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The only time my main is cleated is downwind (and it is sheeted in TIGHT). I would never cleat the main upwind unless I'm easing along in light air eating a sandwich. What BHyde told you on not cleating the main when driving upwind is absolutely correct.

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Hi guys,newbie here but a long time monohull sailor/ racer. I have been away from the sailing scene for a little while whilst I finished raising my boy and further advanced my career. I bore you with

I've sailed mine in big breeze / lumpy seas, and it never went over when flying the screecher. The big sail lifts the bows (and in absolutely insane conditions 25+) and miraculously the boat digs in -

New Weta model Chris Kitchen and his family came up with this new Weta model.  Brought a smile to my face.

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Ahhh [wistful sigh], cleating the main - what a fun topic

Nice theory to play it continually - but having only one really functional hand under load that is a physical impossibility for me ... so riddle me this Batman: 'why am I am one of the fastest around the track in Aus?' 

I have to approach it differently by cleating it all the time, & my home club in one of the vicious gustiest courses around, so I carry the main with all the time & uncleat/recleat when gust hits, thereby taking pressure of dodgy hand.

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On 12/7/2021 at 11:46 AM, βhyde said:

The other thing you may want to try to help find the "groove" for the mainsheet trim upwind is not cleating it. Most people just cleat it and then drive the boat to the desired heel or upwind angle. This is wrong, and leads to a lot of rudder input and excessive heeling, which is generally not desirable. It also causes you to head up in puffs (to keep the boat flat) and down in the lulls. That's your inner-keelboat talking. Resist it. You have zero momentum because you aren't dragging around a bunch of lead. Depending on conditions and wave state, you may find better upwind performance by easing the main a little in the puffs, maintaining heel angle, and allowing the boat to drive forward instead of up. Once the boat is rolling, then try squeezing a little main on to point. Stay fast, point when you have to. When the breeze starts to get fresh, this will help you keep the boat flat and balanced, which is always fast. Above 12-14kts wind going upwind I almost never cleat the main (except right before a tack). Beam reaching never cleat the main. You'll be surprised how much faster you are when you're not stumbling over the leeward ama all the time. Oh, and remember to smile, that fucks with your competition :)

Sounds a lot like Bethwaite's 'Fast Handling Technique'.

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4 hours ago, Chidz said:

Ahhh [wistful sigh], cleating the main - what a fun topic

Nice theory to play it continually - but having only one really functional hand under load that is a physical impossibility for me ... so riddle me this Batman: 'why am I am one of the fastest around the track in Aus?' 
 

Go by and suggest the 18, 49er, 29er, I14, Moth, A-Cat, and Laser guys/gals add mainsheet cleats to their boats to make them faster around the track. Let us know how that conversation goes :)

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as I have sailed several of those competitively, but a unable to anymore, you are preaching to the choir - this wrist issue of mine is precisely why I am not sailing specifically Moths anymore (Lasers are boring as batshit & are sailed 'if you must') & why I am sailing Wetas. So I do what I must to get on the water, and find what works for me to go as quick as I can. Just because I place in almost all the major regattas says cleating can work not just cruising, but competitively.
Never said it was ideal, just doable - and can be done to be very quick.
Until you have to sail with other's limitations, I suggest you temper your contempt for methods other than your own.

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On 12/6/2021 at 7:44 AM, Wetabehindtheears said:

Now for the question:

The competition was definitely reeling me in down wind in the light air. They seemed to be driving deeper, but when I went deeper it seemed painfully slow. I think my question is how does one know when it’s time to drive deep rather then heat up for speed downwind? It was challenging to me to disregard my monohull mindset and adapt to the new angles of a multihull.

What were your wind indicator and/or shroud telltales doing as your were going down wind?

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4 hours ago, Chidz said:

as I have sailed several of those competitively, but a unable to anymore, you are preaching to the choir - this wrist issue of mine is precisely why I am not sailing specifically Moths anymore (Lasers are boring as batshit & are sailed 'if you must') & why I am sailing Wetas. So I do what I must to get on the water, and find what works for me to go as quick as I can. Just because I place in almost all the major regattas says cleating can work not just cruising, but competitively.
Never said it was ideal, just doable - and can be done to be very quick.
Until you have to sail with other's limitations, I suggest you temper your contempt for methods other than your own.

My comments regarding not cleating the mainsheet were intended to help a new weta sailor become more familiar with the boat. He may or may not be an experienced dinghy/skiff sailor and may or may not know what is considered an almost universal practice (while racing anyway). It is not a "nice theory." That you are fast and win despite limitations is completely irrelevant to what may be helpful information for a newcomer. Good on you for doing so, but I suggest you temper your comments for the intended audience and not your particular situation. Also don't assume you are the only person here with limitations. Cheers.

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I’d also add to Keith’s cleated method that the skipper of one of the other leading boats in the Australian fleet, who often wins (despite still undergoing treatment for cancer) also cleats the mainsheet as does our dealer in Victoria and so do I.

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35 minutes ago, Pewit said:

I’d also add to Keith’s cleated method that the skipper of one of the other leading boats in the Australian fleet, who often wins (despite still undergoing treatment for cancer) also cleats the mainsheet as does our dealer in Victoria and so do I.

Yeah, early on when we had 10 boats regularly racing, pretty much everyone was cleating, including me. 3 or 4 of us would basically swap wins depending on the conditions. Most of the time it came down to a bad shift or picking the right side of the course. Then one very windy, wavy race series I got completely smoked upwind by my friend Dave. I noticed he wasn't cheating the main and was continuously playing it. Made a big difference in those conditions once I got used to it. It's good to try it both ways and see what works.

