Westsail Owners Alliance - Post: "Topping Lift & Sail Shape"
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Post: "Topping Lift & Sail Shape"

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


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- Archived Message from Inactive Forum -

John and Helena Almberg

My policy is indeed that the captain is always right, to carry out orders to the best of my ability, and to keep my brilliant suggestions to myself.

This was a special case in that we were just sitting there, with maybe 0-3 knots of fluky air, trying different things.

This was a Moody 38 with a loose-footed, no-batten, furling main (one of those mains that rolls into the mast), with a hydraulic boom vang.

The leach line was loose... i.e., not tied off on the boom end.

My feeling was that either the vang was just too tight (it's never been adjusted whilst I was on the boat), or the weight of the boom itself was dragging down on the main. The leach was literally a tight, straight line from masthead to clew.

We had tried loosening the out haul, so there was some bag in the sail (loose footed), but the leach was still tight.

It just looked all wrong to me... Given the chance, I would have tightened the out haul just enough to straighten out the foot of the sail, then let off on the vang, and given a bit of topping lift.

Or maybe the hydraulic vang would have done the trick by just raising the boom up a bit. I never had such a gadget on one of my boats, so don't really know how they work.

Don't know if it would have made us go any faster, but it wouldn't have looked better :-)

Anyway, I made my gentle suggestion, then shut up when it got shot down, as a proper crewman should. We put on the engine shortly there after, anyway.

But I've been thinking about it ever since, wondering if it was just a plain stupid idea, or what!

-- John

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