07/08/2019 at 10:40 pm #18807
Can I cut down my spare mainsail to de-power the rigg similar to a reef and still used the wire halyard onto the sharks tooth. I would like to reduce power by 20%
09/08/2019 at 8:01 pm #18834steve13003Participant
unless your cut down sail has a headboard that is attached to the sail say by the luff rope being left as the old length the answer is no you can’t use the existing wire halyard and hook rack.
if you want cut the sail down I presume you will take out a middle panel and maybe shortened the foot along the boom. The head of the sail will then be about 1 m or so below the top of the mast. I would replace the wire halyard with a 5mm spectra rope halyard and a camcleat, then you can adjust the main to suit your cut down or full sail with no problem
10/08/2019 at 7:14 am #18835
Thanks for your reply, just to give you a little back ground as to why I want to cut the sail and keep the wire halyard. I have recently retired and and now sail on Wednesday afternoons, with my grandson (4 stone) and wife (8 stone or so she tells me), this gives me a very light all up crew weight and even in a moderate wind I have a problem keeping the boat flat. They both become really nervous if I have to aggressively hike and the boat heals, I don’t want to put them off. My normal weekend crew is 14 stone and we do not have a problem, so I want if possible to maintain my racing ring for the weekends, and reduce sail in the week.
I have spoken to HD Sail and the are going to cut down the sail and add a wire halyard to make up the difference, they are also going to cut down one of my old Genoa and turn it in to a midi. I will let you know how this lot performs if you wish, but I hope that it works so I can encourage the next generation of GP14 sailors and still keep my boat competitive in the club races at the weekend
Best regards Kenny
12/08/2019 at 2:09 pm #18861Oliver ShawModerator
It seems that you have thought through a viable way to do this.
You absolutely must not use the rope tail of the wire halliard, but your proposal to add a wire strop at the head of the sail would be a viable way round this.
However that does entail a significant amount of work for your sailmaker, and if you are going to that degree of modification I personally feel you would do better to add a set of reef points, preferably two rows, and set up a proper slab/jiffy reefing system. That is a far better system, and will give you much more flexibility – in both directions; you will have a second, seriously deep, reef available when needed, and you will also be very glad of having full sail available for light wind conditions.
You will however need to replace your wire halliard with rope, but that need not spoil your racing rig. Although it is vitally important that the luff of the mainsail is stretched to the correct length, the actual tension needed to do this is comparatively modest, and if you use dyneema the stretch in the halliard will be insignificant. Even for larger loads, the stretch in dyneema is comparable with that of wire. Use either 4 mm or 5 mm diameter, and use a clam cleat to cleat it off.
See the paper on Reefing Systems in th Members Area of this site.
Hope this helps,
12/08/2019 at 3:37 pm #18865
I have now read your paper on reefing systems, and it is brilliant. I have also today spoken to HD sails and they have given me the same advice. I have never used a rope halliard, but I am more than willing to give it a go. You have been very helpful, but could I ask one more question. Could I leave the sharks tooth rack in place and still add the clam cleat and would I need to add a pulley block to stop the rope fraying on the hole through the mast?
Best regards Kenny
12/08/2019 at 3:54 pm #18871Oliver ShawModerator
Yes, and yes, respectively.
You can of course leave the shark’s tooth rack in place, but you will not be using it with your rope halliard.
If your final direction of pull on the halliard when you are hoisting the sail is upwards, which many people find helpful, you will certainly need a turning block (pulley block) to change the direction of the rope.
14/08/2019 at 3:32 pm #18936Seamus OConnellParticipant
The issues seem to have been covered above, but for what it’s worth I can add that I have done what you asked about. I damaged an HD mainsail a few years ago and rather than bin it I had HD cut it down for me. I attach a wire strop to the head of the sail and it works fine.
Since then I have also converted from a wire halyard to Dyneema and retained the tooth rack. That also works fine.
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