As with most things sailing, it's not one thing that wins a race, but lots of little things.

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I'm running a poll on the Australian Weta Class FB Group - so far 17 for cleating when racing and 2 for not.

My recommendation for beginners:
Upwind (as long as you're not in very windy, gusty conditions) cleat the main but hang on to the sheet to release if required. Make sure the Becket angle is adjusted so you can uncleat from anywhere on the boat.

Ease to bear away and round up - sheet in and re-cleat once headed downwind/upwind.

Downwind, It's more important to have the gennaker sheet in your hand ready to ease/dump/sheet in - although Randy Smyth suggests cleating it and sailing to the shifts.

Dumping the gennaker sheet when overpowered is more important than dumping the main - you can bear away quickly to ease pressure on the main (which is less risky than easing the mainsheet and opening the head of the sail to push the bow down) but if you allow the gennaker to jerk continuously on the bowsprit it can break.

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5 hours ago, βhyde said:

but I suggest you temper your comments for the intended audience and not your particular situation. Also don't assume you are the only person here with limitations. 

comments were directly answering question asked, with explanation of circumstances surrounding.
If you don't like that form of reply - tough

I will now absent myself from this conversation, as I do not appreciate condescending responses & do not want say anything derogatory or can be construed as inflammatory.
 

hope you all enjoy your Weta sailing

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11 hours ago, Pewit said:

Dumping the gennaker sheet when overpowered is more important than dumping the main

Further even. Overpowered downwind, keep the mainsail tight and "go deeper", DDW if needed. Easing the main will power it up may catapult you into a nice swim. 

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I'm a cleater. It's difficult to compare the Weta to other boats such as Moths, 49ers etc. for a few reasons. Firstly, most other boats have the mainsheet coming off either the boom or the floor forward of the skipper. The Weta has both mainsheet and tiller behind the skipper, which (at least I find) makes it somewhat more difficult to manipulate. Secondly, without a boom or vang, easing the main makes multiple changes to the sail shape, mostly detrimental to upwind height, especially with a square top.  Lastly, compared to other skiffs, the Weta has much more inherent stability which (probably lazily) encourages one to rely on this and not sail trim to achieve stability. I usually sail 2 up - quite often in 20+ knots. Upwind, I just crank the main on, hike and drive it as hard as I can. Downwind, ease the main and sail as fast as I can.

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Honest question. Maybe I'm a wimp? I have both arms in good shape but I don't have the strength to keep easing and pulling the mainsheet upwind in more than 15kt for any length of time, plus the ergonomics problem already mentioned. Can you guys do it?

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1 hour ago, sail(plane) said:

Honest question. Maybe I'm a wimp? I have both arms in good shape but I don't have the strength to keep easing and pulling the mainsheet upwind in more than 15kt for any length of time, plus the ergonomics problem already mentioned. Can you guys do it?

6:1 mainsheet could help. I think the factory mainsheet is 5:1. It's definitely a load above 15kts. I angle the sheet around my windward knee to add a little friction. It's not like we don't need the exercise:wacko:

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2 hours ago, sail(plane) said:

Honest question. Maybe I'm a wimp? I have both arms in good shape but I don't have the strength to keep easing and pulling the mainsheet upwind in more than 15kt for any length of time, plus the ergonomics problem already mentioned. Can you guys do it?

No.

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I suppose if everybody did the same thing, every race would be a tie...

I reduced my mainsheet rig to a 4 to 1. Hard as hell to pull but I can still do it and it responds very quickly, which is important in the type winds I sail in. I never cleat the main upwind.

Downwind, the comment above "although Randy Smyth suggests cleating it and sailing to the shifts." is how I do it although I do hold the screecher sheet so I can feel the pressure and steer accordingly. So once I get the screecher set, I steer to it. Steering is quicker downwind than sheeting and you can keep speed and power on. Martin's post above also contains much wisdom. Besides just the idea that easing the main downwind can lead to a pitchpole (it can) why charge the screecher with having to drag the mainsail through the air? That's a lot of drag beyond a certain point. Sheet the main in tight and let the screecher run unfettered.

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9 hours ago, Tom Kirkman said:

I suppose if everybody did the same thing, every race would be a tie...

I reduced my mainsheet rig to a 4 to 1. Hard as hell to pull but I can still do it and it responds very quickly, which is important in the type winds I sail in. I never cleat the main upwind.

Downwind, the comment above "although Randy Smyth suggests cleating it and sailing to the shifts." is how I do it although I do hold the screecher sheet so I can feel the pressure and steer accordingly. So once I get the screecher set, I steer to it. Steering is quicker downwind than sheeting and you can keep speed and power on. Martin's post above also contains much wisdom. Besides just the idea that easing the main downwind can lead to a pitchpole (it can) why charge the screecher with having to drag the mainsail through the air? That's a lot of drag beyond a certain point. Sheet the main in tight and let the screecher run unfettered.

LOL it seems we exactly the opposite.

In waves, you have to ease and pull the gennaker all the time. Sheet in tight to look for apparent and/or avoid a wave back, then ease for soaking maximum vmg and/or surfing a convenient wave deep downwind.

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14 hours ago, sail(plane) said:

Honest question. Maybe I'm a wimp? I have both arms in good shape but I don't have the strength to keep easing and pulling the mainsheet upwind in more than 15kt for any length of time, plus the ergonomics problem already mentioned. Can you guys do it?

