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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related) > Dousing headsails in breeze when the main is down?
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Thread: Dousing headsails in breeze when the main is down? Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
04-23-2013 11:58 PM
downeast450
Re: Dousing headsails in breeze when the main is down?

Quote:
Originally Posted by peterchech View Post
That's nice! does it interfere with the aerodynamics of the jib though, right along the luff like that?
No, not that I can tell. I am using it with a 135. When it is set, the halyard is tight, I tension the down haul. The flow across the sail looks normal. The leech line works properly. Tell tails normal. The sail looks good. Pointing is good. Helm balance, too. Hull speed is easy. This is also true with a single reef in it. No concerns there. There must be some effect because it is there but I can't see or detect a performance change. If there is an effect it is well worth the convenience. I would think a partially rolled up head sail would be much worse.

Down.
04-23-2013 09:18 PM
peterchech
Re: Dousing headsails in breeze when the main is down?

Quote:
Originally Posted by downeast450 View Post
I attach the down haul to a small brass ring I sewed just below the top hank. Not to the head. This allows me to pull down on the head. I tried running the line through the hanks but there is not enough space and it would chafe badly. I sewed rings below each hank. Half inch brass rings I purchased from Sailrite. I adjust the tension on the sheets depending on conditions and am usually controlling the halyard's release as I pull on the down haul. Both lines run to the cockpit. Having the sheet tight places everything securely on the deck.

This set up has made my single handed management of the head sails very simple, convenient and safe.

Down
That's nice! does it interfere with the aerodynamics of the jib though, right along the luff like that?
04-22-2013 09:33 AM
downeast450
Re: Dousing headsails in breeze when the main is down?

Quote:
Originally Posted by peterchech View Post
Do you tighten the jib sheets before blowing the halyard and pulling on the down haul? Where on the jib is the down haul attached, halfway up the luff or all the way at the head?

I feel like tightening the sheets as recommended above would recent the jib from coming down though, something about the geometry of a triangle?

Btw I switched from roller furling to hanks shortly after acquiring my boat and have never looked back...
I attach the down haul to a small brass ring I sewed just below the top hank. Not to the head. This allows me to pull down on the head. I tried running the line through the hanks but there is not enough space and it would chafe badly. I sewed rings below each hank. Half inch brass rings I purchased from Sailrite. I adjust the tension on the sheets depending on conditions and am usually controlling the halyard's release as I pull on the down haul. Both lines run to the cockpit. Having the sheet tight places everything securely on the deck.

This set up has made my single handed management of the head sails very simple, convenient and safe.

Down
04-22-2013 08:53 AM
peterchech
Re: Dousing headsails in breeze when the main is down?

Quote:
Originally Posted by downeast450 View Post
Since I added a jib downhaul things have been much more comfortable in all conditions. It makes good sense to me to have it rigged. I had to change the jamb cleat to a larger one from my original install. I started with a nylon cleat sized for the line I use and managed to cut into the nylon base of the fairlead because of the high loads that are present sometimes. I am working from the cockpit pulling up on the downhaul line. The jamb cleat is low on the outside of the cockpit coaming. I need to change its location to reduce that angle by moving it forward a bit.

Down
Do you tighten the jib sheets before blowing the halyard and pulling on the down haul? Where on the jib is the down haul attached, halfway up the luff or all the way at the head?

I feel like tightening the sheets as recommended above would recent the jib from coming down though, something about the geometry of a triangle?

Btw I switched from roller furling to hanks shortly after acquiring my boat and have never looked back...
04-22-2013 01:17 AM
matthewwhill
Re: Dousing headsails in breeze when the main is down?

I think the original poster implied that he had hanked on headsails... If this is so I have read many places that a down haul is the way to go... An earlier reply may have refered to it as a jack line. I don't know if this is in some places synonymous with down haul. The only jack lines I've learned a out are rigged on the deck for harness and teather clip-ins.
04-21-2013 05:16 PM
travlineasy
Re: Dousing headsails in breeze when the main is down?

Well, I just replaced the jib furling line, went from 1/4-inch to 5/16-inch, which makes it a bit easier to grip, and doesn't seem to take up much more space on the drum. The Alado furling system I use employs a rather large, aluminum drum, which for the most part, makes furling easier than some of the small drum systems I've seen.

