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The S-jibe defended (was sailing our creations)

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  • oneillparker
    ... Congratulations, you got my dander up with that comment.... First, my source: The Racing Edge by Ted Turner and Gary Jobson, 1979 Simon and Schuster.
    Message 1 of 17 , Sep 1, 2002
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      > > You're right! I wonder what else I got wrong!
      > >
      > My impression is just about everything!

      Congratulations, you got my dander up with that comment....

      First, my source: "The Racing Edge" by Ted Turner and Gary Jobson,
      1979 Simon and Schuster. Page 79: "Use an S-jibe to keep your boat
      under control when jibing in heavy wind."

      Second, my experience: The S-jibe is an easy maneuver for a small
      boat, and it works dramatically well.

      > In general, if you want to make a jibe without any drama, you
      should sheet
      > the main to the centerline while steering across the eye of the
      wind and let
      > the sheet out in a controlled manner once you've passed through the
      eye of
      > the wind.

      I sail in a windy, shifty, gusty area, and I don't like to get wet.
      Your 'drama-less' method of jibing will not consistantly work,
      period, in a breeze of wind, in a fore-and-aft rigged boat without at
      times wild gyrations and even capsize. You call the S-jibe
      complicated. I call it simpler than a jibe-swamp.

      Consider: A turning boat heels. Your method of using rudder to help
      initiate the jibe acts to heel the boat to what will be the new
      leeward side before anything else happens. So, when the sail loses
      the wind (and the wind's heeling action)the boat will begin to heel
      to the new leeward faster than it otherwise would. Your initial
      conditions before the sail even fills set you up to go far over.

      When the sail does fill, in addition to the heeling force from the
      sail, the boat wants to turn sharply into the wind making you heel to
      leeward even more, for three reasons:

      1: The rudder, if it hasn't been moved, is acting to turn the boat to
      windward because that's the direction you've turned it.
      2: The wind on the sail also acts to turn the boat to windward
      because the boom is well off centerline, giving a turning moment.
      3: The suddenly heeling boat also tends to turn the boat to windward,
      by the action of the unsymmetrical underwater shape moving through
      the water.

      Initially (thank you Bruce, for pointing this out)the boat will be
      making lots of leeway. Especially if your centerboard is down this
      will tend to `trip' the boat, just like grabbing a jogger's leg, over
      it's going to want to go.

      Net result, the boat will heel WELL beyond what would be a steady-
      state heel for those conditions.

      The helmsman reacts with lots of lee helm suddenly applied, stopping
      the turn but also slowing the boat (still more leeway), and quite
      possibly stalling the rudder, rendering it ineffective and sending
      the boat careening to windward, this time without anything to stop
      it. Hopefully at some point the wind spills from the sail and the
      boat comes more or less upright before it fills again. If it doesn't
      you capsize or broach. If it does the boat goes through a few milder
      gyrations, and off you go on the new tack. But one way or another
      you're thinking that's the nature of jibes in fore-and-aft rigs, and
      there's nothing to be done about it....

      Wrong.

      Don't use the tiller to initiate the jibe, at all. Use the sheet.
      Turn the boat to follow the boom as it comes across. This acts to
      heel the boat to the new windward, and counteracts not only the
      filling sail trying to heel you to the new leeward, but also that big
      turning moment suddenly forced on the boat. You now won't need huge
      amounts of rudder action to counter her natural tendency to round up,
      because the rudder is already countering it, and neither do you need
      to stop your rudder-induced turn to the new windward, because the
      sail filling is doing that for you.

      There are very few boats which allow one to let the boom out ahead of
      the
      > mast ("sailing by the lee"). I suppose that "Cartopper", which has
      no
      > shrouds, is one of those. There are aerodynamic advantages to doing
      so, but
      > it will cause the boat to heel to windward, which can be
      disconcerting.


      If you don't like the idea of turning opposite the way you want to
      go by following that boom, simply start the maneuver by turning in
      the direction you do want to go before sheeting in the sail to start
      the jibe. But while doing that, you might want to let the sheet out
      some, so you don't jibe before you're ready to, thus the 'by the lee'
      referance.

      > Anyway, IMHO, you have provided needlessly complicated instructions
      on how to
      > jibe a small boat.
      >
      At one point in your post you say how easy it would be for you
      to "clobber some guy in the back of the head with a boat's boom while
      he was pissing over the lifelines."

      If you've got lifelines, you don't have a very small boat. I'd say,
      try it before you knock it. Because I've tried it both ways. This way
      works much, much better. Every small boat sailor should know the
      technique. I guarantee it'll save a few swims.

      > Getting struck in the nape of the neck by a boom in an uncontrolled
      jibe can
      > be fatal.

      I don't know of many Bolger rigs, or any rigs for that matter, that
      allow the crew to take so much draft out of the sail prior to the
      jibe that it won't at some point snap across, and hard - especially
      if you're simultaneously turning. One way or the other that boom is
      coming across! DUCK!

