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PostPosted: Sun Mar 23, 2014 5:57 am 
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Location: Sarasota,Key West FL
Trevor:
Is it possible to extend you bow sprit a little further out, and possibly raise the sail up a little higher ( leave the furler alone, just raise the sail higher on the pole). Having the jib mast pole longer so the top of the jib mast is almost to the top will also help. I found having loose ropes up there causes problems. I'm thinking you can shorten the front of your mast topper or mount the jib about 3-4 inches in front of the main. As long as the jib doesn't get furled into the main. I have my jib halyard line running in a small PVC water pipe to prevent the halyard from getting tangled in the main when furling the main ( loose ropes aloft are bad). Actually if you leave the mast topper length alone you can mount the pulley for the jib closer to the main, add another pulley at the end of the mast topper then run your halyard line down the front. I found having the halyard return line too close to to the jib, it tends to get furled into the jib when furling if it is too close to the jib at the top.
That front halyard will also double as a front stay to prevent the mast topper from turning sideways when on a reach (mast topper turning sideways is a bad thing). Captnchaos found this out, because the main mast is so flexible his short jib would form a u shape under load, moving your halyard return line forward, and a PVC jib mast pole all the way up helps the jib keep it's shape under load.
I would add as many tells as you can so you can read the sail. I just super glue ribbon to the sides of both sails during development, as balance between the jib and main is very important. If done right the jib increases the performance of the main ( you will be able to point much closer to the wind). This is why the gap between the back of the jib and the main is so important. When you do go out make sure you take video, several of us can help you fine tune the sail from there.
It's not the big things that make a jib work or not work, it's the little details.
Hope this helps you
Bob


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 23, 2014 12:29 pm 
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Good advice Bob.

I have today stiffened up the topper and shortened it a bit on the front.
My halyard returns to the bowsprit to keep it clear from the main as it furls. As i test it I might be able to reduce the topper length further.

The stainless one that we are making has a load of holes to be able to move the halyard position around.

CC

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 23, 2014 5:00 pm 
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Location: Kailua 96734
Well said Bob. I like the pvc tube suggestion too.

CC, Hobie makes inexpensive 7-10 hole shroud/forestay adjusters which you can use to raise the furling unit. They are common on boats with bridles.

Image

If you really want to be slick you could add a forward angle plate to your bowsprit so you can adjust both angle and height of the jib tack.

Something along this line:

ImageImage

I think I would connect these with a shackle though,..


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 24, 2014 5:13 am 
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Got one on order.

CC

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2014 8:05 pm 
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Location: Kailua-Kona Hawaii
Here is a short video of the jib close hauled in about an 8kt wind.
Image

