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Reefing

A264 Clytie 8:52am, 18 April 2013
I still think back to my racing my Achilles Idlevice and in hindsight I think I probably didn't reef early enough. There were times we lost speed when the boat was over stressed and additionally we fell away. In the same position again I'd put an earlier reef in the main before changing the for'sail if conditions continue to worsen. Thoughts, do A24's benefit from an early reef?
busy home [deleted] 6 years ago
I did not bother reefing the main .. not often anyway ..
I would leave the genny up and drop the main , easier when alone .
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NormanKlipspringer 6 years ago
Yes I always reef the main first, since inevitably the conditions will get worse and it is much easier to reef the genoa (furler) afterwards. I have found no effect on speed in doing this. At least I cannot notice it on my instuments. If you have hanked on sails then I guess the opposite may well be true.
Amrum 9171Y 6 years ago
Yes, I always reef the main first as well to avoid too much heel, and if racing keep the full genoa as long as possible, well into a force 6.
www.flickr.com/photos/32058683@N02/4994390530/in/photostream
The attached photo was in the Holms Race which Snifter won, and we had top end of a force 5 down channel. She was very comfortable and fast with main reefed to the first batten.
The following year we had to reef the genoa as well when the tops of the waves were hitting us horizontally, and the cockpit was full of water, which leaked through the locker hatch into the boat. She still took it very easily.
A264 Clytie 6 years ago
That's exactly what I'm talking about Snifter and I think you're quite right, I wish in retrospect I'd done it earlier and more often. As you say heel is a problem which then causes the boat to slow and deviate off course.
Amrum 9171Y 6 years ago
There's lots of drive in the genoa. I agree with Chille in that if I'm sailing singlehanded and it blows up, dropping the main and sailing under genoa alone is much more relaxing. I love roller reef ing mains!
The trouble is all this racing! It's all about balance. Trying to get optimum speed and sailing close to the wind (upwind) with minimum heel, and not having to spill the main. Trial and error, and the Achilles responds well.
On the Holms Race referred to above Snifter went storming past another A24 which was under full main and small jib. The power was too high up, and the main was being spilled, and there wasn't enough drive in the jib.
rothwell_neil 6 years ago
Seems like we all found out that the A24 sails well on genny alone. If single handed and looking to blow up I would roll the main away and sail on genny alone, will hold full genny for a lot of wind and always pretty well balanced. As roller could then roll some up when it got really nasty, as it can!
Little_Plum 6 years ago
I have found the same as Rob (Snifter), Little Plum always seems far happier and balanced with the No 1 Genoa ( and mine is a hank on deck scraper) and the main reefed to keep the weather helm down.

Cheers

Gee
A264 Clytie 6 years ago
Doesn't she bounce under genny alone when in a blow, rather like nodding donkey? Better - and safer to have main main and a No 2. I never had roller reefing by the way so can't comment on that aspect.
spearhead_027 6 years ago
If you're going to windward and have to tack then some mainsail is needed to do so. Off the wind, genoa-only is fine - so long as nothing goes overboard.

176 Spring Run has full length battens in the main plus the Proctor through-mast roller reefing gear and this allows one to fine-tune the reef over about three-quarters of the height (15/16ths of the area) but the further you are off the wind, the earlier you should do it, as you may have to luff up to get the turns in. As Norman says, it's surprising how little the boat slows.

I've never noticed any nodding donkey effect - the waves are bigger of course - but use your heaviest available genoa, a light one will soon be converted into a balloon, possibly permanently!

Ian.
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