Get atlas showa gloves and... Do just two pullups a day. Add a 3rd or 4th pull up if/when you feel like it.

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On 11/22/2021 at 6:09 AM, sail(plane) said:

Coming from monohulls I find myself trying to point too high and conversely driving too deep down wind. 
How do you know what angles to sail? Especially down wind, where is the right balance between heating up for speed and VMG? 

This is a tough one if you're sailing without instruments. After-the-fact analysis can help you see if you have been heading too high or too low to maximize downwind VMG but that's after the fact.

If you want real time feedback about whether heading up or down a bit gets you to the mark faster there's an app for Garmin watches that does that along with providing navigation, start timing, lift / header information etc.

I used handhelds for a long time, then tried a number of watch apps and couldn't find anything that really helped me, so being a software developer, I wrote one that I use all the time now.

It's called Sail2WIN. You can check it out here, or at the Garmin App Store.

6X Pro SD 1 VMG.JPG

6X Pro SD 1 VMC.JPG

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The problem on the Weta is trying to keep your eye on the water and sail trim and looking at your wrist while going at speed.

There are mast-mounted instruments that show VMG (Velocitek Prostart, Novosail NS-START as well as new digital display products such as the Sailmon Max but not cheap.

If you do have a Garmin watch then also look at RaceQs Watch app which provides Start and Performance data as well as tracking and analytics. 
https://raceqs.com/smart-watch/

https://apps.garmin.com/en-US/apps/74c474f8-4140-4794-afb7-f56817083bd5

However, I think keeping it simple is best and I prefer a twin display compass (Tacktick/Prism) but am looking at a Speedpuck which won’t give VMG but does show SOG.

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14 hours ago, Pewit said:

The problem on the Weta is trying to keep your eye on the water and sail trim and looking at your wrist while going at speed.

There are mast-mounted instruments that show VMG (Velocitek Prostart, Novosail NS-START as well as new digital display products such as the Sailmon Max but not cheap.

If you do have a Garmin watch then also look at RaceQs Watch app which provides Start and Performance data as well as tracking and analytics. 
https://raceqs.com/smart-watch/

https://apps.garmin.com/en-US/apps/74c474f8-4140-4794-afb7-f56817083bd5

However, I think keeping it simple is best and I prefer a twin display compass (Tacktick/Prism) but am looking at a Speedpuck which won’t give VMG but does show SOG.

It’s my understanding that class rules prohibit the use of gps’s. So this is strictly for practice right?

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11 minutes ago, Wetabehindtheears said:

It’s my understanding that class rules prohibit the use of gps’s. So this is strictly for practice right?

It depends on the country. The North America, Australian and French class rules permit any equipment to be used as long as it does not act directly on the foils or sails. The International Class Rules only allow compass and timing devices and GPS for recording only.

However, they may not be permitted under the Sailing Instructions of a regatta.

I use the RaceQs app for tracking on an iPhone in a Catalyst waterproof case in a dry bag below deck and set the tracker timer to start at the first race start. You get much more accurate data having it below deck compared to a watch since crossing the boat produces weird results in the tack analytics. https://raceqs.com/race-analytics/.

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I use the RaceQs playback and analytics a lot and used to use their phone app for track recording. Since the Sail2WIN app on the watch records my track along with providing SOG, VMG, VMC, angle to the mark, tacking angles etc, I no longer use the phone app. I just upload my track from the watch to the RaceQs site for playback and analysis.

6 hours ago, Wetabehindtheears said:

There are mast-mounted instruments that show VMG (Velocitek Prostart, Novosail NS-START as well as new digital display products such as the Sailmon Max but not cheap.

Velocitec's Prostart manual says they focused on providing distance-to-line feature since "no one used VMG function" in their SC1. Their manual doesn't indicate how or if they detect true wind direction to provide VMG.

Novosail doesn't seem to provide VMG and Sailmon Max is expensive and requires wind instruments.

20 hours ago, Pewit said:

If you do have a Garmin watch then also look at RaceQs Watch app which provides Start and Performance data as well as tracking and analytics. 
https://raceqs.com/smart-watch/

https://apps.garmin.com/en-US/apps/74c474f8-4140-4794-afb7-f56817083bd5

However, I think keeping it simple is best and I prefer a twin display compass (Tacktick/Prism) but am looking at a Speedpuck which won’t give VMG but does show SOG.

I tried out the RaceQs watch app several times and found that it didn't give me what I was looking for. I also found that I had to fiddle with the watch app a lot and it crashed a few times in the middle of a race so I gave it up.

Tacktick's manual indicates that their idea of True Wind Direction comes from user input and doesn't change as you sail, so the VMG they provide will be pretty limited.

Prism's description doesn't mention VMG.

So far I haven't found instrumentation that provides start timing, VMG, navigation to the mark (even in current), VMC (velocity along the rhumb line), tack angles plus angle to the mark for layline calls (even in current), along with practice start timing separate from the start timer, and track recording. Most of that can be put onboard with full blown instrument packages but having all of that on your wrist is pretty amazing and it's cheap.

The mast mounted displays are great but do they give you the information you want, and at what price ?

https://apps.garmin.com/en-US/apps/791191d4-0593-426c-838d-ee71558a967d

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3 minutes ago, patzefran said:

I think you must feel it with your nose and enter the data in the app !

Sorry, I spoke about phone apps., IMHO the performance analysis softwares (e.g. GPS action replay) can rely only statistical analysis of windward tracks, wind direction used is the mean of port and starboard tracks. I think It is not very accurate and don't account on wind shift. In GPS action replay you can also enter the wind direction.

