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Fairlead Adjustment

Discussion in 'Sail Trim with Don Guillette' started by Don Guillette, Jan 8, 2017. Add this thread to a FAQ

  1. Don Guillette

    Don Guillette

    Joined May 17, 2004
    1,833 posts, 21 likes
    Other Catalina 30
    US Tucson, AZ
    It's summer in Australia -- right now it's not so much like summer in the North East, but have heart as summer will be there soon.

    A couple of years ago we were in Sydney at this time of the year. While enjoying a "leg of lamb" at a local restaurant, a couple noticed my Catalina 30 polo shirt and engaged my wife and I in a conversation. Turned out that Darrell & Deborah were new Catalina 34 owners and that conversation was the start of a long distance sailing friendship. I'm sure many of you have encountered the same situation. We didn't have time to enjoy a sail on their new C34 but over the past 3 years I feel like I've been on their boat a million times by way of numerous emails and phone calls.

    I tried to sell Darrell on the Garhauer adjustable fairlead system but money is tight for them now so they're struggling with the "pin type system" and are having problems adjusting their jib for 100% efficiency after each tack.

    I provided Darrell & Deborah with a simple adjustment method I use based on how the jib "breaks" but I told them there are probably many other ways (maybe better and easier) that sail trim forum listers use to adjust their jib after each tack and that I'd post the topic and see what methods other sailors have developed. We hope to get back to Australia but the 13 -15 hour flight from LAX is sure a killer!!
     


  2. Jackdaw

    Jackdaw

    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    6,372 posts, 736 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
    Well if you cannot adjust under load, there really is no 'simple adjustment method', as any such method would require moving the car under load, which can't happen.

    While shear can also factor, the biggest factor in adjustment is wind speed. So I would mark the deck next to the pin for a default 'typical breeze' position, and what what wind speed you move back, one, two then three pins.

    'All three sets flying' is the goal in normal breeze, once the breeze come up, twist induced in the sail (pin back) will have the top ones streaming all the time. Once you're at that wind speed, you trim for boat speed and keeping the boat as flat as possible.
     


  3. Joe

    Joe

    Joined Jun 1, 2004
    5,925 posts, 117 likes
    Catalina 27
    US Mission Bay, San Diego
    Here's a good explanation I found on another forum that describes a method similar to one I used to use before upgrading.

     


    Last edited: Jan 9, 2017
  4. drdanj

    drdanj

    Joined Jun 15, 2009
    37 posts, 1 likes
    Catalina 36
    US Channel Islands Harbor
    I have had occasion to adjust under what I'll call medium load, as a big guy with big feet, it can be done. Carefully of course, with a bit of good nautical cussing.
     


  5. Jackdaw

    Jackdaw

    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    6,372 posts, 736 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
    The big problem with pins is of course that they are so rough in their adjustment. Normally an inch is all it takes to get it right, and 6 inches between cars seems like a MILE.

    If your closer pins, great.

    A good thing to look at for the budget-limited is seeing if you can convert your existing setup by removing/disabling the pins, and adding a way to tow the cars forward with a small block system. I know several boats that have done this.
     


  6. Don Guillette

    Don Guillette

    Joined May 17, 2004
    1,833 posts, 21 likes
    Other Catalina 30
    US Tucson, AZ
    I don't think I was clear on what I was talking to Darrell about and I"m sorry I threw Jackdaw off. Adjustment was the wrong term. It was the initial setting a sailor would use going from one tack to the other -- a setting to get him in the ballpark. It's a ballpark because the wind is ever changing but he has to start somewhere. So, when I start out both fairleads are pretty much in the same position and we're probably only dealing with about 6"to 9" of adjustment anyway. I know the number pin hole I'm in (they used to be numbered until I converted to the Garhauer adjustable system) so depending on the way the sail "breaks" I know whether I have to go forward or backwards on the next tack to get me in the ballpark. Stepping on the sheet might be necessary to make the final adjustment -- I never liked that method but it was my only option until I purchased the Garhauer system, which happened to be 3 weeks after I bought the boat.
     


