FWB28 reefing lines

Brian Neale
Brian's picture
Joined: 03 Sep 2006

Technical question - does anyone else have a problem with the second reefing line on a 28 main?

I took Victoria Ruth out a month or so back and although it was not too windy I thought that I would see what the second reef looked like, never having needed it before. However, it seems that if the reefing line is long enough to go from the boom up through the clew cringle and back down to the boom without pulling on the unreefed sail, it is too long to be able to pull down the reef properly - the eye on the end goes somewhere close to the mast when pulled forward along the boom! In retrospect, the simplest answer seems to be to first tie in a new stopper knot to effectively shorten the line when pulling down the second reef (which will leave an 18" or so end dangling below the boom) but I wonder if there is a more elegant solution that anyone uses?

Or does no-one ever need a second reef?

Brian Neale
Brian's picture
Joined: 03 Sep 2006

Steve, I sail in the Solent so very used to muddy waters!

That sounds like a good solution. I need to have a look at the boom and work out how to fit a secure quick-release something-or-other to hold the stopper knot. That will give an accurate and repeatable shortening of the line which would otherwise be guesswork in, inevitably, less than perfect conditions.

I took out a couple of friends yesterday for a short familiarisation sail before we do the Round the Island race in a couple of weeks. It was blowing around top end of a 5 (actual measurements from a weather station very close to where we were sailing - http://www.sotonmet.co.uk/csg.htm - so no fudging from onboard estimates!) and we used full sail (no topsail on Victoria Ruth). It was about as much sail as we could reasonably handle and we were overpressed in the gusts but still controllable. I would normally have pulled down just one reef in those conditions, which is as much as I have ever done, hence seeing the problem with the second reef for the first time. On the other hand, I guess it makes a difference whether you have a crew on board or not; one more pair of hands can make things easier so if you're single-handed and not sure if you might need another reef later, it is better to pull it down sooner. I must try the boat with two reefs, just to see how she balances.

Aeolus FWB28
Aeolus's picture
Joined: 26 Aug 2006

Hi Brian. I only have one reefing line set up on Aeolus and that is the 2nd reef !!
I figure that if you need to reef then put two in. I sail with Jib and 2nd reef.
You are correct about the length of the line. Mine is the right length to go up one side and down the other but it is too long to use, so......... there is a loop on the stbd side and a fig 8 on the port. When reefing I lead the fig 8 forward on the comb to a snap shackle. The line is now just right the right length for the handy billy on the stbd side.
Hope this is clearer than mud.


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