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Discussion Starter #1
Ok new opinion driven post and I want to hear all of them on this one. Our ship came with an original crank operated roller boom that simple winds the mainsail around the boom. I have a raging debate in my head over the usefulness of this system. Here is the criteria for it's use:

1.) the mainsail has two reef points that can be used traditionally without using the roller. Traditional flop flake reefing is still viable.

2.) The boom may be painted which solves any issue with staining of our nice white sail from the aluminum (arbitrary I know)

3.) Any employment of a vang, gallows, or preventer would have removable shackles for when the roller was being used

4.) the aft end of the boom has two provisions for the topping lift and sheet block attachments that allow these to remain rigged while the boom is rotating.

5.) This vessel will be a cruiser with the option of true blue water use if we see fit. She will be sailed daily and be a live aboard, the sails with be set and struck daily

I think this system could be convenient and time saving and would make the sail strike a single person job which is a plus in my mind as there are only two of us on the vessel. My only real reservation is whether the roller will do damage to the sail? Should I have any others?
 

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What tommays said.. if you already have slab reefing in place, it's vastly superior to roller reefing of this type, and you're never without a vang, which, IMO is a basic bit of safety gear.

Faggedaboutit.... ;)
 
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As tommays says, it's a bad idea that never payed out. It destroys sail shape and will stretch your nice white sail. Slab reefing is faster and retains sail shape. Roller reefing was an idea that came and went in the '60s and '70s. Good riddance.
 

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I have the same system. Works well with little maintenance in 44 years of use. Very dependable. My sail is made to be used with this system, no reef ties and the luff bolt rope has means of unlacing the four feet from the tack up and the luff track can be opened at the bottom of track to shorten the sail. Sail need to be slack to furl. Never have had any issues with Alum. staining..clear coated. It is a little slow to furl with the unlacing. With a double reef the end of boom drops, but still clears the dodger.

I will take pictures of the sail, should be one or two more sails left this season.

@ Sabreman, if what you say is true, then why are the in boom furling systems widely used?
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Yeah, I've been reading more about this since posting and am not finding anything good about it without specific sail modifications. I considered this a few months ago and got caught up in other stuff, it came with the vessel. Should have researched more before bringing it on here. My main concern was sail damage or stretching, not worth the price of convenience. I guess I'll be converting to a traditional gooseneck design. Thanks for the replies
 

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Sabreman, if what you say is true, then why are the in boom furling systems widely used?
In-boom furling systems (and to a lesser extent, in-mast systems) are a compromise and there are pros and cons. The pros include a neater furl, but the cons outweigh that one item. They include high cost, poor sail shape, a relatively slow speed of reefing, removing portions of the sail from the mast (depending on configuration), and necessity for crew to be on deck throughout the process.

To specifically answer your question, in-boom systems are less of a compromise than the early boom furlers. A modern in-boom system allows the use of a vang or kicker, preventer, and mid-boom sheeting. The old systems allowed none of these. While in-boom furlers are dramatic improvement on the originals, the simplicity and speed of slab reefing is preferred by the vast majority of cruisers and racers.
 

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Old soul
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Our previous boat (Grampian 34) came with this early 1970's "innovation." I'm glad to see that someone (Delta-T) has been able to make it work. All I can say is, go try and reef in serious conditions. I found it such a PITA than I quickly converted to a slab system.
 

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I like this system on our Corsair 750, but this is a pretty small boat. I don't think I would be willing to use it on a boat much past 20-25'.
 

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around the boom furling means you have no vang. when you need to reef is when you need a vang the most.
 

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There is a c-shaped thing with rollers that allows you to rig a boom vang on a roller furled boom. I had roller furling on a previous boat (Vega 27) and it worked quite well. I think the system is better suited to smaller boats with smaller sails.
 

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There is a c-shaped thing with rollers that allows you to rig a boom vang on a roller furled boom. .......
Yes, but one has to think that's going to be brutally hard on the sailcloth where/when it's loaded up... and vangs DO load up.

At the end of the day, there's good reason it's not done this way anymore.

I wonder if, had a good in-boom furling system been marketed prior to in-mast, that wouldn't be the predominant method used now...
 

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Well Faster, since you bring it up, how are those new in boom furlers ? There's a fairly new PSC 31 that I know the owner brought down from Washington that has one. The sail shape seems excellent and you can't tell it's an in boom until you are close enough to see the boom.
Then I recently saw a 2005 Catalina 36 with a Leisure Furl (?) boom, anyone got one of these ?
 

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I assume the in mast/boom furlers have no Battens, how well can that work?
 

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There is a c-shaped thing with rollers that allows you to rig a boom vang on a roller furled boom. I had roller furling on a previous boat (Vega 27) and it worked quite well. I think the system is better suited to smaller boats with smaller sails.
it does work well on most boats. even the small ones
 

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The attraction of in-boom is that you actually CAN have a battened mainsail.. the track system can, I think, be a bit of an issue, and apparently the boom angle is critical during a furl so it probably takes more care than in-mast..

But all of this is anecdotal, I've never owned either...
 

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My boat, boom furler and sails were designed, owned and used by Ted Hood. I would never consider changing anything not safety related. I love the looks and overall nostalgia of sailing her. Not a fast boat, or roomy, just right for two. I did add a furling head sail. Hanking the head sail was never fun. With a 150% full height head sail I seldom use the main in anything over 12 nm of wind, unless I am trying to get somewhere fast...he he he, he said fast. The 150 works well for me and boat is well balanced. I seldom use the furling boom. I also seldom get to leave the Bay. A days trip to the ocean and my new first mate is still in training for more than a weekend out.
 

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The attraction of in-boom is that you actually CAN have a battened mainsail.. the track system can, I think, be a bit of an issue, and apparently the boom angle is critical during a furl so it probably takes more care than in-mast..
But all of this is anecdotal, I've never owned either...
Our in mast main is battened but they are vertical not horizontal. They have not been an issue.
 

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Having owned just about every available option over the last 50 years of sailing. Conventional flake, lazy jack, stack pack, dutchman, in mast and now in boom. I will never go back. We never have to leave the cockpit to raise or lower the main. It furls in seconds when you want to get rid of it. Reefing is effortless and can be done on the run w/o leaving the cockpit. The only sail trim adjustment you can't do is outhaul and since we're cruising ,not racing, I'm not real concerned about that. No sail ever hanging off the boom blocking your view. No sail ties or sail cover to deal w/ ever. Expensive option but worth every penny!
Jim
 
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