Latest News: Forums Technical Main and Spinnaker – chicken and egg

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  • #3938
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    I’ve read a lot about spinnakers and gybing, but it’s still not clear to me which comes first, the mainsail or the kite? Seems to me about as hard for the crew to re-engage the new guy whilst standing to windward before the main is gybed, as it does to disengage the old guy standing to windward after the main has gybed. So what’s the best?

    I must say there is a real dearth of decent documentation online (or in the Wayfarer handbook) about this sort of thing – lost of sketchy line drawings (pretty poor ones from the 60s it seems to me), or else promotional videos on YouTube from spar suppliers, and mostly aimed at big boats.

    This is my first post since joining up – sorry if I’m ranting….

    #8218
    bigal
    Member

    You gybe the main first ,the crew disconnects the pole from the mast and attaches it to the new windward sheet . He/she then takes the pole off the old windward sheet and attaches it to the mast .

    You may find it helps if the helmsman takes control of the new leeward sheet but that is a counsel of perfection !!

    #8219
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    That seems logical enough. We probably only got by doing it the other way because the wind was light.

    May I ask a supplementary question: At what point do you cleat off or tie down the guy, before or after attaching the pole?

    #8220
    bigal
    Member

    I have a stop knot positioned so that when the pole is put on the it
    just reaches the its final position for a close reach – then the guy is adjusted to its proper position for the new wind . This stops the spi billowing out to leeward .

    #8221
    Fantasia
    Member

    We release the old guy, but the crew hangs on to it, gybe the mainsail, crew pulls the old gut/new sheet to make sure the spin comes around to leeward, then cleat the new guy, before swopping the pole over.

    We forgot to cleat the new guy before sorting the pole last Saturday in 20 knots wind with dire consequences: the spinnaker filled at the top of the mast and pulled us over sideways. The resulting capsize ended up with a broken mast and a damaged tabernacle.

    #8222
    Dave Bevan
    Member

    @bigal wrote:

    I have a stop knot positioned so that when the pole is put on the it

    Bigal – where is your stopper knot? is it “inside the boat”, or between the twinning line or cleat & the turning block at the back of the boat?
    Thanks
    Dave

    #8226
    bigal
    Member

    I have separate sheets and the only place for the stopper knot is before it gets to the cleat above the thwart ( on a Hartley mark IV ) .There is not enough travel on any other part of the sheet to place the knot without it interfering with the operation of guy when it becomes a sheet !

    #8227
    Dave Bevan
    Member

    Thanks Bigal. I hadn’t thought of separate sheets before, but that would enable us to re-use our tapered sheet from our old MKII – I kept them, but they are too short to use on the MKIV.

    #8233
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Thanks everyone for responses to my newbie question! We have a 1 year old Hartley IV. Mark Hartley has fitted a cam cleat on each side of the boat above the thwart block, with the “jammed” direction pointing downwards to the block. What is this cleat for? It seems to be mounted upside down to be used to cleat the spinnaker sheet that runs across the thwart…..

    #8236
    bigal
    Member

    If the helmsman , sitting on the windward side , pulls upwards thru the cleat and lets go the pole should be pulled back and the guy cleated .If this doesn’t happen the cleats are upside down !!!

    #8237
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Sorry bigal. Still confused. I don’t get what you say about the pole.

    I imagine that on a starboard tack, I (as crew) sit on the starbord gunwale. I have the spinnaker guy running from my right hand, under the cleat by the stay, then up to the pole and the starboard spinnaker clew. The spinnaker sheet comes to me across the thwart from the port side and through a block at the starboard end. I am holding the sheet above the starboard block on the thwart.

    Is that what the cam cleat is for: to hold the sheet, or is it to hold the guy.

    This is where I return to my original side-theme: a decent picture would paint a thousand words here. I feel a gallery coming on…

    #8238
    bigal
    Member

    The cleat on the starboard side is to hold the guy – the sheet should rarely ,if ever, be cleated !

    #8240
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Thanks – finally got that. What’s had me foxed is that since we don’t have the barber hauler type of system, the guy is held by a side entry cleat, so I didn’t see the need for another – it’s going to be cleated twice, once at the gunwale and once at the thwart. That’s fine if I’m pulling the pole back, but if I want to move from a run to a reach, I’ll have to make sure it uncleats at both points.

    Best thing is to take advantage of a fine day with a gentle breeze, and get out there and try it …….. and today looks just the day. Bye!

    #8261
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Side entry cam cleats for the guy are a good, simple option and ideal for venues with predominantly light winds, as you don’t have the weight of the barber hauler hanging on the sheet all the time. The downside is that it can be a bit hazardous getting old guy out and the new guy in when gybing in breezy conditions.

    If you sail in a predominantly windy venue then the other system is probably better, where you have a cam cleat on a raised block on the side deck by the shroud, with a barber hauler just in front of it, so you can pull either guy down or release them remotely from further back in the boat.

    As others have said, the sheet shouldn’t usually be cleated on the thwart when the kite is set, for reasons that soon become apparent! However you do need some form of cleat there in order to keep the sheets from hanging over the side when you aren’t using the spinaker.

    Some great pics in the Wayfarer Book.

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