  7. Jackdaw

    Jackdaw

    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    6,372 posts, 736 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
    Ah.

    The starting point is to have your sheet almost bisect the headsail. This will give an even telltail 'break' in most wind conditions.

    [​IMG]
    A clever idea is to mark this line on your clew. Many sailmakers will do this for you, but if not you can mark your own with sharpie, or with strips of sticky-back dacron sail tape. Like this.

    [​IMG]

    Back about here to de-power.
     


  8. Nonsly

    Nonsly

    Joined Apr 14, 2014
    4 posts, 0 likes
    Montgomery 17
    US Duxbury
    Would that line still mark the correct angle on a furling sail as it is furled: i.e., after the tell-tales have disappeared into the furl? If so, that would be very clever indeed.
     


  9. Jackdaw

    Jackdaw

    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    6,372 posts, 736 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
    Of course not. Its a guideline, a starting point. Nothing more.

    Once you're telltails are rolled up, you're trimming blind.
     


  10. Daveinet

    Daveinet

    Joined Sep 20, 2014
    582 posts, 33 likes
    Rob Legg RL24
    US Chain O'Lakes
    I've thought about adding a second sheet that goes straight down. Then the primary jib sheet car could be all the way back, and you just tighten the one that goes straight down until the sail shape is right. Yes, it would be an extra line every time you tack, it make adjustment on the fly much easier.
     


  11. Brian S

    Brian S

    Joined Nov 9, 2012
    2,144 posts, 103 likes
    Oday 192
    US Lake Nockamixon
    Personally, I think remotely adjustable cars would be a far easier solution. More expensive, yes, but far easier to replicate on each side, and to adjust as necessary. Adjusting your proposed solution for every tack would be unnecessarily fiddly, compared to remote adjustable cars. Though, if you aren't racing, and you sail on large bodies of water where you don't need to tack often, and the wind speed is very consistent, the fiddly-ness is probably worth the low cost of your solution. I think you might also be able to do this with a low friction ring over the sheet, down to a second jib track car and block at the forward end of your track. It would essentially be a twing, able to pull down on the sheet, removing twist. So, I guess you'd set your pin-stop cars for more twist, say for higher puff wind speeds, and for lulls or decreasing wind speeds, gradually pull twing on to reduce twist? This would certainly be easier than having to move the pin-stop car forward. But, again, if you are routinely trimming with these twings, you'd so much rather have remote towable cars...

    Thanks for letting me think out loud on this.
     


  12. svquest

    svquest

    Joined May 26, 2015
    10 posts, 3 likes
    Catalina 30 & 22
    US Kemah
    Jackdaw,
    The designed sheeting angle is a straight line perpendicular to the luff that passes thru the clew, extending to the deck. Your picture was good.

    As for sheeting in furling sails, as the sail furls the line perpendicular to the luff thru the clew also moves forward shifing the correct car position much faster. The Sea Scouts and other customers I race with have all started putting that Garhauer system on (it's just so darn affordable vs Harken).

    Additional note on partially furling headsails. Your sail is a 3d shape and when you roll it up around a flat mandrel, the shape is not taken up but shoved back into the remaining sail deepening it's camber and can actually increase the power in the sail. General rule of thumb is you can roll it up 15-20% and still have 'decent' shape. Anything more than that takes a rope/foam luff (and get rope not foam, ask me if you're interested why). So at that point just roll it all the way up.

    K
     


  13. PAC3142

    PAC3142

    Joined Dec 18, 2012
    98 posts, 4 likes
    Hunter 37.5
    US Annapolis
    I'm with Daveinet on this. Low friction adjustable jib lead cars are really far down on my priority list, but I have most of the tackle needed to try this. This would be a variation on the inhaler used on modern race boats. I'd set the jib car at the aftmost position for the sail, then set the downhauler at 90 degrees to the sheet when close hauled, and lead the line back to the stern cleat. The load on the down haul may be low enough to adjust by hand. I think this would be fun to try. Can't wait for spring!
     


