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H26 does not seem to point as well as other boats

Discussion in 'Smaller Boats' started by Jim Loats, Feb 27, 2018. Add this thread to a FAQ

  1. Jim Loats

    Jim Loats

    Joined Jun 6, 2004
    13 posts, 1 likes
    Hunter 26
    US Chatfield Reservoir in Denver
    Hi all,
    While I was racing last summer here in the Denver area, it became clear that my H26 was not able to point as well as other boats. I have the original sails including roller furling jib. I tune side stays on the mast with a gauge, but have not ever adjusted the forestay, as it is part of the roller furling set up.

    Experiences and/or ideas?

    Thanks, Jim on Grizzly Bear
     


  2. shemandr

    shemandr

    Joined Jan 1, 2006
    3,367 posts, 491 likes
    Marblehead Skiff 14'
    US Greenport, NY
    Assuming you are not racing against supercharged H26's one of the first things I would look at is your bottom. If it's not as smooth and clean as a baby's tush it will be reducing your speed. Speed and pointing are different sides to the same coin. You can't point as high as the same boat if you are slower. The other first thing to check is your sails. You said original sails. Maybe they are tired. It would show when trying to point. A forestay flopping around is going to be slow but it doesn't nee to be or shouldn't be bar tight either. The sag in the forestay should match the cut of the luff and then is adjusted according to the wind. You really shouldn't need to adjust forestay sag with tightening the forestay. The forestay sets the mast rake and then is left alone. You adjust forestay sag with the backstay, or upper shrouds (On swept back spreader rigs). Then there's crew weight distribution, Steering skill, and other rigging refinements. I think it will be generally agreed that a clean bottom and good sails are a quick way to improve speed and pointing.
     


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  3. Kings Gambit

    Kings Gambit

    Joined Jul 27, 2011
    2,621 posts, 431 likes
    Bavaria 38E
    US Alamitos Bay
    What other boats? Name a few of the models. Your boat appears to have its shrouds well outboard. Probably will not point as high as ones with shrouds that are more inboard--in addition to the things shemandr noted.
     


    Last edited: Feb 27, 2018
  4. Jim Loats

    Jim Loats

    Joined Jun 6, 2004
    13 posts, 1 likes
    Hunter 26
    US Chatfield Reservoir in Denver
    Thanks Shemandr and KG. Not sure what I can do about the "Steering skill" [:-}, but your other points are right on. The bottom is rough and not recently painted. The sails are original (~1996). I sail in the second group at our races: "the cruisers" meaning mostly the larger non-spinnaker boats. The other boats are mostly keel boats like Catalina 26's and larger. All of them seem to be able to steer the same course, but not me. What are other folks experiences with getting new sails on a H26?
    FYI: The H26 has no back stay and the side stays are all the way outboard. It has a fully battened main.
     


  5. Sailavie1

    Sailavie1

    Joined Oct 31, 2012
    130 posts, 65 likes
    Hunter 2008 H25
    ca Lake Wabamun
    Forgive the dumb question, but does your retractable keel fully lower? Just making sure it is not stuck in the up position.
     


  6. Kermit

    Kermit

    Joined Jul 31, 2010
    4,469 posts, 1,613 likes
    Hunter 260
    US Lake Murray Sailing Club, SC
    Very good question to ask. Maybe dive and and feel how straight up and down it is. Or.... you could make sure the centerboard line is fully extended on deck. Yeah, that’s the ticket!
     


  7. Jim Loats

    Jim Loats

    Joined Jun 6, 2004
    13 posts, 1 likes
    Hunter 26
    US Chatfield Reservoir in Denver
    Good questions. When I put in, I usually lower the board till I hear the "clunk" and assume that it stays in the lowered position all season. I make sure to leave the line on the deck loose. I have never dove under the boat to give it a tug. I'll do that when the water gets a bit warmer ... in June. Thanks.
     


  8. Kings Gambit

    Kings Gambit

    Joined Jul 27, 2011
    2,621 posts, 431 likes
    Bavaria 38E
    US Alamitos Bay
    Those are shrouds.
     


  9. Jackdaw

    Jackdaw

    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    8,627 posts, 2,009 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
    Outboard shrouds have NOTHING to do with a boat's pointing ability. The only related thing that matters is the sheeting angle to the headsail tracks, and normally this is better, not worse than on a boat with inboard shrouds. Indeed the H26 track angle looks pretty OK for its type of boat.
     


    Last edited: Feb 28, 2018
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  10. Jackdaw

    Jackdaw

    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    8,627 posts, 2,009 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
    There are SO many things to look at, so lets try and narrow it down. First, (trying to be delicate here) do you know what good upwind trim really looks like and how to sail to it? The reason I ask is that coach sailboat racing and am always amazed at how many otherwise good sailors don't. The trim of both sails, as well as sailing perfectly to the telltails matter.

    Then, assuming thats fine, what are you comparing it to, or judging upwind by? A Catalina 22 that beats you to the mark might just be sailing to the lifts better. The key metrics are bow angle and speed.

    If you have a good compass, you can see how you're trimming by checking your tack angle. Get going good on one side, and then note the compass angle. tack and get settled, and check again. The difference between the two angles (in >5 <10 knots) should be less than 90 degrees.

    On the course the best place to check is right after the start, when all boats are close and on starboard. Assuming you have clean air, try and judge your bow angle and speed vs other like-sized and purposed boats.
     


