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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Seamanship & Navigation
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Seamanship & Navigation Forum devoted to seamanship and navigation topics, including paper and electronic charting tools.


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Old 10-20-2013
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How high can you point?

I'm trying to determine if my 1986 Lidgard 29' sloop points well. Most days we tack up around 100-120 degrees from side to side. In other words, we are 50-60 degrees off the wind. How are other boats doing?
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Old 10-20-2013
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Re: How high can you point?

I don't know yur boat, but from what I see on line you should be pointing higher. Are the sails original? What size headsail are you using? Do you move your traveler to windward?
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Old 10-20-2013
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Re: How high can you point?

I was on a Catalina 27 yesterday and was amazed at how high it could point, It had a new main and head sails, well about 6 months old. The head was a 135. We had the traveler pretty well centered.

I bet we were only 30 degrees off the wind and she sailed fast and smooth...
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Old 10-21-2013
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Re: How high can you point?

30 to 35 degrees My sails are in good shape and I have a 150 genoa.
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Old 10-21-2013
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Re: How high can you point?

Once you tack to 100 degrees and get moving can you then head up more?
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Old 10-21-2013
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Re: How high can you point?

There are a lot of things that effect pointing. Usually a boat can point around 45* from the true wind. Those saying they can tack through 60-70* better be on an all out race boat. 30* off the apparent wind is quite common, but true wind is still another 10-15* off that. Lets stick to talking about the angle we tack through, as that is a much better measure of how a boat points.

Some of the things that effect pointing are:
bottom condition and foils
boat speed
sail condition and cut
rig tension
heel angle
sail trim
weight placement
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Old 10-21-2013
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Re: How high can you point?

Mostly, it comes down to your foils.

If your sails are blown out, improperly trimmed, if your keel is damaged, or foul with growth, you won't point high.

Also, some lifting keel and centerboard boats don't point as high as their fixed-keel cousins.

Boats that sheet to the toe rail will not point as high as boats that sheet inside the rails. The tighter sheeting angle reduces the "stall point" of the foils.

Achieving 90 degree tacks is pretty easy if you have even fair sails and a clean keel. Getting the next 5 or 10 degrees requires knowledge of fine-tuning your sail trim. (Sail twist, halyard tension, jib car placement, traveler position, etc).

In some conditions, (like upwind into a foul current and a chop) you're just not going to point very high and maintain any decent amount of VMG (velocity made good). You'll have to foot off a bit, to build speed to power through the chop.

LOL...oops, I see zzgta has beaten me to it. Heed his advice, he's a winner and I've raced with him.
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Old 10-21-2013
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Re: How high can you point?

Quote:
Originally Posted by robodd View Post
30 to 35 degrees My sails are in good shape and I have a 150 genoa.
You are talking about apparent wind while the OP is talking about TW.

Regards

Paulo
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Old 10-21-2013
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Re: How high can you point?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lidgard29 View Post
I'm trying to determine if my 1986 Lidgard 29' sloop points well. Most days we tack up around 100-120 degrees from side to side. In other words, we are 50-60 degrees off the wind. How are other boats doing?
The real question here has not to do with how close to the wind a boat can get but what is the wind angle where a boat makes against the wind a better VMG. That angle varies with the wind intensity (it becomes smaller with stronger winds)

For reefing the sails, or for solving some problem I can bring my boat to an incredible wind angle, even on auto pilot, without losing boat control but the speed will fall to half of what I can get with more 7 of 8 degrees.

Modern performance boats, specially the ones that are designed to be specially good upwind can give you an idea about the best you can have today on a cruising boat and serve as comparison.

A First 35 best upwind angle with 6K wind will be 43.7º and the boat will be made a VMG (not boat speed) of 3.35K. With 16K the best upwind angle would be 39.4º and the VMG would be 5.15K.

http://www.yca.org.ar/Gallery/3108.pdf

Regards

Paulo
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Last edited by PCP; 10-21-2013 at 10:33 AM.
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Re: How high can you point?

Quote:
Originally Posted by zz4gta View Post
There are a lot of things that effect pointing. Usually a boat can point around 45* from the true wind. Those saying they can tack through 60-70* better be on an all out race boat. 30* off the apparent wind is quite common, but true wind is still another 10-15* off that. Lets stick to talking about the angle we tack through, as that is a much better measure of how a boat points.

Some of the things that effect pointing are:
bottom condition and foils
boat speed
sail condition and cut
rig tension
heel angle
sail trim
weight placement
zz4gta has it right, but, look at each item on his list. Each item has a direct bearing on boat speed. Anything that will maximize boat speed will improve a boat's pointing angle. I'll add one item to his list - helmsmanship (i.e., the ability to find the groove, and to keep it there with the least amount of rudder movement).
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