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 Post subject: Mainsheet block on clew?
PostPosted: Sun May 25, 2014 7:59 am 
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Joined: Sun May 25, 2014 4:35 am
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Location: Naples, Italy
I've just had to give up sea kayaking due to recurring shoulder problems when paddling. Seemed like a great reason to buy a Hobie Mirage SOT :D, so after researching this wonderfully informative forum I've ordered an Adventure with the sail, daggerboard, large rudder, furler, solid cranks, an extra batten for a boombat and a mini block.
While I wait for it to arrive, I have a rigging question: I haven‘t sailed much for many years now, so this may be nonsense, but has anyone tried having the mainsheet start with a knot at the stern pad eye attachment point, then leading it directly up through a mini block tied to the sail clew eye, then finally having the other knotted end of the mainsheet falling into your lap, for a 2:1 reduction? (I'm not planning to cleat it off as it's often very gusty where I am). I’ve seen this done on lug sail canoe rigs.
It seems to me like the pro's might be:
1. an easy way to get a virtual sheeting angle similar to what Roadrunner acheived by moving his pulley forward on the aft deck, but with the option of adjusting the effective sheeting angle on the fly by how you hold the mainsheet
2. simple rigging
3. less likelihood of the sheet catching your head/back when gybing than with Roadrunner's solution?
4. the possibility of using the mainsheet to help locate you while hiking out
5. Ready easy access to the mainsheet as it falls to hand

Any thoughts?

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PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2014 8:24 am 
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So does the lack of any reply just mean that you're all far too nice to say that I'm clewless? :D

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PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2014 9:09 am 
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I'd guess maybe miss-understood.

Since there is no boom, routing the sheet starting aft... to the clew and then to your hand would create a sort of 2:1, but the angle would not properly sheet the sail. The clew would be pulled down rather than aft, so the sail would not properly function.

The sail is small, so 2:1 is not required. Faster adjustments are possible with 1:1, so that is also preferred since when you NEED to sheet out, your NEED to sheet out quickly. There isn't really any "hiking out" more leaning, but not much of that either. Leverage angle of the sheet and least friction on the system have the sheet running from clew to aft eye then forward. You sheet by pulling forward on the line coming from behind. Additional blocks just add friction.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 10:28 am 
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Location: Naples, Italy
Thanks for your reply Matt,
I see your point about not wanting a 2:1 reduction. I think I could've been clearer in my explanation too as I didn't mean to have an extra block, just to move the block to the clew and anchor one end of the mainsheet to the stern pad eye attachment point. With the other end pulled down by hand, the resulting vector pull on the sail would give a virtual anchor point about midway back on the aft deck - possibly still too vertical.

Anyway, just a thought..

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2014 9:00 pm 
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Wow I just figured out what your trying to say now.

That's a 'different' way to adjust the sail indeed, I agree with Miller that it would be direct pull down action more often than not as the clew location is directly above your head. You may in fact put a lot more strain on the sail and mast base (particular the mast receiver 'nub' and screw point) because pulling down could potentially include your full body weight.

I highly recommend a block/pulley system to feed the main sheet from in front of you.
Clew Eye > Stern Pad Eye (Via Block/Pulley) > L or R Front Cockpit (Via Block/Pulley) > Hand.

Agree with Miller as well that your mainsheet should have 'zero' friction in case you need to 'de-power' quickly.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 6:11 pm 
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Location: Auckland NZ
2:1 purchase on the mainsheet is not required. However you will probably want to set up the sheet so that you pull it to pull the sail in which requires a turning block at the front of the cockpit and a longer sheet. To install things like blocks on my kayak I don't drill holes - I just tie them to one or other of the fittings (padeyes) with small lengths of thin cord - the loads are tiny and that way you don't get any unneccessary holes in your boat.

IMO you do want to use good quality (but small) roller-bearing blocks to reduce friction in the sheet (for fast response) one tied to the rear carrying-handle padeye and the other tied to one of the fittings in the cockpit. Just get a bog-standard block - ones with swivels are no use as they just twist up and create friction in the sheet which is exactly what you want them to get rid of, not add.


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