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post #21 of 27 Old 05-29-2013
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Re: Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?

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As a general rule of thumb for positioning genoa track cars, an imaginary line extending from the block, through the clew (the line of the jib sheet) and out to the luff of the sail should intersect the mid-luff position. This is a decent starting point, moving forward in light winds or if the top breaks early, aft if windier or lower telltales break early..

This is more of a theoretical debate than a suggestion, given the fact that the boat was overcanvassed and being overpowered, would it not be advantageous to let the top of the sail luff? Purposefully bring the fairlead aft to have the lower part of the sail drive the boat while depowering the upper half to lessen heal and control issues? The same could be done with the main by bringing the traveler up and easing the mainsheet.
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post #22 of 27 Old 05-29-2013
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Re: Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?

cthoops,

That was nasty storm, like a tiny hurricane or a summer norester.

Do you use sailflow.com or one of the other wind monitor websites?

Try them and get to know your local wind stations. I know how to read mine pretty well. That in conjunction with coordinating your direction so that you don't end up fighting wind and tide together and it will be smooth sailing. And my boat is as slow as molasses with just the main. We do much better with a reefed main and the jib out.

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post #23 of 27 Old 05-29-2013
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Re: Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?

You need the jib to provide lift if you want to point high, having both sails up and drawing is more than the sum of the parts as the jib accelerates and directs the air that then flows over the main - but too much jib is too much power.
Hauling back on the jib car will flatten the lower portion of the jib and let the top twist (fall) off the wind, in effect de-powering the jib's heeling force while at the same time flattening it for pointing.
Do the same with the main traveller if you have one - pull it up to windward - and the main will twist off at the top.
The over all effect is to lessen heeling force and regain control while improving the angle of the sail to the wind allowing for a better point.

Falling off the wind by as little as 2-5 degrees can also significantly increase speed. If you have pulled all sheets tight and are luffing fall off until the draw well. It's better to go somewhere and maintain control than it is to over pinch and stall.
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post #24 of 27 Old 05-29-2013
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Re: Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?

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Falling off the wind by as little as 2-5 degrees can also significantly increase speed. If you have pulled all sheets tight and are luffing fall off until the draw well. It's better to go somewhere and maintain control than it is to over pinch and stall.
Chuckles brings up another good point in that take what you can get. It is better to crack off a bit, meaning head down a few degrees to not fight the perfect close haul in challenging conditions. This becomes important also when fighting a swell or chop. A more full powered sail will allow you to power through the chop better.

I have a lot of books on sail trim, and am good with the theory, but somehow all the great ideas I have when sitting in front of my computer alludes me when the boats slogging through the chop. I'll have to remember to re-read this thread before going out in a blow again.
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post #25 of 27 Old 05-29-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?

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What book on sail trim did you order? I think that's the next step for me, too.
I ordered "Sail Power: Trim and Techniques for Cruising Sailors" by Peter Nielson. It had positive reviews and I liked how it focuses on trim for cruisers as opposed to racers. I noticed it also covers heavy weather trim and techniques, which seemed appropriate under the circumstances!

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post #26 of 27 Old 05-29-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?

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Originally Posted by Sal Paradise View Post

Do you use sailflow.com or one of the other wind monitor websites?

Try them and get to know your local wind stations. I know how to read mine pretty well. That in conjunction with coordinating your direction so that you don't end up fighting wind and tide together and it will be smooth sailing. And my boat is as slow as molasses with just the main. We do much better with a reefed main and the jib out.
Thanks for the sailflow.com suggestion. I never even thought of a wind app, but it's on my iPhone now.

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post #27 of 27 Old 05-30-2013
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Re: Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?

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It was luffing at the leech. Thanks for the advice about the fairlead.
Leech flutter is different from luffing. If you had the headsail trimmed in as tight as you could and the leech was fluttering badly, it is very possible your jib car was set way too far back. If it was just fluttering a bit, then it may have just needed leech line tension.

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A few people have mentioned heeling, and it suddenly struck me that while we were heeling, it wasn't to the extent that I would have expected given the conditions. Strange. I'm certain about the wind direction and our point of sail. We had the mainsail in as far as we could, and it wasn't luffing so I don't think we were in irons. But why wouldn't we have been excessively heeling? The B24s are known for being tender to about 20 degrees and then holding firm, but I'm sure we weren't at 20. I'm truly puzzled now.
Again, that points to the fact that your jib wasn't trimmed right. If your jib car was too far back, then the jib would be excessively twisted at the top, causing the sail to flog up top. When you are trimming for upwind you should be able to grind the sail in so that the foot of the sail is inside the lifelines, and able to touch the shrouds. At the same time the upper part of the sail should be within inches of the spreader.

You should take the time to put telltales on your jib.



It also helps to put telltales on the leech of your main at each batten position. That way you know if the leech telltales are streaming your main isn't over trimmed.

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