can only tack close reach, can't close-haul - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 03-07-2012
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can only tack close reach, can't close-haul

i have an O'day Daysailer 2 sailing in north carolina lakes and im unable to achieve more of a turn to close-haul. ive been sailing since October of last year and have yet to have more of angle into wind, can only move at a close reach. im trimming sails in as mush as possible as well tried other forms, but now wondering and hoping im missing something. the winds are usually 5 to 15knts. so, when tacking the close-reach just adds time to my advance, but would like to improve to have more control. if i turn more toward a close-haul, trim in sails or adjust accordingly, i loose wind and motion. any ideas? im sailing with the jib and main. thanks
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Old 03-07-2012
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Re: can only tack close reach, can't close-haul

Check your sail shape. If the max camber is more than a third of the way back from the luff of the sail, your sails aren't properly shaped. If you have a "flattening reef", use it. Also, try playing with the mainsail outhaul, vang tension, and traveller position, as well as the position of the jib fair-lead. However, if your boat's sails are old and blown out you may not be able to get a good shape no matter what you do.

You also might just be pinching a bit too much. If you don't have them, instal a tell-tail or two on each side of the jib about a foot or so from the luff. This will tell you if you're pinching a bit earlier than a luffing sail. If your sails appear to have a good shape, but your tell-tails are flapping, and you still can't get enough speed to properly tack, you just need to fall off a 2 or 3 degrees.

Finally, a light little boat like yours will be prone to having a hard time tacking when the wind picks up, particularly if there is some chop. If everything looks as good as you can get it, and you're still having trouble, just fall off a few degrees about 5 or 10 seconds before you tack to build up speed, then tack as usual.
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Old 03-07-2012
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Re: can only tack close reach, can't close-haul

What is your apparent wind angle closest to the wind?

Do you have a compass? Check your bearing on one tack, then tack through the wind and check again. If you are at or less than 90 degrees you are probably fine given your boat.

You may not be able to sail closer than about 45 degrees off true wind.
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Old 03-07-2012
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Re: can only tack close reach, can't close-haul

I'll let the experts correct me if I'm wrong. But I had one small boat with a narrow stern that didn't provide much flotation. Hanging a 4 stroke motor off the motor mount had so much leverage that it changed the trim and leaned the mast backwards and caused heavy weather helm. To stay on course, I had to pull the tiller toward me quite hard. The rudder was acting like a sea anchor and slowing my headway. Removing the motor and raking my mast forward made a big difference, it sailed much better.

And I agree with the previous two posters.
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Old 03-07-2012
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Re: can only tack close reach, can't close-haul

Some possibilities:
- shrouds (stbd, port fore and aft stays) too loose allowing mast to bend
- center board and/or rudder smaller then spec
- sails well blown out
- perhaps you are heading up as high into the wind as you can and are in effect close hauled
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Old 03-08-2012
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Re: can only tack close reach, can't close-haul

How old are the sails? I gained 10 degrees to windward when I got new sails - and the old ones did not look excessively blown.

How are you defining close-hauled? Do you have a Davis Windex on top of the mast? The instructions have you set the close hauled angle at anything from 25 degrees upwards. Whoever installed mine set the indicators at 25 degrees and of course I can't sail at that angle without losing a lot of speed. The problem lies in the expectations, not with the boat.
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Old 03-08-2012
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Re: can only tack close reach, can't close-haul

Obvious question...centerboard all the way down when close-hauled?
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Old 03-08-2012
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Re: can only tack close reach, can't close-haul

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkSF View Post
.....How are you defining close-hauled? Do you have a Davis Windex on top of the mast? ....
This was my question too... how are you determining that you can't get 'close hauled'?
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can only tack close reach, can't close-haul

Yes, might very well be my sails. The jib does look Good, especially compared to the main. I'm going out again this weekend and try a few things such as attempting a barber , check shrouds, the compass is good idea and I may finally attach the windex. My interest is in or my somewhat desire is to reach atleast 50 - 60degrees into truewind, but I'm achieving more of at best 80. Then I loose wind. The cb is all the way down. But, as stated, this is perhaps close to best the DS 2 can provide.
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Re: can only tack close reach, can't close-haul

80 degrees? I don't think so. That's a beam reach, or very close.
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