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Re: seeking opinions on rig choice

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  • oarmandt
    I have the optional solent lug rig on a Birdwatcher. It is 144 square feet. I have not had problems with it kiting. I tie the tack of the sail to the mast
    Message 1 of 11 , Sep 26, 2008
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      I have the optional solent lug rig on a Birdwatcher. It is 144 square
      feet. I have not had problems with it kiting. I tie the tack of the
      sail to the mast before hoisting to keep this corner under control.
      (This line is not otherwise necessary as the downhaul is supposed to
      control it.) I try to hoist the yard very quickly and also try to get
      it down quickly but still under control. That is, it ideally comes
      down just slowly enough to avoid rope burns.

      I have not had the occasion to reef in a blow. If in doubt, I start
      out with a reef and shake it out if conditions warrant. Bear in mind
      that to reef, the yard has to be dropped on deck. The halyard
      attachment has to move up the yard when reefing. This causes minimal
      trouble in the Birdwatcher, since the sail and yard can be dropped
      into the slot top of the cabin, out of the wind. It could get away
      from you on deck of the Black Skimmer, though having the mizzen to
      keep head to wind will help. The boom moves to a new clew cringle
      when reefing. It is still tied to the boat by the snotter and the
      sheet, but it could go over the side if not controlled.

      The yard on BW is a 16' 2x4 whittled down on both ends, substantially
      at the top. The sail remains lashed to the yard, so you will want a
      long sailbag.

      In the case of Birdwatcher, the lug mast is 3.5' shorter for a larger
      sail (144 vs 125 square feet). I suspect this is a real advantage
      when manhandling the mast. It would be somewhat less a factor with a
      tabernacle, especially if you can have substantial counterweight.

      Doug

      --- In bolger@yahoogroups.com, "ehrenherman" <ehrenherman@...> wrote:
      >
      > Hello all I have been studying my plans for the black skimmer and am
      > trying to decide on the rig. The plans come with the options of a jib
      > headed sprit rig or the solent lug. My initial thought was the solent
      > lug for ease in dropping the mast for low bridges (Tampa bay) but the
      > prospect of the sail kiting away as I'm trying to reef in a blow has
      > given me pause, thats a big stick. Does anyone have actual experience
      > with the solent lug? is it fairly easy to handle in practice?
    • mason smith
      I do have some experience with the Solent lug. It was discussed (my experience, that is) by Phil and Susanne in some articles in Messing About inBoats a couple
      Message 2 of 11 , Sep 26, 2008
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        I do have some experience with the Solent lug. It was discussed (my experience, that is) by Phil and Susanne in some articles in Messing About inBoats a couple of years ago. I had the rig on my second Birdwatcher. It seemed to me the only way that could have been used, practically, to increase the power of the Birdwatcher rig, and I think you see it on BW II. It required a very good 2:1 downhaul. It came down in a hurry, which you can't say for the regular BW rig. It was easier to raise the mast, it being shorter and not burdened with the sail. It was a bit of a loose cannon, partway up or partway down, and required some learned techniques; and it filled the boat with sail when lete down, and was fairly hard to bundle up and organize single-handed. Way less simple than the standard sail but it upped the performance nicely. I used it with a roller furling jib set flying, tacked to the forward slope of the cabin-top, as far forward as it could be and still be aligned with the offset mast. Not like the BWII jib. ---Mason Smith

        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • graeme19121984
        ... rig. Mason, how so? It shouldn t have had to come down for reefing on BW1. Pull on a string and the reef is taken into the mast. Slacken the string and the
        Message 3 of 11 , Sep 26, 2008
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          --- In bolger@yahoogroups.com, "mason smith" <masonsmith@...> wrote:
          > It came down in a hurry, which you can't say for the regular BW
          rig.

          Mason,

          how so? It shouldn't have had to come down for reefing on BW1.

          Pull on a string and the reef is taken into the mast. Slacken the
          string and the reef shakes out. At least that's how it could be.

          PCB shows a funny way to reeve that reefing line (brail) - just one
          overly long zig-zagged string through alternating grommets with
          plenty of opportunity to bind, where it should be one heavy string
          all the way up the luff with smaller brails whipped/spliced onto it
          and out through paired grommets at equal heights that has any
          friction sequenced in parallel and only has to be handed a couple of
          feet (see Fig 38, American Small Sailing Craft by H I Chapelle).

          With that BW original sail, I don't see how a jib also could not be
          set flying. The turning block could be at any convenient mast height
          as that style of reefing won't see it interfere with the sail
          lacings. Similarly, the snotter doesn't interfere with reefing, so
          it doesn't have to be handed or repositioned, but just slackened or
          tightened along with the reef brail as the case may be.

