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Code Zero vs Asym


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Which part of the PNW?  Down in Seattle most of our sailing is up or downwind, so beam reaching/close reaching sails like a code zero don’t get used as often.  So I would pick an asym spinnaker over a code zero. 

If my boat were in Anacortes and I was sailing a lot through the San Juan’s and in the Strait my choice might be different. 

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1 hour ago, Alex W said:

Which part of the PNW?  Down in Seattle most of our sailing is up or downwind, so beam reaching/close reaching sails like a code zero don’t get used as often.  So I would pick an asym spinnaker over a code zero. 

If my boat were in Anacortes and I was sailing a lot through the San Juan’s and in the Strait my choice might be different. 

I sail the San Juan's and up into Canada (when the boarder is open).  I was leaning this way but wasn't sure if the code zero on a furler is a good idea for short handed sailing. 

 

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1 hour ago, SailSailSail said:

I sail the San Juan's and up into Canada (when the boarder is open).  I was leaning this way but wasn't sure if the code zero on a furler is a good idea for short handed sailing. 

 

If you already have a 150% genoa, a Code 0 may not be that much larger of a sail, and likely won't carry as much luff tension, so won't go upwind as well.  An asym that's easy to handle is probably a better bet as it will give you a lot more zip off the wind, and your 150 genoa will be giving you the upwind power.

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Agreed. A 150 instead of the default 135 is fair bit of sail area. An asym for downwind/reaching is way more useful IF you use it. It is surprising how many people have spinnakers but never take the trouble to hoist them. If it's more than 2 miles, it's going up.

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On cruising boats symetric kites are underated because people are scared of them. In light winds, the hard bit is going downwind and that's the best sail for this. In less than 15 knots (when you actually need the kite ), the pole is easy to handle, no need to be scared. And once the wind goes up, you take down the kite and use its pole to pole out the Genoa with the kite sheet and the downhaul + uphaul and it will be safe and easy.

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5 hours ago, Panoramix said:

On cruising boats symetric kites are underated because people are scared of them. In light winds, the hard bit is going downwind and that's the best sail for this. In less than 15 knots (when you actually need the kite ), the pole is easy to handle, no need to be scared. And once the wind goes up, you take down the kite and use its pole to pole out the Genoa with the kite sheet and the downhaul + uphaul and it will be safe and easy.

That’s a big simplification.  I don’t think “scared” necessarily captures it.  Some are scared, sure, of the power in such a sail, But I have often have almost zero desire to deal with a spinnaker, with all the various lines.  Extra cost, extra complexity.  Why bother, if not racing, for a little extra speed and better direction downwind?  Depends how much you care.  

Yeah, it’s supposedly purer sailing, and certainly more challenging, but it’s simply not terribly practical —and often not enjoyable to manage, for a shorthanded crew, especially launching and retrieving.  Maybe that’s just me - flying a symmetrical kite is hard work - fun sometimes, mostly not.

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22 minutes ago, Jud - s/v Sputnik said:

That’s a big simplification.  I don’t think “scared” necessarily captures it.  Some are scared, sure, of the power in such a sail, But I have often have almost zero desire to deal with a spinnaker, with all the various lines.  Extra cost, extra complexity.  Why bother, if not racing, for a little extra speed and better direction downwind?  Depends how much you care.  

Yeah, it’s supposedly purer sailing, and certainly more challenging, but it’s simply not terribly practical —and often not enjoyable to manage, for a shorthanded crew, especially launching and retrieving.  Maybe that’s just me - flying a symmetrical kite is hard work - fun sometimes, mostly not.

Let's agree that different folks have different ambitions when out pleasure sailing.  Or should we just add "lazy" to the list of reasons not to use a sym chute?

My wife and I enjoy using the chute if possible when we're daysailing or cruising (doublehanded, used to be 27' masthead, then a 30' frac, now a 35' masthead).  The increased speed, beauty, and interaction with the boat and each other easily offsets the complexity (?), cost ($0 since we race too), and two minutes of potential stress when setting and dousing.  We have two rules:  don't set if the wind's over 15 true, and don't jibe if it's over 12 true (douse and reset or reconsider).  If the numbers seem arbitrarily random it's because they're the result of some negotiation and ongoing tweaking!

The joy we both feel being better connected to the boat, each other, and our environment far outweighs any added workload or even the occassional snafu.  YMMV...

Cheers!

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, CriticalPath said:

Let's agree that different folks have different ambitions when out pleasure sailing.  Or should we just add "lazy" to the list of reasons not to use a sym chute?

YMMV...

 

Yes, yes, and yes.

As with many things, it also depends on various other factors and timing, etc.  (E.g., I wouldn’t bother with a symmetrical spinn offshore, at night.)  An asym just seems better all around?  
 

Or maybe a symmetrical is better/more versatile as a sail since it can be flown traditionally, or instead without a pole with one of the clews tacked to the bow, like an asym?  Not as good as a true asym, but more versatile as a sail since can be flown both ways, depending?  Just my inexperienced take on it.

@estarzingerhere talked (a few months ago) about having a drifter/reacher type sail for downwind in the Southern Ocean, I think, but also had an asym for use sometimes, depending on conditions.  Something like that.  

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Timing's everything, this little blurb just came out this morning from my sailmaker, Keven Piper at Bay Sails:

https://sailingincanada.canadianyachting.ca/sail-tech/5771-keven-talks-sails-do-you-need-a-spinnaker-for-cruising?oly_enc_id=1794I0346467C5U

True dat, I've noticed more boats flying a-sails when out daysailing/cruising on the Great Lakes than used to be, and many of them are the newer "cruising boats" as he's described them...

