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prod performance worth it?


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i have a good deal option on an A kite for a 20K# 41 cruiser. 

No prod currently on the bow, but considering adding one.  it would be a bit wonky given the busy

configuration up front.  (two headstays, two anchor rollers)

 so im wondering what the performance diff would be using a prod vs just tag lined to the bow.

 

i'm mostly concerned w deep angles, say aft of 140 AWA.   TWS north of 10kts.

 

thx,

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In general A-Kites work well tacked to junk on the bow if they are cut big and proper to fly with the shoulder lifted out from behind the mainsail leech. That causes it to rotate a little to windward if sailing deep. Otherwise the strop to the bow is a liability. A sailmaker can make a nice flying kite for that. You might get lucky with the used one.

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I bought a used one off craigslist last year and have been contemplating the exact same thing.  I have a 42' that weighs around 28,000.  I have been flying it off my Rocna rollbar but only in non-sporty conditions.  When running dead downwind, I'll drop the main.  Of course, this is cruising config not racing.  Flying the main, I can get about 140 or so. 

I have the Rocna secured with lines so as to not spool out 320' of chain and sink the whole damn setup.  I'd like to get a prod but...

These pictures don't really add much to the discussion but I'm trapped at the hospital right now and just like looking at my boat.  Goddamn I have a lot of shit on there.  This is coming back from the San Juans last year.

 1559493555_IMG_1491(1).thumb.jpg.99ea71c452cbefa96480dccee74a2e97.jpg

IMG_20200810_122721.thumb.jpg.c80d0414a87aef292222489a10d64078.jpg

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We used an asymm flying from the anchor roller on a Bristol 45.5 (40,000 lbs). Was it as effective as it would have been with a sprit - No; did it meet our needs - Yes. Didn't fly it at night, just too big to deal with if conditions deteriorated but very useful downwind for long distance cruising.

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My boat is about half that displacement and I use the anchor roller.  The anchor locker would probably keep me from mounting a retractable prod.  I have a fractional rig and with the main, the asym won't go very deep, which brings me to this question and thread jack (but maybe will be useful to the OP on getting a prod, and definitely to me):  Any hints on making gybing easier and more successful?  Without the prod, I am guessing outside is best.  Last time I had it up (this last Monday) an outside gybe, in shifty winds I am telling myself, had multiple wraps in different directions!  Took quite a while to clean it up.  Someone mentioned a light single line to attach the sheets (3/8" double braid sheets) to, but not sure how that works.  I also have not tried to center the main before gybing the asym to give it more air.  Meant to, forgot to.  Other than gybing and not being able to sail deep, it works great.

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15 minutes ago, bridhb said:

Someone mentioned a light single line to attach the sheets (3/8" double braid sheets) to, but not sure how that works.

We use a roughly 1meter pendant made of dyneema. That is permanently spliced to the clew of the sail and then the sheets are attached to it. 

We changed to outside jibes and attached a batten that sticks out at the bow. 

I fly off of the pole and pull it back a bit if we need to go deep. 

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13 minutes ago, Alex W said:

We use a roughly 1meter pendant made of dyneema. That is permanently spliced to the clew of the sail and then the sheets are attached to it. 

We changed to outside jibes and attached a batten that sticks out at the bow. 

I fly off of the pole and pull it back a bit if we need to go deep. 

Does the pendant make outside gybing easier?  Does the light weight allow the sail to fly forward a bit?  Not sure I understand the use of a batten?  I need to get this gybing issue solved!

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4 minutes ago, bridhb said:

Does the pendant make outside gybing easier?  Does the light weight allow the sail to fly forward a bit?  Not sure I understand the use of a batten?  I need to get this gybing issue solved!

The batten - helps stop the lazy sheet fall over the outboard end of the pole/bow. 

The pendant usually has less drag on the headstay during jybe and less weight directly on clew in light air.

