Technique for furling in high winds - Page 3 - SailNet Community
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post #21 of 40 Old 11-10-2008
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furlers, boat and sail sizes

Hello,

If your boat is a morgan 41' model, it will have a big sail and I think that will take a good amount of effort to furl.

My first boat, a Catalina 22, had a 150 genoa on a furler (I forget the particular model). It was a small boat with a fairly small sail. It was easy to furl in all conditions (once I learned about halyard wrap).

My second boat was 28' and came with a Selden Furlex 100S furler. That furler worked great. I used it with a 150 genoa and, later on, a 140 laminate genoa. Regardless of the wind, i could easily furl the sail without a winch. It it got real windy it would take more effort. It it was real real windy (20-25 kts) I would make sure I was on a port tack and on a beam reach so I could easily roll up the sail (it rolled up counter-clockwise).

My current boat has a Hood Line Sea Furl SL (it was originally a line drive and has been converted to single line). The boat is bigger (35'), the sail is bigger, and I expected more effort to furl the sail. Last year was my first with boat, and it was very difficult to furl the sail. I am pretty strong, and it took a lot of effort to furl the sail. This past spring I spent some time cleaning and lubricating the furler. I also worked on betting the forstay / backstay tension correct. The furler worked better this year, but does not work nearly as well as the furlex.

So the level of effort to furl the sail will depend on your particular furler, sail and sail size, as well as halyard and stay tension. But, on a 41' boat, I don't think a 98 lb weakling will be able to furl it without a winch.

Good luck,
Barry

Barry Lenoble
Deep Blue C, 2002 C&C 110
Mt. Sinai, NY

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post #22 of 40 Old 11-10-2008
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I have a Selden Furlex 100S on my Pearson 26 & was cautioned to never use a winch to furl the sail... if you need the winch, something is wrong and you'll probably break something (like a forestay) ... agree w/ running on a broad reach/beam reach/downwind to let the main help shield the jib for furling purposes....

Jon
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post #23 of 40 Old 11-11-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 121Guy View Post
The idea behind easy furling is a relatively tight forestay and a relatively loose halyard.
On one issue I agree that a tight forestay will help because sag of the foil. It is a big cause of the friction encountered while furling. On the issue of a loose halyard; I can't say that I agree because if it is too loose the halyard may want to wrap up. A tensioned halyard should not add significant friction to the swivels if everything is working freely. Tension on the halyard helps prevent it from getting wrapped around the foil. I think it is important to regularly check the upper swivel to be sure it is working freely. Lubricate torlon ball swivels with McLube SailKote to provide a dry lubricant that will not become gummed up. Harken previously claimed that you should only flush with water and not to lubricate the swivels on furlers; but now they recommend the SailKote product for all sheaves and recirculating torlon ball applications. So my point is that if you must loosen the halyard to reduce the friction in the swivels, then the problem is with the swivels; not the amount of tension on the halyard.
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post #24 of 40 Old 11-11-2008
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Halyard Wrap

Keel Haulin,

The op was concerned about a furler that did not furl easily but eventually did when winched. Therefore halyard wrap was not an issue or it wouldn't have furled at all without unrolling the sail by hand around the forestay or a series of jibes to unwrap it.

The reason a halyard wraps has all to do with the angle the halyard makes between the top of the swivel and the block in the mast. If there isn't an angle, then the halyard is parallel to the headstay and it wraps easier. They sell restrainers to deal with this if the geometry of your setup doesn't allow an angle.

You may have noticed that I mentioned slacking the halyard until some wrinkles appear in the luff of the sail. This small adjustment will relieve any added tension on the furling system and allow the upper bearing to swivel freely. When this upper bearing does not swivel freely, and turns with the foils is when the halyard wraps.

You are correct that the bearings need maintenance on most furling systems. I have owned several Harkens, a Selden and and a Streamstay and have worked on and sailed many boats with a ProFurl, one of the only units that has sealed bearings for the life of the system.

Good Luck,

121Guy
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post #25 of 40 Old 11-11-2008
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Another thing to consider is the age of your furling line. Mine was furling a little stiff, on a similar sized boat with a well serviced furler. I noticed a slightly chafed spot on the line and used that as an excuse to replace with new. The difference was pretty amazing.

