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Post: "Pole Length?"

12,268 posts on 2,444 threads   •   From Mar 07, 2004 - Jan 08, 2012


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David King

Gary Burton wrote: What length pole should I be looking for? For a W32

Ahoy Gary,

If you only had one pole, and you want that pole to do as much as possible, Like winging out a genoa or drifter, as a whisker pole would do, or poling out a tri-radial spinnaker, as a spinnaker pole would do, then I suggest an 18' 0" X 4" spinnaker pole. A whisker pole, which may or may not be extendable, is not strong enough as a spinnaker pole. A spinnaker pole is strong enough for anything but is not collapsible. The "J" measurement of the W-32 is 18' 0". That is how the pole length was determined. If you only cruise, you can use any length you want at any time. If you ever race and are ever rated with a spinnaker then your pole length can not excede the "J" measurement without a penalty.

When I first cruised, I used a 12' to 22' forespar whisker pole. It worked great and is still on Summer Rose in Alaska. I did not have a spinnaker. I used that pole at 18' almost all of the time. For the past 23 years I have been using an 18' spinnaker pole even though I seldom use the spinnaker.

Just my opinion. Good luck, Dave

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