heave to difficulty - SailNet Community

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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 08-30-2010
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legarots is on a distinguished road
heave to difficulty

This weekend I was having some challenges getting a Pearson 27 to heave-to properly. I had 20-25 knot winds, with some stronger gusts. The main and jib were reefed, which the Pearson 27 seems to need after 17+ or so.

First, after stopping, with a backwinded jib, eased main, and rudder secured all the way over, we would still tack through the wind after getting some drive from the backwinded jib.

We completely unfurled the jib, to give the wind more sail area in order to help the bow fall off, so couldn't tack through. This worked, as we were in a more stable position, and were able to maintain it without tacking. However, even with the rudder secured all the way over, we were still making forward progress at about 2.5 knots, with only a very slight drift to leeward.

I expected to make slower progress, with more leeway drift and less forward momentum, based upon my experience with heaving to in the past. Also, gusts heeled us over quite far (the main was eased, so all the heel came from the backwinded jib), so the heave-to was less "stable" than what I've encountered before.
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Old 08-30-2010
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All boats seem to have their own difference "balance" and speed when hove-to.

I'm wondering if you had too much headsail area and were being carried too far off the wind before she would head back up. If you get borne off too much, then you're reaching and making headway. So maybe you need to keep her more "pinched up" at the low end of the heave-to 'wobble'. maybe helm more alee, to keep her more on a close reach than a beam reach, and less jib area.

It's always an experiment.
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Old 09-01-2010
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try easing the headsail for more draft. it should have less forward drive and make more leeway.
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Old 09-03-2010
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Another thought-on my Catalina 27, putting the tiller "hard over" puts the rudder at a 90 degree angle to the centerline of the boat, so no steering happens-the rudder effectively becomes a brake.

If this might be the case with your boat, you might try putting the tiller, say, 45 degrees over...
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