          Graeme
        • Bob Larkin
          My Solent lug experience is with the BW2. A quick summary, after 2 years with the boat: As drawn, the 144 sq-ft Solent-lug main plus 71 sq-ft jib makes the
          Message 4 of 11 , Sep 27, 2008
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            My Solent lug experience is with the BW2. A quick summary, after 2
            years with the boat:

            As drawn, the 144 sq-ft Solent-lug main plus 71 sq-ft jib makes the
            boat sail wonderfully, as a SA/D in the high 20's should. It is a fun
            rig.

            With 2 or 3 knowledgeable folks on board, the sail handling is good, up
            to the 15+ knot range. With practice, this could undoubtedly be
            extended.

            With one person, I feel the boat can be sailed in wind for which sail
            handling is very difficult or impossible. Until the sail is fully up,
            the bag/kite, along with the light weight of the boat, tends to pull
            one beam to the wind. This applies to wind in the 10+ kt range. The
            flailing of the sail and boom easily tangles a line, making the event
            more interesting. Remember, after reefing, one needs to get the sail
            and yard back up. As the wind picks up, I feel this can get wild.

            In addition, I feel the Solent lug for a boat size of BW2 or bigger is
            dangerous. The end of the yard is at head height, and looks a lot like
            a baseball bat. I have constrained the yard to the mast, to solve this
            safety issue (sliding gunter style). I would recommend this change.

            Equipment helps (I have all these): A halyard winch makes the raising
            faster. It has to go up fast! A line clutch makes it faster/easier,
            and is a useful aid for lowering the main. A four part downhaul
            (preset before raising the main) helps straighten the luff. I have
            found a boom topping lift keeps the sail out of the water.

            I'm certainly not as good at this as some. I'm a 68-year old guy, in
            reasonable shape, with about 20 years of random sailing experience.
            Each person must make their own decisions about what makes them
            comfortable. But, last winter, I got Lynne Fabricant
            http://www.sailmakersart.com/ to make up a small main that would work
            on the mast without a yard. This is sort of a "second reef" for the
            big BW2 sail. I am trying to get web-notes together on this sail, along
            with more on the solent lug, so I won't add more here. But, for me,
            this has greatly increased the sailing options, when the wind picks up.

            Bob
            Corvallis, OR

            --- In bolger@yahoogroups.com, "ehrenherman" <ehrenherman@...> wrote:
            >
            > Hello all I have been studying my plans for the black skimmer and am
            > trying to decide on the rig. The plans come with the options of a jib
            > headed sprit rig or the solent lug. My initial thought was the solent
            > lug for ease in dropping the mast for low bridges (Tampa bay) but the
            > prospect of the sail kiting away as I'm trying to reef in a blow has
            > given me pause, thats a big stick. Does anyone have actual experience
            > with the solent lug? is it fairly easy to handle in practice?
            > ....snip
          • c o'donnell
            Makes you wonder if the rig could not have a separate set of attachment points to make it into a balanced lug for heavier winds (i.e. vertical yard becomes
            Message 5 of 11 , Sep 28, 2008
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              Makes you wonder if the rig could not have a separate set of
              attachment points to make it into a balanced lug for heavier winds
              (i.e. vertical yard becomes horizontal yard). I've also wondered
              about a small "utility" mizzen like that of an Oldshoe/Micro. Rowing
              a BW in a crosswind can be a challenge since the rower sits so far
              aft and the bow blows off downwind. The alternative is to retrofit a
              bow centerboard, which was done with the Dovekie.


              On Sep 28, 2008, at 12:26 AM, Bob Larkin wrote:

