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  Topic Review (Newest First)
10-05-2012 05:10 PM
Re: Sailing close hauled?

Originally Posted by RichH View Post
Where has this little gold nugget been hiding?? Some really good stuff in here; can't wait to try it out!

Ever since I had my mast down, I've had serious sag in the headstay, but have been too afraid to mess around with the tension. No longer!
10-04-2012 07:52 PM
Re: Sailing close hauled?

Originally Posted by jerdrake View Post
Flying a C&C 30'. When trying to sail close hauled, everything I have read says I should be able to sail 45 degrees to the wind. However, according to my compass, the best I can do is 60 degrees without luffing the jib.

I have the jib trimmed tightly, the mainsail boom on centerline. What can I do to improve my close hauled sailing?

Would moving jib inside of shrouds when sailing close hauled help?
Lets start with the 'real' basics of what makes a sailboat 'point'.
1. the rigging must be at proper 'tune' so that the forestay does not adversely SAG off to leeward causing the boat to 'skid' to leeward. The geometric profile of the jib MUST have the forestay at near 15% tension to match the luff curve that the sailmaker designed into the foresail (for pointing in 12-15kts of windstrength). Overtightening the jib sheets causes excess sag in the forestay wire !!!!!!!! which causes draft aft jib. Dont be a gorilla on the jibsheet winch if you want a boat to 'point'. The 'curve' cut into the jib's luff MUST match the sag in the forestay ... or the boat WILL NOT be able to 'point'. You adjust forestay tension by adjusting the backstay tension.
Here's some tech explanation:

2. If youre running a mainsail made from woven DACRON, you cant simply 'just' raise it, you MUST 'stretch out' that luff 3-strand bolt rope by a prescribed amount of 'extra' mainsail halyard strain ... if you dont the sail will 'naturally' be draft aft, the boat WILL have adverse 'weather helm' and the boat will be SLOW, will heel aggressively and wont point very well. Here's how to PROPERLY raise a woven Dacron mainsail and what to do about it if certain 'misshape' has occurred or developed in the sail: How to properly RAISE a woven dacron mainsail - see post #1.

3. If youre not using a full set of tell tales, you wont come close to aerodynamic efficiency and will only 'guess' about sail shape and sail trim...
Again go back to the basics and get a 'fundamental' book on tell tales such as: Sail Trim Chart and Sail Trim Guide ... and then as you 'work your way up' in sail shaping and sail trim, then: --->magazine articles---> a 'series' of articles ---> Checking Trim on the Wind, November 1973
Achieving Proper Balance, December 1973
Sailing to Windward, January 1974
Are You at Optimum Trim?, March 1974
These 'seminal' articles is what most all other trim and sail shape articles are based.
Hint: if the mainsail has 'reasonable' shape, start your trim and shape so that the aft end of the second from top mainsail batten is approximately parallel to the boats centerline when you attempt to 'point'.

The above 3 sections should automatically get you to close to the maximum pointing parameters.

10-04-2012 06:40 PM
Re: Sailing close hauled?

I re-read this whole thread and this may be too obvious to even mention but since it is good trouble shooting to start with the easy stuff first here goes.

If you have bad enough current tacking through 180 degrees may be all you can get.
For example if your speed is 6 knots and the current is 2 knots you might be lucky to get 110 degrees with everything else perfect.
10-04-2012 05:27 PM
Re: Sailing close hauled?

Take some pictures of the sails trimmed close hauled and post them. 120* is a lot. I'm thinking there some trimming issues that need to be worked on.
10-04-2012 05:12 PM
Re: Sailing close hauled?

If the sail issue is addressed, or the sails are not the problem in themselves, headstay tension is the next thing to look at. Excessive sag can seriously hamper pointing ability. This is, of course, a rig tension/tuning issue that's already been mentioned...
10-04-2012 05:02 PM
Re: Sailing close hauled?

Mast is not tuned properly. The shrouds are tighter or looser (or both) on one side than the other. There are threads on tuning the mast that will help. If you aren't pointing to 45 degrees true or 30 degrees apparent on your "good" tack, that's not your only issue.
10-04-2012 04:41 PM
Re: Sailing close hauled?

Originally Posted by Squidd View Post
Yes, mine does... Favors Starboard over port...

What does that indicate...?
Potential for rigging issues. Could be a lot of things, but I was curious if the OP could point better on one side, which could suggest inconsistent rig tension.
10-04-2012 10:23 AM
Re: Sailing close hauled?

Originally Posted by jerdrake View Post
Flying a C&C 30'. When trying to sail close hauled, everything I have read says I should be able to sail 45 degrees to the wind. However, according to my compass, the best I can do is 60 degrees without luffing the jib...
The first question is whether you are trimming your jib(s) to an inside track versus to the rail. That alone is good for 10% or so. If you have a small jib (less than a 110%, I would think you can trim it inside the upper shroud. The smallest jib on my C&C 30 was a 110% which I do not believe I trimmed inside the upper...on my CS36T, the smallest jib, a 85% did trim inside the upper.
10-04-2012 10:17 AM
Re: Sailing close hauled?

Originally Posted by Minnewaska View Post
You got all the likely suspects above. Sails are my first guess, but only a guess. I might add jib car location toward the bottom of the list.

Any chance that you can point higher on one tack vs the other?
Yes, mine does... Favors Starboard over port...

What does that indicate...?
10-02-2012 06:10 PM
Re: Sailing close hauled?

I'm sure you checked this but to make the thread complete:

Make sure your topping lift is slack when the mail is hoisted.
The topping lift if tight will mess up the sail shape.

Also the bolt rope on old sails will shrink. This will cause the luff to be tight and the leach loose.
You will see that the boom dips to the stern when the sail is hoisted and the topping lift slacked.
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