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I have owned two boats that had Harken units pre-installed. With the exception of the occasional flushing of the bearings (accomplished with a garden hose) I''ve not had any significant problems. However, I did not respond to tout the virtues of the Harken furlers.

When the velocity of the wind increases to the point that a sail area reduction is necessary to keep the boat "on its feet", perfect aerodynamic shape should not be of critical importance. What is important is that you continue to move the jib lead car forward to maintain the correct lead or sheeting angle for the amount of sail you do have exposed. Too much lip service is given to the "perfect shape" when head sails are partially furled. If a quick reduction in sail area is desired to thwart a knock down during t-storms, then it sounds as if you''re on the right track. My advice is not to get your shorts in a knot about sail shape. Carpe Diem dude!
 
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