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Sailing A MC Scow

Discussion in 'Sail Trim with Don Guillette' started by Don Guillette, Jun 9, 2018. Add this thread to a FAQ

  1. Don Guillette

    Don Guillette

    Joined May 17, 2004
    1,892 posts, 58 likes
    Other Catalina 30
    US Tucson, AZ
    I received a Email today from a lister who asked the following question - "I'm always last in the race. My competitors lower the traveler about 3". My MC Scow is main only. Why is it faster than centering the traveler?". I was going to suggest that he follow the lead of the competitors ahead of him and do what they do but he asked WHY.

    I've never sailed a scow - in fact, I've never seen one. I called a friend of mine who has at least seen one and he knew a fellow who sailed one. He told me that the way they sail these boats is with 30* heel and the traveler 3" off center and that the crew constantly adjusts the traveler to maintain 30*. That answers the WHAT you do but the WHY of sail trim is everything otherwise a sailor is just guessing at the adjustment.

    Can anyone familiar with these boats provide a answer to help me and forum lister?
     


  2. shemandr

    shemandr

    Joined Jan 1, 2006
    3,369 posts, 492 likes
    Marblehead Skiff 14'
    US Greenport, NY
    I've never sailed one either. But I'll step right up to see if I can guess. I think the key is 30 degrees heel. That gets a good deal of the bottom out of the water and reduces drag. It would also put the forward leeward chine under water which would make the boat track like it's on rails and reduce slamming in waves as opposed to the almost flat bottom. Why the traveler down some? Because you don't want 40 degrees heel.
     


  3. Kings Gambit

    Kings Gambit

    Joined Jul 27, 2011
    2,637 posts, 437 likes
    Bavaria 38E
    US Alamitos Bay
    Is this the boat? MC Scow. A Melges-designed performance OD?

    MCScow-.jpg

    If so, I imagine the crew "works" the traveler (as Don confirmed). Down in gusts and up in lulls, at least going to weather and probably on other points as well. The crew works the traveler for the best angle of heel for performance. Crew weight and position probably affects where to "set" the traveler to optimize the angle of heel.
     


    Last edited: Jun 9, 2018
  4. Don Guillette

    Don Guillette

    Joined May 17, 2004
    1,892 posts, 58 likes
    Other Catalina 30
    US Tucson, AZ
    Andrew/Kings Gambit: Thank you. I'll pass your info to the Scow sailor.

    A common sail trim suggestion is to watch and copy the sail trim of boats in front of you. Most times it doesn't work (this case is different) because the sailor in the back of the pack doesn't have a clue as to set his sail trim controls to duplicate what he's seeing. This Scow sailor has my book & chart so he knew WHAT he was looking at and had an idea WHY the boats ahead of him were faster. I've told him that first he should review the chapter of my book on the traveler & angle of attack, which is all the traveler controls. Next, he should duplicate 30* heel and to hold the traveler about 3" off center. Fool around with the 3" setting to see if he squeeze a little bit more speed out of his boat . Additionally, he should review the section on the basics of the racing start in order to get a jump on the competition - after he gets the jump he has to hold it and that's the hard part.
     


  5. jssailem

    jssailem

    Joined Oct 22, 2014
    5,214 posts, 1,659 likes
    CAL 35 Cruiser
    US Salem, Moored Port Everett WA
    Wow... I remember those days. That's when I had Abs of Steel. Sail a boat with your butt on the rail hanging out in the air holding on with a strap over your feet. Hoping the strap does not break. For 3 hours of racing, you will get that six pack the TV commercials promise.
     


  6. shemandr

    shemandr

    Joined Jan 1, 2006
    3,369 posts, 492 likes
    Marblehead Skiff 14'
    US Greenport, NY
    It’s not as painful as it looks. It’s worse.
     


    Will Gilmore and jssailem like this.
  7. jssailem

    jssailem

    Joined Oct 22, 2014
    5,214 posts, 1,659 likes
    CAL 35 Cruiser
    US Salem, Moored Port Everett WA
    They say... no pain no gain.
     


  8. mm2347

    mm2347

    Joined Oct 21, 2008
    205 posts, 21 likes
    oday 222
    US niagara
    I built a Laser 1/2 c-pit with side deck and a hiking strap for a couple of masochists that used it to hike out on while watching T.V. in their living room.
     


  9. Jackdaw

    Jackdaw

    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    8,656 posts, 2,029 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
    @Don Guillette ,

    MC Scows sail with the main down off center because their mainsail is not in the relative knock of a headsail.

    True of any main-only boat. The same boat with a jib (M16 scow) sail normally.

    MC hulls were designed by Johnson Boatworks in White Bear Lake MN. Melges changed the rig and called that boat the MC
     


    Last edited: Jun 11, 2018
    Will Gilmore likes this.

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