      The question is: do you want fine control of the boom, or the boat?
      And might it be possible that a wider swing will tend to lift the
      boom more as it comes across, missing heads that it otherwise
      wouldn't? And in your effort to keep the sail under control, aren't
      you bearing down on your boom vang, pulling that boom closer to
      heads? Isn't there also the possibility that a wider swing gives more
      reaction time than a sudden, nearer centerline snap?

      A final plea: My narrow-bottomend 11'6" Cartopper with a 16' stick is
      tender. I use the S-jibe out of self-defense. Many other boats, even
      poorly handled, even in a breeze, won't easily capsize, and even if
      they do are easy to right.

      But, I wonder how many wives, girlfriends, friends, kids, etc. have
      been turned off to small boat sailing, forever, because of that
      occasional wild, nearly out of control gyration jibing can induce?
      How many former sailors are no longer sailors because they became
      afraid of their boat after going over, or nearly going over, once too
      often, or because it's no longer a family activity, because no one
      wants to go out with them?

      An acquaintance had to be talked out of selling his like-new Escape
      because he dumped her when a shifting gust caught him just as he was
      starting a jibe, and she turned turtle. He felt like there was
      nothing he could do; she just went over. He was wrong, but that
      feeling of complete lack of control nearly turned him off to sailing
      forever. Had he known of the s-jibe, had he just automatically
      followed the boom when it snapped over, it might not have been
      pretty, but he would have stayed in control. It wasn't that big a
      gust.

      I saw another friend in his first time out in his new, used 12'
      Pelican, a huge boat for it's length, almost an Oldshoe. He got
      severely knocked about as he tried to maneuver into the ramp in a
      rapidly rising breeze. Three times he went WAY over. It's a great
      boat built to handle the SF bay, and it brought him through dry and
      safe, but he had his wife and young daughter aboard, and it'll be
      some time before he'll be able to talk them out onto the boat again,
      if he ever can. And in fact he hasn't been out since. It was not a
      fun way to end the outing. But with a little practice, there would
      have been no WAY over, no recriminations, explanations, no
      embarassments, no gyrations, nothing but a clean sail cleanly ended.

      Because in the end, a crew without confidence in the skipper will
      soon revolt, and wild gyrations, explained away or not, do not make
      for confidence. The S-jibe, used by small boats in a breeze of wind,
      can cure the worst of those wild gyrations, and help make a new
      skipper look, and feel, like an old salt.

      John O'Neill








      --- In bolger@y..., wmrpage@a... wrote:
      > In a message dated 8/30/02 1:22:44 AM Central Daylight Time,
      jboatguy@c...
      > writes:
      >
      >
      >
      >
      There was a small conspiracy theory industry born about a decade
      > ago (well, maybe two decades ago) about a "spook" (CIA, NSA,
      something) who
      > died in Chesapeake Bay, apparently by this mechanism. Shortly
      thereafter
      > (within a year or so) an acquaintance of a classmate of mine
      definitely met
      > his demise by this mechanism when his wife accidentally jibed their
      boat on
      > the same body of water. (I believe it was deemed to be an accident.
      On the
      > other hand, I certainly would able to I wouldn't
      > knowingly marry the decedent's widow!)
      >

      > Ciao for Niao,
      > Bill in MN
      >
      >
      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Bruce Fountain
      ... Charming... ... Sailing by the lee does not involve swinging the boom ahead of the mast - I can t imagine why anyone would try such a stunt. The test is
      Message 2 of 17 , Sep 1, 2002
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        On Saturday 31 August 2002 08:06, wmrpage@... wrote:
        > In a message dated 8/30/02 1:22:44 AM Central Daylight Time,
        > jboatguy@...
        >
        > writes:
        > > You're right! I wonder what else I got wrong!
        >
        > My impression is just about everything!

        Charming...

        > There are very few boats which allow one to let the boom out ahead of the
        > mast ("sailing by the lee").

        Sailing by the lee does not involve swinging the boom
        ahead of the mast - I can't imagine why anyone would
        try such a stunt. The test is simple - if you are running off
        the wind, and both the sail and the wind are to port, then
        you are sailing by the lee. Everyone sails by the lee
        briefly as they jibe.

        --
        Bruce Fountain (fountainb@...)
        Senior Software Engineer
        Union Switch and Signal Pty Ltd
        Perth Western Australia
        tel: +618 9256 0083
      • david@simplicityboats.com
        Bruce wrote: Sailing by the lee does not involve swinging the boom ahead of the mast - I can t imagine why anyone would try such a stunt. There are methods
        Message 3 of 17 , Sep 2, 2002
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          Bruce wrote:
          "Sailing by the lee does not involve swinging the boom
          ahead of the mast - I can't imagine why anyone would
          try such a stunt."

          There are methods of self steering downwind that involve the main and jib or double sails trimed angled out ahead of the mast, so boat direction is self correcting... just one reason someone might try "such a stunt".

