Sailing yesterday - lessons learned? - SailNet Community

   Search Sailnet:

 forums  store  


Quick Menu
Forums           
Articles          
Galleries        
Boat Reviews  
Classifieds     
Search SailNet 
Boat Search (new)

Shop the
SailNet Store
Anchor Locker
Boatbuilding & Repair
Charts
Clothing
Electrical
Electronics
Engine
Hatches and Portlights
Interior And Galley
Maintenance
Marine Electronics
Navigation
Other Items
Plumbing and Pumps
Rigging
Safety
Sailing Hardware
Trailer & Watersports
Clearance Items

Advertise Here






Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related)
 Not a Member? 


Like Tree11Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 05-28-2013
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: West Hartford, CT
Posts: 191
Thanks: 13
Thanked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Rep Power: 3
cthoops is on a distinguished road
Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?

Mr. cthoops and I went sailing yesterday on Long Island Sound (we're moored in Groton). There had been 2-3 days of extremely heavy west winds, but when we checked the forecast that morning it indicated that things were lightening up. This was only our second sail on our new-to-us boat (last weekend's conditions were approx 5 mph, with seas under 1 foot), but we wanted to stretch our wings a bit and gain some experience in more challenging conditions.

Well, perhaps needless to say the weather forecast underestimated the winds, and we ended up sailing in approx. 18 mph winds out of the southwest with gusts in the mid-20's and seas of 2+ feet. We were doing pretty well sailing north and south (I love the way our boat handles the waves), but we had a few issues when we switched to east/west and I was looking for some advice.

At one point we realized we had drifted off course and we weren't making much progress, so we decided to unfurl the 130 genoa to try to give us a bit more power. At this point, however, we were sailing very close-hauled to try to get back on track (basically pointing as high as we could), and the genoa was of no help. We couldn't get it in tight enough to keep it from luffing wildly so we furled it. Subsequent internet research has led us to believe that the winds were too high for that particular sail. Is that why it luffed despite our having it pulled in all of the way?

More importantly, we had to turn on the outboard and motor back when we realized that we were getting pushed backwards. We were trying to sail to the west and the wind and waves were basically coming from that direction (so we were very close-hauled). We were also coming into low tide, so we were fighting the current. Best we can figure, having a mainsail alone wasn't giving us enough power to overcome the waves/current. Is that correct?

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated. This hasn't discouraged us in the slightest, and in some ways I'm glad we had the experience because we've learned some things, but the relaxation to anxiety ratio yesterday was definitely a bit too skewed for my taste!

Thanks.
__________________
1975 Bristol 24 Corsair
Blog:
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #2  
Old 05-28-2013
Alex W's Avatar
no longer reading SailNet
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 2,308
Thanks: 2
Thanked 139 Times in 133 Posts
Rep Power: 2
Alex W is on a distinguished road
Re: Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?

What was the speed of the current? If the current is higher than your hull speed then you have no hope of motoring or sailing against it. If it is lower than your hull speed then you should be able to make forward progress against it.

What was your apparent wind angle when close hauled? When the wind is really high the windage of your boat hurts you, so on cruising oriented boats you won't be able to point as high in very strong winds. How much depends on the boat and equipment.

Did you play with the genoa track position while running the genoa? You can move the cars back to increase twist and spill area from the top while sheeting the bottom in tighter. In general you want a smaller sail in heavy air though, and using a genoa cut from light material could damage it if frequently used in heavy air.
__________________
I'm no longer participating on SailNet.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #3  
Old 05-28-2013
bljones's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: South Coast Ontario
Posts: 8,178
Thanks: 32
Thanked 72 Times in 65 Posts
Rep Power: 8
bljones has a spectacular aura about bljones has a spectacular aura about
Re: Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?

