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deltaten 12-17-2012 10:46 AM

Reefing a headsail???
In perusing ads and lists for a used jib, I find a few that have listed reef points. Looking up reefing jibs, there's a lot of opinions and few answers. seems that some say it can't or shouldn;t be done; some say it can!?!?!

I'm trying to find an OEM sized jib for the W27 for next season. Should have a "foot" of near 11 or so feet (100%). Scant listings on (decent) OEM-types; but lotsa Genny's available @ 13- 16' foot; some with reefing points.

Roll/flaking a jib up to some point on the sail to reef it would make a rather large, unwieldly sack of sail the the bottom..wouldn't it? Reefing a jib so in an emergency situ I could see' but for/in common use when ya need a smaller headsail??

Don't have a wish..or $$ for a furling rig, so offering that advice is not the answer , thanx :D

Squidd 12-17-2012 10:52 AM

Re: Reefing a headsail???
Get "two" sails...

A 90 or 100% jib (11') AND a 130 or 150 % Genoa (13'-16')

Hank on the appropriate one for conditions...

Maybe even a 75% storm jib if you go out in lumpy conditions..

Faster 12-17-2012 11:04 AM

Re: Reefing a headsail???
Squidd's scenario is your ideal, esp with hanks or a foil.. where we've made good use of a 'reefable' jib was with our smallest working jib (ie 90%) - on a previous boat we had a single reef in that sail, it was nice to have that 'next step' when we were down to a double reef main and the working jib already. Such sails, esp on a 27 footer are not large, so the 'rolled up tube' of sail at the foot when reefed is not that big a deal.

We left the original tack fitting connected, moved one sheet to the reef clew, then lowered the halyard, attached the reef tack and sheeted in all during a 'slow tack'. Then rolled up the extra sail into as tight a tube as possible and tied it all in. This does have to be fairly secure or it can shake out on the tacks. To unreef we reversed the process. It worked quite well for the relatively rare occasions we needed it - we were glad to have it.

chucklesR 12-17-2012 11:25 AM

Re: Reefing a headsail???
Try Bacon Sails & Marine Supplies - Discount Sailing & Boating Supplies - a local shop here in Annapolis area. They have scads of used sails for sale.
Visiting them for a shopping day is a good thing to do as they have all kinds of used stuff for sail.

On the Chesapeake most days you will want a 130 or so, but if you can only get one in your budget go with a 90 or 100%.

Unfortunately the price of hank on as opposed to furling is you must carry a suite of sails to meet the conditions you'll meet on the water.

deltaten 12-17-2012 11:50 AM

Re: Reefing a headsail???
That was the sort of report I was hoping for. :D

Yes, Chuckles; been to the Bacon's site. That's where I collected prices and options/dimensions. I had contact w/a fella in Conn. that has a Neil Pryde jib that is just under, by inches, an OEM sail. W/bronze hanks and in virtually new condition. He wants $150, and i guess shipping. Sounds like a deal ;) but I wonder if I'll find something closer to the of those "free" sails would be nice LOL

Looking into reefing, as all the Chessie sailors know, WX is variable and I'd like the option of reducing sail without the added expense of a storm jib. Then again... the *is* that spare, nasty main that could use some trimming ;)

Barquito 12-17-2012 03:26 PM

Re: Reefing a headsail???
I have thought about putting reefing cringles in one of my jibs. As I see it, the biggest advantage is that you can have one less sail onboard. On a 27 foot boat, that might make a difference. Make sure the clew is not cut too high, otherwise the reefed 'sausage' will be scooping air. If the reefed position is your storm sail, make sure it is constructed to take a beating.

SHNOOL 12-17-2012 03:46 PM

Re: Reefing a headsail???
It works, and it IS done, but it's not really a great way to roll.
I have a 30 year old boat, and apparently the original sail (a number 2 130)... Yep, the #2 is a 130... on my boat, pretty much you sail with a 155 all the time full crewed up, and you drop down to a 130 only when you reach 25+. I guess that's the thinking anyway....

Here's a shot of mine.. and I can tell you I've sailed the boat twice with a reefed headsail as you speak (not half furled but reefed). It works... and tidying up the foot is ugly so it's not pretty. But in a pinch it works. One time was when my only crew with me was my 9yo daughter. Went sailing 9 miles downwind to a dock and dine, and when we were done lunch we had a rather nasty turn of wind, to 25+... My little 2.2hp outboard wasn't enough to move us in that, but Lord knows we were able to sail! With this masthead rig the boat barely moved with a reefed main alone, and the outboard full tilt (motor sailing style). So up went the 130, reefed, and we made the beat back up the water almost tolerable... HULL speed the whole way, washing some decking as well! Good times. My daughter now does not fear wind! She still talks of the day we had water spraying over the bow, and washing down the decks!

SHNOOL 12-17-2012 03:52 PM

Re: Reefing a headsail???
By the way, I just looked at my own picture that first cringle looks photoshopped... I assure you it is not, weird.

paulk 12-18-2012 10:02 PM

Re: Reefing a headsail???
We found a reefable Solent jib quite useful on a Transatlantic voyage and European cruise. The setup was similar to what Shnool's picture shows. When the wind picked up over 25 knots we'd rig a new sheet to the upper clew, ease the halyard (and old sheet) until the new tack cringle was secured up forward, and then tighten back on the halyard and the new sheet. Took about five minutes. The foredeck crew could then run a sailtie or line through the cringles to bunch (bunt) up the loose sailcloth. This setup lowers the center of effort of the sail a lot more than roller-furling does, so helps reduce heeling. Since the sail was relatively small (90-100% of the foretriangle) catching water in the bunt was not much of an issue. The sail was cut to be effective with either tack in use, so there was no issue with the draft of the sail being in the wrong place, or the "roll" messing up airflow, as could happen with a roller-furled "reefed" sail. On a 27' boat you might even be able to rig up a downhaul to the new tack cringle, and not have to go forward to secure it down. We were on an Ohlson 38.

RichH 12-19-2012 11:46 AM

Re: Reefing a headsail???
The (relatively insignificant) problems with jibs with 'reef points' are two fold:
1. the large 'overhang' of rolled up foot material that extends 'past' the new reef clew cringle.
2. the need for a 'stout' means to control the jib luff tension (a jib cunningham, etc. affixed to 'strong' reinforcing patches). Without a cunningham-like means to control luff tension ... not the luff itself but the sail material tension immediately behind the luff, you will get 'scallops' between the hanks which will tend to 'permanently stretch' the sail cloth between the hank positions. A jib cunningham on a jib with reef points will help prevent this.

The use of a (slab) reefable jib, etc. is a VERY good way ensure good sail SHAPE, especially needed for going 'upwind' in gnarly conditions. This is a strategic advantage over a roller furled jib that typically can only be 'roller reefed' to approx 30% sail area reduction before the shape -- goes all to hell and you get extreme bagginess in the important luff section and thus lose important 'pointing ability'.

I prefer the jib, etc. reef points to run along at an 'up angle' towards the clew for two reasons:
1. if carefully 'angled' you dont have to reset (much) the fore/aft position of the jib fairlead car.
3. the resultant higher (new) clew position will be 'far above the deck' for less trapping of 'green water'. Another way to state this is the my reef points are arranged so that I effectively change a relatively low clew 'normal' shape into a 'yankee' shape with 'high' clew when deep reefed.

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