    Last edited: Feb 28, 2018
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  11. Jackdaw

    Jackdaw

    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    8,627 posts, 2,009 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
    Some thoughts on this. Being one of the slower boats in any handicap fleet, it is important to sail your own race. In particular, getting behind a group of larger slightly fast boats upwind will kill you. Not only will the air be disturbed, but it will be a relative KNOCK to the boats in front of you generating the bad air. Its impossible to sail the same angle and speed here, and this only option is to tack out and get clear air. If you need to go in the same direction, then ease the sails slightly and bear off (foot) a few degrees. You'll not be as high, but will be going faster.
     


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  12. Crazy Dave Condon

    Crazy Dave Condon

    Joined Jun 8, 2004
    6,355 posts, 483 likes
    -na -NA
    US Anywhere USA
    All good points. First @Jim Loats can you take a photo of mast of course up and from the side and post it here. I am quite involved with the boat as a former dealer for Hunter and first I need to see how the mast is sitting. Then we need to talk
    Crazy Dave Condon
     


  13. Will Gilmore

    Will Gilmore

    Joined Oct 19, 2017
    2,371 posts, 960 likes
    O'Day 19
    US Littleton, NH
    While I'm not a racer, I am academically interested in performance sailing. It is my understanding that speed has a direct effect on apparent wind direction. Therefore, a slower boat may actually be able to point higher where balance and rig styles are equal.
    Since that is not the experience reported here, I would suggest your biggest, likely, problem has to do with sail cut. Your original sails have probably lost their shape. A rough bottom will definitely slow you down, but I don't think it will keep you from pointing better.
    How is the helm when you are sailing up winds? Do you have to keep a lot of pressure to windward or to leeward on the tiller? Try flattening out the mainsail and bringing the boom all the way to center tighten the vang, downhaul, outhaul, halyard. As Jackdaw says, there are so many adjustments and variables.

    Good luck. I'm looking forward to hearing how this problem is resolved. It is very interesting.

    - Will (Dragonfly)
     


    Last edited: Feb 28, 2018
    Solarfy likes this.
  14. Jackdaw

    Jackdaw

    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    8,627 posts, 2,009 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
    It does not work like that. Because sailboat speed is ALWAYS a function of wind speed, wind speed plays the real part. As True Wind builds, the Apparent Wind goes AFT, helping the boat point better. The slight increase in boat speed offsets (pushes it forward) that to a slight degree, but not enough to talk about.
    The polars of a boat show it in practice. The square checks show MAX VMG to windward. More wind, better point.

    VPP 260-upwind.jpg
     


  15. Justin_NSA

    Justin_NSA

    Joined Jul 7, 2004
    4,531 posts, 668 likes
    Hunter 30T
    US Cheney, KS
    Will a centerboard boat ever point as high as keelboat?
     


  16. Will Gilmore

    Will Gilmore

    Joined Oct 19, 2017
    2,371 posts, 960 likes
    O'Day 19
    US Littleton, NH
    Yes, I see that. That's why, if you don't speed up, you have a better angle to point to. So what am I missing here? When comparing your pointing angle to other boats, you are comparing yourself to true wind. The apparent wind moves ahead as you gain speed, always. If true wind gains speed, it will bring it back aft, just as you say, but your forward movement means apparent wind is always forward of true wind. The faster you go, the more forward your apparent wind moves. If two boats are reaching in the same wind on the same heading but one is moving faster, her apparent wind is going to be farther forward than they slower boat. So, why can't the slower boat alter coarse to move closer to the wind than the faster boat?

    - Will (Dragonfly)
     


  17. Jackdaw

    Jackdaw

    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    8,627 posts, 2,009 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
    What are you missing?? You said:
    That's not true. Now you're talking about reaching?? Boats can go wherever they want when they're reaching.
     


  18. DrJudyB

    DrJudyB

    Joined Jun 25, 2004
    178 posts, 108 likes
    Corsair F24 Mk1
    003 US San Francisco Bay, CA
    @Will Gilmore
    Are you are clear on the relationship between "VMG" and "target boat speed" through the water? What you wrote seems to have that concept wrong to me, but maybe I am misreading what you wrote.

    When sailing to an upwind destination, if you "foot off" (sail a few degrees lower than optimal towards your destination) your boat can go through the water faster as shown on a knot meter, but it takes you longer to reach your upwind destination.

    A similar concept applies when sailing towards a downwind destination. If you sail a "hotter angle" ( sail a few degrees higher than optimal towards your destination), your knotmeter will tell you that your speed through the water is greater than before. However, it will take you longer to reach your down wind destination.

    Saying the same thing in different words:
    Given two comparable boats and comparable skippers on the same course, both trying to get to an upwind mark, both sailing above 90 degrees true...

    If boat A is sailing at the target speed which achieves maximum VMG upwind and boat B is sailing 5 degrees lower than boat A, then boat B can sail through the water faster, as measured by the knot meter . B is sailing "faster," but loses the race to A. Boat A is going to reach the upwind before B does.

    Judy B
    Ps I hope I got the words right. A graph of a boat's "polars" is much more mathmatically succinct.
     


    Last edited: Mar 1, 2018
    Will Gilmore likes this.
  19. Jackdaw

    Jackdaw

    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    8,627 posts, 2,009 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
    Here is the graphic that Dr Judy was looking for... ;^)
    dell101.jpg

    Most boats can sail to windward at an angle higher than their VMG angle; the angle that generates best windward gain. The trick is to find it. Boats with polars, good instrumentation, or One Design boats can do this easily. For others it requires some patience and careful sailing while practicing.
     


  20. DrJudyB

    DrJudyB

    Joined Jun 25, 2004
    178 posts, 108 likes
    Corsair F24 Mk1
    003 US San Francisco Bay, CA
    Jackdaw, that's a nice graphic. What's the source pls?