But it served its purpose, the rig works really well running and broad reaches... pointing up? nah! its easier to put the engine on!!
- Make sure all the control lines are running freely before hoisting the sail.
- Try not to raise (or lower) the sail in one hit, do one panel at a time and take up the slack in the control lines as you go.
- Stow the loose lines into buckets or bags or whatever in the cockpit at all times, otherwise it will end up looking like a rats nest, and not being able to reef the sail (not good news in a squall!!) and a half strangled dog is an unhappy dog!
- It took me ages to adjust the lines properly so they do not snag the lazy jacks (or each other)... each time I thought I had fixed it I found another snag... next time I will not attempt to assemble the control lines until I have launched the beast and she's swinging on the bouy... then I will do one line at a time fully raising the sail each time to check its OK...
- Its not as easy to see if the sail is set right... on a convensional rig, the luff (t' the front edge of the sail) flutters when you are too tight to the wind... with all the battens there aint no flutter it just loses speed..
- On a conventional sail you pull in the main sheet (the rope that attaches to the back of the sail, the main control, really) when the sail is full, you give it another tug in and its bingo...off you go! Basically, if the sail looks right it usually is right!
- With the junk rig the secret is to let the main sheet off, when the sail is not filling it just rotates like a weathercock (no flutters or thrashing about), you then pull the mainsheet in until you can feel the sail bite..the boat leans over a little and away you go... you do not give it another tug or the sail will stall - much scratching of head and wondering why you have slowed down and going sideways (weird!) So, as the sail always looks right, its more the case that it has to feel right!
- As I expected, pointing up to wind is not as good as a bermudian rig, but saying that, the cones in the battens do make the sail curved and the result is not bad at all... also, the fact that you can alter the position of sail in relation to the mast (forward, backards, tilted, to one side or central) results in being able to adjust the centre of effort and so improve the pointing (I'm going to have hours of fun?!)
- I was amazed how settled and comfortable the boat felt... under engine alone, Bobtail is (frankly) a bloody cow, lurching all over the place like a drunken old whore!! ..... very quickly I found that once you are on a good steady run, by simply adjusting the control lines you can perfectly balance the boat, to the degree where at times I did'nt have to touch the wheel, a little tweak of the main sheet (or moving my position) was enough to steer with... unbelievable!
I will replace the main halliard with 8mm braided dacron rope (easier on the hands and less friction).
I will also put seperate block and line attached to the main halliard set up, so I can lower the whole lot to the deck...at the moment, because its a 4-1 arrangement the rope attaches to a becket on the top block, so you cant replace the rope without climbing the mast or removing it, not good!
I will beef up the lazy jack lines too, to make it easier to handle...
In the cabin I intend make compartments in the control rope stowage area to avoid tangles...