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  #141  
Old 03-28-2013
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Re: Mostly singlehanded...what lines should I run aft?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SVAuspicious View Post
I feel similarly about lines led aft. Given that someone understands the issues of friction and water intrusion if you want to take that approach then fine. Saying that measurable implications (friction and water) don't exist is not a service to those that follow in our wake who make their decisions on the basis of statements that cannot be substantiated.

You can measure the load increase resulting from friction in lines led aft. You can see the water that enters the cockpit (and sometimes the cabin) from both seas and rain in most installations of lines led aft. Ignoring observables is not useful.
At the same time, ignoring the real life experiences of people who DO have their lines lead aft and say that the increased friction is negligible is not helpful either. You obviously have a bit of a pet peeve regarding water getting past your dodger through the very small slots that allow the lines to pass through. Perhaps that is an issue in some circumstances, but given that the OP doesn't even HAVE a dodger, it is not very relevant. I still have trouble visualizing the scenario where significant water could get through even if I did have a dodger.
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  #142  
Old 03-28-2013
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Re: Mostly singlehanded...what lines should I run aft?

I've read this thread with amusement, trying to absorb as much knowledge as I can. Given my limited experience I can't even imagine contributing more than has already been said, and doing so could put me right in your line of fire. But hey, it's the Internet, so I shouldn't let that stop me, right?

Regarding the debate over friction, I think you guys have left out a key component - size of running rigging and tackle, and the stiffness of the line. It's well known that very low stretch lines like Sta-Set X don't like to go around sheaves, and that stiffness creates a great amount of friction. That can be overcome by larger sheaves (but there's a practical limit to that) and/or more flexible (and thus higher stretch) line. Or possibly lower diameter line, since smaller lines need to stretch less as they make their way around a sheave. Also, it less of a hindrance on smaller boats, because the lines are smaller diameter.

So it's possible that a casual cruiser who wants the convenience of running lines aft should consider more flexible line to reduce the friction. Many people may already be using stretchier (or well worn) line, and that's why they haven't noticed unacceptable friction when their lines run aft.

It's also possible that running lines aft reduces mechanical advantage. When you go to the mast and try to get the sail up that last couple of inches, you may tend to pull the halyard out toward you (like plucking a guitar string or bow and arrow). That mechanical advantage provides much greater tension in the line than you can get from pulling directly on the line, and can sometimes get that last bit of luff tension without needing a winch. From under the dodger you don't have that angle of pull available to you, and need to resort to a winch instead.

My lines run aft, but I have a smaller boat with lighter sails so we almost always get the mainsail up from in the cockpit without needing a winch. But when chartering (with boats that always have lines run aft), I usually go forward to pull the main halyard while my wife uses the clutch under the dodger to pull in the lazy end. I do this because I do notice that on charter boats in the 36-39' range, you do feel the friction in the system and it's quicker to go forward than it is to crank forever on the winch under the dodger.

So I agree with all of you, but i think some of the reason you're "talking past each other" is that you're not considering line stiffness and/or diameter.
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  #143  
Old 03-28-2013
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Re: Mostly singlehanded...what lines should I run aft?

I think the whole set of frictional loss, and dodger issues are a reflection of sailing styles and venues. Both can be real issues for the way that some folk sail but not for others.

Take the frictional loss issue, the increase in friction is a very real phenomina that results in part from geometry. There used to be an online calculator for mounting loads for a given block in a given configuration. There were much higher loads on the bearings of a block as the return angle increased and so the frictional resistance increased as well. So, while you would expect that a line which made a 180 turn (say a jib sheet on a deck mounted, turning block) to have twice the mounting load of the sheet tension, the mounting loads were increased substantially beyond that because of the greater bearing friction than would be present with a slight deflection of the line increasing the load on the side led to the winch.

On a boat with a mediocre deck geometry, on a halyard led aft, there would be friction from the 90 degree turning block at the mast, and the 35 degree deflection at the deck organizer.

If you are preparing a boat to go offshore, that becomes even more of an issue as salt build up in the sheaves and lack of water to flush the bearings add to friction. So for someone like S/V Auspicious who spends time offshore and thinks about those sort of issues in setting up a boat, I can see why it would not be a priority to run lines aft.

As someone like myself who loves performance sailing, comes out of racing, single-hands in coastal waters, carries more sail than I should,and is constantly tweaking, I could not live without my lines run aft. I purposely use low friction roller blocks and small diameter low stretch high modulus line to minimize the impact of the lines run aft. Like Take Five points out, I 'jump' my halyards at the mast when there is someone to tail for me, and at those times, I 'sweat' up the last little bit (pull the halyard away from the mast to get more mechanical advantage) which you can't do so easy from the cockpit.

The Bimini issue is a similar thing. I grew up with an 'ethic' that one never let salt water below deck. It was a religious belief in those days, a period where the clothing and interiors, and even the coverings on life jackets were loaded with cotton and wool fabrics, which when you added the short waterline boats of the era which tossed water everywhere when pitching upwind, and where salt meant damp and damp meant mildew and discomfort. A well found boat included a 'wet locker' that could be accessed from the companionway, and wet clothes never made it forward of the grating at the bottom of the companionway ladder, and that grating had a pan which kept the salt water out of the bilge (no-joking). The basis of this religion was that salt attracted moisture and once salt encrusted that fabric would stay damp until you were safely in port and could wash things out.

Even today, during long passages, allowing salt into the cabin is not the best idea for basically the same reason. While the court of common opinion's thinking about S/V Auspicious's idea about preventing leaks in the dodger is one of those things which have changed over time (like a boat needed a retracting bowsprit to be called a cutter), when seen from the historical perpective, and from the point of view of a long distance passage maker, it still is a discipline that has validity.

On the other hand, sailors like me and you and the original poster, we sail without dodgers, and that fits our sailing venues and sailing style perfectly, so, of course, we see a few more holes in a dodger as nearly irrelevant.

To me these discussions are helpful to people coming into the sport or experiencing new sailing concepts because they can hear the various sides on a range of topics. By the same token, those opinions are more useful if the individual posters basis can be explained, so that not only the raw ideas are presented, but also accompanied with the context in which the presenter is forming their opinions.

On a separate topic, the above electronics debate is interesting, but it also only scratches the surface. One thing that constantly surprises me is how insidious electronics have become.

For example, a few years ago, I was heading to a rather poorly marked channel on an overcast and moonless night in pretty heavy air. I had a hand held GPS but it was misbehaving (Somehow the battery saver had gotten reset to a very short interval, and so it could not even boot up long enough for me to diagnose it and reset it.) I figured that this was no big deal, I would simply dead reckon and pilot my way in. It worked out okay and we got in alright but once I was on the anchor I began to replay all of the electronics in the mix:
-I had used an electronic knotmeter to predict my speed,
-I had used an digital stopwatch to time my running time between marks,
-I had used an electronic depth sounder to track the shape of the bottom and confirm my swag of my line of position.
-I used an electronic autopilot when I rolled in my jib to slow down below 8 knots.
I used the electronic compass to watch my course with the teletale maked and off-course bars reading.
-I had planned to use a very bright, plug in, spot light to pick up the reflector on the channel markers (It stopped working just as we needed it so got by with an old fashioned double D cell flashlight)

And when I got in and as the anchor went down, I had a moment in which I congratulated myself on doing it the old fashioned way, until I honested up with myself.

The other issue is systems like the joystick control. Many of us in this thread sail comparatively modest sized boats. I chose my 10,500 lb 38 footer, in part because she was about the biggest boat that I could man handle with a fair degree of ease. Jon Eisberg admits to craving a bigger boat, but lavishes great love on 'Chancey' in part because she is a convenient size for one person to handle and so on. But as more and more of the sailing community move towards bigger boats with all the comforts of home, and as marinas get more crowded, and fairways narrower, it becomes harder, more dangerous and litiginously negligent *grin* to try to get by with simply being good at boathandling. (For example, I raced on a 36 footer which could not fit across the fairway. The owner would motor forward until the bow man could grab the boats across the fairway (with the stern still 4-5 feet in the slip, then crew on the bow, and crew on the stern would push the boat hand over hand until the boat was clear of the slip and aimed safely down the fairway and do the same in reverse coming in.)

In the post above, 'One' refers to that old sailing maxim variously cited as "The price of seamanship (also safety) is vigilence (also dilligence and prudence)" and at the heart of this thread is a series of opinions about how does each of us as a sailor come to grips with what we think is prudent and appropriate. With many of these topics, there is no answer which is any more universally correct than which is the better ice cream flavor 'strawberry', 'vanilla' or 'Peach'. But what is also clear, just like the ice cream analogy, for any given individual, and any given situation there is only one right answer, and for them, unless it hurts them or others, it is just that, the one right answer.

Good thread folks! (even if we have gone pretty far afield from the original programming.)

Jeff
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Last edited by Jeff_H; 03-29-2013 at 11:42 AM.
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  #144  
Old 03-28-2013
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Re: Mostly singlehanded...what lines should I run aft?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff_H View Post
...There were much higher loads on the bearings of a block as the return angle increased and so the frictional resistance increased as well. So, while you would expect that a line which made a 180 turn (say a jib sheet on a deck mounted, turning block) to have twice the mounting load of the sheet tension, the mounting loads were increased substantially beyond that because of the greater bearing friction than would be present with a slight deflection of the line increasing the load on the side led to the winch....
So that brings to mind some interesting thought experiments. I was trained in linear viscoelastic theory, and still work in fluid and solid mechanics every day. There are some very powerful concepts of reversibility and symmetry that can be used to intuit approximate solutions to the laws of motion. Very simple to apply, yet very powerful.

Forget about static tension for a minute, because that does not really cause friction directly. Also, forget about bearing friction - let's assume it's zero. Let's just focus on the dynamic part of the friction caused by pulling the line through a sheave or block. (By definition, the dynamic friction goes to zero when the line ceases moving.) This dynamic friction is caused because when the line is pulled through a sheave. the outer part of the line needs to stretch, and the inner part of the line needs to compress. The line would prefer to stay straight, but the sheave forces it to turn, and the stretching/compressing of the fibers, and their rubbing together as the line deforms into an ellipsiodal cross-section, dissipates heat. So the energy that you put in by pulling the line through the sheave comes out in the form of heat. (And if the line is stretchier, friction is less because the individual fibers will stretch more easily as it goes through the sheave.)

Here's where the symmetry concept is so powerful. If the line makes a 90° turn through the block, it will dissipate a certain amount of heat. If the line makes a -90° turn (negative angle meaning it turns the opposite direction), it will not dissipate negative heat - it will dissipate the same amount of heat. For this reason, the heat dissipation must be proportional to an even power of the degrees of turn. In this case it is the square, as it is for energy dissipation almost all the time.

So if you run a line through two separate (frictionless) blocks, 90° each, you will dissipate twice as much energy as you would for one 90° block. But if you run that same line through one of those same blocks 180°, it will dissipate FOUR times as much heat (=180^2/90^2). So as long as the friction in the blocks is negligibly small, two separate 90° blocks will have less resistance in the line than one 180° block.

Another way reduce friction is to use a larger diameter block if you want to turn 180°. That changes the calculation entirely because if you construct the entire equation for this, the ratio of line radius to sheave radius is very important, and the lower that ratio the less strain (and less friction) in the line. (By "strain" I mean the technical term, which is elongation divided by the original length)

Boring to some of you, but enlightening to me. I don't know whether the friction in the block is truly negligible compared to the friction in the line itself, but this does prove to me that even if you have a "perfect" frictionless block, you will still have resistance due to deformation of the line.

