Best Looking MALE Mod
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Washington State
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A few thoughts we use:
1) We mark our reefing lines. Red, Blue, green: (100% FT, 75%, 50%). THese are color coded and matched with the main. This should be done in controlled conditions where the jib matches the main. I feel it is very prudent to do this ahead of time so that when the storm comes you are not guess working.
2) The book might say you can just pull in a reef. Depending on the sail area of your boat, you might be able to just pull it in anytime. However, if you have a lot of sail area and the winds jump into the 20s, 30s, or more... just grabbing that line and pulling in a reef will be an exercise in futility. Head into the wind some, ease off the sheet, pull in the reefing line and cleat it off. Ease out, pull it in more, then fall off again. The point is to keep forward movement while pulling in a reef or risk an accidental tack/loss of control of the boat. Note: When you start pulling the reef in on the jib, your boat will likely head up/point.
3) We always reef the jib first (but I do not know if there is a good reason for this... just years of doing it that way). If the main is also neccessary, we typically have cranked the engine (on our older boat with traditional main) to head into the wind. We never got it to drop right/easily otherwise. Other people may have had different experiences. I understand that Batt Cars make it easier to put a reef in. On our current boat with in-mast, we simply follow the same steps as the Jib (in general).
4) I always hated it when people said this to me, but it is SOOOO true: The time to put in a reef is BEFORE you have to. It is wayyy easier to take a reef out than put it in. When in doubt, put it in.
Just my thoughts. Fair winds.