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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 07-26-2012
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Re: wind conditions and reefing

There is good advice in many of these replies.

Reefing is not an exact science--it depends on crew/skipper experience, sea state, gusts, etc. (as mentioned by others).

I can tell you that I crewed last night during a race on a 38' sloop rigged boat. We are experienced; our skipper is experienced.

The wind was 23-25 kts sustained. Many gusts reached 28-30 kts. Little seas were present (the wind had little fetch over water).

We double reefed in the harbor, and furled part of the jib. We didn't win, but had a TON of fun, excitement, and boat speed. I was mainsail trimmer and did a ton of easing in the puffs. We buried the rail a few times. Best of all, while quite exciting, we were in control the entire evening. This impressed me the most--ten years ago 25 knots scared me. Now, we just handle it.

Best of luck.
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  #32  
Old 07-27-2012
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Re: wind conditions and reefing

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tempest View Post
Well, whatever the conditions were 6 hours ago, I hope he gets off the river before 8 because all hell is probably going to break loose in an hour. T-storms are moving in.
They lost a J-24 last year in one...went right to the bottom.
Me too. Here in Hawaii I heard on radio news that a person was killed in Bonx when scafolding fell (I presume due to high winds) yesterday.

Last edited by casey1999; 07-27-2012 at 12:33 PM.
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  #33  
Old 08-20-2012
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Re: wind conditions and reefing

Just so you can get the feel. Go out with all sail area up and wait until you are way over powered to reef. Should only take ONE to get the point across.

Yes you should reef BEFORE you need to... BUT don't take my word for it. Do the above first just so YOU know..
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  #34  
Old 08-20-2012
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Re: wind conditions and reefing

It really depends on your boat and your techniques. Here is a video of my Pearson 28 sailed solo with a full main and working jib sailing in 10-15 knots with gusts to 25 knots. The boat displaces 7850 lbs. with 40% in the keel. I was feathering the boat into the wind during the gusts and allowing the sails to luff (I probably could have dropped the traveller down, too.)



The challenge of this kind of conditions is to have enough sail up to sail well during the prevailing wind, but not too much up for the gusts.
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Old 08-20-2012
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Re: wind conditions and reefing

I would make a couple of points:
1. How many people are on board and what is their experience? With a full set of trimmers you can handle gusts. I solo ocean sail so my rule is reef early and reef often.
2. What direction are you going? If you are headed upwind (tacking) and you have the right balance the gust will cause you to head up and stall. Not a real problem as after it passes you can drop back down into the slot. If you are headed downwind (broad reach to run) the gust might make you surf - and will put a bit of a strain on the rig but if it is a short gust it will pass quickly. Again, with active trimmers you can ease the jib as the gust passes. If you are on a reach you are going to heal. Again, if you have active trimmers they just slack the sheets until the gust passes.
3. How comfortable do you want to be? Reaching with the rail in the water is a lot of fun for a short period of time and generally isn't very fast (although it seems that way for the noise etc.) If you are out for a comfortable sail put out enough sail so that the boat remains in the 5 to 10 degree of heel range or less. Your guests will thank you for it.
4. #3 is really the only way to figure out when to reef on your particular boat. I run in the ocean with a 50% jib (that is, it ends halfway between the forestay and the mast) in 15 to 20 and make decent time. I could get maybe 25 miles more per day by running with more sail. But this is a "set it and forget it" trim. I can do other things and check the wind speed every half hour or so. By not having up a main it is pretty easy to trim quickly as wind speeds change (I solo sail a lot.) After 7,000+ miles over the past 4 years I have a pretty good idea how much sail to put out - not at the theoretical level but at a level that gives me good boat speed and good comfort. You don't need to sail anywhere near as much to get the same idea for your boat. I have friends that are sailing a cutter rigged ketch about the same length who have every sail in their inventory up when I am running with a 70% jib and have trouble keeping up with me. They have a classic "cruising" boat - heavy with a full keel. There ride is much better than mine, but they need a lot more sail to go as fast. So to repeat - go out and learn your own boat.
Have fun

Hope this helps
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  #36  
Old 08-20-2012
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Re: wind conditions and reefing

Quote:
Originally Posted by jameswilson29 View Post
It really depends on your boat and your techniques. Here is a video of my Pearson 28 sailed solo with a full main and working jib sailing in 10-15 knots with gusts to 25 knots. The boat displaces 7850 lbs. with 40% in the keel. I was feathering the boat into the wind during the gusts and allowing the sails to luff (I probably could have dropped the traveller down, too.)
And more luff tension in both sails.

