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I have a 12' aluminum boat called a Petrel.
After replacing most of the parts, I took it out yesterday, but am confused by how run the jibsheets.

I ran them inside the sidestays, as I thought was normal, but then the jib actually hits the the stays. I figured that can't be right, as they won't last very long that way. So I ran them outside the sidestays and that seems to work better for the jib, but then the windward one binds seriously on the stay. Since it is alot cheaper to replace jibsheets than the jib, that must be the right way, but it is really awkward. Any idea what is right?

There isn't much on the internet about the Petrel, but one reference refers to it as having a genoa, so I guess the jib is bigger than normal, which might account for it hitting the sidestays.
 

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On a boat with a genoa (the jib overlaps past the mast) you would normally run the sheets outside of the shrouds.

Getting the sheets around the shrouds and mast can be annoying with a genoa, sometimes it will need some help. Using a compact knot (a cow hitch works well on a small boat) can help a lot.
 

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Okay, not an expert so don't flame me folks :) but in larger boats two jib sheets, with bowline or similar, is common. In smaller boats I have seen a single, long sheet used with a cowhitch or similar in the middle may help. One knot close to the clew reduces hangups...as does timing when jibing!

Oh, yeah, and outside the shrouds is indeed the most typical way to run the sheets...
 
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