Author Topic: Have any of you considered a 2nd reef in a Sun Cat  (Read 987 times)

Offline bfelton

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Have any of you considered a 2nd reef in a Sun Cat
« on: March 19, 2012, 09:47:06 AM »
I have recently purchased a Sun Cat and will exclusively sail on San Francisco Bay.  I will attempt to avoid the 25 to 30 knots of summer winds.  But I will encounter them even with the best of planning.  There fore would a 2nd reef in the sail be good idea?   Would a very small head sail with the main down get me home on  down wind and beam reach runs?


Bert Felton

Offline capt_nemo

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Re: Have any of you considered a 2nd reef in a Sun Cat
« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2012, 08:37:42 PM »

If I were sailing exclusively on SF Bay I would definitely have a second set of reef points sewn in the main'sl. Then you will be able to comfortably handle those pesky high winds the Bay is so noted for.

The alternative would be to have a fairly heavy small jib with main stowed to get you home. I've made a light air Nylon Drifter for my Sun Cat and a small jib that initially didn't fit or fly right. I'm in the process of making a club footed jib which will hank on to a MASTHEAD Forestay led to a 4' Bowsprit end. Having left the original quick release forestay on to use as a babystay, it can also be returned to its original position to fly a heavy small jib in a blow with main'sl stowed as you point out.

The trade off, which you must consider, is between the extra reef lines or some simple abbreviated control system to tie in the second reef versus having to either prerig the small jib on windy days or go forward to hank it on and attach halyard and sheets in a blow.

Unlike most Sun Cat Owners I believe in jibs and other headsails to provide the necessary DRIVE required in various wind and sea state conditions. I take the extra time to prerig headsails prior to sailing whether I eventually use them or not.

Sun Cat "Frisky"

Offline oddduck

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Re: Have any of you considered a 2nd reef in a Sun Cat
« Reply #2 on: March 21, 2012, 08:21:26 AM »
I had 2nd reef points added to my sail soon after I got the boat and experienced some heavy air.  The sail sets well on the 2nd reef without any modifications to the rig.  I have only needed to use it once since, in the last two years but I have it if needed.


Offline Tom Ray

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Re: Have any of you considered a 2nd reef in a Sun Cat
« Reply #3 on: March 21, 2012, 10:42:59 AM »
For most people, the Sun Cat does not need a second reef, but most people do not sail SF Bay. Cold water plus 30 knot winds means YES, add a second set of reef points.

Upwind, the Sun Cat does not really need a reef until about 20 knots, but it will actually sail better with the reef in the high teens. Downwind with winds under 20, a reefed sail is not enough.

At 25 to 30, I imagine the same would be true. While it might be possible to sail the boat upwind in 30 knots with just the single reef, it would be too much power and the boat would be better behaved with less power.

Let us know what you learn. You may find that if it is going to be blowing in the 20's it is best to just sail double-reefed even if it is not in the high 20's or low 30's.