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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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  #31  
Old 06-08-2010
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Say fool, does the topping lift serve any significant purpose in sail trim?
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  #32  
Old 06-08-2010
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A couple of thoughts (but I am no expert at sailing through squalls):

If you expect the storm to be short in duration; it might be better to sail into it instead of running away from it. Sailing upwind through the storm will reduce your time in the storm and hopefully the seas wont build as much as they would if you were traveling with it and toward shallow water (if you are running back to the coast).

If you can't sail into it, and you don't want to sail away from the squall; consider a heave-to and waiting for it to pass. A 150% genoa would be a tall order to do this; but if you had a correctly sized sail for heavy wind (100% or smaller); sitting hove-to is incredibly comforting when it would be seemingly horrible conditions. You should practice this in moderate conditions; and try it on days when the wind is up but the seas are relatively flat. Your drift should be 1kt or less; but you still need to be well off of a lee shore so you don't drift into breaking waves.

Single line reefing systems are notoriously bad for sticking and not providing adequate outhaul tension. Practice reefing with the sail and know what the problems are before you need to reef in heavy conditions. Single line systems can require one person pulling the line on the boom and the second person tailing/grinding the winch to overcome the friction in the system. If you don't get the sail properly reefed you could end up tearing the sail in gusting winds.
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  #33  
Old 06-08-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smackdaddy View Post
Say fool, does the topping lift serve any significant purpose in sail trim?
None at all, just keeps the boom from dropping on your head.

Letting the topping lift carry the boom after the main is raised, is an excellent means to break the boom, just trim the mainsheet tight ...something you only do once...
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  #34  
Old 06-08-2010
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Cool. Thanks.

The reason I ask is that my TL is rigged with blocks, etc. that makes it look like it's super adjustable. And this didn't make a lot of sense to me unless it was to be used for trimming.
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  #35  
Old 06-08-2010
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Smack: some people use the topping lift as a sort of anti-vang, to induce draft on very light days by counteracting the weight of the boom & downward pull of the mainsheet. Lift the end of the boom, sail gets fatter. Emphasis here on "very light days." A rigid vang on a C22 is a bit odd: it would cost half the market value of the boat. It's like a hydraulic backstay adjuster -- cool, but overkill where a 3:1 tackle works as well. There's a neat alternative to a full-on rigid vang, tho -- the Boomkicker. It's basically a sprung batten that behaves as a topping lift & works in conjunction with your existing vang.
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Old 06-08-2010
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Yes; but a boomkicker or (solid vang) will take all of the weight of the boom off of the sail as you ease the sheet. So you end up having more draft control than if you simply had a soft vang with a topping lift.
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Old 06-08-2010
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Originally Posted by alanr77 View Post
In addition, I'm going to have my sailing instructor teach me how to heave to during my next lesson. I think the ability to do this is paramount. Though I am unsure if the Catalina 22 will heave to properly. I don't think there is enough keel under the boat but we will see..Alan
As you have probably learned by now, even if the boat will "Heave To", you won't be able to "Heave To" with a 150 (certainly not in high wind). It will be more like...Heave Ohhhhhhhh! In your situation, "Lying A Hull" might have been an option, if done early, when (and if!) you had enough water to Leeward. Hopefully, you have upgraded your sail inventory. Not having a large enough sail, can make for a long day on the water. Not having a SMALL (and therefore, sturdy) enough sail can be a matter of survival (as you discovered). Your evaluation of your experience was thoughtful and testosterone free (probably left it out there !). Well done!
Edit: I should make it clear that I have no idea if a small boat like the C22 is capable of "Lying A Hull" I think if you are sailing a small boat (any boat, for that matter) in waters where conditions can become severe quickly, you should know if it can, and if so...how to do it.

Last edited by L124C; 06-09-2010 at 12:59 PM.
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  #38  
Old 06-09-2010
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I just happened to find this photo on another website. Note that the point of vanishing stability is less than ninety degrees. I amend my prior post and say that I never was over more than 60-70 degrees on my 22 – But it sure felt like it. More importantly, check out this guy’s rig. It looks like he has a boom kicker type of solid vang. I highly recommend this or a topping lift going to the top of the mast. The little “pigtail” topper isn’t good for anything more storage (I cut mine off). See also how he runs his lines aft. The rope clutch is probably over kill and you can easily get by with a series of cam cleats. What you have done so far in boat prep is very impressive and you are on the right path. You are wise in wanting to rely on your sailing skills rather than your engine. The C22 is small enough that it will hobby horse in wind driven chop, pulling the lower unit out of the water and sometimes completely submerging the engine. You were sailing in wind waves and not a seaway. If you are ever caught in ocean swells, It is easy to stall out the sails while in the toughs and the C22 lacks the mass to effectively drive up the next wave face. I have used my outboard very effectively motor-sailing in these conditions.


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Old 06-09-2010
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[QUOTE=GeorgeB;611485][FONT=Arial]I just happened to find this photo on another website. Note that the point of vanishing stability is less than ninety degrees. I amend my prior post and say that I never was over more than 60-70 degrees on my 22 – But it sure felt like it.


G'Day All,

Boy does this thread bring back memories! I bought Cat-22 #61 direct from Frank Butler at the factory in North Holywood, took her back to the Bay area and sailed the hell out of her for the next 7 years. Being young, fairly inexperienced and somewhat stupid I exposed my wife and young cihldren to far too many life threatening experiences on the Bay. I can attest that with the keel down and sorta locked Kookabura recovered from mast-in-the water knockdowns several times, usually whilst rounding the YRA mark at Yellowbluff (lots of vertical downdrafts there). The comment that the above pic demonstrates AVS being less than 90 degrees is only accurate if the boat did NOT recover from his awkward situation... ours always did, thank goodness! Don't know what would happen with the keel up... Frank always said it would still recover, but fear that it might be kinda slow.

Sailing, and especially racing, such a boat on SF Bay results in often sailing in 25+ knots. Our sail inventory soon grew to include a small (70% as I recall) jib, purchased from Bacon as recommended above, and a deep reef in the main. Later we popped for a 150 and eventually a kite. The latter sail added to our number of knockdown experiences! Fortuneately, by then the kids were bigger and I'd divorced the wife (or vice versa). Not sure if the threat to buy the kite had anything to do with that...

Anyway, I sure had a lot of fun with that boat. Spent a month on her in the Gulf Islands/Georgia Straits area, did several trips to Monterey and several from Santa Barbara out to the Channel Islands as well as many seasons of SYRA racing. Given the OP's apparent good attitude and desire to learn, I bet that he will have fun too. Good onya, mate!

Cheers,

Jim and Ann s/v Insatiable II lying Port Stepens, NSW, Oz
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I'm a pretty inexperienced sailor, but that won't stop me from posting my thoughts ..

In stormy weather the last place I want to be is near land, I think it is a good idea to learn how to heave to if you haven't already so that you can just ride it out.

It is easy to sew more reefing into your main on your own.

When running off I have found it easier to fly a small storm jib and no main, the small sail pulls the boat along and she very nearly steers herself away from the wind (for better and worse).

Sounds like you had quite an experience!
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