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 Post subject: shroud tension?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 02, 2011 9:09 am 
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Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon May 02, 2011 11:35 am
Posts: 5
Hi,

I'm a Getaway noob. I must step / unstep the mast each time I sail the boat, so I wanted to make it as easy as possible. Therefore I replaced the tang / clevis pin adjustment hardware above the jib furler with a quick release d-ring. I figure that I will just add additional d-rings if I need to lengthen the headstay.

I've only sailed the boat twice, but I found the following:

(1) In order for me to be able to attach that d-ring at the bottom of the headstay, the shrouds had to be loose enough such that when sailing, the leward shroud was unbelievably loose.

(2) The boat gets stuck in irons more often than not when tacking. Only half jokingly my family has named the boat "The Untackable". (Our Laser is named "The S.S. Leaky".) I find myself doing "chicken tacks". i.e. I basically gybe it for almost all turns.

I'd love to hear some advice on how to tune the shrouds / headstay.

Thanks,

TJ


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 Post subject: Re: shroud tension?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 02, 2011 10:24 am 
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Joined: Fri Jul 16, 2010 6:36 am
Posts: 23
A few thoughts:

The general consensus on the forums is to not use quick release fittings on any standing rigging as they do on occasion open when you don't want them to.

As for rig tension I keep my shrouds/forestay snug so that the mast rotates freely but can't flop excessively from side to side. When sailing, the boat will flex and the leeward shroud will be loose no matter how tight you tension the shrouds. The easiest way to tension the rig is to loosen one of the shrouds by moving the pin in the stay adjuster, then raise the mast, crew pins the forestay in the desired location and then have your crew pull the trapeeze wire while you tension the shroud to the desired setting. I have on occasion left the side stays in their final position, hooked my winch (sits on trailer about 1 foot foward of front crossbar) onto the trap lines and had my crew crank in the winch while I lift the mast and then applied enough force on the winch to get the forestay pinned in the desired location. not sure if it really saves much time but it has worked and makes lifting a little easier if the wind is blowing. I leave the shrouds connected when the mast is down and coil them on the trampoline using a velcro strap to hold them to the hiking straps. Then all I have to do is put the mast on the step ball, and lift while the crew pins the forestay, raise the sails, put the rudders on and go. Trailer to water in 15-20 mins.

For tacking, you can backwind the jib and move you and your crew weight back on the windward side of the boat until the bows cross through the wind (in light to moderate wind). Once through the wind move to the other side of the boat and quickly sheet the jib to the new tack. If you leave it backwinding too long it will make it very difficult to get any boat speed so you can fall off to the desired heading. Always try and have your speed up before starting the tack. Put consistent pressure on the tiller through the turn but don't put it hard over. This will stall the boat in irons. If you keep crew weight aft until the bows come through the wind, I recommend uncleating the mainsheet so you can let it out if you don't cross the boat quick enough as it is possible to start flying the hull if the wind is strong enough. In heavy wind or choppy seas, try and initiate the turn while the bow is cresting a wave and not in a trough. Also be prepared to cross the boat sooner and quicker.

Cheers,
Jeff


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 Post subject: Re: shroud tension?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 02, 2011 12:44 pm 
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Joined: Tue Sep 08, 2009 3:58 am
Posts: 81
I put the mast up and down often and don't mess with the shrouds. I just tighten the forestay as much as I reasonably can using the pin and ring. Pulling forward from the main halyard helps.

For tacking, besides the advice mentioned before, also while you are entering the tack sheet in the mainsheet as hard as you can. That will help to turn the boat into the wind. When you get to irons, release the main a few feet. After I started doing that I have no problems with tacking even with heavy chop.
I can even sail and tack the boat with rudders up (just by controlling how tight the jib and main are). To achieve a rudderless tack, sheet in the main hard and release the jib a couple of feet. When in irons, release the main a little and sheet in the jib hard (to backwind it). You'd be amazed that it can be done with no rudders...


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 Post subject: Re: shroud tension?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 07, 2011 11:03 am 
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Joined: Tue May 27, 2008 7:20 am
Posts: 26
i have never heard this before and am dying to get out and try it. this is an excellent technique to practice, especially for a cat since coming about is such a challenge for so many.

_________________
getaway on long beach island, nj


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 Post subject: Re: shroud tension?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 07, 2011 11:20 am 
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Joined: Tue Sep 08, 2009 3:58 am
Posts: 81
Yea, I actually before figuring out the trick still had a bit of trouble tacking in heavy chop. In the meantime, I was also practicing rudderless sailing, just pulling in the jib and letting the main out of fall off, and opposite to head up. Then at some point I realized I had an easier time tacking without rudders!! And I realized it happened because I used the sails to control the boat, and I didn't when I had rudders down.
Therefore I started using the sails to control the boat direction when sailing with rudders down.
As for ruderless sailing, it is best to try it by yourself initially in 5 to 10 knot wind, as the weight distribution is important. It is better to have the weight kinda back (not too much, just normal skipper position), which helps to fall off because the center of floatation is on the back. You usually can't pull the main all teh way in to the right position because the boat will tend to head up.


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