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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 7:41 am 
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Hi all, I raced this past weekend in Canada at the Jericho event. Saturday was a double trap day and I was untouchable in speed and pointing, it was only by my mistakes that I didn’t have solid bullets. Sunday was light air single trap and I felt like I was dragging an anchor. Can anyone help with light air tactics? I think we may have been oversheeting. Boat rig was medium/tight shrouds, battens tight, body weight forward. The boats that I pulled away from the prior day, we’re leaving me behind. Any thoughts?


Last edited by jere2x on Tue Jun 18, 2019 8:46 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 7:46 am 
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What was your crew weight versus competition? I sail with heavy crew (mostly me :D ) and I am fast in heavy air, slow in light air.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 8:45 am 
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We sail at 315 crew and skipper


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 8:54 am 
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Location: Buffalo, NY
I've noticed the same. Against a H16, it varies... sometimes I'm able to pass them left and right, sometimes they just seem to have an advantage. I think their lighter weight and thinner profile makes them easier to move in the water, but our larger sail area can give us the advantage once we get going. H17's seem untouchable in light air (but they're also a lighter boat and sail singlehanded), though I've never raced against one in heavier winds. The guys that sail them are also undoubtedly some of the best cat sailors out there (I'm looking at you, mbounds! :lol:)

For light wind strategy, getting the transoms out of the water is huge. Get your weight as far forward as you have to! Just get the sterns up! Diamond wires as tight as you can get them. Aside from that, I can never figure out what the best angle is, and usually light means inconsistent, so reading the wind on the water becomes really critical. Downwind, again, I try to stay as forward as possible (crew on one bow, skipper on the other... I steer with my toes :lol:) If the boat is rocking and shaking the wind out of your sails, have the crew pull the boom down to keep pressure on it, keep it open and steady, and hand hold the jib. Daggers halfway up.

As I understand it, mast rake further forward is supposedly better in light air, as it gives you a taller profile, though it moves the sail CE forward and reduces pointing ability. I haven't experimented too much with that.

Any other suggestions I'm missing?

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 9:12 am 
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Location: Jersey Shore
There is often a tendency to move weight too far forward on the 18 because it has such large, forgiving bows. Weight too far forward will put too much bow in the water and too much rudder out of the water making it hard to make minor steering adjustments to account for slight changes in windspeed and direction. Generally the crew and skipper should only go as far forward as the front crossbar, not in front of it. If the wind comes up, especially if it is single trap conditions or if there’s chop, start moving the weight back. If the bow often goes completely under or even near completely under, then you’re too far forward.

Regarding trimming, over-sheeting will definitely kill boatspeed. When in doubt - sheet out.

I find it’s extremely helpful to place telltails on the mainsail in the 2nd and 3rd panels from the top, 1/3rd of the way back from the mast. These are really only used in light wind, but will instantly tell you if you’re over-sheeted.

sm


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 12:00 pm 
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if you can get out there before the race, i set the mast for a very light helm. (if light conditions are expected for the day) raise one board and maybe even one rudder. Play with downhaul and outhaul to find a nice shape for your wind. bring the jib in accordingly, the jib cars are either all forward or all back.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 12:58 pm 
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Leech tell tails...

mmiller wrote:
Tell Tails are used for a variety of wind indications:

Up high on the top of the mast or on a support stay (shrouds, forestays and bridles on catamarans), would be free to indicate apparent wind direction and undisturbed by the sails.

In the body of the sail to indicate air flow over the sail surface.

On the leech of the sail help to indicate under or over sheeting as well as sail twist.

We simply place the basic sail body ones as a starter. These are the most common used in sailing. I like the leech tails and always have a free swinging wind indicator if I'm racing. I have a couple of diagrams that might help. Designed for Catamarans, but really similar on all sails.

How to place them:
Image


How to use them:
Image

The basics are to try and get both standard tells flowing. I would rather see the windward one stall than the lee side. Sheet out or change course until they flow. Then sheet in a bit.

