Do roller-furling cruisers need a storm jib? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 62 Old 11-22-2010 Thread Starter
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Do roller-furling cruisers need a storm jib?

Saw this mentioned on another thread and thought it worth asking about. And yes I see how crappy the shape is on a partially furled headsail, so maybe I know the answer already. My second question (below) stays relevant though....

1) We have a roller furled headsail (130%). One day I'd like to sail our boat to Bermuda. Is a storm jib necessary?

2) If so, how do you deploy it? Unless everyone is using the ATN storm jib that fastens over the rolled-up jib, I suppose everyone could be sliding their jib down the foil and putting it below. Is that the case? That seems like a challenge in any significant wind and seas.

Regards,
Brad
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post #2 of 62 Old 11-22-2010
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Good question I've wondered this myself, The experienced sailors that I have asked say you can use your furled headsail but it does put tremendous strain on your furling lines, and tackle etc. Just be sure its in good shape. We have a spare hank on style storm jib just as an emergency. Hope we never need half the stuff we "have in case" of an emergency.

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post #3 of 62 Old 11-22-2010
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Its a requirement on any of the races or cruising rally

We have only luff tape sails down to a #4(about 85%) and the storm jib is MUCH better

A separate track for storm trysail in place of a deep reef main is also much better as a strong enough reef point tends to make a poor race sail and you really beat the crap out of the main

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post #4 of 62 Old 11-22-2010
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We have a storm jib on Gallivant on our crossing of the Australian Bight last month, most of the crossing was under a Storm Jib and 3rd reef in the main (25 -35knts).
This combination allowed us to quickly change gears when the wind came up 45knt.
We also hove-to under storm jib.Do roller-furling cruisers need a storm jib?-storm-jib.jpg
Gallivant is easily driven and we still maintain a good speed averaging 5.8knt for the 800Nm travelled, straight line 650Nm.
Gallivants furler is a Number 3 Blade with batterns and furls well but in adverse conditions a storm jib is the way to go.Do roller-furling cruisers need a storm jib?-new-jib.jpg
Sail shape is the important thing a furling jib just has not got the shape, offshore a storm jib or trisail is a must in my book.

That my 2 cents worth.

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post #5 of 62 Old 11-22-2010
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As a luxury I've yet to use, we have a releasable inner forestay. For an ocean passage, I would use that for a storm jib. We don't bother for coastal cruising, as tacking the genoa around it is a real pain. That virtually requires that the genoa be furled in most of the way before the tack. A tack or jibe is much less frequent on an ocean passage, sometimes days apart.

For one, in conditions where reefing is as necessary as those that call for a storm jib, I would not want my butt riding on the bet that the furling line or furler itself doesnt' let go.
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post #6 of 62 Old 11-22-2010
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I just got to the BVI's from Virginia. Our furling line DID let go, with wind at 30-35 knots at 3 in the morning (of course). Was sort of exciting for a while. Sure did wish I had used the ATN gale sail that night - will do it much sooner next time.
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post #7 of 62 Old 11-22-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sck5 View Post
.. Our furling line DID let go, with wind at 30-35 knots at 3 in the morning (of course). Was sort of exciting for a while. ...
I had in my boat a 150% genoa and a storm bag that I never used. I could go with 35/40K winds with a little bit of genoa and the main on a really small 3rd reef. the boat could not get closer than 55 of the wind and the sail shape was really bad, but what scared me most was the huge tension on the furling line. With a big genoa I was afraid of losing the mast if the line snapped.

Next boat I will have a releasable inner forestay and a smaller jib with an option to mount a storm sail. If you do only coastal sailing you probably don't need it, but for any passage that takes more than 24h, that's a really safety item.

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post #8 of 62 Old 11-22-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sck5 View Post
I just got to the BVI's from Virginia. Our furling line DID let go, with wind at 30-35 knots at 3 in the morning (of course). Was sort of exciting for a while. Sure did wish I had used the ATN gale sail that night - will do it much sooner next time.
Sck5, Where you part of the Carib1500 Rally? Could you share some of your experience?

I missed an opportunity to crew on a boat doing the rally, but still have been watching the fleet closely (I'm still watching Nancy Ellen).

I was thinking for my boat, I would have wanted a heavy Yankee Cut 100-110 on the furler, with my 135 and a Gale Sail in the locker.

I also think if I am ever able to do that trip, I'd also rig the boat for a storm trysail.

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post #9 of 62 Old 11-22-2010
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Another issue with using a partially furled genoa, other than poor shape and stress on the furling gear, is that the sail cloth may not be heavy enough for the task. Storm jibs and the ATN Gale Sail are made of heavier cloth and stitching to withstand high winds.

If I was going offshore I'd be sure to have at least a Gale Sail (or equivolent) and preferrably a removable inner forestay or a cutter rig that could take a hank on storm jib.

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post #10 of 62 Old 11-22-2010
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I'm all for the decision of having a storm jib for offshore passages, but it is important to note that there are headsails marketed as roller furling and others as roller reefing. Take care and joy, Aythya crew
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