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armandolio 08-21-2011 08:41 PM

Need tips for singlehanding and inmast furling
Recently started sailing a Hunter 36 with inmast furling and already jammed the main sail. Managed to correct the situation after about an hour.

In a single handed situation how do others manage to keep the necessary tension on the outhaul to avoid jams? Any tips?


bacampbe 08-22-2011 12:40 AM

On my Beneteau 31, you don't need that much tension on it. I usually just hang onto it with my left hand.

Your setup may be different, but the most important thing on mine is to keep the boom at the right level. It works best if I let it float and find it's on position, i.e. let off some on the sheet and vang prior to furling. This seems much more important than outhaul tension.

Zanshin 08-22-2011 01:39 AM

I usually wrap the outhaul 1-2 times around a winch as I furl the main, and keep pressure on it by holding the line underneath a foot - it is easy to control tension that way.

armandolio 08-23-2011 09:47 PM

Thanks for your replies.
I was taught that on the Hunter 36's setup the key is to keep the tension on the outhaul so that the sail remains very flat as it exits/enters the mast. Given the choice one should always be pulling more on the outhaul than on the roller in order to accomplish this. Hence, my question about how folks do this.

armandolio 08-25-2011 10:10 PM

Any other thoughts on this issue?

dhays 09-02-2011 12:42 PM


Originally Posted by armandolio (Post 766272)
Any other thoughts on this issue?

I think they gave you about the best advice there is. However...

I'm not sure what spar is used on the Hunter, but I think it is a Selden. I'm not familiar with those as my Catalina uses a Charleston Spar.

Here are several suggestions.

1. Typically, there is a particular boom position that works best for furling and unfurling the sail. I believe your Hunter comes with a rigid vang. You may want to play a bit with it's position to find the best boom angle. If you are getting folds in the sail, it may be that your boom angle is too high. If too low, the main can be hard to unfurl.

2. Depending on which direction your main furls (on the Charleston's they furl counter clockwise looking from the top), you may have an easier time with the main slightly off center when furling. For example, with the Charleston, the main furls easiest with the boom slightly to port of center. If your main furls the other direction, then having the boom slightly to starboard may help.

3. Keep appropriate tension on the outhaul as you know. You have two winches on your coach roof. Typically, the outhaul and furling line are rigged on opposite sides. Take your outhaul line and throw one or two wraps on the winch on it's side while you are furling the main. The wraps will provide a bit of resistance to the sail as you are furling it. I will usually start with two wraps, then toss off one of them as the main is furled about half way. Alternatively, you can simply put one wrap on the winch and hold the tail loosely in your hand as you use both hands to pull on the furling line. Allow the outhaul to slide through your hand as you are hauling the furler.

You'll figure out a system that works for you use soon enough.


celenoglu 09-02-2011 12:58 PM

The key is to keep the sail furling without any creases. Although tensioning the outhoul seems to help , it is best to keep the boom position so that a very small tension applied to the outhoul keeps the sail so that it furls without any creases.

Try to find the best position to your boom first and you will see that the sail will properly rotate on the drum. The applied wind tension will be enough to keep the sail in correct position. If you do not have any wind (moving your boat will create enough wind for the sail) apply minimum tension to outhaul. A single turn around the winch will be generally enough.

armandolio 09-03-2011 07:43 AM

What about unfurling? How do you alternate between the two lines? Thanks to all for your comments so far.

rtbates 09-07-2011 11:17 AM

you'll get rid of that main system after it jams and shreds in a blow...

Brezzin 09-07-2011 11:38 AM

All the above are good points. All are also pretty worthless if you main's halyard has slipped or stretched at all. Make sure the main is up all the way.

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