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Staysails: How many and what kind(s)


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We spend a lot of time reaching along the coast due to the exigencies of racing with limited committee support driving the use of ATON.

The space between my downwind tack and mast is about 50% of the mast height. (20.5 to 42.5')

what's current thinking on staysails with Genoa/Drifter/JibTop (Photo) or Asymmetric?

what Percentage of hoist and "J"?

 

 

Lioness_Drifter_large.jpg

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We had fun with a staysail on the Marblehead-Halifax race once. Hoisted it, luffing, speed went up.  Trimmed it in, speed went down.  Took it down, speed dropped further. Hoisted and left it so half was luffing, speed increased above full luff.  Won our division.  This sail was rather narrow, and went up about 20' or so on 42'  S&S sloop.   

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If you have the room and budget for a furling staysail, they're pretty damn good in a racing situation. Although if it's light wind you don't want anything up there to block wind from getting to your other headsail...

My experience is with modern racer cruisers, but we use ours with our Code 0's and assymetrical kites, and we have two, one furling 'genoa staysail' which is for reaching and hoists on the pole topper, and one Spinnaker staysail which is basically an ultralight headsail that flies off the headfoil. They give us between 1-2 knots extra int the right conditions. 

 

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We sailed an H-28 that had a mule. Too much hassle to get the boom or sprit settled on the triatic stay and then even more to reset it for the other gybe.  Only useful on really long hauls and even then not big enough to do much 

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14 hours ago, PaulK said:

We had fun with a staysail on the Marblehead-Halifax race once. Hoisted it, luffing, speed went up.  Trimmed it in, speed went down.  Took it down, speed dropped further. Hoisted and left it so half was luffing, speed increased above full luff.  Won our division.  This sail was rather narrow, and went up about 20' or so on 42'  S&S sloop.   

These are the fascinating anecdotes of we amateur aerodynamiscists. All so endlessly fascinating. "Why is that?"

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The mizzen staysail is known as the “Half Knot Sail.” 

Speed goes up a half knot when you set it.

Speed goes up a half knot when you take it down.

I have never been able to use this to ratchet speed up 10 knots by rapidly setting and dousing the staysail 20 times.

SHC

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1 hour ago, Steve Clark said:

The mizzen staysail is known as the “Half Knot Sail.” 

Speed goes up a half knot when you set it.

Speed goes up a half knot when you take it down.

I have never been able to use this to ratchet speed up 10 knots by rapidly setting and dousing the staysail 20 times.

SHC

You are correct, you should have seen a 20knt increase in speed.

I have never been on a boat that wasn't cutter rigged, that had a staysail, but those IMOCA 60's blast reaching with a dozen (obviousl exageration) of them set sure looks cool and fast.

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Staysails are defiantly specialty sails.  I have had good luck with GS (Genoa Staysails) and SS (Spinnaker Staysails) on a lot of boats.   For around the cans stuff you need the crew work dialed in so that its not slowing the boat down setting it up.   If the #3's up at the top mark, we generally leave it up until the first gybe.  The bow team will host the SS and we drop the J3 in the gybe and deploy the SS once the kite fills.   

The GS is used on a long reach inside either a J1 sheeted out board, or a JT.   They do help balance the helm on long reaching legs, great for point to point racing.    

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Staysails primary benifit is increasing flow behind the mainsail.  On spinnaker staysails we usually trim the bottom 2/3s and let the top break slightly. So yeah, I can see how a mild luff could increase speed while over sheeting will slow you down.

       Staysails biggest impediment is disturbing air into the spinnaker in light and lumpy conditions. Sometimes finding the right crossover can be a point of debate.

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11 hours ago, SloopJonB said:

How many ya got?

J/News Articles: J/121 EAGLE Triple-slotting & Going Fast!

All of those plus the an inner staysail and the  Mizzen staysail ... 

Planning to use the existing Halyard at 27.5' and the old pole lift at 21.25' ("I=42.5"). 

Pardon the Trigonometry, all dimensions are rough for purposes of calculating, and the LP on the staysails is a placeholder. 

