Near disasterous first sail - Page 2 - SailNet Community

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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest Forums > Learning to Sail
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  #11  
Old 11-12-2013
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Re: Near disasterous first sail

Lemon,

It's a skill. Skills take practice and repitition to hone and polish.
Sailing is not "instant gratification".

There'll be some initial frustration and as you get better, your confidence will improve and a sense of pride will accompany the confidence.

Don't give up, keep asking questions. Keep sailing.
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  #12  
Old 11-12-2013
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Re: Near disasterous first sail

You wont forget the swing keel ever again, LOL

+1 on the slug with a thumbscrew. I have a few on my boat. I use one to hold the boom up too, when the sail is down.

It will get better.
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  #13  
Old 11-12-2013
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Re: Near disasterous first sail

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lemonshirt View Post
one of those gusts caught me offguard, snapped off a couple of the sail slugs on the stern end of the boom and nearly capsized us
If you have slugs along the boom you probably also need an outhaul, a length of line that pulls the clew (aft corner) of the sail out towards the end of the boom. Something probably wasn't rigged properly if the slugs are snapping.
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Old 11-12-2013
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Re: Near disasterous first sail

RE: the wife;

Sailing reminds me a LOT of downhill snow skiing.

Assuming that you have been on skiis; remember the first time that you got off the lift. It probably wasn't pretty either. If you got to the bottom, and didn't take a ski-patrol sled, then it was a success. You were probably pretty tired/bruised too. In a short time, assuming that you stick with it, it becomes fun. Shortly after that it becomes exhilarating.
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  #15  
Old 11-13-2013
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Re: Near disasterous first sail

Many thanks for all the thoughtful replies and feedback. Winds about 45 and 39 degrees. Might be a few days (weeks?..months?) before I get my next lesson. Cant wait.
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Re: Near disasterous first sail

If you take a spare line and tie a clove hitch around the mast, this can keep the slugs in place until you get a more permanent solution. I actually prefer this method, because it holds the line handy that I use to furl the main on the boom when I take it down.
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Old 11-13-2013
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Re: Near disasterous first sail

All of the advise above is sound and good. But two lines from paul323 ring very true and we don't see them written enough.
Quote:
Personally I don't turn the engine off until the sails are raised and the sails are full.
The same holds true for when you're done with your sail - get the motor started before lowering your sails. Never leave the boat powerless, bad things can happen fast.

Quote:
After every sail I do, I tend to reflect on what I did, and what could have done better...
I think that this is one of the most powerful statements that can be made (not just with sailing, BTW). It's ok to mess up, but it's not ok to mess up the same way twice. Look for new ways to mess up.
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Re: Near disasterous first sail

It will get better.. just takes time.

As for as keeping the slugs in the track, you can use a bungee cord. Wrap it a few times around the mast, with the hooks aft. I find those thumbscrew clamps fall off in the most inopportune times.
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Old 11-14-2013
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Re: Near disasterous first sail

As a newbie myself, I enjoyed reading your post. My dinghy is 16 feet, but it still sometimes feels pretty big when things are going wrong...and boy do they go wrong fast!

Question: I only have a trolling motor to get me out of the marina. So (most of) you guys keep it idle while hoisting the main? I would cut it, then get pushed around because I have no one on the tiller. Should I rig up a line so the tiller stays straight?

Mike
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Old 11-14-2013
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Re: Near disasterous first sail

Quote:
Originally Posted by mattt View Post
Nothing beats a printed, paper check list. Update it every time you learn a lesson, print 20 copies, and stuff them in your cabin binder.
Beat me to it! Would you fly on a plane where the pilot only had a mental checklist?
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