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Boom vangs

Nov 8, 2010
11,240
Beneteau First 36.7 & 260 Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
I see no logic to trimming the vang when closehauled.
We'll do this all the time when we're happy with the boom-end position, but want to adjust the twist. And we have the perfect traveler setup for the boat.
 
Jan 19, 2010
714
Catalina 34 Casco Bay
Absolutely not. In many years of competitive PHRF and one design racing we have numerous occasions to deploy the anchor in situations where current speed exceeded wind pressure. Anyone racing in a tidal area needs to be anchor capable.

My statement is that as a racer when cruising with white sails, there is little performance benefit when reaching from solely adjusting the vang for mainsail twist. If you are FIRST adjusting jib twist by moving the block forward and out, then adjusting main twist AFTER having corrected jib twist, well good on ya that's being conscientious, we're just relaxing.

I see no logic to trimming the vang when closehauled.
You missed my levity... many cruisers are racers and vise versa.... so vang usage is equally applied.. just as anchoring ability..
 
Jul 19, 2013
136
Pearson 31-2 Boston
We'll do this all the time when we're happy with the boom-end position, but want to adjust the twist. And we have the perfect traveler setup for the boat.
Sounds like a lake version of an urban legend.

FWIW here's Quantum's opinion from https://www.quantumsails.com/getatt...mSails_TrimGuide_Mainsail.pdf.aspx?lang=en-US

"The boom vang takes over the job of pulling down on the mainsail clew and controlling twist when the boom is eased out for off-wind sailing. Just as you would with the mainsheet upwind, use enough tension on the boom vang to keep the top batten parallel to the boom. Upwind in light to moderate conditions, the vang is not used and is simply kept snug. In heavy air upwind it can be used to help the mainsheet pull down on the boom and maintain leech tension. "
 
Nov 8, 2010
11,240
Beneteau First 36.7 & 260 Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
Sounds like a lake version of an urban legend.

FWIW here's Quantum's opinion from https://www.quantumsails.com/getatt...mSails_TrimGuide_Mainsail.pdf.aspx?lang=en-US

"The boom vang takes over the job of pulling down on the mainsail clew and controlling twist when the boom is eased out for off-wind sailing. Just as you would with the mainsheet upwind, use enough tension on the boom vang to keep the top batten parallel to the boom. Upwind in light to moderate conditions, the vang is not used and is simply kept snug. In heavy air upwind it can be used to help the mainsheet pull down on the boom and maintain leech tension. "
LOL

That quantum guide to Boomvang use was written for beginners. Did you really think that a complex piece of equipment’s use like the boom vang could be simplified into those four sentences? Really. Any serious racer would laugh at the simplistic advice given.

Oh, and Lake urban legend. What a hoot. Mike Plant, several Olympic gold medalist , an Olympic coach, and a half a dozen world champions learn to sail here.

And I can pretty much guarantee that I have more competitive offshore miles than you do. So why don’t you leave the lake thing alone.
 
Last edited:
Mar 26, 2011
2,695
Corsair F-24 MK I Deale, MD
Multihulls don't use no stinkin' vangs!:laugh:

(I'm not anti-vang. They are vital to proper trim in many boats of all sizes, from skiffs to mega-yachts. You just won't see them on many mutihulls, large or small, for a variety of reasons.)
 
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Apr 8, 2010
1,461
Ericson Yachts Olson 34 Portland OR
Um, everyone: Don't get overly trolled by references to "racers" and "cruisers"....
Just because yacht brokers and sail makers use those words to steer discussions doesn't make it a good idea for the rest of us. Focus on Sailing. :cool:

Sailors who enter races use *all the rig and sail shaping controls that they have on hand. Adjustment happens often when eye balling the position of competitors, next mark, and locations of wind and currents.

When not racing (sometimes described as cruising) most of us probably reduce the frequency of adjustment a bit, but it depends on the interest and enthusiasm of the crew.
If moving the traveler might cause me to park my sandwich in an insecure place, I might allow 2% more inefficiency to occur. Same for parking my can of cold pop. :)

*sometimes with more actual effect than they imagine is happening...
 
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Nov 8, 2010
11,240
Beneteau First 36.7 & 260 Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
Um, everyone: Don't get overly trolled by references to "racers" and "cruisers"....
Just because yacht brokers and sail makers use those words to steer discussions doesn't make it a good idea for the rest of us. Focus on Sailing. :cool:

Sailors who enter races use *all the rig and sail shaping controls that they have on hand. Adjustment happens often when eye balling the position of competitors, next mark, and locations of wind and currents.

When not racing (sometimes described as cruising) most of us probably reduce the frequency of adjustment a bit, but it depends on the interest and enthusiasm of the crew.
If moving the traveler might cause me to park my sandwich in an insecure place, I might allow 2% more inefficiency to occur. Same for parking my can of cold pop. :)

*sometimes with more actual effect than they imagine is happening...
Absolutely true, I never saw any part of this discussion as a racers versus cruisers thing.

