Spreader Boots

Headfoil vs Hanks, thoughts?

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crewed, foil. shorthanded, hanks. with hanks you can drop the jib and it will stay with the boat. with a foil, the bow person and mast person are required to secure it to the deck.

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2 minutes ago, Spreader Boots said:

Understood, thanks. How about the performance differences? Are hanks more efficient than foil? 

yes, but it depends. if you do all your tacks are in the right place and in the correct way and your underwater body is top spec, there is no excess weight on the boat, then there will be a difference. The foil will have a more even pull on the sail, creating even creases all over the front. with hanks, it pulls on less points, so creases tend to be less even. 

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4 minutes ago, European Bloke said:

Have you tried the search function? Top of the page. Looks like a little circle with it's dick hanging out.

Yes, nada. If u have better luck than me, post please.  

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Everyone says that a headfoil gives a better aerodynamic shape compared to hanks.

I know a 2-time National Champion who was the only boat with hanks. So there's that.

For cruising, unless you're using roller furling, hanks. Stays with the boat, can be dropped in a hurry.

 

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8 minutes ago, JMOD said:

yes, but it depends. if you do all your tacks are in the right place and in the correct way and your underwater body is top spec, there is no excess weight on the boat, then there will be a difference. The foil will have a more even pull on the sail, creating even creases all over the front. with hanks, it pulls on less points, so creases tend to be less even. 

Details, 20% offshore, 80% inshore, hydro tack, jib lock

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crewed or shorthanded inshores and offshores?

 

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Whatever you do, (I like foils better) remember that it gets expensive to switch.

If you are only going to buy one headsail and very shorthanded, the hanks will allow you to reef the jib from a 100% to a 70% and still have an efficient foil..

Hanks show wrinkles very early in the easing of the halyard in the light stuff, opposite for the foil IMHO.

 

Sail Safe!

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I don't think either has a performance advantage on their own merit.  The question of hanks vs foils boils down to two things, crew work and the size of headsails.  A third factor to consider is the potential for frequency of headsail changes.  Hanks are easier for smaller crews and smaller headsails.  That is to say for the most part on headsail size, I'm aware of large boats that use hanks.

I can provide two examples:

Express 27:  Smaller boat, small headsails, with only two to choose from.  Bareheaded changes are infrequent and headsails can be changed out in downwind legs.  As such we use hanks.

J111: Bigger (than an Express) larger jibs, more jibs and a crew to manage them.  On that boat foil headsail makes more sense.

 

There are many factors to consider.

 

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9 hours ago, Spreader Boots said:

Understood, thanks. How about the performance differences? Are hanks more efficient than foil? 

Not that any non GP program could measure. Aerodynamically hanks are draggy vortex generators, but the fact is the cumulative loss on the course is far less than any of the handling mistakes a crew of weekend sailors will make in a race. 

 

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Hanks have the (sometime) advantage of not needing a person on the bow to get the jib to come down.   

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depends on size and use. Small boat, stuck with hanks as its probably the only jib and used around the bouys. Big boats/offshore, probably (especially non overlapping), probably hanks as they don't need as many jibs and don't make as many chamges, and don't have the excess crew to keep a foil sail from falling off the boat. For mid sized boats sailing near shore, they will use foils as they will be fully crewed and more demanding of having the perfect sail for varioius upwind configurations.

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Performance
Both are going to perform within such a tight margin that most of us will never notice.  I like hanks because I feel they give you a bit more range on your jib shape because you can ease scallops into the sail.  Foil sails tend to have a cleaner entry which mentally makes me thing they will have a higher top speed.  The difference however will be so small you wil never notice.

Ease of Use
Hanks are much easier to do sets and drops with.  No prefeeder to worry about and the sail stays attached. I like them for short handed boats or boats with limited headsail selection.  Foil is much easier to swap out sails, just pop the tack and the halyard and the sail is loose, and you can do inline peels.  I like them for boats that you anticipate a need to change headsails quickly.