  14. Daveinet

    Daveinet

    Joined Sep 20, 2014
    582 posts, 33 likes
    Rob Legg RL24
    US Chain O'Lakes
    OK, I just deleted my whole post as I rethought this one more time. Originally I was picturing tying the extra sheet directly to the jib, but that looses some leverage. If one puts a pulley right at the end of the car track, and then have the extra line go straight up and attach to the jib sheet directly above the pulley, it would pull down on the jib sheet, the same way the car does. Since it is midpoint in the line, it shouldn't take much extra force to pull it down. Not only that, but the time when you need the most twist is when the wind is the lightest, so it should be easier to pull down.
     


  15. Meriachee

    Meriachee

    Joined Aug 1, 2011
    1,445 posts, 175 likes
    Catalina 270
    CA Edmonton, Ab Wabamun - on the orange ball
    The Garhauer EzGlide cars were one of the best investments on the boat. Clay is spot on - an inch sometimes is too much travel.
    DSC00494.JPG
     


  16. PAC3142

    PAC3142

    Joined Dec 18, 2012
    98 posts, 4 likes
    Hunter 37.5
    US Annapolis
    This is the setup I was thinking about if you ignore the inhauler. I stole the pictures from a google image search.
    low_friction_rings_twing1.png low_friction_rings_twing2.png
     


  17. Ted

    Ted

    Joined Jan 26, 2005
    847 posts, 60 likes
    C&C 110
    US Bay Shore, Long Island, NY
    svquest, your statement is incorrect. The illustration that Jackdaw posted was a method to establish a starting position for your genoa lead car on a beat. In most instances, the proper average genoa lead position would not be perpendicular to the luff. The illustration shows the starting point of the trim line on the luff at 45% of the luff length from the tack. Project a line from that point to your clew and you will have your average genoa lead position. What you described is the method of measuring the luff perpendicular (LP) of a headsail.
     


    Last edited: Mar 1, 2017
  18. Ned Ludd

    Ned Ludd

    Joined Apr 4, 2016
    103 posts, 31 likes
    Newport 28
    US Oregon Richardson Marina
    If you want to go on the least expensive side Pac is on the right track. They are variously called barber haulers, tweeters, lead goddamits and other salty terms by region, but all have the same net result of changing the sheet lead. A block on the toerail, a block on the sheet and some spare line to connect it all and a place to cleat it off. If you are cruising and are not trying to squeeze every fraction of a knot out they will work fine. You need to let off on them BEFORE a tack and make them up afterwards to reduce loading but will give you what you need by digging through the boat spares in most cases. Many a racer use them to increase spinnaker control.
     


  19. Daveinet

    Daveinet

    Joined Sep 20, 2014
    582 posts, 33 likes
    Rob Legg RL24
    US Chain O'Lakes
    PAC- I didn't quite picture it in that great of detail, but now seeing the pics, what you show is even better. I didn't get the slip ring part, but now having seen it, that means one does not need to adjust it every tack. There is also a little leverage built in with the multiple wraps of line. I've already got a loop closer to the clew, so all I will need is an extra jam cleat next the to jib sheet jam cleat. Should be cheap and easy.
     


  20. svquest

    svquest

    Joined May 26, 2015
    10 posts, 3 likes
    Catalina 30 & 22
    US Kemah
    Actually, my mistake was trying to answer a technical question a 2 am. You're right the angle is roughly 45%. What I forgot to add was to take that LP line and the line of the leech and draw a line thru the clew that bisects that angle. Which will give you the designed sheeting angle (the 45% of luff can be off due to the height of the clew or having a very low clew).

    At least that's how we make them.

    K
     



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