This photo shows the jib as it is relative to the main sail.
Image
Today I have raised the jib 12" to see if there is any improvement in performance.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 26, 2014 7:39 am 
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Location: Sarasota,Key West FL
Kona:
Let us know if moving the sail up (closer with the rear edge more parallel to the main) helps. He is a pic of my setup:
Image
I found by experimenting around that with my jib configured like the pic I can sail almost directly into the wind with my jib trying to maintain the best possible VMG (Velocity made good). Actually I have an app on my Iphone called 'upwind' that helps you determine your best VMG.
What I find works best is if I pull all my sails as tight as possible, then start pedaling while turning off the wind, once you get to 10-15 degrees off the wind the sails set and the boat takes off. You have to steer and watch your helm closely to keep the boat from wanting to round up into the wind, and if you stop pedaling, the boat just rounds up and stops. With two peddlers the effect is even more dramatic. I can easily in low winds sail upwind 15-20 deg off the wind (super close hauled) often times faster than the wind itself, giving me an off the charts VMG (according to my app), as a result I almost never tack anymore. Of course the downside to all this is you have to constantly pedal or it all goes away (the miracle of the mirage drives I guess (or you can call it a curse, my wife does because I make her pedal all the time when we are out).
Now comes the really really strange part. I do exactly the same procedure downwind. Contrary to everything we are taught about downwind (barber haulers, spinnakers, batwing setups, etc), what I do is pull my sails as tight as possible, start pedaling like mad (two peddlers works better because the power of just one peddler is not quite enough (I found out), even with my pedal rig that I use when solo where I operate both sets of pedals (through a pulley system) all from the front seat my legs aren't strong enough to get up to the required speed (that's why when solo I sometimes use my motor at 1/4 throttle (takes the place of the second peddler (motor not needed with two people pedaling)). Of course you can't sail this way directly down wind, you need the wind around 20 deg from the rear (about 160 deg). Doing this I am often sailing 1.5x to sometimes 2X windspeed downwind (probably my best point of sail on my TI as rigged). It is the strangest thing to see, watching a boat go downwind with the sails pulled in tight (not as tight as upwind) as if close hauled and totally counter intuitive to anything any of us have been taught, or would naturally attempt to do. Once established it's easy to maintain with tight steerage control and a steady cadence on the mirage drive (nothing exhausting), however as soon as you stop pedaling it all goes away quickly, and you revert back to the old fashion way of conventional sailing, which in my opinion the TI is not the greatest at. I used to have a huge spinnaker specifically for downwind but found with the spinnaker you cannot ever sail faster than the wind (though the boat could always go nearly 1=1 with the big spin out), so the spinnaker is almost never used anymore. Again I attribute all this to the miracle of the mirage drive.
It would be interesting to me if you guys can get similar results with your jibs (both are larger than mine). I admit it's an odd technique but hey it works for me.
What all this means is I typically pedal my TI pretty much 100% of the time that I am ever out (very good exercise as well). Of course all this only really applies in this area where 95% of the time the winds are below 8mph, and my TI is specifically rigged to suit these typical conditions.
Hope this helps
Bob


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2014 2:11 pm 
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So after a long hibernation I'm back. Been thinking on the mast topper subject and here is where I'm at... Have the brass pipe and 5/15 bolt for the mast. Wasn't a huge fan of all the galvanized steel up there, simply because if any of this is perceived to make things more difficult to set up or dangerous to my wife then she won't want to use the boat.

Then I saw some of the other ideas which would be great but it appeared that said folks had work shops and welders and such which I do not have. Nor do I have any friends who do. I'm jealous of the quality stuff you guys are putting out. Truly amazing. Then I saw that fusion had made a PVC version of his topper and I was going to go that route. So I hit the hardware store and found that axe handle. It looked like, after stripping the plastic off, it would lose a few inches in length. And, as it was, it would not fit in the T. I also recall you saying you used fiberglass cloth to make a sock so that it fit the T, and used a lot of epoxy.

I found some fiberglass reflective poles in the sign isle. 8 of them put together squeeze into 1 inch PVC quite snugly. I figured I'd cap them off at the ends. I liked the fact that fusion used pipe clamps as I think I'm going to need to do a lot of adjusting of where the top of my jib will live (if you'll recall it is a Nacra 5.0 jib and is very much on the large side). Hopefully the bowsprit and adjustment up at the mast topper will allow it to work.

For the vertical pin that goes down into the brass pipe and sits on the horizontal bolt, I didn't want to buy 3 feet of material so I thought maybe a bolt with a rounded head might work. I can still cut it to size and thought maybe the rounded head would be a good contact with the other bolt, or flipped around, a good contact with the fiberglass rods in the T.

So that's about where I stand. I'm wondering a few things at the moment. Do you think I can get away without filling the T and the area around the vertical bolt with epoxy? The epoxy at Home Depot is rather expensive and I don't have any west system epoxy laying around. I'm kicking myself as I left a bunch at the old house last time I moved. If not, how do I keep the vertical bolt in place? I have a feeling that the epoxy is necessary to strengthen the vertical portion. Do I need to somehow tie the bundle of fiberglass poles together or should they be fine the way they are inside the 1 in. PVC?