Cheers!

 

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2 hours ago, Jud - s/v Sputnik said:

 

@estarzingerhere talked (a few months ago) about having a drifter/reacher type sail for downwind in the Southern Ocean, I think, but also had an asym for use sometimes, depending on conditions.  Something like that.  

Here it is (the post I just referred to) - post from April 22 if the link doesn’t show properly: 

https://forums.sailinganarchy.com/index.php?/topic/221919-hank-on-sails-or-roller-furling-sails/&do=findComment&comment=7509340

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3 hours ago, CriticalPath said:

Or should we just add "lazy" to the list of reasons not to use a sym chute?

That's a lot of it.  I used our sym chute a lot on our catamaran because it was so easy to rig. 2 sheets and 2 guys, no pole. On our 30' boat we had a traditional sym chute with pole and it always felt like more work.

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I’m getting an A2. I sail short handed, I’m getting older, and I don’t race my cruiser. I think this will get most of the job done and be easier to handle with less lines and less to deal with if/when things go pear shaped. We will see.

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3 hours ago, loneshark64 said:

I’m getting an A2. I sail short handed, I’m getting older, and I don’t race my cruiser. I think this will get most of the job done and be easier to handle with less lines and less to deal with if/when things go pear shaped. We will see.

These are all true...but don't think you can't have things go pear shaped even with an asym.  For shorthanded sailing with an asym, I'm a big fan of an extra long tack line, and a retrieval line on the tack, led over the bowpulpit/lifelines and into the foredeck hatch.  Even if the wind gets suddenly sporty, and there isn't room to drive off and blanket the sail behind the main, you can dump the sheet, have someone on the retrieval line and halyard, then dump the tackline.  Chute flogs off downwind, and its pretty easy to pull into the foredeck hatch while spin halyard is eased...

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All of my bad wraps have been when using an asym on a boat without a sprit.  It’s easier to have fly too close to the forestay when doing a jibe. 

In the PNW we cruise with our asym, but bring the pole because useful to pull the sail to windward and go deeper. I’ll rig without the pole and see how it’s going.  If we’re going a long distance (hour plus) pretty deep it’s worth the extra few minutes to rig the pole and do less jibes. 

In the long run I think I’m going to rig a sprit to the boat. 

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On 12/23/2021 at 7:30 PM, Zonker said:

That's a lot of it.  I used our sym chute a lot on our catamaran because it was so easy to rig. 2 sheets and 2 guys, no pole. On our 30' boat we had a traditional sym chute with pole and it always felt like more work.

True. On a smallish boat, you can minimise the extra work by having the sheets always ready and use an end to end pole so that you need just one set of sheets doing both sheets and guys duties. If you keep the halyard and the sheets tied together, you can pull on what will serve as sheet to bring the 3 to leeward, attach them to the chute, connect the uphaul and the downhaul to the pole that was stored on deck, attach the pole to the mast and everything's rigged.

Once you are used to do it, it is a 5 minutes job.

Gybing with an end to end pole requires more skills especially short handed, so you either need to douse to gybe or learn how to do it.

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On 12/23/2021 at 10:10 AM, CriticalPath said:

Timing's everything, this little blurb just came out this morning from my sailmaker, Keven Piper at Bay Sails:

https://sailingincanada.canadianyachting.ca/sail-tech/5771-keven-talks-sails-do-you-need-a-spinnaker-for-cruising?oly_enc_id=1794I0346467C5U

True dat, I've noticed more boats flying a-sails when out daysailing/cruising on the Great Lakes than used to be, and many of them are the newer "cruising boats" as he's described them...

Cheers!

 

thanks for the link!  I hadn't ever seen that publication before

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2 hours ago, Panoramix said:

 

Gybing with an end to end pole requires more skills especially short handed, so you either need to douse to gybe or learn how to do it.

On my previous boat (which had a similar sail plan to a Catalina 30) I would keep one kite in a sock for single handed use.  I would sock, jibe, unsock.  That made everything really easy (but slow).  I did this with both sym and asym kites.  I built my sym setup with used pole and a cheap worn out kite before getting a good one.

The sock worked really well on that boat (a Pearson 28-2 with swept spreaders), but hangs up in the standing rigging on my current boat (an Express 37 with inline spreaders).  Same North sock design in both cases.  Maybe borrow one first or buy used?

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On 12/22/2021 at 1:28 PM, SailSailSail said:

I have a Catalina 30 in the PNW.  We suffer from light winds in the summer.  I fly a 150% Genoa in the summer but am thinking of adding a code zero or a asym for light wind reaching.  Any suggestions on which is better and what materials to use?

 

I just remembered this - good article on light air sails by Carol Hasse, famously and formerly (retired founder) of Hasse and Co. sails, now Port Townsend Sails (?):

https://www.porttownsendsails.com/pdf/cruising_in_light_air.pdf

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On 12/25/2021 at 2:43 PM, Jud - s/v Sputnik said:

I just remembered this - good article on light air sails by Carol Hasse, famously and formerly (retired founder) of Hasse and Co. sails, now Port Townsend Sails (?):

https://www.porttownsendsails.com/pdf/cruising_in_light_air.pdf

Great article!  Thank you for that.  I thought this company had closed when Carol retired. 

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