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Upwind Windward heel does it work

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    Posted: 12 Mar 12 at 4:42pm
After seeing Roosters brilliant boat whisperer dvd ,he mentioned alot heeling the boat to windward in light winds to increase boat speed to drive towards the mark pushing you sideways.In the dvd the french man seems to do it particulary well.I tried it this week in my laser and i felt it slowed me down is this just me and does it actually work

Edited by kingdacks - 13 Mar 12 at 8:00pm
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Post Options Post Options   Quote kfz Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Mar 12 at 4:45pm
To leeward?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Mister Nick Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Mar 12 at 4:47pm
Never heard of heeling the boat to windward in light airs before... I always heel the boat to leeward, because it helps to improve the airflow over the sail. By heeling the boat over that way you're putting shape into the sail by gravity which means that your sail is operating closer to how it was designed to than it would be if the boat was flat. I find that it works really well. You just need to make sure that it's not excessive heel and that you're not moving around a lot to achieve it. Settle down in the bottom of the boat and keep very still, it should speed you up. 

Edited by Mister Nick - 12 Mar 12 at 4:48pm
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Mar 12 at 4:56pm
The Rooster method is to windward which gives lee helm , this needs compensating by pushing the tiller away, because of the angle of the rudder in the water this in turn lifts the stern. This effects the centerboard agle of attack. It also effects the waterline shape of the hull also increasing lift.......apparently.
 
Not easy with boats without much freeboard cos your bum may drag in the water. You need a bit of wind to try it but not too much.


Edited by GK.LaserII - 12 Mar 12 at 5:03pm
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Post Options Post Options   Quote RS400atC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Mar 12 at 5:02pm
A lot of people heel to windward downwind in light airs, it raises the centre of the rig, especially in a single sail boat. Upwind it would just cause the sails to collapse in very light air. It may work over a certain wind range in some classes, but heeling to windward reduces the righting moment of the hull, so as soon as you are powered up it may work against you. Foiling moths are a different thing, heeling produces lift to windward.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Strangler Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Mar 12 at 5:40pm

Presume you are talking about upwind [laser] sailing.

Sit well forward! A few useful comments here, from 3/4 down page 1 onwards-

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Michael S Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Mar 12 at 7:14pm
I do feel that windward heel is useful downwind in very very light airs (we tried it in the 29er and it help sailing deeper, which was paying even if it was slower), but I've never heard of doing it upwind.

Seems like it can be risky (as if the boat is unstable you can easily have it coming on top of you in lulls), no ?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Rupert Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Mar 12 at 7:50pm
Watch the DVD again, it does make sense - not that I've ever got it working. You certainly need enough wind for the sail to be filling without help.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Mar 12 at 7:59pm
Originally posted by Michael S


Seems like it can be risky (as if the boat is unstable you can easily have it coming on top of you in lulls), no ?
 
Not too bad on then sea but It will improve your reflexs.....When we tried it I suggested to my wife that she went on the wire so as to avoid dragging our arses in the water. She made it very clear that she wasn't very keen on the idea. Ouch
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Medway Maniac Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Mar 12 at 10:30pm
I can't see how it can work.

As GK says, heeling to windward in a Laser will generate lee helm.  This means that the rudder will actually be pushing you to leeward, which has to be compensated by a greater side-force on the centreboard (total side-force must match that of the sail) which will be achieved by a greater board incidence (leeway) angle and correspondingly more drag.

Which is not to say that heeling to windward can never work.  I tend set my 3k up with lots of aft rake, so that in some wind conditions I need to heel to windward to get a balanced helm (small rudder loading).  I just like sailing that way - it's a personal thing; I like to feel that both foils are always sharing the job of generating side-force.  Other 3k sailors have copied my settings and discarded them - they prefer a more neutral helm and to sail with slight leeward heel; resultant Vmg to windward is not affected either way - not noticeably to me anyway.

The first instance I ever recall seeing about windward heel being beneficial was by David Thomas sailing the Unit in the Olympic singlehander trials way back when.  He felt he went quicker on Unit with windward heel, dug around for an explanation and came up with a graph showing the effect of dihedral on aircraft wings. 

Basically the graph showed that lift decreased with dihedral, as you'd expect, but also that at 0 dihedral angle the curve had slope, implying that if you extrapolated it for negative dihedral, lift would increase for the first few degrees at least. I think I've found the graph in question, and am inclined to think he's putting too much faith in the experimental data, or that there were special circumstances, such as the presence of a fuselage. Nonetheless, there might be a slight benefit - which thought gives me a morale boost when I'm heeling to windward, at least!
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