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Blue Water Runner downwind sail

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Wayne's World View Drop Down
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Joined: 18 July 2012
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    Posted: 21 June 2018 at 11:16
During winter we bought a Blue Water Runner downwind sail and have just had a chance to try it out. We were looking for a sail which would be usable downwind - say 160 to 180 degrees. We also want a sail we could furl and unfurl from the cockpit. Phil from Inspiration Marine Group in the UK suggested the BWR. After looking at the Elvstrom website we thought the BWR could be the right sail for us. Elvstrom suggested a 220 square meter sail on an endless furler. The sail cloth is a light weight Dacron but as the sail is 220 M2 with a torsional rope and furler and sheets the sail in its bag weights about 56 kg and takes up a fair amount of our forepeak space but I suppose that is what this area is designed for. Whilst travelling from Gocek to Kas we had winds behind us for some of the 52nm distance with speeds of between 8 to 15 kn. Our best boat speed was 8.6 kn in 14.7kn TWS but were very happy to get 6.9kn of boat speed in on 9.4kn of wind TWS at 179 degrees. The BWR can also be used as a larger headsail (110 M2) by joining the clews together and setting it to one side. The Elvstrom site suggests the BWR can be used in this "headsail" mode in upto 60 degrees TWA. We have used it at around 100 degrees TWA and it was useful in this situation.

Wayne W
Cruising, currently in the Caribbean and will head across the Pacific early 2023
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Maxenvledig View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Maxenvledig Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 February 2019 at 19:20
Hello, could pls tell the price without VAT?
TNX
Maxim
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Wayne's World View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Wayne's World Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 February 2019 at 05:34
Maxim,

The cost ex VAT was about E8,200 including the endless furler and freight.
Wayne W
Cruising, currently in the Caribbean and will head across the Pacific early 2023
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cuneytm View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote cuneytm Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 January 2020 at 08:41
Hi Wayne,

Is there any other experiences you can share about BWR lately? I've looking for a downwind solution for while and to be honest not much information on the internet in order to compare these solutions I mean, furlstrom/one sails ifs/bwr.  

Kind regards,
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Wayne's World Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 February 2020 at 15:04
Cuneytm,

We recently finished our Atlantic crossing and used the BWR for a fair portion of the crossing from Las Palmas to Cape Verde Islands and then from CV to Barbados. We had winds mainly from about 155 degrees TWA which is at the outer end of the BWR downwind ability. There was normally a swell from a different angle to the winds and sometimes a big swell from the north with an over laid localised swell and significant winds drive chop as well. We used the boom to boom out the upwinds side of the sail as per the suggestions from Elvstrom. We did not have a pole of any description. We the very confused seastate the BWR was constantly moving back and forth  across the boat which caused the BWR sheets to rub on the shrouds and the lifelines near the gennecker winches where the sheets came under the lifelines. We ended up adding additional Dyneema outer on the sheets at the places where the sheets rubbed which worked well. We also loosened the aft end of the lifelines and put garden hose over the wire to reduce the damage to the sheets. 

We had good speed with from BWR and we had it up in 14-20kn. We only had it up on one night because the winds always increased during the night. So we sailed overnight with 2 reefs in the main and the headsail half furled. During the 8th night from CV to Barbados we had up to 28kn and during one of these gusts the BWR started to unfurl from the top and within a short while the section unfurled tore. Because of the strong winds and rough conditions I thought it was too dangerous to go on the foredeck to put the BWR down so we left it up with the section unfurled flapping madly. We furled the BWR as much as possible to reduce the flap. We pulled the sail down the next morning when the winds moderated a bit. 

We are yet to get a price to fix the BWR but are expecting a large cost. We have not had a detailed look at the sail as yet but I expect the cause of the damage was the BWR rubbing on the UV strip on the furled head when the BWR was furler. The Hanse supplied XTS clutch for the gennecker halyard is no where near strong enough to hold the halyard tight and it was constantly loosening. This enabled the BWR to rub on the furled headsail and I think create a wear point in the leech of the sail which ultimately tore.  Going forward, if the BWR is economical to repair we will move the tack pint as far forward as we can, fit a much stronger clutch for the BWR halyard and not leave teh sail up  when not in use. This is a bit of a problem because the sail is heavy. The specs say 60kg (for the 220m2 size)but I think it is heavier. So getting teh sail in place and getting it down whilst at sea in rolly conditions when sailing two up is challenging. On the crossing we had 3 on board and with the two males on the foredeck and my wife on the halyard, the boat under motor and running directly down swell onautopliot we managed to drop it quickly onto the deck.  

Some friends who were crossing at the same time had a new Parasailer and experienced the same swaying, back and forth problem with it which we had with the BWR so in the conditions we had I think this problem would not be reduced unless you used a pole for one side of the sail and the boom for the other side to help stabilize the sail.  

We had two other boat friends who used double headsails and in the conditions we this option seemed to be by far the best. These were conventional overlapping headsails on the one foil. With this setup you can run downwind or close. You still need a pole and boom to hold them out and stabilize them but they can also be used furled which other downwind options can not. The problem with trying the twin headsail option on a Hanse is that the normal self tacker size sail is probably too small and does not normally allow you to let the sail out enough for downwind. 

So given the conditions the performance of the BWR was good but I think we should have had a pole and should have identified the rubbing problem before it caused the failure. We intend to fit a pole for downwind  sailing (still need to cross the Pacific) and maybe look at having a second downwind sail which would cover a wind angle of say 130-160 degrees and up to 20kn. This could be a Furlstrom but I would be careful not to get a sail which is heavy because handling the sail at sea is a serious consideration. If you are sailing island to island or to an from your normal marina than the weight of the sail is less important because once you are in protected waters taking the sail down is fairly easy.  
Wayne W
Cruising, currently in the Caribbean and will head across the Pacific early 2023
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