


Now I'm going to assume the "lead" of the sheet from the block to the winch drum is okay. It seems you have a how-to-wrap-and-winch question, and it's likely you need to keep it to two wraps initially while the sail is easily trimmed (meaning not full of wind yet) and the "new" sheet is still sort of slack or at least not carrying much load yet, and the jib not "filled" completely yet. Slack is easy on your arms, but it's also the friend of winch overrides, it's just too hard to keep 4 wraps alongside each other rather than on top of each other.

Once you have heaved in what you can by hand with two wraps (no handle yet) while you have a little slack and lighter load, THEN once you begin to get the heavier load, add the 3rd and 4th wraps stick the handle in, and crank away with one hand and the other tailing (pulling the sheet enough to keep friction on the winch drum). Or, if the force is strong (as Darth Vader would say), then hand the sheet to someone else to tail and use two gorilla hands on the handle. With a heavier load from the jib (and assuming the lead-angle from block to winch is good), this tension will tend to keep all 3 or 4 wraps in place on the drum.

The double wrap and pull with hands is what I was doing and it worked out good, but obviously you can't trim the sails hard with your hands. What do you mean by the lead of the sheet being okay? Here is a picture from the manual that shows the sheet lines...


This may sound like a lot to remember but it becomes second-nature real fast.

And yeah, in heavy air upwind, you don't want to sent anyone to leeward on a lightweight boat. So take maybe one, or two max, wraps on leeward winch, then take it up to windward winch, a couple of wraps there, and crankity-crank while you are all up on the windward rail. You need fairly long sheets for this.

So when you run the sheet through both winches you still need to wrap it at least once on the leeward winch then a couple times on the windward winch? I have plenty sheet length so this will not be an issue.

These are excellent first-sail questions! Keep 'em coming and best of luck.

Thanks for your help,
Zac
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Old 09-30-2013
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Re: My first REAL sail! Lots of questions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by deniseO30 View Post
" but I didn't want to change sails so I could get a good learning experience in heavier winds. Luckily my crew wasn't a bunch of pansies and they were only slightly anxious at the high level of heel we had with such high winds. I did learn quite a bit about how the boat behaves in high winds."

I"m trying.. really trying to be kind but I don't think I'll win a kindness award for this;

Clearly, your little jaunt was more about ego then learning to sail. The "first real sail" should have been about your guests, (crew) handling the boat, handling sails, reefing, motoring, not about a Genoa you can't/don't know how to control that is hard to flatten even in light air.

The wind was probably no where near 20 and 30 gusts. You would have been knocked down or worse, that little 22. Do you know the first advice anyone gets? "when in doubt let out"

I don't think if I were a friend of yours, I'd be back for more abuse.

No mention of the main sail....was it up? locked and centered, I'm guessing?

Next time.. (you may find yourself "suddenly solo") Suggestion, you apologize to your friends, (and wife?) for not considering their comfort level first.

Sorry I don't know what you mean by having the mainsail "locked and centered" but it was in the centerline of the boat when we were close hauled. The traveler on my boat is not easily adjusted and requires removing of pins from the track to limit the movement of the traveler. when you tack/gibe the traveler slides in the track until it hits the set pin (about 8-10" if I remember correctly) I do not know enough about tuning yet to properly set the traveler or to know if it should even slide freely or be locked in place by the pins each time you tack?

I have spent plenty of time in the back of trucks while going 25-30 mph to know what that feels like. Just because a sunfish was out sheltered in the bay doesn't mean I was seeing 20+ mph winds out in the open river. The Chrysler 22 is a heavy little boat and with an additional 700 lbs of crew we had a pretty good fight against gusts. Also due to the lack of rudder power the boat would steer into the wind before it could knock us over so no worries about going into the water.

Yes my friends were a little beat up but that mostly had to do with the deck being wet, them having poor balance on a boat, and not really knowing how to move around in the beginning. They were moving around pretty good by the end of the day. You make it sound like I was an jerk for putting them through hell They had a good time and it was a learning experience for us all. Next time I will use a smaller sail in winds like that because NOW I know what it is like using a genoa in high winds. Had I used a smaller jib it still would have been cold, loud (wind noise, couldn't hear our little bluetooth speaker) and they still would have beaten themselves up moving around the boat

I need to read up some more on proper sail management (reefing in particular because i don't know how to properly tie it down) so we have a better time next sail. I guess maybe that can be my next question in this thread...
How do you properly reef a mainsail? I know I can find this information my searching, but maybe it will help another novice that reads this thread.

Zac
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Old 09-30-2013
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Re: My first REAL sail! Lots of questions...

I've sailed your boat a friend has one. You tube has thousands of educational vids.
This you and the crew? LOL
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Old 09-30-2013
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Re: My first REAL sail! Lots of questions...

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Old 09-30-2013
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Re: My first REAL sail! Lots of questions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by deniseO30 View Post
I've sailed your boat a friend has one. You tube has thousands of educational vids.
This you and the crew? LOL
hahaha Yeah that headsail looked about as large as the one we were using. I wasn't yelling at the crew like that but we were moving along about like that. My gps showed 7.3 mph a couple times, but we stayed around 6 mph cruising speed most of the time. The waves were MUCH bigger for us however. We buried the bow a couple time going over the waves.
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