Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Annapolis, Md
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The Whitehalls that I have sailed have had a long fairly deep keelson and planked were planked down in the stem and onto the skeg in the stern. This was intended to help them track straight when being rowed but which also made these boats hard to turn under sail. The whitehall that I knew best, had semi-circular centerboard (pivoted at the front) that probably extended roughly 2 feet below the boat when fully down. The boat would not tack reliably undless the board was in the fully down position.
Complicating things was the fact that whitehalls have an easily driven hull, a rig with a lot of windage, and turning the long keel quickly makes a lot of turbulance, and so they lose a lot of speed during the tack. It is important to "carve the turn" rather than trying to make a quick tack.
Adding a bowprit and jib will only add more windage slowing the boat further and making it harder to get head to wind. On the other hand if you can get head to wind, you should be able to back the jib and get the boat to pay around. Not a great way to sail because you can get caught back winded and be over before you regain steerage.
As several others have said, I would guess that the problem is with your centerboard modifications and that adding a jib and bowsprit is an unnecessary complication.
Last edited by Jeff_H; 08-11-2006 at 10:55 PM.