If you're interested in switching from hank-on to roller furling, you may want to take a good look at Alado at ALADO - Furler and Roller - main page

Gary
04-21-2013 12:56 PM
downeast450
Re: Dousing headsails in breeze when the main is down?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichH View Post
With a hanked-on jib/genoa, the 'best' way to do this is with a jack-line attached to near the head of the jib, then run to block at the stem and run back to at least the base of the mast.
Just 'blow' the (captured) halyard, pull hell on the jack-line (from the relative safety of the mast base or cockpit) until the sail is fully down; no need to release the jibsheet, in fact its better to fully pull-in the jibsheet before dowsing.
Since I added a jib downhaul things have been much more comfortable in all conditions. It makes good sense to me to have it rigged. I had to change the jamb cleat to a larger one from my original install. I started with a nylon cleat sized for the line I use and managed to cut into the nylon base of the fairlead because of the high loads that are present sometimes. I am working from the cockpit pulling up on the downhaul line. The jamb cleat is low on the outside of the cockpit coaming. I need to change its location to reduce that angle by moving it forward a bit.

Down
04-21-2013 12:42 PM
MarkofSeaLife
Re: Dousing headsails in breeze when the main is down?

I'm not sure i agree with the thought that a genoa alone is more stable than with the main.
I am pretty positive the main stabilizes the boat better than jib alone.

It's just that people get scared going dead down wind in heavy weather that they will accidentally gybe.
04-21-2013 12:35 PM
JonEisberg
Re: Dousing headsails in breeze when the main is down?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Faster View Post
I think there are definite improvements with today's furlers, but it still takes considerable effort to furl a loaded sail - and using a winch on a furling line scares me - too much power and if things are jammed up you might break something.
Definitely... I generally find that if one needs the assistance of a winch to furl a headsail on boats up to 45' or thereabouts, something is wrong... Either the furler is undersized, or the boat is oversized, you've waited too long to do the furling to begin with, or the person doing the furling is simply too weak... (grin)


Quote:
Originally Posted by Faster View Post
Be careful here, Gary... when you go to heavier line you can fill the drum before the sail's fully in. If you use heavier line it's a good idea to remove the core (or the cover) for the portion that 'lives' on the drum.. it reduces the drum fill but leaves you with heavier, easier to hand line in the cockpit.

Core vs Cover?... the core-less cover tends to roll 'flat' onto the drum and is said to be less prone to overrides.. removing the cover reduces diameter too and the core supplies the bulk of the strength of the line.. it's also a bit easier to do.... On a previous boat we stripped the cover off of 3/8 line and ran it over the aft half of a small dyneema type furling line to give us the grip.. tapered and stitched the cover onto the small diameter line where it ended.
Stripping the cover is definitely the way to go, IMHO... I would never rely on using the cover alone on a furling line, which on most hi-tech lines today is far weaker than the core...

On the furler for my genoa, I'm using 3/8" Samson MLX with the cover stripped from the portion that lives on the drum... The core is a very 'slippery' Dyneema blend very similar to Amsteel, and glides very nicely through the lead blocks and lays beautifully on the drum, one would really have to screw up to produce a snag... a highly recommended solution, I've VERY happy with my set-up...

I've come to love Samson MLX for furling lines and headsail sheets, a beautiful rope, very nice on both winches, and hands...

04-21-2013 12:16 PM
paul323
Re: Dousing headsails in breeze when the main is down?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SimonV View Post
I take it we are talking about hanked on head sails because all you would do is roll up the furler, on a roller furler. The only Hanked on sail I have is the staysail.
Not as easy as it sounds if your foresail is full in heavier winds. In fact, almost impossible - I also hate the idea of using the winch on the furler, but I was caught out once when if was impossible to furl the sail any other way. Scared the heck out of me. Even if released and flogging, in enough wind a manual furl is almost impossible. (Yeah, I was dumb not to have at least part-furled it earlier).

I can't help wondering if, in the dire scenario we are discussing, hauling the sail down the furler would work better (less strain on the rig) - but it would be dangerous.
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