But here’s a sidenote to that which is relevant. Ask any guy if he’s a good (car) driver, and he’ll say ‘yeah I’m a great driver’. Everyone says that because there’s no way to judge. Unless you race. Then you find out if you’re good, True in cars, and doubly true in sail boats. you find out if you’re good helming, you find out if you’re good trimming. You find out if your tactics are sound.
 
Apr 8, 2010
1,461
Ericson Yachts Olson 34 Portland OR
We'll do this all the time when we're happy with the boom-end position, but want to adjust the twist. And we have the perfect traveler setup for the boat.
Some readers may not, at first, pick up on the subtlety of this reply info. A great many boats, especially built in the last 25 years, have quite poor-functioning traveler locations and their main sheet systems are also poorly designed for active sailing.
:banghead:

When you shop for a boat that is well-designed for sailing, you will be looking at boats with deck layouts NOT designed by marketers.
Unfortunate, but for a generation the bulk of sailboats have been designed more for occasional sailing and for dockside RV-style comfort. It's what sells. Brokers find that trying to actually educate newbies, however satisfying when it does work, costs them directly in lost sales, and an inability to feed their families and pay the rent.
 
Apr 8, 2010
1,461
Ericson Yachts Olson 34 Portland OR
Absolutely true, I never saw any part of this discussion as a racers versus cruisers thing.

But here’s a sidenote to that which is relevant. Ask any guy if he’s a good (car) driver, and he’ll say ‘yeah I’m a great driver’. Everyone says that because there’s no way to judge. Unless you race. Then you find out if you’re good, True in cars, and doubly true in sail boats. you find out if you’re good helming, you find out if you’re good trimming. You find out if your tactics are sound.
So True.
I used to be a turn marshall for sports car races and did a lot of auto crossing. I did not get my racing license, but did get to "check out" a number of road courses early in the morning.... ! :)
I always recall that the best/winningest drivers I knew were also subtle and smooth --- they won more races than the rubber burners. True in auto crossing, as well.
I have few trophies, but a lot of ancient dash plaques gathering dust in the basement... !
:)

I drive a lot of miles, with extremely few incidents, still remembering the lessons of the proven "Smith System", from studying it decades ago.
:clap:

Also, "Tactics" is where I have always struggled the most. Same for when not racing when we are plotting the best way thru a tide rip or picking a course to best use... or avoid... a current.
 
Jul 19, 2013
136
Pearson 31-2 Boston
LOL

That quantum guide to Boomvang use was written for beginners. Did you really think that a complex piece of equipment’s use like the boom vang could be simplified into those four sentences? Really. Any serious racer would laugh at the simplistic advice given.

Oh, and Lake urban legend. What a hoot. Mike Plant, several Olympic gold medalist , an Olympic coach, and a half a dozen world champions learn to sail here.

And I can pretty much guarantee that I have more competitive offshore miles than you do. So why don’t you leave the lake thing alone.
FWIW its from a mainsail trim guide and while its incomplete as a racing guide, it states some fundamentals, that are, well, fundamental.

As to the lake thing, I apologize that my attempt at humor hit a nerve, certainly the lakes generate a lot of sailing talent, tho I would have mentioned Melges first off... We could do the comparing racing miles, might depend on your definition of "offshore" as to how close you fall. I could make a lake joke here, but well, never again.
 
Nov 8, 2010
11,240
Beneteau First 36.7 & 260 Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
FWIW its from a mainsail trim guide and while its incomplete as a racing guide, it states some fundamentals, that are, well, fundamental.

As to the lake thing, I apologize that my attempt at humor hit a nerve, certainly the lakes generate a lot of sailing talent, tho I would have mentioned Melges first off... We could do the comparing racing miles, might depend on your definition of "offshore" as to how close you fall. I could make a lake joke here, but well, never again.
Like I said, I've got thick enough skin to survive someone taking the piss, but just don't combine that with being wrong.
 
Oct 19, 2017
6,505
O'Day 19 Littleton, NH
Some owners have a more capable rigid, spring-loaded vang.
What makes a rigid vang more capable? Is it the ability to lift the boom and induce twist and belly? I've never used a rigid vang, but I like the idea of getting rid of the topping lift. Mostly, I think of rigid vangs as push-button hydrolic sailing. Not that that's a bad thing.

-Will (Dragonfly)
 
Oct 24, 2010
2,282
Hunter 30 Everett, WA
Spring loaded vang. We don't use it much unless we're sheeted way out. We use the traveler more. We also still need to put the main halyard on the boom when not sailing to keep the boom away from the dodger and to hold the boom still.
 
Sep 14, 2014
978
Catalina 22 Pensacola, Florida
Getting rid of topping lift is fine until you lose a halyard up the mast, or part one, or the vang dies, then that vestigial topping lift will come in mighty handy.
 
Jan 19, 2010
714
Catalina 34 Casco Bay
Getting rid of topping lift is fine until you lose a halyard up the mast, or part one, or the vang dies, then that vestigial topping lift will come in mighty handy.
At the end of the day, I depend on my topping lift as counter strain. My topping lift is adjustable from the cockpit. The line has a pre-registered mark for the end of the day. This guarantees that the boom gives me proper no duck head clearance. Then the main sheet is winched in and the vang line tightened against the topping lift. This action greatly dampens the lateral boom movement.
 
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