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Old 02-09-2014
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Re: Closer to the wind question

The key to all kinds of mechanical devices is knowing which ones are big and strong and which are light and fragile -- and then using the appropriate-sized tools and appropriate forces on each. And knowing when brute force is just making things worse, so try applying other tactics.

I say this having broken off the heads of quite a few bolts and being forced to drill out and tap new threads to repair
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Old 02-12-2014
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Re: Closer to the wind question

It's harder when you're singlehanding or have green crew, but getting the timing down right on your tacks and bringing the sheets over quickly and smoothly after you've got the boat starting to tack can really help reduce the workload of grinding in the new windward sheet, as well as help the boat come up to speed faster on the new tack and lose less speed in the tack. If you're singlehanding a tiller boat, you might be able to use shock cord to make a tiller tamer that will let you let go of the tiller for a few seconds to take care of the sheets and winches.
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