Congrats on getting out on the water, and congrats on having the presence of mind to note what was happening and asking what to do about it. Generally, under main alone, many boats will not have enough drive to fight tight upwind. As Alex said above, regarding your genny, play with the cars on the tracks, to change the sheeting angle to help with luffing.
__________________
It's 5 o'clock somewhere:


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #4  
Old 05-28-2013
Faster's Avatar
Just another Moderator
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: New Westminster, BC
Posts: 14,926
Thanks: 75
Thanked 214 Times in 206 Posts
Rep Power: 10
Faster has a spectacular aura about Faster has a spectacular aura about Faster has a spectacular aura about
Re: Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?

In a boat such as yours you'll have great difficulty making headway to windward with mainsail only. The genoa (or better, a smaller jib in heavier winds) is pretty much essential. That it was 'luffing violently' is an indication that you were attempting to sail too close to the wind and/or the headsail was not, in fact, in as far as it needed to be. Was the sail nearly touching the shrouds? In this case you would likely have been better off to use only part of the genoa, though that's far from ideal too.

Realize that realistically you can only get to 45 degrees or so to the wind direction when you're close hauled, and the main and jib need to be sheeted in 'all the way' and the boat steered in a way that allows the sails to power up. Of course this can lead to a fair amount of heeling, which can also be unsettling at first.

Good for you for giving it a go.. if you have a smaller jib for your furler that would have been the one to use that day. But your boat will not sail well to weather on only the main, I'm afraid.
chef2sail likes this.
__________________
Ron

1984 Fast/Nicholson 345 "FastForward"

".. there is much you could do at sea with common sense.. and very little you could do without it.."
Capt G E Ericson (from "The Cruel Sea" by Nicholas Monsarrat)
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #5  
Old 05-28-2013
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 1,993
Thanks: 4
Thanked 50 Times in 49 Posts
Rep Power: 8
Tempest is on a distinguished road
Re: Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?

It sounds like you were sailing too close to the wind ( pinching too much) if your genoa was luffing wildly.

OR, Like Alex suggested..did you adjust your fairleads when you unfurled the genoa?

Also, You could have rolled up the genoa a little, and fallen off the wind until the sail stopped luffiing. You'd probably sail a little flatter and faster in those winds, with something less than 130.

If your destination was dead upwind and you didn't want to tack, then yes you'd take in the genoa and start the engine with the mainsail hauled in. Still you'd want to fall off a little to keep the main from luffing. Yes, You're not going to make much progress against those winds and a current with mainsail alone.
RobGallagher likes this.
__________________
Tempest
Sabre 34
Morgan, NJ
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
The Following User Says Thank You to Tempest For This Useful Post:
kegggggggg (05-29-2013)
  #6  
Old 05-28-2013
tommays's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 4,269
Thanks: 1
Thanked 27 Times in 27 Posts
Rep Power: 7
tommays will become famous soon enough
Re: Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?



The good news is you took a pass on Sunday as that was really windy well past the point of being fun

On monday I was out on the Northport side of things between 11 AM and 3 PM and i am not sure how your getting the wind speeds but it was pretty calm day with some occasional puffs that were on the edge using full mainsail and 150 genoa*


It will take some time to learn the boat but it is pretty rare when you would not be better off with the full 130 and a reefed mainsail if the boat was overpowered as using both sails allows the boats sailplan to keep things in the balance the design intended*


Yes I am off by one day on everything because Monday was a holiday
__________________
1970 Cal 29 Sea Fever

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

1981 J24 Tangent 2930
Tommays
Northport NY


If a dirty bottom slows you down what do you think it does to your boat
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Last edited by tommays; 05-28-2013 at 09:51 PM.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #7  
Old 05-28-2013
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: West Hartford, CT
Posts: 191
Thanks: 13
Thanked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Rep Power: 3
cthoops is on a distinguished road
Re: Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?

We were out yesterday (Monday). The wind speed came from the weather.com page. Not sure how accurate that is, but it was pretty darn windy.

We have a windex (which I love) which I was using to gauge how close to the wind we could get, and when the genoa was luffing the mainsail was still doing o.k. The genoa was close to touching the shrouds, but I'm not sure how old it is so perhaps that may be an issue.

We didn't even think to adjust the genoa track - thanks for the suggestion. We ordered a book today on sail trim. It was something that we had been wanting to do anyway - we figured the more knowledge the better.

