Sail inventory basics - SailNet Community
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 5 Old 10-12-2006 Thread Starter
blueranger's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Colorado
Posts: 90
Thanks: 5
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Rep Power: 11
Sail inventory basics


This is my first sailboat and I'm wondering what sails would be considered "the basic necessary inventory." I sail a Ranger 22, no open water, just a large lake but I've encountered just about every wind condition out there I can think of. Right now I have a main and a 155% head sail that came with the boat. What else should I have? Is there a significant difference between a %110 and %125? Ijust cruise, no racing so I'm not sure I would even notice the difference.

And how do you decide what sail to use? What wind speeds dictate a specific sail? If there's a standard or rule of thumb that folks use would you please share?

Thank you,
blueranger is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 5 Old 10-12-2006
Senior Member
paulk's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: CT/ Long Island Sound
Posts: 2,845
Thanks: 4
Thanked 45 Times in 44 Posts
Rep Power: 18
The sail inventory you need depends upon a lot of things. Formost is the boat you have. If it's a catboat, you don't have to worry about jibs or spinnakers for example. Next is the conditions you sail in or that you are likely to encounter. If you're sailing on a large lake like Lake Michigan, conditions can change once you're out there to something very different from what you set out in, (possibly very nasty) and you'd still want to be able to keep sailing, to get to a harbor. You'd want to have a main you could reef at least once, and maybe twice. You might want a smaller (about 100% of the foretriangle) jib so that you could keep the boat balanced. Of course you'd need to make the sail change before it got too bouncy up front there! If the lake you're on isn't THAT big, you can probably duck back into a harbor before the weather gets too bad, and you don't need the smaller jib as much. The sail the boat came with probably fits well with the local conditions most of the time. Adding another sail gives you more flexibility, but... you may not need it a lot. The type of sailing you do also impacts the kinds of sails you may need. If you're going on long cruises that include overnight passages, it's often smart to hoist a smaller jib at night. If the wind picks up in the middle of the night, you'll have fewer problems. On a long leg in a heavy breeze, a smaller (100%) jib can be just what you need to provide the punch to get you through the waves without overpowering the boat. If you're only going out on daysails when the weather is nice, you probably don't need much more than you already have. If it was blowing hard enough for you to need a smaller jib, you might decide not to head out anyway. If you plan to race, a spinnaker needs to be under your tree at Christmastime, perhaps along with a smaller jib to provide total flexibility. You are the one who has to decide how you want to sail and how many options you need. Our boat came with #1, #2 and #3 jibs, but the wind conditions and race lengths around here really call for using mostly the #1 or the #3. When the #2 wore out (from UV degradation, mostly, rather than from sailing mileage) we didn't replace it. Sail for a season and then decide what would improve your enjoyment of the boat. You'll find out quickly what works and what you need.
paulk is online now  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #3 of 5 Old 10-13-2006 Thread Starter
blueranger's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Colorado
Posts: 90
Thanks: 5
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Rep Power: 11
Thanks Paul. I like to keep things as simple as possible so for now I'm just going to pick up a 110 or 125 and see if that works. Thanks again for the help.

blueranger is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #4 of 5 Old 10-13-2006
Senior Member
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 3,233
Thanks: 9
Thanked 56 Times in 54 Posts
Rep Power: 16
I sailed a 25' boat for many years on a small inland lake, and had a 155 and a 110 (hanked-on sails). I used the 110 in the spring and the fall, when the winds were strong and gusty, and the 155 in the summer, when the wind was lighter. Personally, I think a 125 would generally be a little too big for those stronger winds, and a 100 would be a little too small (assuming you'll only have 2 sails, and you're on a small inland lake). Those two sails cover a wide range of winds.
Sailormon6 is online now  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #5 of 5 Old 10-13-2006
Jeff_H's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Annapolis, Md
Posts: 7,500
Thanks: 12
Thanked 248 Times in 198 Posts
Rep Power: 10
The Ranger 22 was an IOR era race boats and was actually designed for a pretty large sail inventory. In full racing form, they carried a #1 (155%), Number 2 (roughly 130% if I remember correctly), a number 3 (roughly 110% and a spinnaker. They are tender and unforgiving as compared to Rangers non-IOR style boats. In racing form, the right sail decision was crucial, so much so that even on small boat like this, sail changes might be made during the spinnaker leg.

For daysailing and cruising, because of the Fractional rig you should be able to get by with just a #1 and a #3, carrying the #1 into moderately high winds using a increasing amounts of backstay tension and perhaps throwing a reef in the mainsail if things get to be too much. At some point around 12-15 knots the 110% really is a better sail in all ways. I would not think that you would want a #2 unless you fully planned to race and even then it would be the least used sail in your inventory. These boats had very poor performance dead down wind without a spinnaker, but they were easy to deploy, fly, jibe and retrieve,

Jeff_H is online now  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook

Quick Reply

By choosing to post the reply above you agree to the rules you agreed to when joining Sailnet.
Click Here to view those rules.

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the SailNet Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
Please note: After entering 3 characters a list of Usernames already in use will appear and the list will disappear once a valid Username is entered.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Heavy weather sailing sailorfrank Learning to Sail 26 09-10-2013 06:32 PM
Windward performance deseely General Discussion (sailing related) 21 04-01-2012 02:42 PM
New to Sailing, please Help =) xyris Learning to Sail 19 11-17-2008 08:30 AM
Traveler usage? Humpwalker Seamanship & Navigation 22 02-17-2007 10:54 AM
What is the point of a traveller? dwbecker Learning to Sail 9 09-25-2006 08:35 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome