Do I need a guy and a sheet on each side of spinnaker? - SailNet Community
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Do I need a guy and a sheet on each side of spinnaker?

Hi

Have a Kent Ranger 24 ft IOR racer/cruiser boat.

I'm going to use the spinnaker soon. Do I really need a sheet and a guy line on each clew (each side-right and left)? What's the point? They seem to do the same thing.... and I have read that smaller boats just need a single line on each side of the spinnaker.

Would you guys raise it in front of set jib and main? Or would most people drop the jib and just raise it in front of the main?

Does anyone sail by spinnaker alone>
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post #2 of 31 Old 03-19-2013
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Re: Do I need a guy and a sheet on each side of spinnaker?

Just one line on each clew. The sheet becomes the guy depending on which tack you are on.
When racing we raise the spin behind the genoa then drop the genoa. Reverse this for dropping the spin, but then we have 5 people on the boat.

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post #3 of 31 Old 03-19-2013
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Re: Do I need a guy and a sheet on each side of spinnaker?

We sailed by spinnaker alone when figuring out the asymmetrical. This was on Lake Union on light wind days, so we weren't in a position where blanketting the spinnaker with the main was likely to be necessary (that is normally a useful safety maneuver).

The nice thing about sailing with spinnaker alone is that you can easily see the whole thing from the cockpit and thus more easily experiment with sail trim and handling. You can also reef the main to get a similar effect.

I recommend having two crew and an autopilot or three crew for figuring it out. There is a lot going on, even more so with a symmetrical spinnaker and pole (I have little experience with those) compared to the asymmetrical cruising spinnaker that I use.

It's not that much help for flying your symmetrical spinnaker, but I'd be happy to show you how the asymmetrical works on my boat since we're both in Seattle.

Did your KR24 come with the spinnaker and pole, or did you buy them afterwords?

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post #4 of 31 Old 03-19-2013
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Re: Do I need a guy and a sheet on each side of spinnaker?

Quote:
Originally Posted by matthewwhill View Post
Hi

Have a Kent Ranger 24 ft IOR racer/cruiser boat.

I'm going to use the spinnaker soon. Do I really need a sheet and a guy line on each clew (each side-right and left)? What's the point? They seem to do the same thing.... and I have read that smaller boats just need a single line on each side of the spinnaker.
Do you need two lines both side? Not usually.. but what's the point? The point is that sheets and guys require different sheeting angles so, on some yachts, the sheets and guys are run through different sets of blocks to different sets of cleats. This ensures that the spinnaker can be correctly set from the moment it's hoisted - not some minutes later after the opposition has cruised past..

In that case, usually the guys are thicker line than the sheets, and often a different type (low-stretch) because they're under a lot more strain. Obviously on a smaller boat the spinnaker is smaller, so line thickness and type isn't so critical and, going right down to a dinghy, there often isn't the space for the extra blocks and sheets anyways.

I guess the system you use on your boat will be dictated by how mad-keen a racer you are and how good your crew is.. but on a 24-footer, personally, I would use one line each side.

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Originally Posted by matthewwhill View Post
Would you guys raise it in front of set jib and main? Or would most people drop the jib and just raise it in front of the main?
Most people would raise it in front of the jib, then lower the jib. Reverse for a take-down. This allows the jib to blanket the spinnaker a bit, making it easier to lower in a stiff breeze..

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Does anyone sail by spinnaker alone>
Yes. Regularly. It's a great way to get home (down hill, of course) after a long day on the racecourse!
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Last edited by Classic30; 03-19-2013 at 01:33 AM.
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post #5 of 31 Old 03-19-2013
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Re: Do I need a guy and a sheet on each side of spinnaker?

This is the setup that is most appropriate for your size boat. The "tweakers" shown in red, are pulled on the windward side to change the lead angle to one more appropriate for a guy. It is a much simpler setup than running dedicated guys.

Most IOR boats I have sailed are not very happy with a symetric spinnaker and no mainsail, particularly if you are sailing deep. They tend to be more prone to "death rolls" which is when the spinnaker oscillates from side to side, causing the boat to roll side to side to increasing extremes. If the helmsman is not good at keeping the boat under the sail it can get very ugly! (It happens with the mainsail as well, but not as easily.) I don't mean to scare you, but you should be aware that is a characteristic of IOR hull forms!



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post #6 of 31 Old 03-19-2013
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Re: Do I need a guy and a sheet on each side of spinnaker?

One can use an assymetric like a symetric spin. Helps a bit downwind. My boat is a post fastnet half ton. It does ok with an AS, but frankly, a symetric would be better. I will pole the tack to the opposite side of the main at times. this does help me get better downwind angles.

If you want a fun race near you, third weekend in April is the Meydenbauer bay yacht club spring regatta. In the past couple of years, there has been an R23 or two from Renton sailing doing the NFS division as have I. HERE is a link to the website and info. There are also usually one or two FS divisions also. If you have not raced too much, want to try it out, the NFS ie "no flying sails" is usually the better one to try initially. Then graduate later into the FS or spin groups.

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post #7 of 31 Old 03-19-2013
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Re: Do I need a guy and a sheet on each side of spinnaker?

In flat water and/or small 2-3 ft. waves, tweakers can be eliminated by the use of a bridled spinn pole, the downhaul of the bridle run to a block at the front of the base of the mast .... and both uphaul and downhaul spinn pole bridle control lines run back to the cockpit for single handed control. You'll need bridles on the top AND bottom of the spinn pole.
Tweakers DO help a lot with spinn handling, so dont entirely dismiss their usage; and, on 'small boats' should be lead from quite near the cap shrouds.

For that size boat and for single handing, I would suggest you start your learning curve in light winds and with 'end for end' gybing of the spinn and spinn pole: .... overtrim the spinn sheet and lazy sheet to set the middle (seam) of spinn to the boat's centerline, run dead downwind, gybe the main, go forward and simply change the pole ends --- small boat spinn techniques. I'd also suggest to forget about socks / spinn chutes, etc. as on that size boat will add nothing but unnecessary 'complication'. If you do use a sock, simply 'reef' the sock halfway when gybing. To do 'end for end' you simply have to practice to keep the un-poled spinnaker flying 'perfect' in front of the boat, but with foreguy (the lazy spinn sheet) and spinn sheet pulled in a bit to keep the spinn from oscilating.

Dowsing when single handing can be accomplished by simply easing the pole forward, pulling the sheet 'all the way', and then turning the boat's bow completely through the wind (by 'TACKING') and 'laying' the spinn onto the 'now windward' side of the mainsail and the boat hove-to and then simply PULL / PEEL the spinn down from the mainsail. Obviously, you have to absolutely sure you have no 'sharps' in the rigging or spreaders.

Suggest you start out with simple 'small boat' spinnaker methods, and then add the 'more complicated stuff' as needed for bumpy or stink weather conditions --- KISS.

Last edited by RichH; 03-19-2013 at 09:47 AM.
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Re: Do I need a guy and a sheet on each side of spinnaker?

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Originally Posted by blt2ski View Post
I will pole the tack to the opposite side of the main at times. this does help me get better downwind angles.
Yes indeed, damn good advice !!!!!!!! good technique, especially for when single handing so you dont 'have' to gybe so often.
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post #9 of 31 Old 03-19-2013
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Re: Do I need a guy and a sheet on each side of spinnaker?

Just a couple of things to add.

1) I always keep my main up. I may centre it if it interferes with the wind.

2) Separate sheets and guys are generally found on dip pole spinnakers in which the pole stays attached to the mast and swung through the fore triangle on the gybe. An end for end set up a la ShockT's diagram does not need separate guys. The dip pole is generally used on larger boats and requires a sizable crew.
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post #10 of 31 Old 03-19-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: Do I need a guy and a sheet on each side of spinnaker?

Thanks everyone. Great advice.

My boat did come with a spinnaker and pole. I used the pole yesterday to set my 150 to go wing and wing on downwind runs. It worked fantastically!

I will plan on using just one line on each clew then.

But for my education... Are the guys angled more steeply down to the hull than the sheets which are angled more shallow and aft?
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