OK, now you can wake up and resume the discussion...

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  #145  
Old 03-29-2013
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Re: Mostly singlehanded...what lines should I run aft?

I've learned a lot on this thread and appreciate the input from all posters. But yesterday read the thread about 2 professionals being pulled out aboat at risk of life to our CG. Think it gets back to the need for a belt and suspenders mentality all sailors should have before setting out on any sail. It's the hard edges that kill most people on the water. I just built a boat with the goal of doing the north Atlantic gyre then the south pacific. I realized it would be done by two average people in their 60's. I realized although this was the goal 90+% of our sailing would be coastal. We have most all conveniences ( 30+k of electronics, all power winches, bowthruster etc). However at every step have a fall back ( knot stick, hand held gps, sexton, papercharts, sounding line,reefs and running rigging set up up to be done at mast or cockpit). We are doing this in stages. A year of coastal. Then snow bird to V.I.s. Then ARC to Portugal etc. Spent countless hours getting input from other sailors, builders, delivery captains, sail makers etc. and expect to suck every bit of knowledge out of anyone I ever encounter in my travels as fimly believe you need both the equipment and the knowledge. As regards the orginal poster suggest he go back to his/her boat sit on it and envision every possible occurance. If running lines aft makes for more safe sailing go for it. For me it think it does.
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  #146  
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Re: Mostly singlehanded...what lines should I run aft?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SchockT View Post
At the same time, ignoring the real life experiences of people who DO have their lines lead aft and say that the increased friction is negligible is not helpful either. You obviously have a bit of a pet peeve regarding water getting past your dodger through the very small slots that allow the lines to pass through.
I don't think it's a pet peeve. I have way to many issues about which I think "aren't you LISTENING?" to call this one thing a pet peeve.

In fairness, if you just do daysails and weekends and stay at the dock if the weather kicks up my concerns may not be relevant.

I would point out that both Jon Eisberg and I have noted the relationship between lines led aft and water in the cockpit. It really is a problem. Even a cup of water in your lap at the beginning of a four hour watch is a problem. If you're singlehanding wet nether regions in the morning may mean having to deal with a change of clothes with no one to take the wheel. Not terrible with an autopilot offshore but a real time waste to anchor if you're on the ICW or other restricted waterway. Add some cold to that equation and think about the results.

You've got at least two professionals saying the friction is not negligible.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TakeFive View Post
I've read this thread with amusement, trying to absorb as much knowledge as I can.

*snipped some very good and rational points*

My lines run aft, but I have a smaller boat with lighter sails so we almost always get the mainsail up from in the cockpit without needing a winch.
Boat size is something I haven't given adequate credence to. Smaller boats have lighter sails and the impact on boat motion of going forward is substantial on a smaller boat. The difference between my current 22,000# boat and my previous Catalina 22 is significant. I go forward without much concern in the middle of the ocean on Auspicious. Going to the mast of the 22 foot LB was spooky.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff_H View Post
As someone like myself who loves performance sailing, comes out of racing, single-hands in coastal waters, carries more sail than I should,and is constantly tweaking, I could not live without my lines run aft. I purposely use low friction roller blocks and small diameter low stretch high modulus line to minimize the impact of the lines run aft.
Then with all due respect you need a better autopilot and maybe a remote. The more turns you have in the lead of a control line (not mechanical advantage - just lead turns) the harder it is to tweak. All that extra friction and stretch make adjustment that much more difficult.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff_H View Post
The Bimini issue is a similar thing. I grew up with an 'ethic' that one never let salt water below deck.
This is a bigger issue with people who liveaboard and cruise. It isn't like we can go home and run all the fabric through the laundry. Keep the water and salt of the boat because the boat is home.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff_H View Post
A well found boat included a 'wet locker' that could be accessed from the companionway, and wet clothes never made it forward of the grating at the bottom of the companionway ladder, and that grating had a pan which kept the sail water out of the bilge (no-joking).
Which is why the best place for a head is at the bottom of the companionway.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TakeFive View Post
Forget about static tension for a minute
Okay for purposes of discussion, but static friction is significant in all but the best blocks.

best, dave
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  #147  
Old 03-29-2013
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Re: Mostly singlehanded...what lines should I run aft?

