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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 08-20-2001
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EscapeArtist is on a distinguished road

110 degrees!

I spent a couple of hours tacking down Great Peconic Bay over the weekend on my way to Sag Harbor. The wind strength was 8-10 kts true and the direction was right on the rhumb line. Not a wave in sight.

Using my GPS, I carefully noted the track of each tack. I was 268M on starboard, 158M on port. That''s awful, it seems to me.

After each tack we would get the boat up to speed, get both tell-tales streaming, hold that course and check the track. As our beat went on, we pinched up until the windward tell-tale was lifting and spinning just a bit, and that got us almost to 100 degrees.

My Hunter 336 has an 11-degree sheeting angle, and a huge roach on the main. Seems like I ought to be able to get the boat to point better than that.

I worked hard to get the jib leads in the right spot, so I don''t think that was the problem. I set them so that all three sets of jib tell-tales broke at the same time when we luffed.

We didn''t sheet the jib in flat, it slowed us down. We''d sheet it in all the way, then ease it out until a slight curve showed on the foot, about 8 inches.

The halyard was not drum tight, and we had the boom about six inches off centerline with the traveler all the way to windward.

Could it be my stubby little wing keel? Should I check the tide tables? What''s up?
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Old 08-20-2001
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divad is on a distinguished road

It sounds to me like you''re doing all the right things regarding sail trim. Do you have telltales on the <b>leach</b> of the mainsail, at the end of each batten? I find that these are real helpful in telling you how the leach of the sail is trimmed.

Did you try to determine what your pointing angle was relative to the <b>apparent</b> wind? I''ll bet your apparent angle looks good because of the boat''s tight sheeting angle capabilities, but you are giving up true pointing closeness to leeway from the shallow keel, in which case, you''re bumming.
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Old 08-20-2001
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Start by checking the tide tables. Chances are you were in an adverse current. Adverse currents affect your speed and course over ground as recorded by the GPS. Currents also affect the apparent wind and adverse current going with the wind reduces the apparent wind speed and so results in a velocity shift that appears to be a header.

I would also look at your actual compass courses on each tack. If they are less than 90 degrees, with a wing keel you are probably pinching. Wing keels hate to be pinched and make a lot more leeway than if you fall off a little and keep you speed up.

Good luck
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