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Low cost and easy mainsail furling


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What is the issue?
For a year I cruised an old IOR Class One racer which was great fun. The boat was arranged for a crew of eight which in sailing parlance means handling convenience was not factored into the design. The mainsail was enormous and once the topping lift was released the whole lot fell right down on the deck. Furling this large mainsail, or even reefing it, was a major daily sailing chore.

Why address this?
Dealing with the massive main sail on this boat was challenging. The physical exertion of dragging it about and stowing it was totally exhausting and precipitated seasickness. Openly, because the reef implementing was far from easy, I did not implement many a timely reef which caused things to get more than interesting at times.

How to address this?
Implement two straps on the bottom of the sail as presented in figure 1.

When dropping or reefing the sail, let down the sail first lower it enough to allow these straps to be hooked on and pause to connect them. This creates a natural sail bag or pocket for the remaining sail to flake into as it comes down.

This approach made a dramatic difference to handling the mainsail at practically zero cost.


With thanks to:
Michael Harpur, Yacht Obsession.


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