Lioness Reaching Headsail plan     Measurement Height Halyard Stay Head angle Stay Deck Angle  Tack Height above reference      Luff MAX        
    Drifter/JibTop/Assym spinnaker I0 42.5 25.9 64.1 0.5 <-- sprit   46.8        
    OFF wind staysail I2 27.5 26.1 63.9 0.25     30.4        
    genoa I 42.5 20.2 69.8 2 <-- Furler   43.4        
    Upwind Staysail I3 21.25 20.6 69.4 0.25     22.5        
  LP %      Fore base Tack vs Forestay LP intersection dis horizontally from tack at TH Clew Height above reference Clew past TH Clew from tack parallel to Ref line Foot MAX   Area 100%   Area
  150% Drifter/JibTop/Assym spinnaker J0 (5' SPRIT) 20.6 -5 34.3 4 1.70 36.0 36.2   438   722.7
  125% OFF wind staysail J2 (Mooring CLEAT) 13.5 2.1 18.8 4 1.84 20.6 21.0   186   256.6
  155% genoa J 15.6 0 25.8 2 0.00 25.8 25.8   332   524.7
  125% Upwind Staysail J3 (track)  8.00 7.6 10.7 2 0.66 11.3 11.5   85   112.4
                             
                             
                             

 

Most likely we will use in pairs: Something like this.... 

Deeper VMG Reaches  (135-165 TWA): Asymmetric on Sprit and Spinnaker Staysail on 27.5' hoist tacked to weather stanchion base about midpoint of sprit to mast, with Mizzen staysail tacked to weather aft lower shroud

Broad Reaching:(105-135 TWA) Sprit: Drifter/Jibtob & Spoin Staysail (27.5' hoist tacked on midline at midpoint of Sprit to Mast (10 ' from mast) with Mizzen Staysail tacked to weather working jib track (half beam) 

Close Reaching:(65-105 TWA) Forestay: Genoa & Inner staysail (21.256' hoist) tacked at midline, midpoint of forestay to mast (7.5'), mizzen staysail tacked to near midline 

We can carry the Mizzen staysail reasonably close upwind as shown below. 

IMG_4220.thumb.jpeg.283de1c8b94093524c15d23dd685127d.jpeg

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I have a cutter/ketch, the furling staysail is useful to about 135 with the full genoa, but by that time I've usually switched over to a spin and tallboy (full hoist, very short foot, maybe 11').    Like you, I'll move the mizzen staysail tack around pending the wind angle.  Mine is fairly full bellied, so my struggle is avoiding the split backstay.  I'd like a more flat one for close reaching.  Christmas gift maybe ;-)   For my boat it is a powerhouse of a sail, not to mention a lot of fun to play with.   As far as percentages?  No idea.  

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5 hours ago, bosundog said:

For my boat it is a powerhouse of a sail, not to mention a lot of fun to play with. 

We've used the Mizzen Staysail very effectively. For what it's worth, mine is a recent (2018?) Tri-radial from Hood/Quantum, bought from SF Loft, but apparently designed in either NZ or OZ, replacing a Miter cut 1962 sail that was shredding in use.  It sets reasonably flat with halyard tension, as shown with the Main Boom about 20 degrees off centerline. I've toyed with a shorter foot "blade" idea, much like your main's Tallboy for even higher angles but would be tacking it in the companionway/cockpit... so no go. 

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My "Tallboy" is a spinnaker staysail - I don't have a pic of it from outside the boat, the clew nearly matches up with the spin, slightly inside.    And since mine is a ketch (higher mizzen mast) with split backstay on the main, I can't quite get that nice full hoist on the mizzen staysail that it looks like you get.  

TallBoy.JPG

MizzenSnip.JPG

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There are multiple factors to consider when choosing your headsail setup. The most important is looks, so you should always go for as many headsails as possible.

On our boat we have 3 forestays, the inner two are the reasonable ones, the outer is just because the previous owner had the idea to deck step the mast to gain 2 meters of mast length. But I like it in light air...

So if the conditions are right we set:

inner jib (lowish clew 100% to bow, approx 3/4 hoist) 

Outer jib (high clew 100% from end of bowspirit, hoist approx 50 cm up from inner but still very fractional)

Topsail (hoisted on the masttop stay, but foot around 2 meters from the low point of the stay)

We also fly a mizzen staysail for aestetic reasons.

Honestly, especially in lighter conditions we should use our masttop genoa, but being doublehanded ww like to be able to just roll away most of the foresails. And three headsails makes you look much better!

One more point that I should try more often is to play with the tack point of the mizzen staysail, but then i dont really have that much beam to change the angle anyways...

20210929_095759.jpg

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