Thanks for the props on getting out on the water. Once we recovered from the anxiety, we felt pretty proud of ourselves for handling a challenging (to us) situation well and without any panic.
__________________
1975 Bristol 24 Corsair
Blog:
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #8  
Old 05-28-2013
northoceanbeach's Avatar
first sailed january 2008
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: California
Posts: 1,408
Thanks: 17
Thanked 15 Times in 15 Posts
Rep Power: 7
northoceanbeach is on a distinguished road
Re: Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?

Sounds like you're on the right track. As long as your boat is in good condition you should be fine in those conditions.

What I think you were doing is getting a little freaked out from heeling so much and since the boat wants to round up into the wind anyways, ill guess you were letting it point too close into the wind and the genoa wasn't trimmed tight enough but the main was. Do you use a fully battened main? Maybe that helped stop it from luffing.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #9  
Old 05-28-2013
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 1,993
Thanks: 4
Thanked 50 Times in 49 Posts
Rep Power: 8
Tempest is on a distinguished road
Re: Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?

When you say the genoa was luffiing...can you clarify?..Was it confined to the leech?

If so, you'd want to move the fairlead back .. If at the luff you were porbably pinching too.
__________________
Tempest
Sabre 34
Morgan, NJ
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #10  
Old 05-28-2013
chef2sail's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Maryland
Posts: 6,997
Thanks: 29
Thanked 55 Times in 51 Posts
Rep Power: 7
chef2sail will become famous soon enough
Send a message via AIM to chef2sail
Re: Sailing yesterday - lessons learned?

Great that you increase your challenge.

Let me address a few of your issues. Taking waves head on will slow a boat try to angle even under power . Motoring with he main up is more effective than without in terms of stability. Sounds like you were too close hauled and pinched thus the luffing. Roll in some sail. Adjust your genoa cars back. Tighten the sail. At the same time move the main traveler so the boom is in the centerline of the boat when set correctly. Remember not to have the main in super tight when sailing close hauled as you don't get good slot action and lift.

Read some on basic sail trim. If you have a knot meter see how what you do in moderate conditions by moving the genoa cars as well as main sail positions and boob positions does to affect you speed. Don't use GPS as current is factored into that speed number.

Sailing close hauled up wind to a point is a trade off and a series of tacks. Sometimes falling off a little so you aren't too close hauled and pinching increase the boat peed a great amount to allow you progress faster. Like I said trade off.

Also lastly since you sail the Sound where current is so important, to have to face both current and wind to return to your port on a day sail should affect your direction to sail. Better to sail your brutal direction first so he return trip is easier and faster for a while.

It takes time and practice and you will get better and better. Maybe good to ake an experience person to show you one tricks too. Great that you challenge yourself as that helps you learn.

Dave
__________________

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
___________________________
S/V Haleakala (Hawaiian for" House of the Sun")
C&C 35 MKIII Hull # 76
Parkville, Maryland
(photos by Joe McCary)
Charter member of the Chesapeake Lion posse

Our blog-
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


“Sailing is just the bottom line, like adding up the score in bridge. My real interest is in the tremendous game of life.”- Dennis Conner

Last edited by chef2sail; 05-28-2013 at 08:50 PM.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

 
Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may post attachments
You may edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Learned a new thing about my boat yesterday jaschrumpf Seamanship & Navigation 4 06-07-2012 10:55 PM
Lessons Learned While Sailing Part 2 Lubrdink General Discussion (sailing related) 6 09-06-2011 10:37 PM
Lessons Learned ephman General Discussion (sailing related) 21 04-24-2008 10:06 AM
Sailing to Simplicity: Life Lessons Learned at Sea John Rousmaniere Gear and Maintenance Articles 0 05-29-2000 08:00 PM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 06:02 PM.

Add to My Yahoo!         
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.1
(c) Marine.com LLC 2000-2012

The SailNet.com store is owned and operated by a company independent of the SailNet.com forum. You are now leaving the SailNet forum. Click OK to continue or Cancel to return to the SailNet forum.