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Spinnaker – set and trim • A short presentation including input and comments from everyone • We all learn from each other
Spinnaker – set and trim • If you are planning to fly a spinnaker for the first time this year, and • if you wish some support, • one of us who have flown spinnakers often will be happy assist you in any way you wish including sailing with you.
Spinnaker – set and trim • However.......
Spinnaker – set and trim • If you watched the Ensign race on June 16 • You may want to be a bit careful in selecting the person to assist you in spinnaker sailing • Because some of us claiming to be experienced spinnaker sailors……
Spinnaker – set and trim Can really screw it up!!
Rich Bowen“Spinnaker Trim for Performance” • http://www.sailnet.com/forums/gear-maintenance-articles/19825-spinnaker-trim-performance.html • N No
Sailing Downwind • Sailing downwind is often more of a challenge than sailing upwind. • Downwind performance requires a little more input from the team and the spinnaker trimmer is the primary source of this input.
Sailing Downwind • A good spinnaker trimmer needs to stay on his or her toes, making constant adjustments to the trim in response to the fluctuations in the wind's intensity and angle. • This person also needs to communicate effectively so that the helmsman and the rest of the crew know how to respond to keep the boat performing at its optimum.
Basics • The essential objective for trimming the symmetrical spinnaker is to keep the sail filled by positioning it in front of the boat, just ahead or to weather of the wind shadow created by the mainsail.
Basics • When sailing downwind with a spinnaker, there are three basic adjustments you'll need to pay attention to in order to trim the sail properly. • These are: • Pole height • Pole position fore and aft • Sheet tension
Spinnaker Sailing • When the spinnaker is hoisted, the pole is usually already up and in place. • Once the sail is up and the halyard is secured, it is time to fine-tune the controls. • Stand back and take a look. Who picked those spinnaker colors anyway?
Leech Pole Up Luff Pole Down Guy Sheet Pole
Pole Height • An initial reference on most boats is the height of the clews—the lower corners of the sail. • Generally speaking, you want these to be level.
Spinnaker Pole Orientation • You generally want to keep the pole parallel to the water
More on Pole Height • The important thing about pole height is that it affects the flying attitude of the spinnaker. • With the pole too low, the luff could be too tight, making the front of the sail too round and the rest of the sail too flat. Having the pole too high will make the spinnaker look like a huge balloon stuck to the front of the boat. It not only looks awkward, it's slow.
Fore and Aft Pole Position • There really aren't that many factors that govern the fore and aft position of the pole. • Basically, the pole should be perpendicular to the breeze to ensure that the spinnaker presents the most projected sail area to the wind. • There are a couple of ways to work on achieving this. • The trimmer looks up at the masthead wind indicator and using that as a gauge.
Fore and Aft Pole Position • And/or use telltales on the shrouds, which is a little easier and slightly more accurate. • Telltales on the pole topping lift is the closest reference to the bulk of the spinnaker. • These will give you a good indication of the breeze angle without having to crane your neck. • The object is to use these references to help you keep the pole perpendicular to the telltales.
Sheet Tension • Assume that the spinnaker pole is in the correct position • Now the sheet tension becomes more critical.
Sheet Tension • The basic rule of thumb here is to ease the sheet until the luff of the sail curls, then trim the sheet just enough to not quite stop the curling. • This is an ongoing process that should keep you busy throughout the entire downwind leg, but be careful not to let the luff curl too much. • Too much curl is slows the boat, and it could cause the sail to collapse, which tends to get you—the trimmer—yelled at.
More on Spinnaker Trim • One common mistake of which most spinnaker trimmers are guilty of is getting distracted—and over-sheeting the sail. • When this happens, the trimmer is no longer playing the curl and the trim is not optimum. • Keep totally focused on trimming the spinnaker, particularly in light air conditions.
More on Spinnaker Trim • The spinnaker trimmer is essentially steering the boat because the trimmer must/should provide constant input about pressure on the sail, and the helmsman should respond accordingly. • Constant communication among the crew regarding wind direction, boat traffic and helmsman is essential to a successful sail.
More on Spinnaker Trim • The spinnaker is the throttle downwind, and you need to sail in a way that keeps the throttle at full bore. • If there is too little pressure, the trimmer will call for the boat to head up slightly. • If there is plenty of pressure, then the trimmer communicates that and the helmsman responds by bearing away slightly.
North U demo • North U Trim Seminar on CD – 2 CDs • Chapter 11 • Spinnaker Trim Photos I
Conclusions It is the same process with the spinnaker as with any sail setting and trimming.
Conclusions You have to practice and practice!!!
Conclusions • Yes, we all have and will again mess up but…….
Conclusions It is very satisfying when it all functions as it should.