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RaceQs replay does a pretty good job of calculating the wind direction based on your tacking patterns and you can manually change it on a per-leg basis.

It also gives you useful anaysis of tacks and gybes: tacking angle, oversteering deg, min VMG, min SOG, duration, recovery time, time lost  - although it's best if you have the phone in a fixed central position rather than using a watch for the latter because of the effect on the track of crossing a wide boat like the Weta.
https://raceqs.com/race-analytics/

The app uses a rule based algorithm which assesses the likely wind direction based on the tacking / gybing angles and course shifts on close hauled POS (likely headers and footers). Estimated margin of error is about 3 – 5 degrees in the single boat mode and 1 degree with 5 or more boats are on the race course. This method of calculating VMG although not exact, incorporates the current impact and is more accurate than VMG toward wind without adjustment for the current.

Interesting summary of sailing analysis apps here https://sailzing.com/sailboat-race-analysis/ - although I'm not sure how old it is.

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4 hours ago, Pewit said:

RaceQs replay does a pretty good job of calculating the wind direction based on your tacking patterns and you can manually change it on a per-leg basis.

It also gives you useful anaysis of tacks and gybes: tacking angle, oversteering deg, min VMG, min SOG, duration, recovery time, time lost  - although it's best if you have the phone in a fixed central position rather than using a watch for the latter because of the effect on the track of crossing a wide boat like the Weta.
https://raceqs.com/race-analytics/

The app uses a rule based algorithm which assesses the likely wind direction based on the tacking / gybing angles and course shifts on close hauled POS (likely headers and footers). Estimated margin of error is about 3 – 5 degrees in the single boat mode and 1 degree with 5 or more boats are on the race course. This method of calculating VMG although not exact, incorporates the current impact and is more accurate than VMG toward wind without adjustment for the current.

Interesting summary of sailing analysis apps here https://sailzing.com/sailboat-race-analysis/ - although I'm not sure how old it is.

2018 or older. Personally, I use ChartedSails and love it. Reading about that wind guessing algorithm, makes me want to ping the ChartedSails creator. 

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3 minutes ago, Pewit said:

?????

Apologies. I meant to quote the very last line of your post, which was - 

 

5 hours ago, Pewit said:

Interesting summary of sailing analysis apps here https://sailzing.com/sailboat-race-analysis/ - although I'm not sure how old it is.

It is a bit old. Older than Sept 2018 for sure. 

What I'd personally add to that list is: ChartedSails.

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11 hours ago, patzefran said:

I think you must feel it with your nose and enter the data in the app !

An estimate of true wind direction is made from your tacks, tacking angles, and course changes as you sail upwind. It produces very useful numbers. Correctly calibrated onboard instruments will be more accurate but having "good enough" numbers for VMG and lifts / headers... on your wrist... is really useful.

It's quite a bit better than feeling it with your nose :-)

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Hi All,

 

 I am bringing back the 12.9 spinnaker topic :

who has really used this system?

solo or duo?

can it be hoist like a normal assymetric spinnaker with a halyard & tackline?

In the Weta video  hoisting & retreaving kite he is furling with teh gennaker furling sytem. is it teh easiest way to do this?

I am often sailing with realy light wind (around 10knots or less) and I am wondering how much this spinnaker woudl help me to have more fun in light light breeze.

 

 Thanks

 

 Joss

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1 hour ago, josselin said:

Hi All,

 

 I am bringing back the 12.9 spinnaker topic :

who has really used this system?

solo or duo?

can it be hoist like a normal assymetric spinnaker with a halyard & tackline?

In the Weta video  hoisting & retreaving kite he is furling with teh gennaker furling sytem. is it teh easiest way to do this?

I am often sailing with realy light wind (around 10knots or less) and I am wondering how much this spinnaker woudl help me to have more fun in light light breeze.

 

 Thanks

 

 Joss

Being new to the Weta, I’m not familiar with this set up. However it looks like a lot of work for a little gain in the light stuff. I can’t see where dragging the spinnaker through the water and waiting to tack to retrieve it can be faster.

Maybe someone has better insight on this.

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I have a friend who has one - unless you’re sailing long legs downwind it really is more hassle than it’s worth.

You’d get more benefit from upgrading to the 9.3 Square Top mainsail (if you haven’t already done so) as that improves performance upwind and downwind.

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10 hours ago, josselin said:

Hi All,

 

 I am bringing back the 12.9 spinnaker topic :

who has really used this system?

solo or duo?

can it be hoist like a normal assymetric spinnaker with a halyard & tackline?

In the Weta video  hoisting & retreaving kite he is furling with teh gennaker furling sytem. is it teh easiest way to do this?

I am often sailing with realy light wind (around 10knots or less) and I am wondering how much this spinnaker woudl help me to have more fun in light light breeze.

 

 Thanks

 

 Joss

Joss, I am going to comment on a 75% custom spinnaker I had made (not the wetas 12.9). Mine must be 10? 11m2?

At 75% the spinnaker still furls and can live hoisted (I've tested it up to 22kt winds)

With this, the only hassle you have is to tighten the halyard for furling and easing it a bit for using it. But nothing like the mess it is shown with the 12.9

The gains in light wind are real. Still not fun, but at least you will move. But the main gain is not speed, it's angle. You will not go faster and you will not be able to reach, which is one of the most enjoyable things with the original screecher. What a spinnaker gets you is VMG. Lots of VMG. In 20kt winds, I do 10-11kt downwind gybing through 60deg (30from ddw). The VMG is amazing. In low and medium winds you will gybe through 90deg instead of 120 as with the screecher.