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Apples to apples, the biggest draw back to hanks is when doing a sail change. You have to drop one sail before you can hoist another, and offshore boats this isn't usually a problem however with W/L racing programs it could be. With Tuff Luff you can hoist one sail on the spare luff groove on the foil so foils have the advantage of doing peels. With hanks you have to drop the sail and hank on a new one and then raise it.

One of my friends tells a greatly animated story of using a special hank loader back in the day of the Americas Cup with 12 meters and the hank would be in a special loader which got slammed onto the fore stay and the reverberation would travel all around the ship. He was so happy when they switched over to foils. 

 

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15 hours ago, JMOD said:

yes, but it depends. if you do all your tacks are in the right place and in the correct way and your underwater body is top spec, there is no excess weight on the boat, then there will be a difference. The foil will have a more even pull on the sail, creating even creases all over the front. with hanks, it pulls on less points, so creases tend to be less even. 

Halyard tension not a thing around where you sail?

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If I go with hanks - should I wear finger less or full sailing gloves?

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I have   found a way  to fark  up any foil I have owned so I prefer hanks 

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Just some random thoughts - 

I currently have foils on both my boats. A primary advantage on a moulded sail is that the load on the genoa luff is evenly distributed the whole length where with hanks there is just a series of point loads. (I have sailed with both) A sail performs best as a smooth aerofoil, hanks (in my experience) tend to produce more uneven creases than a foil. Any research on air flow shows that even the slightest flaw in that aerofoil shape causes vortexes which adds to the drag on the sail. Arguments that one bad crew manoeuvre can be worse than a bad sail shape. Ha! You can control bad crew performance by a) better crew or b) more practice. The hanks are always there.

Just my opinion n performance.

On the subject of easier to handle. of course hanks, by keeping points of the sail attached to the forestay they are easier when dropping sail. When hoisting is the sail is properly flaked prior to hoist and the pre-feeder is properly set up then there shouldn't be a problem.

As a point of reference I often single hand my quarter tonner (fractional rig, runners, checkstays and headfoil & moulded sails. Referring to point b) above (practice) I never have any problem. I am no spring chicken being the high side of 65 yet seldom have any challenges with the headsail until it is on the deck. Then whether it has come off the headstay having used foils or hanks, the fun starts with flaking the sail and bagging it on a sometimes bouncing foredeck with the boat on the autohelm.

I suppose the ultimate 'convenience' option would be a furler but then just throw out performance considerations out the window on a normal budget.

 

 

 

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Hanks will always be a compromise when it comes to inshore fully crewed racing. Do you want that quick change from a J2 to a J3? Not gonna happen. 

 

I think boat/sail size is the critical component here..you're seeing them use hank on J1's on maxis like Comanche, Oats(smaller sails are furling). I would be curious to see how many of the offshore focused 40-50 footers are running hanks instead of a foil...my guess is the answer is very few. Are there any offshore 52s running hanked jibs in AUS?

 

 

 

 

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1 minute ago, ASP said:

I think boat/sail size is the critical component here..you're seeing them use hank on J1's on maxis like Comanche, Oats(smaller sails are furling). I would be curious to see how many of the offshore focused 40-50 footers are running hanks instead of a foil...my guess is the answer is very few. Are there any offshore 52s running hanked jibs in AUS?

 

 

 

 

From what I have seen the top TP's all run foils, but do bare head drops on jibs to save wt and drag of multi halyards/locks etc and crew time on the bow. At least one TP runs or did run an oversized foil to take advantage of un rated sail area. 

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Foil is great when you have lots of youngsters playing on the foredeck every time you take a sail up or down. With less hands on deck I'd go hanks all along, using textile hanks keeps the weight down. Solo and DH mostly sail hanks, and win over fully crewed boats.

I haven't seen foil being that much of a decisive advantage performance-wise at the RORC with a mix of foil, bare and furlers in classe 3 and 4, although in theory foil has the best aerodynamics.

