Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Chicago area
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It mostly depends on the attachment point for the main sheet on the boom. The wind load against the sail will raise the boom which draws the boom toward center. using a traveler, in light winds, one moves the traveler to windward, to allow the boom to rise easily. In heavy winds, the traveler is moved more toward the center, as the stronger wind will cause the boom to rise. So the trick is, that if your main sheet attachment point results in less leverage downward on the boom, the boom will rise more easily. Put the main sheet in the middle of the boom, and it doesn't take much wind to get the boom to rise. So with a mid-sheet attachment point, the boom rises easily, this allows the vang to have a greater range of adjustment all the way up to very light winds. If the main sheet attachment point is at the end of the boom, that may be OK for heavy winds, but does not work for light winds, as the wind is not strong enough to lift the boom much. This means the vang has doesn't do much.
I will say that moving the attachment point farther forward is not a perfect alternative to a traveler, but it does make the traveler less important. I would also suggest that not having a traveler is going to more tedious to get the sail twist correct for any given condition.
RL 24 NEW to me April 25th 2014
AFC 17' 2+2 (sold in 2012)
Sunfish project boat
Sailing a large boat on a small lake is very tacky.