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The 12.9 spinnaker is a "one-trick" pony. You can go pretty deep with it, but you won't go very fast. The standard spinnaker, combined with the center board pulled halfway, will be faster and allow some leeway to get nearly as deep. Bigger is not always better - shape and course have a lot to do with things.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Am pleased to advise the Australian Weta Titles have been run n won in a carefully covid safe environment.

But that was the only safe thing ... ambulance trip, one boat destroyed, many many 'choc tops' ... but many many many smiles on faces!

A severely diminished fleet of 19 (due to a container of new boats still at sea after 6 months still waiting & at least 12 boats staying at home due to jitters over covid border closures) took to Lake Illawarra, just south of Sydney for a mixture of short and long courses.
Range of conditions from a solid southerly in the invitation, to a drifter for first heat, to honking NEers when we didn't get the full schedule in as kicked to 30 knots ... but with big blue skies!
Final heat saw absolute champagne Weta sailing conditions with sunny day, dead flat water and 12-15 knots - bliss (it didn't last though!)

Winners:
1up - local boy John Richardson blitzed the start of the regatta with a series of bullets & was never headed - even with a trip to hospital for deciding to implant his c/board into his leg in a wild nosedive.
2up - myself (a recalcitrant mainsheet cleater - see previous discussion) & my crew Phoebe, got the biz done in some pretty interesting conditions.
Teams Trophy - New South Wales nailed those naughty other states to the wall
and
the highly coveted Pickle Fork Award (biggest stuff up) was taken out by Victorian Andrew Boyes for one race a spectacular prawn trawling, and another losing his boat not once, but twice!

It was a truly memorable regatta.

Here are some images to enjoy - the winners, some of the fleet, plus a bit of action. 
Also a link to a bit of video of me in Heat 4 (long race) 

 

the 1up winner JR.jpg

winner 2up.jpg

269811649_4656084561165187_1357614563255353506_n.jpg

bit wet.jpg

more action.jpg

some of the action.jpg

wet oopsies.jpg

rob sending it.jpg

1432651973_wetainsects1.jpg

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53 minutes ago, Chidz said:

myself (a recalcitrant mainsheet cleater - see previous discussion)

Very glad you're back.  Thanks for the report and vids/pics.

I admit it, I am the kinda guy that will stop and look at a train wreck. So, tell us more, how was 

59 minutes ago, Chidz said:

one boat destroyed

?

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3 hours ago, unShirley said:

Very glad you're back.  Thanks for the report and vids/pics.

I admit it, I am the kinda guy that will stop and look at a train wreck. So, tell us more, how was 

?

Steve bought my old 2009 boat (while waiting for a new one in the container) which I had been using as a loaner for demos. It came with an early Norths Jib and the clew tore off (not sure why) and the sail started sliding up the forestay.

He managed to finish but the wind was getting up and he couldn’t get the sail down or tack. Just before getting into the shallows near an island, he tried to gybe but instead accelerated into a rock which pushed the Daggerboard back - slicing open the Daggerboard slot leaving a hole in the bottom of the hull and a chunk out of the Daggerboard. Also broke the rudder in the shallows.

He won the pickle fork award for that day not only for trying to move the island but for breaking the tiller extension which caught on the ground as he was launching.

Photo album:https://photos.app.goo.gl/skM4gZdMXZrHnSVXA

 

 

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actually - a couple of minor corrections:
- It all happened as he invoked the Pickle Folk Fairies wrath by placing a repair on his jib pre-race in the shape of a P.F. ... I bore witness to said atrocity and deliberate provocation
- [might be wrong on this one] it was his tack that pulled out allowing jib to gravitate upwards
- it was in front of the c/board case that got destroyed  .... and I mean destroyed - bottom of the hull was opened like with a can opener for about a foot & look down the case & there was nothing left of the front of the case

We repaired it immediately with gaff tape, but he was a bit reluctant to try it out - sook

I'll try and find pics - they are around

And he did move the island

it was a mess

and thanks @unShirley

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That  Lake Illawarra sea breeze sure does blow!!!!

I guess the locals are used to it.

Also impressive hiking in the video.

Would the boat be more stable down wind with the crew on the back of the main hull in a blow?

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3 minutes ago, bushsailor said:

That  Lake Illawarra sea breeze sure does blow!!!!

I guess the locals are used to it.

Also impressive hiking in the video.

Would the boat be more stable down wind with the crew on the back of the main hull in a blow?

thank you - I get myself into a comfortable position and just go for it
good question re the crew position - many find that ... my preference is not too far back as get in my road if I have to get in suddenly. Positioning of my weight (being a big fat toad) I find more critical ( downwind I hike off the back of the arms in a big blow - but that is my preference & I find it fast & controllable 

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here is a pic of the damage

here you are looking at the bottom of the boat, with the bow toward the bottom of the picture & stern. to the top - as you can just see (looks more spectacular from above) there is no front of case

sub damage.jpg

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my opinion (and is only opinion) is that he had c/board right down, hit hard, chunked out rear of case and then board pivoted forward and down blowing out front of case & bottom

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56 minutes ago, bushsailor said:

Would the boat be more stable down wind with the crew on the back of the main hull in a blow?