Where previously I had always needed to do the furling, after simply replacing the line my wife could furl it easily in 20 knots. It was the only thing we changed, and I'd wager that the required pull was reduced by a good 20%.

As lines age, they stiffen, especially ones which are exposed a lot, like mainsheet, traveler and furling lines.
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post #26 of 40 Old 11-12-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 121Guy View Post
Keel Haulin,

The op was concerned about a furler that did not furl easily but eventually did when winched. Therefore halyard wrap was not an issue or it wouldn't have furled at all without unrolling the sail by hand around the forestay or a series of jibes to unwrap it.

The reason a halyard wraps has all to do with the angle the halyard makes between the top of the swivel and the block in the mast. If there isn't an angle, then the halyard is parallel to the headstay and it wraps easier.
Yes, I know this and is what I was trying to point out in my first post. Most masthead sloops have halyards that go over the sheave box and internally down the mast; there is no angle between the forestay and the halyard. Before I purchased my boat the PO was showing us the headsail at the dock; unfurled and then it would not roll back up. The Harken furler was brand new. The owner started cussing and yanking the furler and eventually the sail rolled up. At the time I was not familiar with the boat and did not notice a wrapped halyard but I was trying to get him to stop jerking the furling line because I was afraid of the damage it might do to the furler. Well it turned out that there was nothing wrong with the furler; but the un-tensioned halyard was wrapping up around the headstay/foil and caused it to bind.

He did manage to force the furler to roll in the sail, but at the expense of tweaking the foil at the point where the halyard was binding on the foil (I did not see this until after the boat was purchased; but it is only a slight bend). If he had put the furling line on the winch I fear that he would have ruined an otherwise new furler or foil. Adding a pennant between the head of the sail and the swivel resolved the issue. I suppose instead of a wire pennant; a pennant made of dyneema that is eye spliced would be a good choice also. We keep the halyard tight to prevent the smaller length of exposed halyard from wrapping around the foil now; and have not had any problems.

If you have a furler system on a mast that does not have enough angle between the halyard exit and the headstay, it's a good idea to keep the exposed halyard length short (use of a pennant) and well tensioned when furling to prevent the halyard from getting wrapped up. Otherwise; add the mast mounted turning block below the masthead to get an offset angle (at the potential expense of being able to fully tension the luff of the headsail).

JMHO...
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post #27 of 40 Old 11-17-2008
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Halyard wrap should not be an issue with a properly installed ProFurl furler. The furler head should have a stainless strap the goes up between a (teflon?) donut which is securely attached to the headstay and positioned with a 30 to 45 decree opening centered towards the mast. When properly installed and the headsail is hoisted to the correct height, this strap and the opening in the donut insures that halyard wrap will not occur. I also know (from expensive experience...) that you have to be very careful when raising the headsail at the dock if the wind is not on your nose! At that time, I was not aware of the slot and got impatient trying to get the jib to full hoist. Basically, I busted the donut. When the pieces hit the deck, I quickly learned something about my "new to me boat" and the furler design. Since then (and after dropping the headstay to replace the donut), I have been very diligent about alignment of the strap and the opening.

This is also the first boat I have owned with a furler, but after 6 years, I am very pleased with the ProFurl design and ease of use. I especially like the access to the forestay turn buckle that this furler allows.

-michael
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post #28 of 40 Old 11-17-2008
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Furling in High Winds

I replace the original furling line for one considerably longer and always keep it on a winch ( use a winch that is not normally in use). Works great!
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post #29 of 40 Old 11-17-2008
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All good information. As an operator of a charter company my
daughter has seen many a problem resulting from furling in a headsail
with a winch. As the manufactors state NEVER put the furling system
that is under load on a winch. The best way is well off the wind, not
necessarily dead downwind but enough to let it stream like a flag. This will reduce the load. I use this tecnique with great success on our Gulftsr 50 (which I singlehand on charters). This will also work even when there is no main to blacket it. Just my two cents.
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post #30 of 40 Old 11-17-2008
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Might work great, but IMHO, you'd be better off setting up the furler so the winch wasn't a requirement. Using a winch to furl a RF headsail can often do massive damage to the rig.
Quote:
Originally Posted by DFA View Post
I replace the original furling line for one considerably longer and always keep it on a winch ( use a winch that is not normally in use). Works great!

Sailingdog

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