[Public-List] Blown out sails OK for crusing

crufone at comcast.net crufone at comcast.net
Mon Jan 10 06:05:40 PST 2011


I made the original post strictly from the point of view of less stress on the boat, skipper and crew and more pleasure in being able to trim properly to achieve balance, drive with less heel. I guess this also equates to boat speed, but that was not my focus with the post. I am always thinking about ideas to improve my knowledge and skills to sail my boat from point A to point B with less fatugue on both the boat and personnel aboard. For instance I don't subscribe to the adage 'no pain no gain' when it comes to sailing. Some sailors believe that more power is more speed.  An overpowered boat trying to beat to windward all the while not pointing well and beating up the boat and crew doesn't make sense to me when a boat with less canvas up trimmed properly can walk right by the overpowered boat in more comfort for both the boat and crew. 

I guess I don't understand folks trying to sell sails which are no good for racing but considered OK for cruising or day-sailing when in fact those sails are no good for any type of sailing. If a skipper wishes to have good trim, pointing ability and boat speed for racing why wouldn't they want it for cruising and day-sailing as well?  The extra value I am realizing now is that it is also easier on the boat and rig. My good boat takes me out to sea and back again..............I want to do all I can to take care of her. 

This doesn't mean new sails every year. But what comes to me is that skippers trying to get another 5 years out of a suit of 12 year old sails might just be under the delusion of a false economy. 

I think what Don was pointing to was that the crisp racers edge of new sails dies away after perhaps one season. But those sails will be of decent service for some years to come. I have come to realize that s kippers trying to do any type of sailing with tired, but OK for cruising sails are really doing themselves and their boat a disservice.  

Michael #133 
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Bill Spires" <spiresac at yahoo.com> 
To: "Alberg 30 Public List -- open to all" <public-list at lists.alberg30.org> 
Sent: Sunday, January 9, 2011 12:33:35 PM 
Subject: Re: [Public-List] Blown out sails OK for crusing 

I agree,  Unfortunately, speed goes up at the square root of money.  Some 
classes I have raced in limit how many sails you can buy.  Or you can figure out 
a handicap for sails and other factors.  It seems to me that the Albergs manage 
to have some fun, enjoy a little friendly racing and there will no doubt be 
those who will put in the time and money to win.  I have seen class after class 
destroyed by becoming more concerned with who won than the enjoyment of the 
sport.  Please don't let that happen to the Albergs. 

Capt. Bill 

From: Don Campbell <dk.campbell at sympatico.ca> 
To: Alberg 30 Public List -- open to all <public-list at lists.alberg30.org> 
Sent: Sun, January 9, 2011 11:33:44 AM 
Subject: Re: [Public-List] Blown out sails OK for crusing 

    All I can say is amen! The biggest problem for the converted is to convince 
those who like "good"  old sails to get that new sail in the first place in 
order  to actually feel the difference and become a convert to enjoying some 
power to drive their boat and therefore enjoy some fun while sailing. 
    The one thing you must remember regarding a transfer from a racing sail to a 
cruising sail (at least in my sail inventory) is the slight degree of loss of 
shape (competitiveness) to effect the transfer. 
    It takes very little loss of shape to take the edge off a  good sail, when 
the difference of a few boat lengths over a race makes the difference between 
winning and losing. When this loss of power happens, a change of sail (to new) 
is necessary. This often depends upon those against whom you compete and how 
often they get new sails too. 
    If you want to look at the math of this, it gets to be very small numbers. 
For example in a mid wind range race, with an average speed of 5.0000 knots over 
a 5.0 mile race, that race will have a time duration of 1 hour. Let us assume 
two boats are in the race with good crews and no one makes a mistake throughout 
the race so both boats are able to run at a constant average speed for the hour. 
(This rarely happens, but for the math it is easier.) Say the second boat 
finished in the 1 hour. If the first boat finished ahead by exactly one Alberg 
30 boat length, then its distance travelled in the same time would be 30 feet 
more than the second place boat. Since s  = d / T,  where d is distance,  s is 
speed, and T is time, then the difference in speed of the two boats is s1-s2 = 
(d1/T1) - (d2/T2) = (d1-d2)/T,  since both boats are timed in 1 hour or 3600 
seconds. Distance 2 is the full racecourse so 5.0 miles or 5.0 x 6076.1 feet. 
Distance 1 is 30 feet more than distance 2. Thus the difference in speed is 
(30410.5 - 30380.5 ) / 3600 = 0.0083 feet per second  or about 1/10 of an inch 
difference in average speed per second. This amounts to us being able to say 
that this difference is valid per second per boat length as well.  Therefore if 
you are getting 10 boat lengths behind at the finish, (which many would say was 
a comfortable win for the winner and a definite loss for the second boat),  then 
you are a huge 1 inch per second different in speed! Most cruisers would say 
that is negligible,  - but there is no gold for the racers in the second boat 
who are 10 lengths behind per hour! However, over the time period of a day 
cruising for 8 hours, that small difference amounts to almost 4/10 of a mile. 
   Just a brief comment about Michaels' two sails:  Excessive luffing of a 110 
for only a minute in a bit of a blow will finish that sail's shape, regardless 
of how new it is, because it will lengthen the leech from the whipping action 
and make that sail untrimable. The 150 is far less likely to undergo excessive 
luffing because it is never flown in those big breezes.  Chronological age is 
not the only criteria for ending the useful life of a sail. 
Don #528 
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