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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Seamanship & Navigation
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Old 07-16-2011
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I would plot, not that I have as of yet, ALL the jibs in inventory with different reef options too. You may find a 130 and one reef in some wind conditions is faster than say a full main and 110 if the SA numbers about the same area. Then also look at the wave conditions too. I remember reading and article in Sailing World interviewing a skipper in a V70. They had three sail options for winds in the 40-50 range?!?!?! depending upon what the wave sizes were, and where the wind was in relation to the water level. Granted in our little and way under info' we have for wind speeds, waves, where the max wind is etc. still plotting the different sails in even the 20-35 range could be worth doing. Yes under 20 maybe the BIGGEST sail(s), but at 30mph, I know I do not have a 155 and full main up. More like a 110 and a single reef, Or if I get an 85% FT jib, then that and a full main. So which is quicker better in what conditions would be worth plotting IMHO!

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Old 07-17-2011
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I realized yesterday while out on the water that when I took a good look at what my requirements for speed really is, the answer was this.

Velocity Made Good (VMG)vs Distance Made Good (DMG). As a cruiser with destinations I need to shortest route between to points, and the fastest way to travel on each track to get there. My average travel distance per day is 16 to 25 kt miles per day. In the inside of Vancouver Island the Gulf Islands is where I sail. The landscape controlling the winds, tides running fast through narrows and pushing you out of bays when its filling. Add the crazy weather coming in from the open sea or over the mainland mountains. I just need to get to are destination and enjoy all the things we do on the water.

Do I like to see how fast I can get her to sail absolutely, when the conditions are right I will push the limits and grin all the time while doing it but. When I need to make head way I will sail, motor sail, use the motor what ever it is that will give me the best Distance Made Good. This is what I need to learn the most how to travel fast and comfortable in all condition and weather.

VMG will just make me learn how to get the most out of my sailing. Knowing what speeds to expect from winds of the day on sailing legs makes plotting a trip easier and more fun for everyone on the trip. A check sum for my sail trimming. A way to teach the kids how to catch the wind then harness it. VMG is something all Skippers should know about there boats. Just another tool in the sailors bags.
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