Sorry for the picture of a computer screen. I couldn't figure out how to post the picture without using my ipad.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2014 7:54 pm 
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Dm06:
Hey I just bought a bunch of those fiberglass rods to re-enforce (hurricane proof) my garage door, they were 3/8 dia x 4 ft long and a $1.98 each ( a good deal), I just laid them into the garage door frame and covered them with polyester fiberglass resin, a quart of the resin was I think $14 bucks at Lowes. That same resin would also work fine to fill the vertical part of the mast topper if you fill some of the open space with pvc tubing, or anything just to fill some of the space, I happened to have some fiberglass cloth laying around so I threw that in as well, just anything to fill some of the void.
If you tape around where the bundle of rods comes out of the T and stuff some silicone or hot glue in between each rod around the edges, when you fill the vertical part with resin it will flow in between some of the fiberglass rods and help bond them together. I just put the whole thing together on my bench with the center rod fixtured (using a cardboard cutout) into the center, then just poured the resin in to fill the whole works, worked like a charm and is actually very strong and light (the whole mast topper is under two lbs).
If your planning to use both a jib and spinnaker eventually, then leave the front sticking out around a foot.
To clear the battons on the back of the sail I'm thinking on the TI you need about 2 ft. sticking out back from the center. You can get stainless steel pipe clamps at Lowes, that's all I used, I like them because they are adjustable so you can tweak things in.
All my stuff is just functional, I don't really care what it looks like as long as it works well. I am amazed at how long 90% of the stuff I just threw together in an afternoon years ago (like the original mast topper) has lasted, I'm still using the original brass tube from over 4 yrs ago, and that original galvanized pipe mast topper still works fine ( I keep it as a backup).
The stupid motor mount I made the day after I bought my TI back in April 2010 after my wife gave me a free ticket to buy a motor after we spent two hours pedaling trying to get thru the pass from offshore the same day we bought the boat, it was a Thursday afternoon, I had no idea at the time that the wind dies completely every afternoon at sunset, and that the rushing tide out the passes runs at 5-6 mph ( who knew, (LOL)), we were totally exhausted. I've never taken my boat out again without a motor....( I made that motor mount in 2 1/2 hrs in my garage, for about $15 bucks), I don't think the mast topper cost more than $10-12 bucks to make in a couple hours in the garage. My fancy wing jib sail was $100 bucks in material, I built it in two weekends.
Actually if you exclude the cost of the TI itself, and the cost of the motor, I have $700 dollars invested in my boat all told total for all the mods I have done ( not including the $250-$300 total for the trailer), in over 4 years of use going out every single weekend all year round (way over 6000 sailing miles).
I worked in tool shops my whole life and had access to anything and everything you can imagine (CNC equipment, welders, etc). You really don't need any of that stuff at all. Just be creative, you can make pretty much anything you can want or imagine without anything at all, just your mind and your hands. I design and make all my own sails, hydrofoils, etc using nothing more than my mind and my hands. To me that's all part of the hobby, and very fun for me.
Good luck
Bob


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2014 4:15 am 
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Location: South Florida
Good answer, Bob. I'm not a tinkerer, but I have fooled around with spray skirts, hakas, and hatch seals--they are easy. Generally, I'm happy if my (& my wife's) boat works the way it is supposed to. I'm very cognizant of tides and never try to go through a pass with opposing currents (4 mph or more)--pretty much impossible with a stock AI. I'm much the opposite of you and hope I never have to put a motor on my boat. It is clear why you do it, but, it is not my style, and, because I mainly do camping trips, a motor of any kind is just too heavy and/or takes up too much space.

Keep up the good work. I'm sure you inspire many.

Keith

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2014 7:16 am 
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Sails on the driveway with the topper. Topper unfinished. Tape measure shows length from the main mast out to the tip of the bowsprit. If the end of the tape measure is cut off it's just on the outside of the picture. Topper has 2 ft in front, looks like you were right on the 1 ft measurement. Maybe 1 1/2 feet for some adjustment room?

Back of the topper has 3 ft. If 2 is working for everyone else I'll reduce that as well.

Image
Image


Image

The topper with rods inside 1 in. PVC. Can I cut the bundle of these fiberglass rods with a mitre saw without any special kind of blade? Or would they splinter? Do you think the 1 in. PVC is necessary for the entire length of the rods? Would it be more advantageous to maybe have just 3 in. of PVC from each side of the T and have the rest of the rod exposed and taped together with something like electrical tape?


