Author Topic: Need advice - Fore sails - Genoa or Drifter or both  (Read 206 times)

Offline mkaplan

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Need advice - Fore sails - Genoa or Drifter or both
« on: April 26, 2017, 10:27:29 AM »
My new to me 23 has only a working jib for a foresail so I plan to get 1 or more sails for light winds and I'd like advice. If I get a hank-on drifter do I need a Genoa? Does anyone sail with just a 110 and a drifter for foresails?

If I have a hank-on drifter is there any need for an asymmetric spinnaker? Will a drifter take care of all my light wind needs?

I'll be cruising only so racing rules are not an issue.

Offline HeaveToo

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Re: Need advice - Fore sails - Genoa or Drifter or both
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2017, 03:07:20 PM »
I have a furling 150 for my jib, a 110 that also fits on my furler, and then I have an asymmetrical spinnaker for downwind in light air.  I love my sail set-up and I feel that it gives me a wide range of possibilities.

If I had one sail, I would probably do a 135 on a furler.  That is a good compromise.
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Offline mattman

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Re: Need advice - Fore sails - Genoa or Drifter or both
« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2017, 07:13:10 PM »
Sail shape is king!  Above size or weight. If your sails are white, crispy, stiff and the sales receipt says 2016-North 3DL or Uk-Xdrive...then we can start talking about headsail options...if on the other hand your main and jib are fairly white, do double duty as a pillows, have the old Johnson arrow logo, and you don't have a sales receipt and whisker pole...you get the picture. All fun aside...please make sure you have a set of  really good working sails and whisker pole... a main with 2 reef points and a 100 or 110% made of Dacron from a reliable name brand loft or local loft near your sailing area who will service you. The loft will ask you to measure YOUR boat. Do so with a tape measure. Do not accept the factory measurements.Also give them jib track placements, tack offsets, sail track locations etc.  Once set up with a decent set of sails make sure you are utilizing your control lines to address sail shape for each point of sail. Remember that a spinnaker only takes few seconds a mile off of the time from the same jib and main boat(that would be 6 seconds on a Flying Scot for example). With all this in mind, HeaveToo is right about the 135 on a furler. That set up is a standard workhorse in the charter fleets, but then again they are not working to windward much.  I am not a furler guy (that would be another post)...so for a non-furler setup I would say in order of return, a new main,110 jib, and then a symmetrical. Best of luck...

Offline mkaplan

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Re: Need advice - Fore sails - Genoa or Drifter or both
« Reply #3 on: April 26, 2017, 08:56:46 PM »
Thanks for your responses. I understand what you're saying about sail shape and condition so I'm reconsidering my plans and will consider a new main and 110 first. Would you get the off-the-shelf sails from Com-pac or a different sailmaker?

Mattman, did you mean symmetrical or asymmetrical?

Offline mattman

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Re: Need advice - Fore sails - Genoa or Drifter or both
« Reply #4 on: April 26, 2017, 09:43:02 PM »
Symmetrical, Just better for straight downwind, with the asymmetric you will tend to heat it up to a broad reach like the cats and scows do. I think it is harder to get the asymm to rotate forward and windward to expose  the sail to clear air. With the standard symmetric the pole puts it right out there with no hassles. Though many times while cruising you might fly the chute with the main down.  I would go with a reputable loft. North, Uk, Doyle, Quantum unless you know a local guy and have seen what they have been building...there are many guys out there building really good sails. There are also a fair number of really average guys building average sails too.  I have bought from Doyle in the last few years and was reasonably pleased though I ordered a tabbed-in reef crinkle that came as a through the sail crinkle. I accepted the sail as it may have been my mistake as it wasn't on the estimate that I Ok'ed. Overall the sail material was of good quality, the stitching quite good, shaped out really nice and they recommended a weight that was a half oz heavier that I wold have chosen, I conceded to their expertice and was pleased. I have had some experience with North one designs sails -they tend to have a little more belly in the main. Btw the spinnaker you buy may also be a little fuller or flatter depending on the builder and local conditions. Even within builders there are small discrepancies as the pieces are sewn together. The price I paid was about 20% more than the bargain places.  Call each loft and just talk with them. They will ask you about how, where, when, how much wind...a 30 minute phone call will give them a good idea what you need and want. they will also have recommendations to consider. Listen carefully, take your time,  get it right  and you will have years of good service and sailing.  If you buy in the off season it will be much cheaper! Best of luck.

Offline brackish

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Re: Need advice - Fore sails - Genoa or Drifter or both
« Reply #5 on: April 27, 2017, 03:23:17 PM »
You know, the symmetrical vs asymmetrical debate is based on what you want out of life.  I spent many years as race crew either as foredeck crew, packing, setting and jibing that dude or manning either the sheet or the guy trim station and for top speed downwind symmetrical is king.  However, in this stage of life, 70, sailing single handed a lot, my asymmetrical with dousing sock and no pole, lmited rigging, able to be set up at the dock before I leave is all I want off the wind.  I almost always leave the main flaked and covered when I know a long down wind run is at hand and that knot or so i lose is just fine. 

Same argument applies to furler vs hank on.  My 23 is the first boat I've ever had with a furler and for the same reason above I would not go back.

Also where you put your money depends on where you sail.  I currently sail on a long lake where no matter the prevailing wind away from the lake it is always up lake or down lake.  I bought the asymmetrical for light conditions and go wing and wing in heavier air.  Beam reaches are a very rare commodity.

Agree with mattman first money should be spent on replacing tired basic sails before expanding.  I have a 110 (rarely used any more and in fair condition), a 135 almost new and an asymmetrical also almost new.  Any sail purchase at this point would be to replace my main, 12 years old but only maybe 1000 total cruising hours if that. Considering loose footed, fully battened along with going to mid-boom sheeting with traveler.  Same concept, I just hate having to turn around working sheets both ahead and behind me, want everything in front of me.
« Last Edit: April 28, 2017, 07:38:04 AM by brackish »

Offline HeaveToo

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Re: Need advice - Fore sails - Genoa or Drifter or both
« Reply #6 on: April 27, 2017, 06:38:37 PM »
Well....Sail shape is important.  Then again, how many of us are tweaking the control lines and trimming like we are racing.  I gave up racing for cruising and I don't tweak sails like that anymore.  I get a good set and usually leave it at that.

New sails are nice....but if I had okay sails and had the option of a bigger sail for light winds I would take the sail for the light winds.  Then again, I bought my asymmetrical spinnaker used for $100.  That asymmetrical makes me pretty fast downwind in the right conditions. 
Døyr fe, døyr frender
Døyr sjølv det sama
men ordet om deg aldreg døyr
vinn du et gjetord gjevt