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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 05-18-2011
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Question Name this headsail

No, not the spinnaker, the triangular one underneath.

Pic is of an Excaliber 26 from the Sailboat Data web site.
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Name this headsail-excalibur_26_photo.jpg  
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Old 05-18-2011
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Daisy Staysail.
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Old 05-18-2011
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Old 05-18-2011
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We always called that a "spinnaker staysail," used off the wind with the chute.
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Old 05-18-2011
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My understanding is that...
Daisy Staysail: Flies to windward of the spinnaker and tacks some place between the bow and the mast. When I've flown one of these, ours was much lighter than the one in the photo and we only ever carried it in extremely light winds. After researching on the net, apparently it can be used as a windseeker/windfinder/drifter as well.

Windseeker/windfinder/drifter: Flies to windward of the spinnaker and tacks some place between the bow and the mast. Originally I thought this was synonymous with the Daisy I mentioned above. However, the Internet tells me that windseekers will be tacked to the bow and therefore have a luff that is too long to be a Daisy Staysail, although you can fly a Daisy as a windseeker.

Spanker/Blooper: This flies leeward of the spinnaker and is set beside it. I don't believe that fits the picture above, however, I have never flown one so I could be wrong.

Spinnaker Staysail: My understanding is that is an overall/umbrella term to cover the Daisy Staysail, Windseeker/Windfinder/Drifter types of sail. Any sail set within the fore triangle... But I haven't found an article to confirm or refute that.

(As an aside, be careful when Googling "Spanker" at work.)
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Old 05-18-2011
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Doesn't really matter what you call it. "Staysail" is close enough. Beyond that, who cares? They don't make much difference anyway except to kill your view forward. Though if you blow out the spinnaker, or lose the halyard, they're at least useful in giving you some sail forward of the CLR so you can bear off if you have to.

The boat in the photo is at hull speed. Doubtful the (whatever you want to call it) is adding anything.
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Old 05-18-2011
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Sailors are often pedantic when it comes to terminology so it's helpful for me to learn the correct terminology and so I can be specific about which sail I'm speaking of. It is probably accurate to call it "A sail", "A stay sail", "A Daisy staysail" in increasing order of specificity. I don't know the reason for the OP's post... perhaps it was a quiz? perhaps he's pedantic like me? perhaps he's just curious.

You're right though, it probably isn't making much difference in that photo as they're usually used in light winds I would think. In the cases where I've used a Daisy, it made a "huge" difference in relative boat speed; I know that doesn't seem like much in the grand scheme of things but every little bit helps in a race. I think it is probably hindering, not helping the fellow in the photo above.

(Another use for a spinnaker staysail is to keep the crew busy on light air days so they don't get bored...)
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Old 05-19-2011
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While it is windy, boat appears to be at hull speed plus, I know a few folks that will use jibs below a spin in heavier air to blanket the spin some, to make the boat easier to handle when the wind pipes ups, this is what could be happening in the photo, but up the staysail, still retain some drive, yet blanket the spin so one does not go over, etc.

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