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2014 2:15 pm 
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DM06:
I just measured my mast topper and it is 1 ft out the front and two ft out the back, I have never had anything tangle up on the sail battens, but then again I run my stay line thru a 3/8 water pipe to prevent the stay line rope from getting tangled on anything. If your not planning on using the PVC tubing, longer might be better. I have my jib mounted about 3 inches in front of the mainsail (very close to the mast).

I'm sure a miter saw is fine, I usually use a hack saw to cut the stuff.

The position of the jib on the topper is controlled by the slot (that's the distance between the back of the jib and the main mast). It works better I found and you get the most performance gain if you keep that slot space fairly close to the main (within 3-5 inches, overlap is also fine as in a genoa) and try to make the slot as even as possible. The jib organizes and accelerates the air going across the far side of the main making the mainsail more efficient. Actually I think the main purpose of the jib is to direct accelerated air across the main preventing the airflow over the main from breaking down in questionable conditions (like upwind). Basically the mainsail is always the engine, the jib is like an efficient fuel pump or turbo charger.
Basically with a jib you can always point much closer to the wind, and in lighter wind than would normally work with just the main (so I'm told). You can typically sail a little faster with the jib. However when the wind increases too much because you have more sail area, you typically need to furl sooner, that's why on a TI a furling jib is much more handy, as wind increases you just furl it smaller. At least on my TI, if the wind gets extreme, I typically put the main away completely and just sail using the jib alone.
One thing you need to keep in mind on the TI is the main mast is mounted so far forward, there is hardly room for a jib. It really helps if the jib is tilted and mounted further forward at the base, leaving the top close to the main (even if this means the back edge isn't parallel with the mast), what this does is helps create lift and prevents the bow from diving under water.
If you ever decide to add a spinnaker, you will want that at the very tip of the bow sprit, with the jib set back some, and the spinnaker at the front of your mast topper with some separation between the jib and spinnaker (so you can run both at the same time).

If it were me I would run the PVC the full length of the mast topper and cap the ends with something like this.
Image
I have these type caps and spinning fittings on the end of my masts so the masts can be easily furled. After mounting the hardware into the cap, I just glue it onto the end of the PVC tubing. They would also work nicely on the front and back of your mast topper.
Here is another pic of one of those spinner caps (on top of my jib)
Image
You can always put a pipe clamp around the mast topper tubing and put a ring on it (top of sail would clip to ring), this way you can tweak the position back or forth on the mast topper to tweak the position that works best for you.
Hope this helps
Bob


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2014 2:31 pm 
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I'd stick with the PVC and runs electrical tape all around the rods.

What's the purpose of so much length in front? Adding more sail or Just reluctant to trim the rods?


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2014 4:39 pm 
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No reason other than I didn't want to cut it too short before getting a visual and some opinions.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 9:20 am 
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Image
Right, so this is how they fit in 1 in. PVC. The 7 fit tight around the inside perimeter and the 8th slides easily into the middle. It will slide around and fall out. The price tags and the reflective tape on the one end of the rods makes these things too big, so wrapping them with electrical tape and THEN putting them in the PVC is a no go.

So I'm not sure how to go about epoxying this thing.

If I wanted to keep the epoxy in and around the T I guess I could insert the bundle in the T itself, where there is some wiggle room, and use putty or something in between each rod, smoosh them together and then put the 1 in PVC on the T. That would block epoxy from traveling the entire length of the rods.

Or I could purposely fill the dead spaces the entire length of the rods by pouring it into one end instead of into the base of the T... That would get rid of flex But would add weight...

I could leave the middle rod out creating a space and pour the entire length, but not pour in the spaces between the outer rods and the 1 in. PVC...

I'm not sure what is ideal. Do I want flex? Do I want to glue these rods together so there is only flex between the rods and the PVC? Do I want to epoxy the hell out of everything so the rods and PVC are one?


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 10:16 am 
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Maybe leave the middle one out while you pour in most of the epoxy then stick the middle back in?

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