I did'nt even bother to read any thing but the OP's question. Simple. I've been single handling off shore for 25 years. I have 3 lines in my cockpit. Mainsheet, port jib sheet, starboard jib sheet. If you are not comfy accessing all points of your vessel while under way in any condition's, you should not be single handling, Having all that crap clutering up your cockpit is not safe, nor easier (Add one more line if you are a furler person.) I can get from my mast head to the bottom of my keel any where any time, 1000 miles off shore at night in the rain, I have fold out mast steps and dive gear on board. Single handling is self sufficiancy.
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Re: Mostly singlehanded...what lines should I run aft?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SVAuspicious View Post
I don't think it's a pet peeve. I have way to many issues about which I think "aren't you LISTENING?" to call this one thing a pet peeve.

In fairness, if you just do daysails and weekends and stay at the dock if the weather kicks up my concerns may not be relevant.

I would point out that both Jon Eisberg and I have noted the relationship between lines led aft and water in the cockpit. It really is a problem. Even a cup of water in your lap at the beginning of a four hour watch is a problem. If you're singlehanding wet nether regions in the morning may mean having to deal with a change of clothes with no one to take the wheel. Not terrible with an autopilot offshore but a real time waste to anchor if you're on the ICW or other restricted waterway. Add some cold to that equation and think about the results.

You've got at least two professionals saying the friction is not negligible.



Boat size is something I haven't given adequate credence to. Smaller boats have lighter sails and the impact on boat motion of going forward is substantial on a smaller boat. The difference between my current 22,000# boat and my previous Catalina 22 is significant. I go forward without much concern in the middle of the ocean on Auspicious. Going to the mast of the 22 foot LB was spooky.



Then with all due respect you need a better autopilot and maybe a remote. The more turns you have in the lead of a control line (not mechanical advantage - just lead turns) the harder it is to tweak. All that extra friction and stretch make adjustment that much more difficult.



This is a bigger issue with people who liveaboard and cruise. It isn't like we can go home and run all the fabric through the laundry. Keep the water and salt of the boat because the boat is home.



Which is why the best place for a head is at the bottom of the companionway.



Okay for purposes of discussion, but static friction is significant in all but the best blocks.

best, dave
I too agree about the friction issue and keeping things dry - as I mentioned. The friction issue is however more of an issue on traditional slab reefing boats versus inmast. On inmast, everything is done by hand on our boat anyways. And having salty clothes is a nightmare aboard. THey nnever get dry. That is why we keep "outside" clothes and inside. THis works well with bathingsuits and beach towels.

Brian
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Re: Mostly singlehanded...what lines should I run aft?

I'm real curious about holes in dodger leading to significant water in cockpit. Built boat with hard dodger. Have 4 lines going through coaming and back to line stoppers then winches on either side of companion way. In past have just set tails of lines under dodger to get them out of the way. House top is beveled. Figured any water coming in would be minimal and run along leeward inside of dodger. Will have limber holes if necessary but now have gutter in forward cockpit seat so water would go to scupper. ?Is this really an issue especially as I tend to wear my foulie bottoms most always to keep my clothes underneath dry and salt free when doing passages? If a real issue may just stick a sponge in the holes which would pop out if lines were adjusted. Also tend to leave lowest board in most times as agree inside of boat should always be dry.
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Re: Mostly singlehanded...what lines should I run aft?

I'm really struggling to think of sea condition scenario where I would be dry, if not for the water that came up over the height of our cabin top in sufficient volume to make it through the chase for the aft led lines.

And, if it did, it would not enter the cabin, if the hatch is closed. No way. I routinely hose the cockpit down with gallons of water and not a drop.
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