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  Topic Review (Newest First)
03-09-2010 07:38 PM
Originally Posted by oldironnut View Post
Newb here:Often single handed sailing. Other than self tending and less sq. ft. What are the pros and cons of club foot jib.
Harder to control the shape of the jib. On many, you can't move the fairlead forward or aft to change the shape of the sail.
03-09-2010 06:44 PM
oldironnut Newb here:Often single handed sailing. Other than self tending and less sq. ft. What are the pros and cons of club foot jib.
12-28-2009 04:35 PM
Originally Posted by toastchee View Post
Could u explain how a self-tacking sail works? thanks.
The idea of a self tacking sail is that when you come about, you do not need to do anything to the sheet as long as you are going to end up on the same point of sail. Sails that use a boom and have a single sheet are self tacking because the sheet will allow the boom to go out the same distance from centerline on both tacks(this assumes that you don't do anything weird with a traveler). As I described, a loose footed sail cannot be sheeted to centerline so to be self tacking the sheet length needs to stay the same but the sheeting point needs to move which it would not need to do with a boom. The sheeting point can be moved using a sheet horse/traveler that allows the proper amount of movement. However, getting the sheet to stay the same length becomes a bit trickier at this point.

Since putting a traveler on a loose footed sail is tricky, most people use 2 sheets just like a jib does. When you tack, you simply change which sheet you are using. The trouble with this is that you end up with a lot to do between steering, tacking the jib, and tacking the main.

One other caution that I forgot before is that your boat has to be properly shaped to accept the sheeting for a loose footed sail. The sheet now has to lead aft instead of vertically and it has to sheet outboard of centerline. It will not work if the stern does not extend a few feet beyond the clew of the main or if the stern is narrow. Many traditional double ended boats used a loose footed main and a boom on the mizzen because a loose footed mizzen will not work with their hull shape. And this all assumes that the sail is built for being loose footed.
12-28-2009 03:42 PM
Originally Posted by klem View Post
Unless you get a traveler to work, you won't have a self tacking sail anymore.
Could u explain how a self-tacking sail works? thanks.
12-28-2009 02:31 PM
klem The problem with getting rid of the boom has to do with sail shape. When sailing on the wind, this can be corrected by using the proper sheeting angle but off the wind, you won't be able to get the correct sheeting angle. As you fall off farther, you want to sheet the sail more outboard to keep it from bagging too much and this simply isn't possible. Think of it just like a big genoa. I suppose if you found a compelling reason to try this that you could work out a whisker pole for downwind sailing but at that point you might as well just use a boom.

I have sailed many loose footed traditional vessels and almost all have 2 sheets which is almost as dangerous as having a boom. Some boats with a single sheet lead the sheet to centerline which gives terrible sail trim. A traveler is pretty hard to get to work correctly without a boom although a rigid track one can work. Unless you get a traveler to work, you won't have a self tacking sail anymore.
12-28-2009 11:08 AM
toastchee thx all, esp Tager.
12-23-2009 10:47 AM
tager The boom gives you greater adjustability, you have an outhaul. Reefing is simplified. Positioning of the mainsheet and traveler is closer to the helmsman. You could rig a sloop without a boom, but it would probably be more of a pain to get your mainsail setting right. In some conditions, you want a loose foot, and others a tight foot. The only way to acheive that without an outhaul is to have an entire traveler-grid instead of a linear traveler. That could become pretty complicated.
12-22-2009 09:42 AM
nickmerc You hardley ever sail a Hobie dead down wind without a spin. Usually they broad reach. This is thier fastest point of sail so the apparent wind is much farther forwrad than on a 30' sloop.

Keep in mind that loose footed and boomless are two different arrangements. Loose footed mains still have a boom, but the foot is not in a track along the top of the boom. It is only connected at the clew.
Ana_Sofia live
12-21-2009 02:25 PM
WanderingStar Cats can do it because of their width and speed. Some traditional boats with lug or sprit rigs are boomless. My Dory has a sprit rig that sailed boomless for many years. I added a boom for easier sheeting and better down wind shape. A great advantage of small boats (the dory is <19') is the ability to cheaply experiment with the rig.
The boom transmits much of the drive to the mast. Without it a 30' sloop would need mainsheet winches. It would also change the balance.
12-21-2009 10:39 AM
2Gringos The rotomolded hobie cats have no booms....
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