              > My Solent lug experience is with the BW2. A quick summary, after 2
              > years with the boat:
              >
              > As drawn, the 144 sq-ft Solent-lug main plus 71 sq-ft jib makes the
              > boat sail wonderfully, as a SA/D in the high 20's should. It is a fun
              > rig.
              >
              > With 2 or 3 knowledgeable folks on board, the sail handling is
              > good, up
              > to the 15+ knot range. With practice, this could undoubtedly be
              > extended.
              >
              > With one person, I feel the boat can be sailed in wind for which sail
              > handling is very difficult or impossible. Until the sail is fully up,
              > the bag/kite, along with the light weight of the boat, tends to pull
              > one beam to the wind. This applies to wind in the 10+ kt range. The
              > flailing of the sail and boom easily tangles a line, making the event
              > more interesting. Remember, after reefing, one needs to get the sail
              > and yard back up. As the wind picks up, I feel this can get wild.
              >
              > In addition, I feel the Solent lug for a boat size of BW2 or bigger is
              > dangerous. The end of the yard is at head height, and looks a lot like
              > a baseball bat. I have constrained the yard to the mast, to solve this
              > safety issue (sliding gunter style). I would recommend this change.
              >
              > Equipment helps (I have all these): A halyard winch makes the raising
              > faster. It has to go up fast! A line clutch makes it faster/easier,
              > and is a useful aid for lowering the main. A four part downhaul
              > (preset before raising the main) helps straighten the luff. I have
              > found a boom topping lift keeps the sail out of the water.
              >
              > I'm certainly not as good at this as some. I'm a 68-year old guy, in
              > reasonable shape, with about 20 years of random sailing experience.
              > Each person must make their own decisions about what makes them
              > comfortable. But, last winter, I got Lynne Fabricant
              > http://www.sailmakersart.com/ to make up a small main that would work
              > on the mast without a yard. This is sort of a "second reef" for the
              > big BW2 sail. I am trying to get web-notes together on this sail,
              > along
              > with more on the solent lug, so I won't add more here. But, for me,
              > this has greatly increased the sailing options, when the wind picks
              > up.
              >
              > Bob
              > Corvallis, OR
              >
              > --- In bolger@yahoogroups.com, "ehrenherman" <ehrenherman@...> wrote:
              > >
              > > Hello all I have been studying my plans for the black skimmer and am
              > > trying to decide on the rig. The plans come with the options of a
              > jib
              > > headed sprit rig or the solent lug. My initial thought was the
              > solent
              > > lug for ease in dropping the mast for low bridges (Tampa bay) but
              > the
              > > prospect of the sail kiting away as I'm trying to reef in a blow has
              > > given me pause, thats a big stick. Does anyone have actual
              > experience
              > > with the solent lug? is it fairly easy to handle in practice?
              > > ....snip
              >
              >
              >



              === craig o'donnell
              dadadata@...
              Box 232 Betterton Md 21610





              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • ehrenherman
              thanks for all of the input having had my visions of a kiting club flying around the deck at head height in adverse conditions verified I am going to go with
              Message 6 of 11 , Sep 28, 2008
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                thanks for all of the input having had my visions of a kiting club
                flying around the deck at head height in adverse conditions verified I
                am going to go with the standard leg-o-mutton rig but set in the
                tabernacle drawn up for the solent lug option. I feel this is the best
                choice for the boat as I intend to use it and I cant see any reason
                not to go this route


                btw has anyone heard of or seen an example of the black skimmer with
                the jib? It s on the plans but it seems like an after thought
              • Jon Stone
                Hi there, Would not the easiest rig be a junk rig? They are reefed in seconds with one hand, they put themselves to bed by letting go the halyard and letting
                Message 7 of 11 , Sep 29, 2008
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                  Hi there,

                  Would not the easiest rig be a junk rig? They are reefed in seconds with one hand, they put themselves "to bed" by letting go the halyard and letting them drop into the lazy jacks, They maintain a proper sail shape at any point of reef, the will beat any similar boat off the wind and keep up with most on the wind, one never has to leave the cockpit to hoist, reef, drop, etc., there is no heavy boom to worry about, the sails won't flap and flog when left to "weathercock"... I could go on. If the mast on your boat is freestanding (ie. no stays or shrouds) there is (in my opinion) no more flexible rig for single handed safe (and therefore relaxed) sailing.

                  All the best.
                  Jon

                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • ehrenherman
                  the junk rig is one of my favorite rigs for all the reasons you mention however bolger seems not to agree and as this is a bolger boat I thought I would try to
                  Message 8 of 11 , Sep 29, 2008
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                    the junk rig is one of my favorite rigs for all the reasons you
                    mention however bolger seems not to agree and as this is a bolger boat
                    I thought I would try to stick to his design parameters, also as the
                    leg-o-mutton main is reefed the center of effort moves forward
                    maintaining helm balance with the mizzen, I don't think this would be
                    the case with the junk rig as it drops straight down. I am toying
                    with the idea of a tacking crab claw as well mainly because they are
                    so cool but also because the mast could be quite short < 20 feet i
                    would think and that would get around the tabernacle issue although it
                    might not look quite right
                  • Bruce Hallman
                    ... It is a good call to try to stick with the PCB plans, especially with a design element as important as the sail rig. For what it is worth, PCB is not
                    Message 9 of 11 , Sep 29, 2008
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                      > the junk rig is one of my favorite rigs for all the reasons you
                      > mention however bolger seems not to agree and as this is a bolger boat
                      > I thought I would try to stick to his design parameters


                      It is a good call to try to stick with the PCB plans, especially with
                      a design element as important as the sail rig.

                      For what it is worth, PCB is not entirely opposed to the junk rig,
                      only to the loose battened type of junk rig.

                      The Bolger 'Chinese gaff' which has a jawed type of batten is a Bolger
                      junk rig. It is used on his Micro Navigator design, and also on the
                      Yonder, Hassle and Fiji designs. I can attest that the Chinese Gaff
                      is an effective sailing rig, though like all junk rigs, it is complex
                      with many pieces and parts. (And, most suited for 'navigator cabin'
                      types of sailboats.)
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