|Rich & Cherie Scilllia
Model/Year: Capri 22 1990
Hull No. 604
Hailing Port: Lake Cheney
09/18/2010 5:39 AM Pacific Time
I have been told, and read recently, that when the main is reefed you should not tie off the lines that gather the bottom of the sail around the boom. The reason is that if the reef breaks loose somehow, those lines will rip the sail.
But, the main is attached to the boom along the entire the length of the foot by a bolt rope in the sail.
My question is can the sail be attached without feeding the bolt rope into the boom slot?
Can the tack hook on the boom and the slide at the clue end of the sail take the entire load without the bolt rope?
I have seen many other types of boats that do not have a bolt rope held in the whole length of the boom, and it seems you would get better sail shape that way.
|Bill Braun & Christine Sammel
Boat Name: Da Doo Run Run
Model/Year: 1989 Catalina 22
Hull No. 14840
Hailing Port: Wilmette, Illinois
09/21/2010 10:10 AM Pacific Time
Rich & Cherie,
About three years ago we purchased a new main from North Sail, and it came "loose-footed," i.e., with attachment points at the tack and clew only, and no bolt rope. We had not realized that would be the case, but have gotten used to not having a footed main. The only difference is that we have to pay more attention to outhaul adjustment. We would assume that you could have a do-it-yourself loose-footed main by feeding in the tack and clew attachments only. If that's what you want, it's worth a try, although you wouldn't get the full effect of a loose-footed main, given the relative rigidity of the bolt rope on the foot of the sail.
Regarding reefing, we sail on Lake Michigan and, especially in the autumn when the wind is stronger, reef our main almost every time we go out. We tie off our reefing lines around the boom, making sure to tie secure knots, and have never had a problem. We installed extra-long reefing lines to make sure we had enough length to make strong knots.
Could you please give the name and date of the publication stating that you shouldn't tie off the reefing lines around the boom? We're gathering that they say to just gather the sail fabric and tie that up. Wouldn't that cause the sail to flog in a very high wind? We think that tying around the boom serves to make the sail more stable in high winds.
We also don't see how the reefing lines could let go if they're knotted securely, or, if one does, that the main would get torn, given the extra reinforcement at the reefing grommets. Maybe we're just naive?
Bill & Christine
Boat Name: Sea Sharp Minor
Model/Year: Catalina 22 - 1984 - Swing Keel
Hull No. 11823
Hailing Port: Lake Norman Sailing Club
09/22/2010 7:24 AM Pacific Time
We have a bolt rope at the foot of our sail. I was taught that the reefing ties are only used to hold the loose part of the reefed main from flopping around and it is not necessary to use them. But if you do, they should be loosly tied so as not to affect the shape of the sail which is determined by the reefing cringles. It is when they are too tight that the sail can be ripped.