Only downside with hanks is sail change, which needs to go bare for a while, although foil forces you to tack... I hated foils short handed in a breeze and am very happy with hanks now.

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21 minutes ago, Sebyseb said:

Only downside with hanks is sail change, which needs to go bare for a while, although foil forces you to tack... 

Not true, you can do a foil peel without tacking.

Step by step instructions

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1 hour ago, axolotl said:

Not true, you can do a foil peel without tacking.

Step by step instructions

Sure you can, and it's a lot easier if the windward track is available.

It's already slightly nightmarish with a full crew, we did prefer to take two tacks (offshore sailing mind you), try that short-handed...

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21 hours ago, LB 15 said:

If I go with hanks - should I wear finger less or full sailing gloves?

Depends on your shades and Boots... 

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47 minutes ago, Sebyseb said:

Sure you can, and it's a lot easier if the windward track is available.

It's already slightly nightmarish with a full crew, we did prefer to take two tacks (offshore sailing mind you), try that short-handed...

Yep, we'd load the leeward track if it's expected we'll be on one board for 50 miles so we can peel up or down without tacking easily.  Um,  the reverse is harder,  but not impossible.  A standard jib peel should be cake for a full crew compared to other sail transitions.  Keep two tacking when peeling jibs, you're losing maybe 30+ seconds every time and I could correct out over you:D.

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On 10/7/2020 at 12:27 AM, European Bloke said:

Have you tried the search function? Top of the page. Looks like a little circle with it's dick hanging out.

Dick, I thought it was a spy glass? So is that what you Euro's call a dick? No wonder the girls here in So Cal like the Aussies and Kiwis.......................:O :O :O

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We pick the track by where we are in the range of the sail. More powered up long track (more luff round) top end of the range short track. Bow guy asks ever time we set it. Offshore we just set the gs behind and bare head the change. 

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On 10/7/2020 at 9:05 PM, Rawhide said:

From what I have seen the top TP's all run foils, but do bare head drops on jibs to save wt and drag of multi halyards/locks etc and crew time on the bow. At least one TP runs or did run an oversized foil to take advantage of un rated sail area. 

From what I know, TP’s run single slot foil for weight savings. So bare headed jib change is only option when it pipes up. Plus only one jib halyard. Gotta keep spins halyards open for gate options. 

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9 hours ago, Sebyseb said:

Sure you can, and it's a lot easier if the windward track is available.

It's already slightly nightmarish with a full crew, we did prefer to take two tacks (offshore sailing mind you), try that short-handed...

Six one, half dozen the other. Good crew no issue. 

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1 hour ago, Spreader Boots said:

From what I know, TP’s run single slot foil for weight savings. So bare headed jib change is only option when it pipes up. Plus only one jib halyard. Gotta keep spins halyards open for gate options. 

They use a G foil made by gorilla rigging which is around 1/3 of the weight of the next lightest foil. I will always prefer a foil over hanks and can solo the J88 and it not be too much of an issue. I also race a SF3600 with hanks which are good for those hoists and drops in the middle of the night 2 handed but they also have the tendency to snag things which is annoying. I’m considering the option of webbings and clips so changes can be faster and they’ll hopefully snag less stuff 

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soft hanks are an option! we used to have bronze hanks on our 186% jibs, but changed to soft hanks. no more snagging!

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On 10/7/2020 at 3:20 AM, JMOD said:

crewed, foil. shorthanded, hanks. with hanks you can drop the jib and it will stay with the boat. with a foil, the bow person and mast person are required to secure it to the deck.

Let's go another step.  Smaller boats, hanks no matter which.  Being able to drop the sail on the foredeck without the bow having to worry about it and be on the nose is a big advantage.  Also, smaller boats aren't as reliant on change the front sail while moving - think J-24 et. al. which will take their 155 up to very high wind speeds.

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