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Wing on Wing, disconnecting the Whisker pole

4021 Views 15 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  L124C
I'm trying to figure out the best way to disconnect the Whisker pole from the jib and mast. I've done some reading, and haven't found this specific issue addressed. A friend who has more experience, suggested disconnecting the pole from the mast first. This seemed like a bad idea to me, as you then basically have a spear connected ot a lot of power you may not be able to control. But....did I listen to my logic? Oh, No! With him at the helm and me at the mast, I disconnected the pole at the mast. Well...this was weeks ago and my hand has healed now, but I was lucky! Yesterday, I tried to disconnect the pole from the jib first and found it difficult with tension on the sheet. Now, I'm thinking probably the best method is to jibe the main, in order to cover the jib and disconnect the pole without tension on it (this is how I furl the jib and it seems pretty obvious to me now. Fortunately I still have ten fingers :p ) Thoughts?
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Off the mast first, same as a spinnaker (with an end-for-end pole)

Gybing order of ops: mast, sheet, sheet, mast

What kind of wind speeds are we talking here and how much time have you spent on the pointy end playing with that pole?
On my 55 ft boat the pole with the 1100 sq ft genoa would be a very dangerous object to release from the mast end. That is why it has a quick release mechanism at the mast end for the jaws at the jib end.

The quick release also lets you 'un-rig' rapidly if a man goes overboard; the jib flies free and can be used to heave-to or get back to windward and the properly rigged pole--- topping lift, down-haul and guy--- is stable and it is not necessary to de-rig until things become more stable.
You can (easily) release the mast end?? Would have thought you'd have a more or less permanently fixed butt end on a track going up the mast

On a boat small enough to end-for-end (sounds like what the OP is talking about) there really shouldn't be much pressure in the pole if you're deep enough to wing it out unless its really honking - maybe the OP doesn't have a trip line rigged running down the pole and had to actually disconnect it at the mast? I can see where that might cause some problems. Oh, and to the OP: always helpful if you're on the weather side of the pole, honking or not
First off all - "wing on wing" is a slow and unstable point of sail. Unless the wind is strong, you would better VMG on a deep reach. The pole is meant to hold the genny out of the main's shadow. With my 1300 sqft genny, trying to release the pole at the mast would be dangerous. When we gibe, I furl in the headsail, remove the pole from the sheet, raise the mast end to clear the staysail, then reverse the process on the oposite tack.
Given the way the question was phrased, I'm guessing the boat is 30' or less and does NOT have a mast track for the pole, nor any other type of fitting and has a plain ol' end for end pole with a couple rings on the mast. Think about it, if you could raise the mast end, why would you worried about which end to release first? The situation becomes fairly obvious at that point doesn't it?
We were in light air, but we went from a deep run, doing just over two knots (over ground), to Wing on Wing, doing just over 4. Why do I see racing boats using spinnakers in light air? Are they not maximizing sail area like I am Wing on Wing?
Well, winged means you're a few degrees either side of DDW... slow! (unless it's blowing 20+)

You can also run DDW with a kite up, and yeah... basically the whole kite is on the weather side of the forestay so I guess it'd be "winged", but we don't do that in less than about 15, it's quicker to gybe through a series of deep reaches. Basically if you're winged out you're in full drag mode getting pushed by the wind rather than pulled (like every other point of sail). Sails are much more efficient operating in lift mode. However, assuming you don't have a spinnaker yeah winged might work best for you for getting downwind since it's very hard to keep a genoa drawing well on a really deep reach since the sheeting angles are all wrong at that point - can't really have the headsail sheeted to a point 20' off your beam. Never a simple answer is it?

Oh, and the goose dies
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