High winds, main only or Jib?

Topics primarily or specifically about the DS1. Many topics are of general interest, so please use forum sections on Rigging, Sails, etc. where appropriate.

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Re: High winds, main only or Jib?

Postby TIM WEBB » Wed Feb 17, 2016 10:26 pm

Plus it's a bit more of a "civilized social event", with onshore dinners and B&Bs and such as opposed to the usual WCTSS beach bonfire ... ;-P
Tim Webb
1979 DS2 10099 The Red Witch
(I used to be Her "staff", in the way dogs have owners and cats have staff, but alas no longer ... <pout>)
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Re: High winds, main only or Jib?

Postby spoefish » Sat Jun 10, 2017 11:16 pm

On my previous DS-1 I installed a set of reef points which gave me many enjoyable breezy days. To balance the rig found a Blue J jib that was about the correct main-to-jib ratio with the reefed main. I think having a smaller jib to go with the reefed main is one solution, and one that worked well for me. It was important to have a good degree of control when sailing by myself, which this did
"When you are playin' the banjo, everything is OK"

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Re: High winds, main only or Jib?

Postby Windtherapy » Tue Jun 13, 2017 10:06 pm

I literally just installed a single line reef system on my DS1 last week. Took me 2 cheek blocks, line, a few eye pads and a small block at the mast tabernacle. Easy peasy--took me about an hour to mount everything and cost was about $75 bucks. The picture attached is exactly how I did mine and I did have a reef hook at my gooseneck.
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Re: High winds, main only or Jib?

Postby GreenLake » Sun Jun 18, 2017 2:34 pm

The picture shows the setup I have currently (except it cleats at the boom instead of being lead aft).

I can tell you that my experience is that simply pulling at the reef line will not set a reasonable reef. What I need to do is first pull the line along the boom to get the end tight and then take out the slack around the tack; it simply will not manage to to both.

I have sailed on a number of different boats and am now convinced that I should have used a reef hook instead (with the clew part of the reef line installed as shown).

However, if I plan to sail extended distances with a reef, I tend to add a lashing that holds the clew more tightly to the boom. The reef line by itself sometimes can't seem to get the clew positioned right.

If you cruise a lot in higher wind areas, and want a better experience with longer distances you might think about getting a smaller jib or reef points in your jib. That allows you to have a better balance.

Reefing the jib sounds odd, but is very easy. You add a new clew and a new tack. You attach (or lash down) the new tack to the deck and attach your jib sheets to the new clew. (You can roll up the unused portion of the jib and secure it with sail ties or bungees).
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Re: High winds, main only or Jib?

Postby spoefish » Thu Sep 21, 2017 11:52 am

Another thought if it looks like the winds are building - the potential issue of dousing either the main or jib, or both. Easier if you have slugs instead of the boltrope on the main, but in either case some kind of a downhaul can come in very handy. I also sail a Cape Dory Typhoon, often solo. When it looks like things may be headed towards getting out of hand and you want to get the sails down often they do not want to cooperate. In the case of the jib, I have rigged a downhaul that goes back to the cockpit and which lets me pull the jib down without going forward (difficult when you are by yourself). I think the same thing would work on the DS, and it is a good feeling to get a flapping jib down on the deck. With both the Typhoon and the DS it is usually possible to pull the main down from the cockpit - and again, easier if you have slugs. Much less resistance. I don't often need to do this, but there are times when a squall comes up pretty fast and I don't want any sail up while I wait it out.
"When you are playin' the banjo, everything is OK"

Steve Martin
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Re: High winds, main only or Jib?

Postby GreenLake » Thu Sep 21, 2017 12:45 pm

The jib downhaul can come in handy if you have a stiff sail. Got a new jib not too long ago and its so stiff that it won't "fall" down on its own. I'm very slow in adding "yet another line" to my boat, but this is getting ridiculous.
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Re: High winds, main only or Jib?

Postby lemsteraak » Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:38 pm

This may be a little controversial but I don't think reefing is the right answer. If you know you are going to be in high winds, maybe take a reef, but I wouldn't reef if caught out in big winds and waves. Daysailers plane, so I think the answer to to flatten the sails and put the boat up on a plane, then they become very stable. If you tighten the outhaul, cunningham and vang, the mainsail flattens right up so it is a flat blade. Not all that much more windage than just the mast if you feather it. Jib the same way, tighten the jib halyard, and bring the jib sheet car back. This flattens the jib but also allows the top to spill wind. The idea is to depower the rig and minimize drag.

A friend and I were practicing with a spinnaker and were hit with an extremely strong gust. The Daysailer just took off and I've never sailed so fast in my life, totally flat wake and shooting ten feet on either side. I was sure we would do a death roll but it was just a thrilling ride and fortunately we had enough river because there was no way we could turn. Point is, Daysailers handle high winds very well, they like to be sailed fast.
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