Spinnaker without a pole - Page 4 - SailNet Community
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post #31 of 34 Old 08-26-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: Spinnaker without a pole

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Originally Posted by RichH View Post
For a Cat-22 a ~9ft. aluminum spinn. pole of 1-1/2" dia. would be relatively insignificant in cost; most of the end connections/fittings are easily obtainable on the internet: mast ring connector (you really don't need a mast track for the spinn pole @ 8-9 ft. long, end fitting spring jaws, spinnaker sock, etc. etc.
A new pole for my boat runs around $500. I didn't really look at eBay because I figured shipping would be prohibitive, it didn't occur to me to just look for the ends.

I do have a mast track. I have not moved it since I bought the boat.

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post #32 of 34 Old 09-20-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: Spinnaker without a pole

Update: Yesterday I finally got an afternoon of very light winds to play with my spinnaker. I tried flying it like an asym with one corner as the tack at the stem fitting, and also with both clews free with no pole.

As recommended I put a block on my stem fitting and ran a line back to the cockpit so that I could raise and lower the "tack" of the spinnaker. (This line has also been handy as a downhaul for my jib.) I shackled the tack to the forestay. It might have been better to let it fly free, I'm not sure. The result was that I could get almost to a beam reach before the leading edge of the sail collapsed. Sailing dead downwind it kind of pillowed out and wasn't super effective. Running enough line to allow a jibe meant there was a ton of string in the cockpit. Conclusion: Kind of fun, but a hassle and not any faster than my nylon 170 drifter.

Next I tried flying it free, no pole. Wheeee! It was definitely a challenge, but what fun! I stood in the cockpit with the tiller between my knees and one sheet in each hand until I got it dialed in. It really found some wind! I was going about 2 knots on my way upwind, but was making 4 knots with the spinnaker downwind. Conclusion: Fun! Probably a little faster than wing-and-wing with the jib poled out. You really have to watch the helm to make sure you keep your angle right.

I apologize for the crappy pictures, I mostly had my hands full just trying to keep the sail inflated, and I had to use the panorama feature to get the full sail in so the pictures are a bit distorted.



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post #33 of 34 Old 09-20-2016
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Re: Spinnaker without a pole

Yeah, fun right?

When flying the symmetrical spin w/out a pole ya kinda hafta steer into the sail as you found out. Fun but really only going ddw or a few degrees off.
With a symmetrical spin w/a pole you can sail about as high as a beam reach with much tinkering.

What is that yellow bit at the top of the mast? Is that your royal pennant? Admiral of the Yellow?

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Re: Spinnaker without a pole

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Originally Posted by CalebD View Post
What is that yellow bit at the top of the mast? Is that your royal pennant? Admiral of the Yellow?
It's a smiley face flag. It's actually about halfway up the topping lift, the distortion of the panorama makes it look like it's at the top.

I know it's cheesy, but I like it. I found a place that sells cheap flags and bought several with the intention of changing regularly, but I just kind of settled into the smiley face. So much so that I brought it with me on a charter trip last week. It's like the un-pirate flag, we dubbed it the Jolly Molly.

Here it is flying on the charter 39' Jeanneau:




Speaking of chartering and spinnakers and poles, jeez, I would have given my soul for a whisker pole on that trip. We had tons of downwind sailing, but the charter company doesn't trust us n00b bareboaters with poles so we had a heck of a time trying to do wing-and-wing.
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