Join Date: Jan 2007
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I fitted a "Main-Star" roller furling boom last year. The sail gets rolled up around a shaft inside the boom itself. It all looks pretty neat in theory. In my case, it has not yet proved an acceptable system but is a fine waste of money. (I should have posted this on the confessions thread).
I had hoped I could raise and lower the main sail from within the wheelhouse, instead of going to the mast to reef slab-wise. Yes, the sail goes up just fine. But getting it down is a labour of ... something too long. There's no dropping the main in a hurry anymore, it slides in a luff grove on a foil and jams happily. The boom has to be at just the right angle to the mast, otherwise the sail rolls up too far forward or back on the shaft and jams. If the halyard is not released with just the right tension as the furling line is hauled in, then either the sail furls too loose and will not all fit into the boom, leaving enough working area in the breeze to give trouble, or it takes too much hard work to wind it in.
Maybe I'll find how to trick it into submission, or return to slab reefing on my old boom.