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Depends a lot on your J dimension.  If you can't get the kite tacked far enough away from the base of the mast, then the asym is likely not worth it, especially for a heavier boat.  If the mast is farther back on the boat, it could be a significant boost.

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Possibly I'm guilty of sloth, but on a kruuzer the easiest way to gybe is with a sock.  My tack line comes off my bow roller - I transfer to the pole when I need more rotation.  My pole stores on my mast with the topping lift attached. My foreguy / preventer and afterguy / spinsheet / reaching genoa sheet (through a twing) are pre-rigged, in passage mode, so it's an easy connect /disconnect. Apologies if this is common knowledge/practice to most cruisers. 

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I always make a Kite required for my chartering.  90% of the kites that come with charter boats are junk except this one (North) which sailed like a dream.

image.thumb.png.a32672d85b5fc761862da66727332068.png

Good luck with a Craigslist kite.

FWIW, I've found a boat that offers a symmetrical chute and carbon pole.  That one made me a repeat customer.

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I've never sailed with a bowsprit, but my impression is that they work best for boats that are fast enough to keep the apparent wind fairly far forward.  For deep apparent wind angles, one is supposed to ease the tack-line allowing the luff to pull to windward.  Which sounds great in theory. The problem I've encountered is that every wind shift/lull will collapse the A-kite behind the main, requiring you to head up to re-fill it (often to the point that I might as well just sail the higher angle and more distance).   What works for me is to guy the tack a little way windward and aft with a spinnaker pole, if you've got one.  Then the guy holds the bottom of the sail far enough out to keep it filled and stable. 

You can use the lazy sheet for the guy, but that will make gybing tricky as you switch sheets, so I keep a separate guy line on each side.

For cruising gybes, I've played with easing the tack line way out, which allows the kite to lift well away/forward of the stay.  This lets me gybe inside the luff, but outside the headstay, even without a bowsprit.  Note that I haven't tried this in any very strong wind, but for cruising, I keep the kite for light air.  Seems to work OK the few times I tried it (YMMV), and sure beats the number of times the lazy sheet fell under the bow. 

 

 

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12 hours ago, bridhb said:

 Any hints on making gybing easier and more successful?  Without the prod, I am guessing outside is best.  Last time I had it up (this last Monday) an outside gybe, in shifty winds I am telling myself, had multiple wraps in different directions!  Took quite a while to clean it up.  

Hoisting a jib or large staysail for the gybe to prevent the kite from wrapping around the forestay can be a big help in challenging conditions or while learning a new sail.

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13 hours ago, Alberta said:

Hoisting a jib or large staysail for the gybe to prevent the kite from wrapping around the forestay can be a big help in challenging conditions or while learning a new sail.

good call,  

 we have a genny on the most forward roller, and we could just unroll a bit and sheet tight.

  gonna try without the prod initially, and see how it goes..

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13 hours ago, estarzinger said:

Spinnaker nets used to be a mainstay among cruisers and the shorthanded transpac crowd.  But I dont think I have head anyone mention one in some years now.  Stan Honey had a design he perfected posted somewhere.

Yep, but they were up all the time for the inevitable big round down, IOR gybe broach crash.

To gybe your ayso just unroll a bit of headsail if you're worried about a forestay wrap.

In many dinghies we sheet the kite in as we bear off. Gybe, plaster the kite into the jib, then pull it through the slot over the jib. It avoids the wrap of the flogging kite. Feels weird to start with effectively backing the kite, but if your timing is good it hardly touches the jib and doesn't really back..

Not sure how it would work on a yacht with the smaller gap between kite and forestay.

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On 4/29/2021 at 9:22 PM, Alberta said:

Hoisting a jib or large staysail for the gybe to prevent the kite from wrapping around the forestay can be a big help in challenging conditions or while learning a new sail.

Thanks.  I usually leave the jib/genoa up while hoisting.  I also seem to always forget to center the main while trying to outside gybe the asym.  Good suggestions to try here!

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