          David
          www.simplicityboats.com
          ~~~/^\
          / \
          / /
          /_____/
          _______ /___/
          \__________/
          \/
          ----- Original Message -----
          From: Bruce Fountain
          To: bolger@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Monday, September 02, 2002 2:47 AM
          Subject: Re: [bolger] Sailing our creations


          On Saturday 31 August 2002 08:06, wmrpage@... wrote:
          > In a message dated 8/30/02 1:22:44 AM Central Daylight Time,
          > jboatguy@...
          >
          > writes:
          > > You're right! I wonder what else I got wrong!
          >
          > My impression is just about everything!

          Charming...

          > There are very few boats which allow one to let the boom out ahead of the
          > mast ("sailing by the lee").

          Sailing by the lee does not involve swinging the boom
          ahead of the mast - I can't imagine why anyone would
          try such a stunt. The test is simple - if you are running off
          the wind, and both the sail and the wind are to port, then
          you are sailing by the lee. Everyone sails by the lee
          briefly as they jibe.

          --
          Bruce Fountain (fountainb@...)
          Senior Software Engineer
          Union Switch and Signal Pty Ltd
          Perth Western Australia
          tel: +618 9256 0083

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          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • David Ryan
          ... In my Light Scooner, when you get far enough of the wind (but not on a dead run) the foresail is completely blocked by the main. Sailing the foresail by
          Message 4 of 17 , Sep 2, 2002
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            >Bruce wrote:
            >"Sailing by the lee does not involve swinging the boom
            >ahead of the mast - I can't imagine why anyone would
            >try such a stunt."
            >
            >There are methods of self steering downwind that involve the main
            >and jib or double sails trimed angled out ahead of the mast, so boat
            >direction is self correcting... just one reason someone might try
            >"such a stunt".

            In my Light Scooner, when you get far enough of the wind (but not on
            a dead run) the foresail is completely blocked by the main. Sailing
            the foresail by the lee make the boat go faster, and balance better.

            YIBB,

            David

            --

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          • wmrpage@aol.com
            In a message dated 9/1/02 7:11:28 PM Central Daylight Time, jboatguy@cs.com ... I m sure I came across on e-mail as more dogmatic than I intended - But thanks
            Message 5 of 17 , Sep 2, 2002
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              In a message dated 9/1/02 7:11:28 PM Central Daylight Time, jboatguy@...
              writes:


              > My impression is just about everything!
              >
              > Congratulations, you got my dander up with that comment....
              >

              I'm sure I came across on e-mail as more dogmatic than I intended - But
              thanks for the extended exegsis on this S-jibe business. I'm still not sure I
              fully grasp the concept, but I imagine it will become clearer as soon as I
              get an opportunity to try it out. Perhaps I'm quasi-S-jibing in some
              conditions without really grasping what I'm doing in those terms. Anyway,
              thanks for the citation and explanation!

              Ciao for Niao,
              Bill in MN


              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • wmrpage@aol.com
              In a message dated 9/2/02 1:53:26 AM Central Daylight Time, ... In light airs, on certain courses, this gives more speed than running broad off. It s strickly
              Message 6 of 17 , Sep 2, 2002
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                In a message dated 9/2/02 1:53:26 AM Central Daylight Time,
                fountainb@... writes:


                > Sailing by the lee does not involve swinging the boom
                > ahead of the mast - I can't imagine why anyone would
                > try such a stunt.

                In light airs, on certain courses, this gives more speed than running broad
                off. It's strickly a light-air gambit as: (1) the boat heels to windward as
                the sail goes ahead of the mast; and then, the real excitement (2) the heel
                reverses when you sheet back in square off on a reach or to jibe, accompanied
                by some unusual steering dynamics. When the wind was too strong, I've managed
                to extricate myself from this by chasing boom and tacking. Perhaps I was 1/2
                way to re-inventing the "S-jibe" without realizing it! Anyway, it can be fun
                if you're ghosting around trying to eke the most out of light and uncertain
                winds.

                Ciao for Niao,
                Bill in MN


                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • Bruce Fountain
                ... I have never seen this, but it sounds like an interesting technique. It sounds like a dunking waiting to happen on a small, tender dinghy in heavy air.
                Message 7 of 17 , Sep 2, 2002
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                  On Monday 02 September 2002 21:27, juliejj@... wrote:
                  > There are methods of self steering downwind that involve the main and jib
                  > or double sails trimed angled out ahead of the mast, so boat direction is
                  > self correcting... just one reason someone might try "such a stunt".

                  I have never seen this, but it sounds like an interesting technique. It
                  sounds like a dunking waiting to happen on a small, tender dinghy in
                  heavy air. These are usually cat rigged too, so I doubt if you could self
                  steer.

                  --
                  Bruce Fountain (fountainb@...)
                  Senior Software Engineer
                  Union Switch and Signal Pty Ltd
                  Perth Western Australia
                  tel: +618 9256 0083
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