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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 12-02-2009
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Shortening sail

The books I'm reading keep referring to the jiffy reefing system. My sails aren't equipped for this.

So my question is, When you reduce sail, how do you tie up the excess? Pictures would be nice if you have any.

I have titles for some better books that will be more informative, I just need to get to the bookstore.
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Old 12-02-2009
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Jiffy reefing generally involves a set-up where there are two reefing lines, one for the forward reef cringle and one for the aft cringle. You simply head up, lower the halyard to the appropriate point (some mark this on halyard), take in the forward and after reef lines, cleat them off to cleats provided, tighten up on the mainsail halyard and resume course. Go to the Harken site to see how they recommend you do it (and of course, the equipment that they would like to sell you to do it.) Others have devised a single line reefing system, so there is only one line to be taken in (usually from cockpit) instead of two with jiffy reefing. Either way, the excess sail is handled as follows. In the mainsail at the level of the reef cringles, there will be 3-4 smaller cringles. On some boats, there are already small lines inserted here. If not, you insert your own small lines. Gather up the excess sail with these lines and tie the ends together. Take care not to put tension on the sail with these lines. They are only for compacting the excess sail and you can tear the sail if you put significant force on the sail at these points.
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Old 12-02-2009
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While gathering the excess sail. Do not tie the lines around the boom. Tie them under the foot of the sail..........i2f
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Old 12-02-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NCC320 View Post
Take care not to put tension on the sail with these lines. They are only for compacting the excess sail and you can tear the sail if you put significant force on the sail at these points.
I wish I had read that 6 weeks ago!

Mike
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Old 12-02-2009
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Thanks, I believe I understand. I'll practice this as soon as possible.
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Old 12-02-2009
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Don't get too hung up about tying up the loose sailcloth. If we know it's only for a few hours - say until we get to the weather mark, we let ours hang. If it starts to flap too much and become a distraction for the helmsman we might tie it off with a sailstop through a reefing cringle that's easy to reach. Tying up the sail in a bunch, but NOT INCLUDING the boom is a good idea, for the reasons mentioned.
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