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That Self Tacking JIB

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lukemi View Drop Down
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    Posted: 02 July 2009 at 16:13

This past weekend I just finished, or should I say quit, a race. Pretty much every boat beat us (although only 1 of 7 actually finished the race). In my experience, the standard self tacking Jib is of no value in a light wind race. Below 3 knots of wind, my 370 just seems to spin in the water. I noted that other boats in this class all had 140 to 155 % Head Sails. Also, I could not get the angle on the wind that the other boats had (there's 20-30 degrees vs mine 50-60 degree best). My crew was very discouraged with this performance. I had another race planned for August but my crew is muntiney mode. They don't see the sense in trying unless a new head sail is purchased. So the Question: Is there any hope of competing in a race using the standard self tacking JIB? Being a novice racer, I'm not sure what to expect. I know what I'm asking Santa for Xmas but that doesn't help now.

Mike
Stella Maris
 
PS: The only boat to complete was a Beneteau 40. With their full keel every puff of wind pushed them a little closer to the finish (they do not spin like the 370). I'm not sure this is racing (3 hours to finish) but that did give them a light air advantage.
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Peter-Blake View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Peter-Blake Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 July 2009 at 16:33
You will have no chance with a selftacker in winds under 10kts!
Blake 370
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panos View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote panos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 July 2009 at 17:27

Hi,

I don't quit agree! Hanses have a bigger main than the boats with a 140%, so sail area is probably sufficient. A bigger genoa will only increase the penalty if you race under ORC or IRC certificate and will have a disadvantage in normal winds.
Choosing the front sail is crucial: If you regularly sail in very low winds then a special wind seeker could be needed. This sail is hoisted free like a spinnaker but actually is a jib and is made of a ultralight material. The size should be the same as your self tacker. You just roll the self tacker and hoist the wind seeker. With so low wind this is a child's play.
How to steer in these conditions is a challenge! You need lots of practice to keep the boat pointed to the correct direction. It took me several years to learn how to do it. Try to win your crew back and go out to practice. It is very important to feel from which direction the wind puff is going to come and turn the bow to the correct direction and trim the sails before the puff hits. The puff lasts one two minutes and if ready, the boat will start to pic some speed. You use this speed to have control over the rudder to take advantage of the next puff, and so on. Moving is more important than the direction where you go to but of course tactics are always important.
To practice the self tacker is good enough. My suggestion is not to buy anything until the crew learns to love low wind speed racing.
 
These were just a few stupid thoughts. Everybody past through the same situation as you are experiencing now.
Panos

Hanse 630e - selling her -
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Peter-Blake View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Peter-Blake Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 July 2009 at 19:48
Sorry panos, i love sailing in strong winds and in low winds too. I have - i think - many years (sailed races since 1978) of experience. All my former boats had no problems in low wind with the right sail. Same with the 370. You need a big upwindsail with overlapping. Otherwise you will loose. The 370 doesnt give you any feedback with the selftacker in  low winds. With the big genoa it is totally diffrent! You can feel the diffrence!
Blake 370
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CARAMEL View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote CARAMEL Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 July 2009 at 08:43
With my H470 I had to change the selftacker.
The advise of my sailmaker was not only to go for a 108% but certainly for a better quality.
The standard jib is of very poor quality (North...???). It is imposible to get the right shape. The selftacker on the boot of Panos is 3DL-North and that is another story.
Now I have a 108% laminate sail (Maxx Voyager carbon Aramide) and can compete with  x-yachts and other fast boats......!!!!!
For upwind sailing I need minimum 6Kn of wind.
 
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Zeester View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Zeester Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 July 2009 at 09:55
Just a ' stupid' question, I suppose you can't run the 108% on the self tacking system?

Regards,
Ron
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Abstinenz View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Abstinenz Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 July 2009 at 09:55
I agree,

You'll never get the race potential from the std. jib. It's only a 85% jib and the shape is hopeless due to the negative roach. I really understand your crewConfused
A premium selftacker jib of aprox. 98% will add a lot of speed when going upwind and reaching but still you will need more canvas below 8-10 knots of wind and a code zero or a genua is a must. With a laminated ligth genua of 125-130% you'll find that the Hanse goes like a rocket in windspeed below 6 knots. (don't buy a heavy tafetta/dacron covered genua for light wind racing as it will be too heavy to fill)

/Steen   


Edited by Abstinenz - 03 July 2009 at 09:57
Hanse 342#436
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Abstinenz View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Abstinenz Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 July 2009 at 10:06
Originally posted by Zeester Zeester wrote:

Just a ' stupid' question, I suppose you can't run the 108% on the self tacking system?

Regards,
Ron

No you can't. A 100% jib will fill the hole triangle and a 108% will have to be sheeted on it's own traveller aft the mast. You can buy a 95-98% selvtacker jib with a biiig roach but it will then hit your mast and motor ligth every time you tack. The biiig roach has it's avantage when reaching.
 
/Steen   
Hanse 342#436
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panos View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote panos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 July 2009 at 20:20
Hi,
 
@PB: The quality of the sail is extremely important. I am talking about a 3DL selftacker with vertical battens. White sails are not worth a penny. IMHO the sail area is enough, but a heavy sail cannot be trimmed properly.
With a 140% genua you will be required to reef at 15-16 knots-NOT GOOD.
My experience with my Hanse is :
0-4 knots (true) wind seeker 100% + unreefed main
4-18 selftacker 88% + unreefed main
18+ selftacker+1/2 reefs.
all above for beating
we also use a code 0/1 for 60 to 100-120 degrees and
an asymmetric spinnaker for 120 to 160 up to 20-22 knots (true)
else we use the selftacker.
Important: we always use an "inhauler" to keep the selftacker a few cm to the centerline on closehauled, and a barber hauler to open the selftacker in more open courses.
In our boat it is almost impossible to change front sails due to their size and weight.
Panos

Hanse 630e - selling her -
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silversailor View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote silversailor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 July 2009 at 00:20
I just added a used recut #2 mylar genoa 155 (there is no penalty to my PHRF rating for a 155 or lower).  While it is not strictly a light air sail, it's large area permits it's use in light air and winds to 20K.  It's made a world of difference for all points upwind.  Much more efficient than my 135.  The only downside is that it is slightly too large for the standard genoa track on the 370.  I'll either have to cut it down to a 150 or put a longer track on.  I'm leaning toward the latter.
Silversailor
South Haven, MI USA
S/V Legacy
2010 Andrews 28
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