I usually sit on the back of the amas downwind because you can keep your weight back and out at the same time. If it’s blowing over (say) 25 knots and rough then you have to move to the back of the main hull to keep the nose from digging in - although you also have to go more downwind as you can’t counter the heal so much.

if you have the harness you can go for the “widow maker” position astride the rear ama upright.

But if all depends on the doughnut factor. 

 

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10 hours ago, Pewit said:

I usually sit on the back of the amas downwind because you can keep your weight back and out at the same time.

I use to do that but am no longer capable of getting back up onto the tramp from that position.  Aging ain't for sissies.

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14 hours ago, Chidz said:

here is a pic of the damage

here you are looking at the bottom of the boat, with the bow toward the bottom of the picture & stern. to the top - as you can just see (looks more spectacular from above) there is no front of case

sub damage.jpg

Well, at least he can now make a proper fitting cb case in one of the old boats

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Thanks for breathing new life into this thread.  Really enjoying all the photos and the slightly embellished story.

I think I only noticed one pin head main.  Was it competitive?

 

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I've owned every sail Weta has ever offered for the boat. Far and away the best of the bunch in any and all conditions is the dacron pinhead model. It's better than any of the mylar pinheads in light air and more powerful than the squaretop in good wind.

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41 minutes ago, Tom Kirkman said:

I've owned every sail Weta has ever offered for the boat. Far and away the best of the bunch in any and all conditions is the dacron pinhead model. It's better than any of the mylar pinheads in light air and more powerful than the squaretop in good wind.

How would YOU know whats best in light winds? ;-) Wink wink, sarcasm font

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2 hours ago, Tom Kirkman said:

I've owned every sail Weta has ever offered for the boat. Far and away the best of the bunch in any and all conditions is the dacron pinhead model. It's better than any of the mylar pinheads in light air and more powerful than the squaretop in good wind.

That hasn't been the experience in our fleet and we have had back-to- back testing - we had 19 boats at the Australian Weta Nationals racing in conditions ranging from 5-10 knots to 25+. I've also raced at the same lake location with offshore winds blowing over 25 knots (so flat water) and I tried a pinhead - the Square tops did not loose out upwind and were faster off it. As you know, the aerodynamics of the Square Top are just more efficient at the top of the mast compared to the pinhead - otherwise why would every development class in the world have switched to square top sails? 
1810627361_pinheadvssquaretop.png.7bf84cef09e499a45d864d2640727d92.png

If you're light, don't hike from the amas and only sail in strong winds then the pinhead may be the best sail for you but it doesn't make it the same for everyone else.

 

Some research for you
https://www.saphireboats.com/blog/2018/02/28/head-affair-squaretop-vs-pinhead-mainsail
https://bethwaite360.com/square-head-vs-pin-head-rigs/

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I plan to do an analysis of crew weight vs race time using the data gathered from the Aus Nationals. We had three races in light wind ~ 8kts and three in strong wind ~ 18-25kts. My gut feeling is that in strong winds the heavier crews (1up or 2up) just lose by a slightly smaller percentage margin. In this regatta, the well-sailed lighter crews outgunned the heavier opposition regardless of conditions, with all but one using SQ mains.

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The "research" you cite does not take into account the particular cut of the Weta square top main, which features a huge amount of luff curve, causing the top of the sail to de-power as if you'd pulled on maximum cunningham. The fact is, the square top Weta sail is weak. Safer for beginners for sure, and that's not necessarily a bad thing, but it was simply too slow for my tastes.

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This is another project...

A cut-down Cherub kite which looks nice at least. It's a bit finer than the Weta big kite in the head, and seems to furl well. I didn't get a chance to use it yet, but will report back when I do.

20211230_100824.jpg

20211230_100909.jpg

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I have both a pinhead and a square top main.  I can't really sense a significant difference in performance.  I laid the pin top on top of the square top on a grassy lawn and was disappointed to find that the square top was only slightly bigger. The square top is much newer and has much more easily adjusted battens, so I think I can achieve better shape with it and therefore use it for racing. I use the pin top for daysailing primarily to save the "freshness" of the square top for racing.   Maybe somebody can contribute a post that lists the square footage for each.

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I believe the square top is 10 square feet larger than the mylar pin head. 100 sq ft vs 89 sq ft. The dacron pin head is also 89 sq ft but shapes differently than either of the mylar sails. 

To the best of my knowledge there have been no less than 6 different mainsails for the Weta since the boat’s inception. A white mylar pin-head, a dacron pin-head, a clear mylar pin-head, a mylar “storm sail” pin-head (all these made by Gastra) then a mylar pin-head and a mylar square top both made by North.

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I laid the two overtop and took a picture.  The square top definitely does not seem like 10-11 more square feet.  The luff is definitely curved more to get better shape.  Also why it's harder to hoist.  All 3 corners and foot line up perfectly.  Leach is slightly extended over the entire length. 

PXL_20210914_175512301.thumb.jpg.f1a0e464be62cf5f1fe6d9517dff2ed5.jpg

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After taking a bunch of measurements of each section of the sail and sketching into CAD, I came up with 89 cubic feet for the pintop and 94 cubic feet for the square top.  Could be off but I think 100 cubic feet is a stretch.

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1 minute ago, Boks said:

After taking a bunch of measurements of each section of the sail and sketching into CAD, I came up with 89 cubic feet for the pintop and 94 cubic feet for the square top.  Could be off but I think 100 cubic feet is a stretch.

I think you mean square feet...

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3 minutes ago, Boks said:

Correct, area, not volume.

but it seems right, by the pic...

