QUANTUM SAILS CRUISING TIPS
TAMING THE MAINSAIL: FINDING THE BEST HANDLING SYSTEM
As mainsails get larger, the struggle to raise, lower, reef, flake and cover them becomes more and more of a battle. Here’s a look at some sail handling options to help you tame your mainsail.
The easiest way to contain the sail as it drops is with lazy jacks. Flaking and putting a cover on is still a chore, but the lazy jacks will keep the sail under control until this is convenient.
INTEGRATED SAIL COVERS
As boats get bigger, simple lazy jacks may not be enough. The next step in simplifying the process is to integrate a sail cover with the lazy jacks. The sail just piles up inside the cover.
The Dutchman is basically a series of control lines that are integrated into the sail. As the sail comes down it is not only contained, but also will flake itself to some extent. This system works well on small to medium size boats.
In-mast furling is probably the easiest and most reliable system. It does require compromises to both the size and shape of the sail, but you can’t beat the ease and safety of operation.
The beauty of in-boom furling is not just in never-leave-the-cockpit ease of handling, but in the sail itself. A full batten structure is used which allows the designer to create a full-sized sail. This provides the ultimate balance between no-compromise performance and ease of use.
Get the full article in the Resources & Expertise section on Quantumsails.com.