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Sailing in Windshifts

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NickA View Drop Down
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    Posted: 21 Oct 11 at 6:56pm
kind of hard to watch transits if you're out on the wire - they won't stay still.  

But yes feeling for the boat starting to heel to windward, sheet out head up, sheet in again; heeling to leeward, bear off.  Easy to mistake lulls and gusts for shifts tho.   
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GybeFunny View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote GybeFunny Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Oct 11 at 4:57pm
I grew up sailing on a lake, I always use the tell tales, I am totally lost when it is raining and they are stuck to the jib. I dont use a compass. As long as you always keep the telltales streaming you can tell if you have been lifted by looking at a transit on the shore. On a lake I have a good idea if the next gust I see on the water will head or lift me, it is because a gust not only travels downwind but it also fans out a bit so you can make use of the different wind direction along the edge of gusts. This tactic of sailing round the gusts is particularly useful in an asymetric in light winds.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote alstorer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Oct 11 at 10:31am
That's why you should be using tell tales along with everything else. Steer to the tell tales, notice the shift by how much you're steering to keep them happy.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote bustinben Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Oct 11 at 10:28am
In anything over 8 knots most good laser sailors are looking at the sea ahead and steering completely by feel anyway, the tell tales are just there for the reaches  Wink

I'm a compass user myself, I tend to get lost without it, but when the sea is up it's not very accurate in a laser because your boat is pointing at totally different angles depending on where you are on the wave.  Usually I notice that I've had to bear away a bit, check the compass, if it looks like it's changed a bit look at the competition over my shoulder.  Can I cross them? If yes, it's a header, and then it's down the strategy flowchart to decide whether or not to tack on it.

Problem with using just the tell tales is that 1.  You'll miss a wind bend 2.  You'll miss a slow shift 3. It ignores the fact that a boat 10 boatlengths to inside of you might be in the most godalmighty lift and gust and you should really get over there regardless of what your wind is doing!
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Post Options Post Options   Quote G.R.F. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Oct 11 at 10:30pm
I shall, how to you wrestle control of the jib away from the bloody crew? Wink
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Oatsandbeans Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Oct 11 at 11:26am
I really try to use as little rudder as I can. Especially in the light as it just slows you down. Many sailors like feel from the rudder and thus sail the boat too heeled in the light, this means that the boat will want to head up into the wind and the rudder will be used to correct this. This is just wasting energy that should be used to make the boat go faster through the water.  I only heel the boat when it is really light, as soon as I get enough wind for the tell tales to flow I flatten if off. I am paranoid about not using the rudder. I think it is a bit like  driving a car and not using the brakes. If your car has one of those MPG read outs you can really get the MPG numbers up by not braking. This is how I feel when I sail in the light without using the rudder. Everytime that I can do a manouver with minimal rudder I know that I have gained over the others that are wanging the helm back and forward. Give it a try!
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Post Options Post Options   Quote G.R.F. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Oct 11 at 10:46am
Interesting technique there OaB, I tend to heel the boat, but still 'feel' the tiller, I'd never really attempted to sail a boat using just the jib and main until last weekend when the rudder fell off and we were taking the buoys out to lay a course, the crew had attempted to 'have a go' see why the rudder had come of (the lower pintle was bent leaving the beach) but I can see now how that would work.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Oatsandbeans Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Oct 11 at 10:17am
A technique that I use when it gets really light when sailing to windward, and I can't tell if the sails are properly set ( tell tales wet or just limp) is to ease the jib off until it luffs. It is easy to detect when it luffs and it will then tell you how far off the correct course you are. Then heel the boat a boat to leeward and let it slowly come up to the correct course as you squeeze both sails in. This is a winner as no rudder is used as thus speed is retained in conditions when speed is critical ( I also ease the main out as soon as I can see the jib needs easing). This technique may seem obvious, but most people achieve the same by steering the boat around, to check the set of the sails, which is slow as in most cases the sails are stalled out anyway and boat speed has dropped.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Roger Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Oct 11 at 9:25am
Originally posted by Rupert

Is anybody else reading this thread down the far right hand side of the screen?
Page 1 was, at least...
 
Yep, just the same for me, all text in a narrow column down the right side???
On page one only...
 
 
 
 
 


Edited by Roger - 20 Oct 11 at 9:26am
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Rupert Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Oct 11 at 9:18am
Is anybody else reading this thread down the far right hand side of the screen?
Page 1 was, at least...

Edited by Rupert - 20 Oct 11 at 9:19am
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