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Which converted back into rest of world measurements makes the Pinhead 8.3 SqM and the Square Top 8.7 SqM.

Hmmmmm!

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5 hours ago, Boks said:

I laid the two overtop and took a picture.  The square top definitely does not seem like 10-11 more square feet.  The luff is definitely curved more to get better shape.  Also why it's harder to hoist.  All 3 corners and foot line up perfectly.  Leach is slightly extended over the entire length. 

PXL_20210914_175512301.thumb.jpg.f1a0e464be62cf5f1fe6d9517dff2ed5.jpg

The additional luff curve on the square top was not to obtain "better shape." It was intended to automatically depower the sail in higher winds. When Weta was developing the sail they knew that a sail that added more area for better performance in light air might also cause overpowering issues when the wind grew stiffer. Therefore they built in more luff curve which has the same effect as pulling on more cunningham to flatten the top of the sail and cause it to twist off easily in higher winds. This is why the square top sail is so much more gentle and less powerful than the pin-head sails as the wind increases.

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Note that the sq top also has more battens.  Might want to look at the batten construction for whether or not they are tapered (in both) and where the tapers start to determine where on the mainsail the max luff occurs which is what is one of the more important things that determine drive (especially upwind).  Suggest the following article.  

 http://www.fxsails.com/squaretoparticle.php

Personally, I like sq tops if my boat is always "seeking power" in the winds I sail.  However, for those few boats I've owned that were tender (felt like reefing more often), then I liked the pin tops since didn't need to dump the main or travel down as quickly.

The idea that the sq top "blows off" in a gust is pretty much bogus unless you have a top angle batten that is so wimpy it might as well be a soda straw.  

 

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The battens are not tapered although the top one is thinner as the original one supplied was too stiff.

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6 hours ago, Boks said:

I laid the two overtop and took a picture.  The square top definitely does not seem like 10-11 more square feet.  The luff is definitely curved more to get better shape.  Also why it's harder to hoist.  All 3 corners and foot line up perfectly.  Leach is slightly extended over the entire length. 

PXL_20210914_175512301.thumb.jpg.f1a0e464be62cf5f1fe6d9517dff2ed5.jpg

The difference on the luff side means that there's a deeper luff curve. I am inclined to think that for light air, if you put significant tension on the battens, in particular the top 3 (including the gaff batten there), you'll end up with a main that is pretty difficult to hoist, but is noticeably more powered up

Modern rigs with mylar square-top mains and bendy masts react really well when you put a ton of batten tension on the top half of the sail. On the UFO we put a ridiculous amount of batten tension (see here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JYKXCTZDuWY ). Other foilers do the same.

So crank that tension up, all the way to "for the life of me I can't hoist this @#$% sail", and then hoist anyway with some lubrication and bending of the mast towards the stern to match the luff curve (maybe abusing the spi halyard for this?).

 

It'll also be tricky to pop the battens on tacks and gybes.

Should be good all the way to 10-12kt TWS with quite a bit more power, and yet a bit of cunningham should tame the beast if the wind picks up.

On modern square top mains, if you are not (ab)using batten tension to build up curve, in light to medium air your big main is just big drag. From 10-12kt TWS onwards I'd start evening out batten tension across the sail, still tight but not "can't hoist" tight. Past 18kt I'd remove tension from top 2 battens - just take the wrinkles out, barely.

Has anyone tried something like this? 

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1 hour ago, martin 'hoff said:

Has anyone tried something like this? 

No but I intend to.

I’ve found it help to leave the Gennaker halyard slack when raising the SQ main as it allows more flex at the mast head.

Regards

Paul

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7 hours ago, Pewit said:

No but I intend to.

I’ve found it help to leave the Gennaker halyard slack when raising the SQ main as it allows more flex at the mast head.

Regards

Paul

I'll be interested to hear how it behaves.

Wrt to the gennaker halyard I would go much further. Detach it from the gennaker and have a friend pull it hard standing well astern. Not just slack, you want to positively bend it until the mast comfortably absorbs the luff curve.

For the hoist to succeed you need the track to be in good condition.

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1 hour ago, martin 'hoff said:

Wrt to the gennaker halyard I would go much further. Detach it from the gennaker and have a friend pull it hard standing well astern. Not just slack, you want to positively bend it until the mast comfortably absorbs the luff curve.

I think the easy way to do that would be to tie it the gennaker halyard to the transom bar while you hoist  - although I can see that the head of the main could get stuck on the halyard.

Also I copied one of our leading sailors at the Australian Nationals last week who had moved the side stay adjusters to the second hole from the bottom which induces significant mast bend. Certainly made a difference to my pointing ability.

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13 hours ago, martin 'hoff said:

So crank that tension up

How many turns on the batten tightening screw?  I am still experimenting. The last time I used my square top, IIRC, I put 5 turns on the top and bottom battens and 4 turns on the others.  I have also crudely tapered my battens with an orbital sander.  I haven't had any problem hoisting my main and I do have to pop the top batten.  Maybe my hoist is easy because I have my stays shackled to the ama (eliminated the adjuster), or, because I need still more batten tension?

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30 minutes ago, unShirley said:

How many turns on the batten tightening screw?  I am still experimenting. The last time I used my square top, IIRC, I put 5 turns on the top and bottom battens and 4 turns on the others.  I have also crudely tapered my battens with an orbital sander.  I haven't had any problem hoisting my main and I do have to pop the top batten.  Maybe my hoist is easy because I have my stays shackled to the ama (eliminated the adjuster), or, because I need still more batten tension?

