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  #1  
Old 09-26-2008
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Jib Pennant and Performance

Can I expect any performance increase (in light air) by adding a pennant to the jib sail to raise it a bit? Or would it be negligable?

Thanks, Eric
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Old 09-26-2008
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Theoretically, the lower the sail the better, but that is so that more sail area can be added...by lowering foot the you can have a bigger sail.

Adding a penant, in your case will raise the sail which will benefit from the higher wind speeds that exist due to the lower drag caused by the surface drag. So in a way yes.

However a higher sail will spill more wind from underneath as the boat heel..

In light wind..don't bother.

If it's preformance you seek...go look somewhere else...sail trim etc.

Check the videos here..jump the first one

Last edited by Giulietta; 09-26-2008 at 11:29 PM.
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Old 09-27-2008
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I always viewed a pennant as only a good means of keeping the foot of the jib off the lifelines - thereby giving better sail shape. Unless it's feet instead of inches you'd never measure the difference with your knotmeter.

And if you need more than 6" on, say, a 30 ft boat you need a better sailmaker and not a pennant. Someone measured something wrong.
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Old 09-28-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Giulietta View Post
Theoretically, the lower the sail the better, but that is so that more sail area can be added...by lowering foot the you can have a bigger sail.

Adding a penant, in your case will raise the sail which will benefit from the higher wind speeds that exist due to the lower drag caused by the surface drag. So in a way yes.

However a higher sail will spill more wind from underneath as the boat heel..

In light wind..don't bother.

If it's preformance you seek...go look somewhere else...sail trim etc.

Check the videos here..jump the first one
I agree to a point, but it is possible and sometimes desirable to raise the tack off the deck of a No. 3 or something in order to catch winds that "don't come down to the water" and to increase visibility. I do it sometimes when I'm sailing alone for just this reason in light to mid-conditions. Generally, though, you want the foot to get close to the deck, as the tack angles will be a little trickier (you will have to experiment with the genoa cars to determine a proper lead).
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Old 09-30-2008
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There was something interesting that we did on this last weekend crewing on someone else's boat, who was flying my jiblet (My Catalina X-10 from North). We opted (on my suggestion) to use a downhaul (like you would a spinnaker) instead of attaching it to a fixed spot.

Personally, I am not a close hauler. Everything is about sail shape and when you have to contort the sail to make the shape regardless of wind conditions you kinda loose on that front. There are times you want the sail on the deck but any other time - if it is banging against your life lines etc... you want to be able to adjust the sail up and over it and there is only one way to do that. You have to allow room for it to go up and over the lifelines and that means you adjust it on the fly.

I wouldn't worry so much about the pendant per se, but allow yourself a way to move the sail up and down to adjust for whatever conditions. Racing - if you want all the sail can do and you are in the position that close hauling is the way to go - you want that sail as close to the deck as possible. All other times you want it be fully adjustable (moving the genoa cars up or down depending) and over the lifelines.

That crink at the bottom of the sail when it creases against the lifelines is at minimum a 1/2 a knot of speed because it distorts the sail shape.

The only real time you want to worry about a pendant is if it is a roller furling. In which case that pendant determines whether or not you wrap halyards around or not...


If you are hanking on the sail and not relying on a furler - and can control it (manage the two lines instead of one), worry less about the pendant and use the principle of a downhaul to move the sail closer to the deck or off the deck. You'll then get the most optimum performance out of the sail. It does make a difference and one of the reasons that racing furlers let you drop the drum and implement other tactics...
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Old 09-30-2008
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Jody was on my boat last weekend, and to a degree, by raising the jib above the LF's, we did get better sail shape, and did gain some speed. BUT, I would also like to point out, that his jiblet is some 3-4' shorter than my forestay, so there is room for this added ~2' of raising of the jib!
If you are in truly light winds, ie uner 7-8 knots or so a lot, you may wish to invest in a drifter. Which is for my boat, a 130 jib, made from about 1.5-2 oz nylon spin cloth, and with a higher cut clew, to allow one to get the clew up and away from the LF's, but is a full length luff, for max drive along the luff. One other boat in my YC has one of these, along with another boat like mine north of me in Vancouver BC vs me being in the greater Seattle area. Both are able to move when others with lighter 155's stall out. Another option is a tapedrive/carbon 155, which would be lighter in cloth wt than a dacron HS, and catch the zephers better too.

There are a few ways in lighter airs to make your boat sail better.

Marty
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