danstanford

J/88 top batten hooking on backstay

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Hi Everybody, I have a new to me J/88 with North Sails and we have an ongoing problem with the top batten (not the diagonal one) hanging up on the backstay in lighter winds. If I let the backstay right off and then shake the boom and the backstay I can get it to go through but this is a vexing issue especially when short handed as there aren't enough hands to spare time and attention to this when tacking. 

- Does everyone have this issue or just us? 

-If so, are you in the habit of letting the backstay off when tacking? 

-would a thinner batten help? The sail didn't have a batten so I got one from a sailmaker and it is pretty stout.

-any other suggestions? 

Thanks,

Dan 

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Never sail the 88, but I sailed the 80 and 90, so do as you wish with these comments.

1. If it only hangs up in winds less than 10 or so knots, your backstay should be totally eased, so your question of letting the backstay off does not apply.

2. Call North. The sails I ordered from them used to come with two top battens (maybe it was just our local loft that did this), a light wind one and a regular one. A more flexible batten will help.

3. Check the batten tension. Ease it until you see vertical wrinkles appear, then tighten it just enough to remove the wrinkles. Write down your settings for light, medium and heavy i.e. n full turns from fully loose, assuming a screw type tensioner.

4. Check your rig setting per the N tuning guide (including headstay length,  butt position, etc.)

5. Maybe that is the reason it did not come with that batten :ph34r:

 

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Flicker or roller at the top.  On the 80s and 105s I race on we Just got in the habit of pushing it by in light air. 

 

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I have a flicker but with any backstay on it loses some of its effectiveness. As Varan notes above, above 10 knots it is less of a problem for sure.

I really think that top batten is too stiff as you cannot just push it through unless the backstay is right off and the flicker straight out. 

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I have North 3Di on the J30 and the original batten was a problem in sub 6 kts in every tack or gybe. Switched to a softer batten (without taper however) and problem solved. Easy fix. Try that first.

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On 9/3/2020 at 2:27 PM, danstanford said:

Hi Everybody, I have a new to me J/88 with North Sails and we have an ongoing problem with the top batten (not the diagonal one) hanging up on the backstay in lighter winds. If I let the backstay right off and then shake the boom and the backstay I can get it to go through but this is a vexing issue especially when short handed as there aren't enough hands to spare time and attention to this when tacking. 

- Does everyone have this issue or just us? 

-If so, are you in the habit of letting the backstay off when tacking? 

-would a thinner batten help? The sail didn't have a batten so I got one from a sailmaker and it is pretty stout.

-any other suggestions? 

Thanks,

Dan 

Dan, I make sails for the 88 class.  What we have done is make the full batten load from the front and cover the leech end with a Teflon woven tape.  We also went to a lighter batten (rbs 15180) which helps as well.

If it does catch put vang and or Cunningham on and it should pop with 1 pull.  We generally only have issues in super light tacks and somewhat light gybes.

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My 88's North main top batten was at an angle that matched up perfectly with the back stay. That batten pocket seam was a royal pain in the ass getting hung up often with or without the flicker. North said pull down on the boom. Bullshit. 

The new Quantum main worked like a charm. zero issues. I had Quantum modify the North batten so I could use it for practice. Problem solved. 

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17 hours ago, Greyhound37 said:

My 88's North main top batten was at an angle that matched up perfectly with the back stay. That batten pocket seam was a royal pain in the ass getting hung up often with or without the flicker. North said pull down on the boom. Bullshit. 

The new Quantum main worked like a charm. zero issues. I had Quantum modify the North batten so I could use it for practice. Problem solved. 

Can you elaborate on the batten modification? I have been contemplating simply thinning it out by sanding it down. The sail did not have this batten present when I got the boat but I added one in and have always had the problem. Did the Quantum sail not have that batten or was the angle different?

Thanks, Dan

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I have sanded the outer portion of the batten down to about half what is was thickness wise. It makes sense to me that this might allow the flattop of the sail to pass through under the backstay flicker more easily but should I anticipate less drive from the top of the sail? 

This batten is diagonal and about 18" long out to the tip of the flat top. 

Dam 

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This used to annoy me on the J105 also. It is a pain in the ass downwind, never a problem upwind except in really light air. I handle it by shaking the backstay. Since the boat is "one design" you can't make any substantive changes anyway, so really you're stuck with the manual approach.

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10 hours ago, danstanford said:

I have sanded the outer portion of the batten down to about half what is was thickness wise. It makes sense to me that this might allow the flattop of the sail to pass through under the backstay flicker more easily but should I anticipate less drive from the top of the sail? 

This batten is diagonal and about 18" long out to the tip of the flat top. 

Dam 

Why the outer portion and not the inner?

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8 hours ago, Varan said:

Why the outer portion and not the inner?

Frankly there was no serious thought as to which end. It seemed to me the it is the tip that needs to bend to allow the batten to curve the other way and slip through. 

Should I be looking at it another way? 

Dan 

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usually, there is a heavy weather and light weather batten, especially for the top batten in the main sail.

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On 10/8/2020 at 9:58 AM, danstanford said:

I have sanded the outer portion of the batten down to about half what is was thickness wise. It makes sense to me that this might allow the flattop of the sail to pass through under the backstay flicker more easily but should I anticipate less drive from the top of the sail? 

This batten is diagonal and about 18" long out to the tip of the flat top. 

Dam 

The gaff batten should not hit the backstay, its usually the next batten down.  Can you post a pic?  Sounds like something is wrong with the way the sail or boat is set up.  Sounds like the head of the main is higher than it should be.

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