Going to Weather


This discussion has been fascinating and I thought I'd add my "solution" though it may be heresy to Joel and silly to the professional sailmakers out there.
I converted Libertad (Maramu #121) into a cutter-rigged ketch with a removable main staysail stay attached to a plate through-bolted to the anchor locker bulkhead (added running backstays as well).  On this stay, I hankon a low cut jib (staysail) that sheets inside the shrouds and yes, I did mount track and cars -no leaks yet.  On long passages (it would clearly be a pain to have to furl the genoa for every tack) on any point between 50 degrees and a beam reach, this sail adds another 1/2 knot of boat speed in wind 15 knots or less (obviously don't need it in wind over that).  I don't do long passages above 50 degrees -I am a gentleman afterall; besides my wife wouldn't stand for it.  I used it frequently in my recent pacific puddle crossing and I suspect I'll be using it for the leg to the Tuamotus which appears to be close to a beam reach.  I also had a stormsail made to hankon as I understand moving this type of sail closer to the center of
the boat is the best position. 
The result is I can definitely point higher without stalling but I don't go very fast and I drop the mizzen due to bad air off the main.  However, next time I go to weather I will spend more time trimming  both for the optimal leach shape as Danny has described.
Dennis Johns
s/v Libertad
Taiohae, Nuku Hiva
Marquesas, French Polynesia

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