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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related) > leaving sails on the boat during winter...horrible idea?
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Topic Review (Newest First)
11-12-2012 12:11 PM
MedSailor
Re: leaving sails on the boat during winter...horrible idea?

Quote:
Originally Posted by smurphny View Post
I left the sails aboard this year for the first time. Stowed them in sail bags. Has anyone actually had mouse problems? I have never seen any evidence of mice getting aboard. I put a strainer on the bilge drain hole so critters can't get in and don't see how they'd ever get up the sides which would require climbing up over the painted surface upside down. They can do a lot of damage, chewing on stuff to build nests. If there were any danger of mice, it would probably be a good idea to take sails home.
If you're worried about mice, take measures to keep the mice from coming aboard. It's fairly easy because you start with a moat. The dock-lines are the way they usually come aboard and they're easy enough to fortify.

Take a 99c funnel from an auto store with the narrow end sized to your dockline diameter. Duct tape the puppy on with the wide side facing the dock and voila! you're rodent-proofed.

I couldn't find a picture of the easy funnel setup but plastic plates and strings work as well, they're just not as quick and easy to set up.



MedSailor

PS I leave my sails on and have for over 10 years on 2 boats in the PNW. No detectable damage. No mold except the spinnaker which got wet in its bag in the lazarette due to a hatch drain failure.
11-12-2012 11:15 AM
smurphny
Re: leaving sails on the boat during winter...horrible idea?

I left the sails aboard this year for the first time. Stowed them in sail bags. Has anyone actually had mouse problems? I have never seen any evidence of mice getting aboard. I put a strainer on the bilge drain hole so critters can't get in and don't see how they'd ever get up the sides which would require climbing up over the painted surface upside down. They can do a lot of damage, chewing on stuff to build nests. If there were any danger of mice, it would probably be a good idea to take sails home.
11-12-2012 08:59 AM
pdqaltair
Re: leaving sails on the boat during winter...horrible idea?

My main's only been bent on since 1997. So far, no need of signifigant repairs, though I have changed battens, added a few stitches to the pockets, and replaced slug lashings. The sail is well covered, including the clew (many hang out). Same on my last boat.

While you could certainly take the main home and many "feel" better about it, I'm not sure it's obvious that mildew is less likely with the sail folded at home than in cold storage on the boat under a breathable cover. There should be zero chafe and zero UV exposure, if the cover is proper. I've never expereinced it on the spar. Do close it tightly enough that birds cannot get in--that I've expereinced several times, though they did no harm. I do add sail ties over the cover when leaving for a storm or a long period.

----

I'm surprised they let you haul with the genny up.

I would NOT try to remove that sail is there is ANY detectable wind. The force to the side is far greater than you may think and stands are not meant for that. IF the sail does not fall straight down, there is too much wind. Try early in the morning.

The "wrap the halyard" trick is very effective done well; I've done that through weak huricanes at the shore. But give the extra windage, off is better. Also, a genny does not have a true cover, only a UV strip, and they require expensive replacement.
11-12-2012 08:46 AM
eherlihy
Re: leaving sails on the boat during winter...horrible idea?

I must have been tired when I posted the above...

I removed the jib, and stored that in the salon last week.

I forgot that the supports for the shrinkwrap are FG strapping that is wrapped around the boom. It can't be done, and kept tight enough with the sail and two sailcovers over it.

It is getting tight in the salon, gut the main has got to come off.
11-12-2012 08:39 AM
Minnewaska
Re: leaving sails on the boat during winter...horrible idea?

Bubble,

He is shrinkwrapping the boat in the Boston area, so it will presumably sit still for 5 or more months. I would agree, if you are going to use it periodically, you can keep it dried out.
11-12-2012 08:20 AM
BubbleheadMd
Re: leaving sails on the boat during winter...horrible idea?

Bah. Properly prepared, the main can survive on the boom during the winter. I've done it because I sail in sub-freezing weather if the sun and wind are right. I also went more than 4 days without visiting my boat.

However, if you're certain that you're not sailing during the winter, and you're going to leave the boat unattended for weeks at a time, just take the dang thing off and eliminate the risk.

I do agree that a roller furling jib will be ruined though. I use hank-on jibs, so mine are always stored in bags.

This winter, I have an option- I will probably put my new mainsail away, and bend on my ratty, 40 year old main for winter sailing if the long-range forecast looks promising.
11-12-2012 07:12 AM
Minnewaska
Re: leaving sails on the boat during winter...horrible idea?

Quote:
Originally Posted by eherlihy View Post
.....Do I really need to remove the main?
Yes

Boston... freeze, thaw, freeze, thaw. You may have a cover, but moisture will get under it and into in the seems, in the threads maybe the weave. I might feel differently, if you were planning to use the boat occasionally, which would dry it out. Mildew would concern me as well.

But, they're your sails. Do with them as you please. You won't come back in the spring to find shreds. I'm only suggesting you will notably shorten their useful life.

Imagine what will happen if a winter storm manages to get your cover loose, even just one end.
11-11-2012 06:49 PM
eherlihy
Re: leaving sails on the boat during winter...horrible idea?

Resurrecting an old thread because I am SERIOUSLY contemplating leaving the main under the sailcover for the winter.

Here is the situation: we are 80% sure that we are selling the house, and down sizing to a condo. Because there'll be enough stuff to move, or put in storage, I deflated and packed up my inflatable dink, and put it in the salon. I also removed the jib (I can't imagine leaving that on over the winter), and put it in the main salon. I've opened up all the storage under the setees, and V berth, but left all cushions aboard - flipped on their side so that air can circulate everywhere.

I actually have a spare (old) main sailcover, and I am contemplating placing that over the new sailcover to minimize chafe. My current plan is to have the boat shrinkwrapped, as I have for the past 2 years.

Do I really need to remove the main?
12-06-2011 01:35 PM
Bene505
Quote:
Originally Posted by eSailor View Post
update: I removed the main sail last weekend. The jib will come off this weekend.

While I was driving around the yard looking for my boat on stands, I noticed a decent amount of boats did have their sails on after they were hauled out. Regardless, mine will be removed.

Thanks,
Nice job eSailor.

Don't look here http://www.sailnet.com/forums/genera...tml#post803836.

Regards,
Brad
12-06-2011 07:21 AM
eSailor update: I removed the main sail last weekend. The jib will come off this weekend.

While I was driving around the yard looking for my boat on stands, I noticed a decent amount of boats did have their sails on after they were hauled out. Regardless, mine will be removed.

Thanks,
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