anyone know of a good article on downwind light air VMG sailing

Dog Watch

Super Anarchist
1,465
20
tired of hearing "but we go faster that direction!"

something on line would be nice
I think if you can't get up and plane then go as deep as you can with the kite floated out the front.
Surely depends on the boat! No? Try tellling that to the Transpac or VOR racers! (Or anything that doesn't plane, for that matter!)

SailingWorld has an excellent collection of articles on all sorts of subjects.

http://www.sailingworld.com/experts/how-to-make-the-most-of-the-least-part-i

http://www.sailingworld.com/experts/how-to-make-the-most-of-the-least-part-ii

That should be enough reading to get you started.

DW

 

DEAD MONEY

Super Anarchist
This has been a HUGE argument on our Boat for years. I am always arguing to steer to the Polars and to match the correct speed/angle and always try to be at the correct speed and being High or Low has nothing to do with it.....It is always about how fast we are going as we can Hit the Numbers going up wind (or pretty damn close).

The conflicting argument is to drive Deeper and screw the Polars....but we are woefully slower the deeper we go.

So which is it??? Steer to the Polars (Higher and Faster also Longer distance) or Low and Slow (shorter distance but slower)???

Please don't give me the standard....A Blend of the 2....down in the Puffs and Up in the Lulls, Duhh.....I'm a Black and White Guy....It's either Day or Night....She's Hot or She's Not.....Your Fast or Slow.....High or Low....you get the point....

 

Christian

Super Anarchist
Sail to max VMG - either use your wind instruments if they are properly calibrated or use a GPS set to a WP 1000 miles directly downwind. Experiment with you angles in different windspeeds to maximize VMG - those are your target angles. pretty simple actually

 
sail in VMG mode with a handheld GPS....it will tell you for sure which way gets you faster to the mark. I say steer to the polars unless you are at hull speed...then go deep...

This has been a HUGE argument on our Boat for years. I am always arguing to steer to the Polars and to match the correct speed/angle and always try to be at the correct speed and being High or Low has nothing to do with it.....It is always about how fast we are going as we can Hit the Numbers going up wind (or pretty damn close).

The conflicting argument is to drive Deeper and screw the Polars....but we are woefully slower the deeper we go.

So which is it??? Steer to the Polars (Higher and Faster also Longer distance) or Low and Slow (shorter distance but slower)???

Please don't give me the standard....A Blend of the 2....down in the Puffs and Up in the Lulls, Duhh.....I'm a Black and White Guy....It's either Day or Night....She's Hot or She's Not.....Your Fast or Slow.....High or Low....you get the point....
 
Thanks for the tips on the articles.

The problem I'm having is convincing others that slower is actually faster, nothing else. I know where the mark is, know the right angles to sail based on the polars (pretty much) but always end up with me saying "turn down! we're headed away from the mark" and the response is "but...."

 

Somebody Else

a person of little consequence
7,634
805
PNW
Dead Money, you're kind of missing the whole concept. If you're sailing to the polars you are maximizing your progress DDW. A polar plot gives a graphic representation of speed versus true wind angle. The point on a curve closest to the bottom of the chart is at the true wind angle for your best downwind VMG. If you can't sail to TWA for whatever reason (instruments, skill, whatever), race a Laser in the best fleet possible until working the sweet spot becomes 2nd nature.

I'm a Black and White Guy
Not going to happen. Sorry. The higher performance the boat, the more dynamic those numbers become.

Quick question: Do you know what an "apparent wind crash" is?

 

ropetrick

Super Anarchist
2,625
224
Quick question: Do you know what an "apparent wind crash" is?

That is when your father farts.

I'll get my coat.

 

Livia

Super Anarchist
4,011
1,080
Southern Ocean
This has been a HUGE argument on our Boat for years. I am always arguing to steer to the Polars and to match the correct speed/angle and always try to be at the correct speed and being High or Low has nothing to do with it.....It is always about how fast we are going as we can Hit the Numbers going up wind (or pretty damn close).

The conflicting argument is to drive Deeper and screw the Polars....but we are woefully slower the deeper we go.

So which is it??? Steer to the Polars (Higher and Faster also Longer distance) or Low and Slow (shorter distance but slower)???

Please don't give me the standard....A Blend of the 2....down in the Puffs and Up in the Lulls, Duhh.....I'm a Black and White Guy....It's either Day or Night....She's Hot or She's Not.....Your Fast or Slow.....High or Low....you get the point....
How can there be an argument about this on a Mumm 36 of all boats?

 

EWS

Super Anarchist
2,096
3
sailed a bit on the 10R's over the last few years...about the only angle the boat will sail to it's rating is 10-14 knots upwind. Downwind deep is key. It's not worth heating the boat up.....

 

gqchicago

Member
213
0
Chicago, IL
Race OD against some other similar boats if you can. I had similar questions or issues when I started driving the 36.7, but you race in a fleet of them, and it becomes obvious VERY quickly how you should be driving downwind. Simple really, follow the guys in front of you if they're going faster than you. In this sense, the comment about racing a laser is dead on.. or any OD boat really, but better in your own boat as they're all a little different.

The problem with non-OD is you're not going to learn a lot hanging out next to boats with poles that may sail different angles. Not sure how similar a FT10 is to a 10R, but that might be a good boat to compare against, or go sail on one and see what angles they sail. I think we've progressed more in the last few years of sailing OD though than in years of sailing PHRF, there's really nothing like learning from others on the same boat.

The black and white part of it is good too, "yes, those guys are faster than us downwind, we should be trying to imitate them more".

 

Wet Spreaders

Super Anarchist
2,496
291
SF Bay
On a J105, in light air, polars are your friend. In 14 to 20kts, you need to hunt for it. In >20 kts, go as deep as you can carry the kite.

 

casc27

Super Anarchist
2,353
134
On a J105, in light air, polars are your friend. In 14 to 20kts, you need to hunt for it. In >20 kts, go as deep as you can carry the kite.
Depends on whether or not the boat is on a plane......
I always have such a hard time convincing the pilot to ignore ATC direction (damn the FAA, do what I tell you) and turn down wind when my boat is on a plane.

 

DoRag

Super Anarchist
On a J105, in light air, polars are your friend. In 14 to 20kts, you need to hunt for it. In >20 kts, go as deep as you can carry the kite.
Depends on whether or not the boat is on a plane......
I always have such a hard time convincing the pilot to ignore ATC direction (damn the FAA, do what I tell you) and turn down wind when my boat is on a plane.
That's odd as the FAA is usually sleeping in the tower......

 

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