The upper 3rd of the sail is a good location for "leech" tell tails. If you sheet too hard the tell tail will wrap to the lee side. Not sheeting hard enough and the tell tail flows straight aft. The right sheet tension typically causes the tell tails to flow aft then wrap to lee and repeat... alternating. Very difficult to get it all flowing correctly on a Kayak sail due to the limited tension and sheeting controls and no traveler. Catamarans have battens, downhaul, outhaul, and travelers on the sheeting systems... all work together to trim properly for different points of sail (directions you are sailing compared to the wind).

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 12:13 am 
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Jere, you did just fine causing enough grief for the rest of us... :)
We all had trouble at various times during the weekend.... it was an odd day with wind and high tides (12' change) so big currents....
here are the results to prove it!
https://www.sailwave.com/results/hobiediv4/Jericho2019.htm
He was tied for third place and won with a first place finish!
Don't let him kid you guys, he's doing quite well on the course and becoming someone to worry about... :)

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 8:35 am 
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Location: Buffalo, NY
srm wrote:
Generally the crew and skipper should only go as far forward as the front crossbar, not in front of it. If the wind comes up, especially if it is single trap conditions or if there’s chop, start moving the weight back. If the bow often goes completely under or even near completely under, then you’re too far forward.


Interesting. I've heard the target is basically the waterline should be about halfway up the bow, with the transom just skimming the surface, so that's usually what I shoot for downwind. Getting the sterns out of the water usually gives us a noticeable and immediate boost of speed (~1 mph, which is at least a 10% boost when you're going 6-8 mph!) In light air downwind, that pretty much necessitates crew and skipper at the front crossbar, and in very light air, often in front of it (I'm thinking madcatter conditions, this year... we were going maybe 1-2mph downwind :lol:)

It's possible I've got a different definition of light conditions... I consider light conditions as no trapping necessary, singlehanding the boat :lol:

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 1:28 pm 
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Thanks Paul, Sunday I felt really slow, and I can’t help but notice you didn’t post any advice, haha. I was joking with Kaia and told her “ I guess this will end us getting help with boat speed and handling”. We had a great weekend


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 2:41 pm 
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SabresfortheCup wrote:
Interesting. I've heard the target is basically the waterline should be about halfway up the bow, with the transom just skimming the surface, so that's usually what I shoot for downwind.


Probably should have been more specific. Yes, I would agree, downwind I might put more bow in the water. That has a tendency to happen naturally even without moving the crew way forward since the force in the rig is in a more forward direction.

But upwind, I would not stick the bow way under. I’ve see people sail upwind in light wind on the 18 with the crew perched nearly on the tip of the bow (can’t say I haven’t tried that at one point or another). The boat will be fast like that in super flat water and super steady wind, but as soon as you get a little puff the bow will dive under and the helm will load up which is slow. Or if you get a wind shift, you’ll have so much bow in the water and rudder out that you won’t be able to steer to take advantage of it.

Just my experience. Some people like to get that bow way under upwind, but I find being able to steer the boat is more important.

sm


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 3:33 pm 
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So, "Sabre" throws his crew overboard in light air? LOL.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2019 1:14 am 
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In light wind (zero to 5 knots) I have my rig one hole looser on the sidestay (one side only) than in all other conditions.

I also use a super soft top batten for 0 to 5 knot conditions. Drifters. It helps carry the power all the way from third batten to the head.

Hope this helps.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2019 10:20 am 
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I was under the impression that battens should be tight all the way up in light air to keep as much wind in the sails. The general consensus is don’t over sheet. I was definitely sheeted in way to tight.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2019 12:07 pm 
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I'll try:

A very soft but tight batten will be very curved. This will keep the leech in better all the way up, and make more of a pocket.

You might have to give the boom a shake to 'pop' the batten over when tacking / jibing.

Does this sound about right?

My second theory:

Soft batten allows the top panel to twist off more without taking the panels below it along for the ride.


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