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Solent Stay H36

Aug 10, 2010
52
Hunter 36, Quarter Berth Model Placid Harbor, Cuckold Crk, Patuxent River
Unfortunately a bit bored at the moment and toying with ideas. Looking for a "storm" sail option. I am inclined towards something like the ATN Gale Sail, but then stumbled upon a lot of chatter about adding a solent stay...curious if anyone has attempted something similar on 80's vintage Hunters. I realize the H37 has a factory cutter option. Anyone have close up pictures of how/where the cutter rig is attached to the deck? Thought for me the easiest location would be at the "mini samson post" forward of the anchor locker, realizing that's not an ideal location for high-wind sail effectiveness, but seems beefy enough as is, could avoid having to strengthen the area behind the anchor locker where the H37 cutter stay attaches (or so I presume). Any thoughts are most welcome. This idea will probably get binned due the other dozens of projects I'd like to tackle, but figured I'd reach out on the forum in case anyone has had similar ideas. Thanks.
 
Jun 8, 2004
910
C&C Frigate 36 St. Margarets Bay, Nova Scotia
The H37C didn't have a "factory cutter option" - it was designed by Cherubini as cutter right from the beginning. The mainmast is stepped further aft in a cutter design, allowing for a larger fore triangle. Some owners have converted their cutters to sloops by removing the inner forestay and the running backstays. Blaise Pascal has proven they sail very well as sloops too. The chainplate for the inner forestay on a H37C is bolted to the aft end of the anchor well structure. I'm not sure if the same thing is possible with the H36 - you will have to evaluate the deck and bulkhead structure in that area. Usually a Solent stay is a lot closer to the principal forestay than the inner forestay on a cutter rig.
 
Aug 10, 2010
52
Hunter 36, Quarter Berth Model Placid Harbor, Cuckold Crk, Patuxent River
Thank you Jim. Yeah, I'm not too hopeful that I can use the aft portion of the anchor locker as a sound enough attachment point without some significant reinforcement, so while that may be a more efficient location for heavier wind sailing (assuming a reefed main) I may have to stick with plan A of keeping the deck attachment closer to the forestay...I found some images online with some closeups of the H37 inner stay deck-attachment point.
 
Jun 5, 2010
1,060
Hunter 25 Burlington NJ
Some owners have converted their cutters to sloops by removing the inner forestay and the running backstays.
...and some, psychos like me, have converted their sloops to cutters - because they know the value of that inner jib, the BEST SAIL ON THE BOAT.

Hardest bit to doing this is providing adequate support for the inner-forestay chainplate. I built a whole abbreviated bulkhead across the foot of the v-berth. Use of 'glass and good plywood here is a must.

Second-hardest bit is figuring out where to put it! - but I had a secret system for that. :cool:
 

Attachments

Aug 10, 2010
52
Hunter 36, Quarter Berth Model Placid Harbor, Cuckold Crk, Patuxent River
Thank you for the insight and pictures. Couldn't agree more about an inner forestay support option, hence the lean towards a solent which I think would be a decent compromise - "easier" deck reinforcement options, and a lack of need for a aft "baby-stay" if I understand the concept properly.
 
Jun 5, 2010
1,060
Hunter 25 Burlington NJ
Thank you for the insight and pictures. Couldn't agree more about an inner forestay support option, hence the lean towards a solent which I think would be a decent compromise - "easier" deck reinforcement options, and a lack of need for a aft "baby-stay" if I understand the concept properly.
You would still need to fasten this somewhere to the face of the mast and to provide running backstays to oppose the load. Masts of 40-plus years' age have been broken by in less wind than you'd be willing to believe due to inadequate tuning and lack of support above or below the spreaders.
 
Aug 10, 2010
52
Hunter 36, Quarter Berth Model Placid Harbor, Cuckold Crk, Patuxent River
You would still need to fasten this somewhere to the face of the mast and to provide running backstays to oppose the load. Masts of 40-plus years' age have been broken by in less wind than you'd be willing to believe due to inadequate tuning and lack of support above or below the spreaders.
Interesting - I thought the idea of Solent stay would be to have the inner stay fastened very close to the top of the mast (near but just below the forward stay) negating a need for an additional back stay?
 
Jun 5, 2010
1,060
Hunter 25 Burlington NJ
Interesting - I thought the idea of Solent stay would be to have the inner stay fastened very close to the top of the mast (near but just below the forward stay) negating a need for an additional back stay?
We get so many varying terms for this apparatus! - baby stay, jackstay, slutter stay , etc. All of these are not what I meant.

There are two rigs I have never understood and put them down only to British ideas of racing-rules loopholes. One is a sloop but with a second headstay from an intermediate point (above the spreaders) to the stem. The other is the opposite, a stay from the masthead to a point on the deck maybe 2/3 back from the stem. I see no universal sailing value in either of these.

The second one (which you seem to be calling a ‘Solent stay’) makes coming about a nightmare. You will have to tack the head of the outer jib a very narrow triangle at the top; and good luck with that!

The first one has the same problem but at the deck. In fact I’d say this one is worse.

Thus I expect these are only racing rigs, for when a crew can set and strike one of the sails and reset it on the other tack. I would strongly suspect that in either it’s the inner one they leave up - the only one of the two that can tack by itself.

Any shorthanded cruising application of either would have to be for very long legs in predictable, light air, such as setting the two wing-and-wing; and if that’s the case why not just go with two parallel standing headstays? - which has been done often - but which I’d never do.

My preference would be for a proper inner forestay, leading from some intermediate point above the spreaders to some corresponding point on the foredeck, essentially a 2/3 or 3/4 headsail. This can be removable, perhaps by use of a Hyfield lever, to permit tacking a large (outer) Genoa; but this isn’t necessary with a proper cutter setup. What will be necessary are proper running backstays.

On Cherubini 44s I have rigged both stays with Schaefer headsail furlers (3100 and 2100; and NO boom for the inner headsail!) which makes tacking, furling, and going wing-and-wing easier especially when shorthanded. Given my dad’s experience with C44s, this was the thinking behind the H37C.

My reasoning for adding an inner stay for Diana was something else entirely.