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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 1975 33 ft Irwin Sloop that came with 2 staysyls. I have been trying to figure how to rig the leads so the clew can be drawn back to mirror the angle of the headsyl and help fill the slot but there is only one set of tracks and cars. These tracks don't allow the staysyl to be drawn far enough to midship. I am assuming there is something there to work because the staysyls came with the boat when I bought it a few years ago. There are a number of winches on the deck under the boom that I haven't figured out the purpose for yet. There are also 2 winches on the cabin roof that might be used. They were labeled for the mainsheet. I was wondering if these forward winches could be used for the staysyl sheets or if I need to install a short track and cars to be used with the staysyls. I would appreciate any suggestions anyone could give me. Sorry I don't have pics of the attachment point for the inner headstay which is internal on the staysyls. It is the typical adjustable deck hardware on a short track behind the attached furled headstay. Thanks!
 

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Farr 11.6 (Farr 38)
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The collection of winches up by the mast are a classic IOR era winch farm. Before the days of rope clutches, race boats had large collections of winches mounted on the deck up by the mast to handle the halyards. While its hard to say for certain, the winches aft were probably used for the mainsheet at one time or perhaps to handle the traveller.

Without knowing more about the weight and design of the extra staysails, but guessing from the age of the boat, I would suggest that these staysails, as you call them, were either intended to be flown from the forestay in lieu of the genoa. IOR era boats like yours typically carried a wide sellection of jibs and genoras which would have included a working jib, number 1, 2 and 3 genoas. These would have had hanks or else been flown in the lufftrack. IOR boats of that era also carried lighter weight staysails intended to be flown on thier own luff wires. These might have included bloopers, drifters, reachers and spinnaker staysails. Bloopers and spinnaker staysails were flown when the chute was up. Drifters and reachers were flown in very light air. All were sheeted to snatch blocks that would be attached into the punched aluminum toe rails of that era.

I would doubt that any of the staysails that you have are meant as heavy weather sails and if they were I seriously doubt that they would have been taken to a track on the foredeck. That track is probably for the spinnacker pole downhaul.

Respectfully,
Jeff
 

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The winches on the cabin top by the companionway could also be for topping lift, pole lift, spinnaker halyard or related controls. Mine are so marked. The spinnaker sheets, by contrast, are brought right back to the stern quarters, around a block and forward to small spinnaker winches. I agree with Jeff that the "clam cleats" and seemingly excess winches are indicative of IOR early '70s racer-cruisers. They aren't excess so much as superfluous if you don't have a crew of six in 20 knots to work the boat.

As for the staysail issue, it is possible that the "staysails" you have aren't traditional, but are "genoa staysails" that tack to the rail and are led back to the cockpit to an auxiliary winch. Rarely seen these days, they were a way to create a slot on a reach on those boats with long Js to really power up the foretriangle.

Here's a nice little explanation about the staysail on these types of boats:

Team Celeritas.com Results/Blog » A good article on trimming the staysail a must read!

Conversely, if they are actual staysails, is it possible that the staysail tracks were removed from the coach house top? Is it possible that a second set of cars is used on the existing track?

By the way, the clearest explanation I ever saw about why and when to use the 1970s arsenal of sails is in Wally Ross's "Sail Power", about the best book I ever read about sail theory and practice, even though it is largely outdated now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you both for your reply!

The 2 staysyls I have are called a "Tall Staysyl" and a "Spinnacker Staysyl" and they both have internal stays in their luffs. They are both made by Horizon Sails. There is an attachement point for these sails between the forestay (furler) and the mast. There is no apparent indication of any additional tracks being removed from the deck. There are 2 cars on each genoa track but I can't see how it could be used for the staysyls because it doesnt look as if the 2nd car could draw the staysyl in far enough to the centerline to make it effective. The tall staysyl is a very light material and from what I uncovered after researching it found out it is used for very light winds (less then 10 knts) in order to get the boat moving. Then once the apparent wind has increased you unfurl the geneo. The boat also came with a drifter, reacher, 3 genoas, a storm jib, and 2 symetrical spinnackers.
 

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The spin staysail is not normally rigged to the centerline but to the windward side while the spin is up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Dear 39512,

Thanks for the info about the spin staysail! I am new to sailing and havent put my spin up yet and dont know if I could do it since I sail shorthanded (my wife and I). I looked into buying a tacker in order to fly my symetrical from the forestay but not comfortable with that yet. Was more interested in the Tall Staysail rigging since we have so many days of very light winds out here in the puget sound. I think I will just check with the PO times 2 who lives in Walla Walla. He owned the boat for 10 yrs or so and see if he ever used it and how he used it. Thanks!
 

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The tall staysail may be a dazy staysail or one of the seeker type staysails. Both would have been tacked to the stemhead fitting or the windward rail when used with a spinacker, and been sheeted to the toe rail. These are intended as reeching and running sails and so would not have been sheeted close aboard as would be the case with a beating sail.

Jeff
 

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What Jeff said. There should be information on these older type of wire luff staysails online, as they were very popular at one point and certainly had hilarious names. They are easily handled as they are usually light-air sails, but can keep you moving in sub-10 knots simply due to greater sail area.
 

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So, in very light winds, less than 2 knots, will the Staysail improve the performance of a light wind genoa? If so, by how much and are there any negatives?

Dave B.
 

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So, in very light winds, less than 2 knots, will the Staysail improve the performance of a light wind genoa? If so, by how much and are there any negatives?

Dave B.
No, generally not. These sails were designed for 'drag' enhancement not 'aerodynamic sailing'

In most cases and from a practical basis, putting up a staysail in 'light' winds under a genoa will detract from the aerodynamic 'CIRCULATION flow' interaction of the vastly more important genoa/mainsail combo, making the genoa less efficient. You can (should) develop your own (polar plot) data base from various trials with a staysail added to your normal combo ..... but more often than not you will find that staysail efficiency only becomes valid in winds above ~8kts. And, in above ~8kts. staysails require VERY different shaping and extraordinarily different 'trim and set' than the 'simplicity' of what 'sloop drivers' are accustomed.

Probably the ONLY technically correct 'article' ever written concerning staysails (flying under topsails, genoas, etc.): http://www.arvelgentry.com/magaz/The_Double_Head_Rig.pdf
 

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So, in very light winds, less than 2 knots, will the Staysail improve the performance of a light wind genoa? If so, by how much and are there any negatives?
The staysails as described were both likely to
be intended to be flown inside a spinnaker and
would be hoisted nearly to the masthead.
These sails can also be used in place of,
not in conjunction with, a genoa in very
light winds.
A genoa staysail would be smaller and hoisted
on a topping lift, and is most effective in a
narrow wind range in steady wind.
The negative side of using a staysail is
there are about even odds it will make you
slower rather than faster.
 
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