How much depends on the wind you are sailing in that day.  Do you have teltales on your leach, how is the flow off the back?  How does the luff pocket look going up (too much tension would make the pocket too far forward)?  When you tapered your battens, where did you begin the taper as that is where your max camber is supposed to be.  Generally speaking, you need more tension higher up simply because there is more roach higher up.  If the breeze is medium for your winds, you ought not have to pop the battens on a tack.  Experience in the conditions is the only rule.  Since it is PITA to lower the sail to adjust batten tension you are left with playing with it over time.

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5 hours ago, unShirley said:

How many turns on the batten tightening screw?  I am still experimenting. The last time I used my square top, IIRC, I put 5 turns on the top and bottom battens and 4 turns on the others.  I have also crudely tapered my battens with an orbital sander.  I haven't had any problem hoisting my main and I do have to pop the top batten.  Maybe my hoist is easy because I have my stays shackled to the ama (eliminated the adjuster), or, because I need still more batten tension?

"5 turns from what baseline?". I suggest taking baseline at the point where the batten holds shape up and needs to be popped (see the UFO batten video). That's baseline / minimum for the top 3-4 battens. So I'd try, from gaff batten down

  • 4 half turns on the gaff batten
  • 3 half turns
  • 2 half turns
  • 1 half turns

remaining battens just enough that you have to pop them.

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36 minutes ago, martin 'hoff said:

"5 turns from what baseline?". I suggest taking baseline at the point where the batten holds shape up and needs to be popped (see the UFO batten video). That's baseline / minimum for the top 3-4 battens. So I'd try, from gaff batten down

  • 4 half turns on the gaff batten
  • 3 half turns
  • 2 half turns
  • 1 half turns

remaining battens just enough that you have to pop them.

Also remember that neither mainsails nor battens are held to precision tolerances.  So different mainsails or battens may require more or fewer turns.  Also someone whose windspeed never gets much above 10 will have more fun with fewer turns since it is really not much fun to pop the top battens from below over and over and over again (sorta slow that way).

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15 minutes ago, MultiThom said:

Also remember that neither mainsails nor battens are held to precision tolerances.  So different mainsails or battens may require more or fewer turns.  Also someone whose windspeed never gets much above 10 will have more fun with fewer turns since it is really not much fun to pop the top battens from below over and over and over again (sorta slow that way).

Right, so given the lack of precision, "it pops" is a good reference baseline. And you do have to experiment, find what's the max camber you can put into it and still pop them, and also what are good techniques to pop them when they are in high tension.

If your wind is in the 5-10kt range, I think you'll want to have the camber. It is annoying to tack and gybe, but it really drives the boat.

Below 5kt the flow detaches if you have too much camber, so it's back to gradually straightening to keep flow attached. So cunningham on if the wind increases, above 10kt, and cunningham on if it drops below 5. Call us crazy.

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Can also use less stiff battens if you are routinely in lighter breezes, makes them easier to pop but still support the leach.  

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I don't remember if it was on their website, Weta's or was something they sent me in an email response but somewhere there is a directive from North on how much tension they believed was best for the square top sail for the Weta. I cannot recall their instructions to the letter, but it seems like they said to run the tensioners up until the battens were snug (not bent) and then add one-half additional turn. They indicated that light batten tension was better for their sail.

FWIW here's the North Sails video on general tensioning sails with the rocket tensioners: https://www.northsails.com/sailing/en/2016/04/video-how-to-tension-full-length-battens

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Might ask yourself what do battens do?  Short answer, they provide support for roach which is the amount of the sail that extends beyond the straight line between head and clew.  Old style sails used battens that had pockets sewn into the leach, interior to those pockets were elastic bands that served to provide tension to the leach.  Too little batten tension in the extreme can be seen on Fboats who forgot to put the gaff batten in when they hoisted (happens more often than you would think).  Top of the sail just sorta flopped around.  The following picture is what too little batten tension looks like on a more modern full length batten sail.  Too much batten tension and your sail won't tack without popping it over and too much batten tension over time will cause problems at the luff tape where the batten is being squashed against the mast.  

image.png.fb2d2a3ee3577083ce71f0ef18dac5f4.png

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5 hours ago, MultiThom said:

Too much batten tension and your sail won't tack without popping it over and too much batten tension over time will cause problems at the luff tape where the batten is being squashed against the mast.  

Weta sails have batten caps, so unless there's a problem with the caps, luff tape should not be affected.

 

8 hours ago, Tom Kirkman said:

I don't remember if it was on their website, Weta's or was something they sent me in an email response but somewhere there is a directive from North on how much tension they believed was best for the square top sail for the Weta. I cannot recall their instructions to the letter, but it seems like they said to run the tensioners up until the battens were snug (not bent) and then add one-half additional turn. They indicated that light batten tension was better for their sail.

Perhaps. I'll note that the UFO sail has very similar construction to the modern Weta square top, and both are made by North. And yes, I'm sure light batten tension is better for the sail (which might not be for the sailor who wants to go fast). If you want the top 1/3 of the sail to work in light air, you ought to give it shape, and batten tension on laminate sails is the way. The magic of modern sails is that you can depower them by flattening them with the cunningham. 

8 hours ago, Tom Kirkman said:

FWIW here's the North Sails video on general tensioning sails with the rocket tensioners: https://www.northsails.com/sailing/en/2016/04/video-how-to-tension-full-length-battens

That's a dacron sail. Love dacron, but laminate sails on performance boats are