Looks like a blast!
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  #37  
Old 08-22-2012
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Re: wind conditions and reefing

Quote:
Originally Posted by casey1999 View Post
Come out my way and I'll show you 10 knots gusting to 35. I do not generally pay much attention to forcast. I have heard forcast here calling for 15 knots and I'm sailing in 35 at the time.

What's the sunfish got to do with anything?
0 to 35 kts would be an appropriate forecast for a typical day on SF Bay in the summer. 0 kts in the Oakland Estuary, 10 to the south of the Bay Bridge, rising to 30 kts gusting to 35 in the slot. You can go quite rapidly from one condition to the other.

Last weekend what worked best was keeping the working jib at 100% (maximum) and adjusting the main - from full, to double reefed, to down completely in the slot. The new system to reef from the cockpit helps, so does the recent removal of the lazy jacks. Now you can go to a close reach, sail on the jib, luff and adjust the main, and hardly lose any speed.
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Last edited by MarkSF; 08-22-2012 at 02:23 PM.
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  #38  
Old 08-26-2012
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Re: wind conditions and reefing

Think Andreas will ever be back ?

Sailing in 30 knt gusts in tiny NY Harbor dodging the Statan Island Ferries with Thunderheads all around might be just a bit too much unnecessary adventure for little old' me.

It is my jaded observation that the most daring sailors tend to be those who have never experienced the 'adventure' of a busted mainsail halyard; at night; in the rain; in 30 knts; with following seas; and the mainsail jammed halfway up ( but at least MOST of it dropped in the boat ) .....
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  #39  
Old 08-27-2012
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Re: wind conditions and reefing

Maybe Andreas got hit by a squall, hauled off in a cyclone, being as he has now not found the yellow brick road, will not be back to tell us how the adventure went! or maybe them flying monkeys got him, or the cowardly lion was less cowardly that thought!

BUT with that, I have done all the above idea's on reefing, if with race crew, we actively luff the main during gusts. If it is just spouse and I, I have to set the amount of sail area so she is comfortable both in gusts, and steady'ish wind at the time. Reality is, there is not a right or wrong, only what work BEST in the conditions, crew etc you have on hand at that time.

Like 4 days ago, 12-13 low, 15 reasonably steady, with gusts to 20. A bit on the high side for a 155, but with a person on the main sheet being active, leaving a big of a bubble behind the mast, we were doing 5.5-6 knots most of the night, staying level etc. Altho helps that I have a 4-1 micro with the 4-1 mainsheet, so easier to haul in and out as one needs to trim vs just the 4-1. 16-1 is way easier! I also have a cockpit traveller/mainsheet setup, so easier to work with than a cabin top setup.

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  #40  
Old 09-01-2012
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Re: wind conditions and reefing

Sorry guys, I am actually just fine.
I have found I can sail the boat fine without a reef to 22 knots. I get more heel but I am not dragging the rails in the water by any means.m I get to about 30 degrees of heel.
The other day when things got to 25 I solved the problem by using the rolling furler on my to put a reef in my jib (I believe its a 150% genoa when fully extended) . Then we had no more trouble.
I am still a little intimidated by trying to put in a reef when I am on the water. When the sails are luffing it I worry I will be hit by them or the jib or the jib lines.
The briefing on this site indicated that you should put the reef in when the sails are luffing. Is it also possible to do while there is wind in the sail? It seems like that would be less drama.
When close hauled I am perfectly happy to let the wind gust pull the boat upwind with weather helm, after all I am trying to get upwind.

One time I started getting weather helm on big gusts from a running position, that was not so much fun, neither was the thunderstorm that followed. It was ironic because I HAD checked the sailing weather reports but they merely showed 15% of TS's. Had I looked at weather.com I would have seen a squall line that covered the entire eastern seaboard. That time we ended up dropping the sails in high winds and biting rain.

thanks for all the feedback guys and sorry I dropped off. Was out of town.
Andreas
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