Are snuffers the work of the devil?

mainsail1

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My experience with a snuffer on a cruising chute makes me feel they are more trouble than they are worth and I have removed it. What do you think?
 
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Seajet

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Never tried a snuffer; may well be an idea for big conventional spinnakers, but I find the great thing about chutes / asymmetrics is that one can let them fly like a headsail & gather them much more easily.
 

Hadenough

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That you do not have it rigged properly. Mine was a struggle at first but after repacking it stretched out on dry land and making sure the up haul / down haul is free inside the "tube" it goes up and down like a whores drawers. Wouldn't be without it.
 

lw395

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I feel they are misunderstood.
A snuffer makes hoisting a big kite/cruising chute shorthanded a lot less tense sometimes, you can set all the lines then un-snuff.
Taking kites down has never caused much problem for me except in dinghies (touch wood).
Snuffing to gybe is a useful thing too, if you are two up, it is a useful tea-break, loo break, cross on the chart few minutes every couple of hours.

Like most gizmos, one that doesn't work well is not worth having.
Hadenough could be right!
 

Seajet

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The point I was trying to make about mainsail1's chute is that is has a luff, so one can let the sheets fly and still have the thing under control, wheras numerous dramatic photo's around Cowes for a start show how difficult traditional kites are even with a big trained crew.

A hanked / free flying chute ( like any headsail not on a roller ) would be even easier if one rigs a downhaul, say from the head of the sail down to a block at the tack / forestay then back aft, this keeps it much more controllable for a crew of 2 or even 1; if solo I pull the sail down and temporarily put the downhaul around a foredeck mooring cleat, then ties around the sail then sort it out neatly afterwards.
 

johnalison

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We sailed and raced for many years without a snuffer and then got a snuffer with a larger boat. I always found the snuffer a nuisance when hoisting, which I could do much quicker and easier from a turtle. Occasionally, the snuffer made lowering easier, but not much. The main problem was sorting the lines out when hoisting as they never seemed to be in the right position in relation to the sheet/guy.
 

bedouin

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I wouldn't like to manage a spinnaker single handed without one - to me one big benefit is not having to repack between hoists.

Make sure it is properly set up and it shouldn't jam - and even if it does you can still drop it in the conventional way
 

Seajet

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If you can manage it finacially & boat wise singlehanded, or dual get a tri radial ( so it will allow pointing up to a close reach in light winds ) chute - much easier and user friendly for solo or a couple fast cruising.
 

Twister_Ken

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A hanked / free flying chute - if it was hanked it wouldn't be chute - would be even easier if one rigs a downhaul, say from the head of the sail down to a block at the tack / forestay then back aft, this keeps it much more controllable for a crew of 2 or even 1; if solo I pull the sail down and temporarily put the downhaul around a foredeck mooring cleat, then ties around the sail then sort it out neatly afterwards. - sounds like you're describing a snufferless-snuffer, with the difference that you'll have metres of unrestrained sailcloth blowing around on the foredeck or trailing/trawling over the deck edge, instead of neatly contained in the sausage.
 

Porthandbuoy

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I have just been given an assymetric spinnaker or cruising chute. With the tack fastened to the stemhead fitting using the drop nose pin, and a very short bowline on the head, I can just get it hoisted with a taut luff.
I also have a snuffer which is far too long, so probably off a much larger boat. I plan to cut it down to suit, but as it came without any "string" I'm wondering how best to rig it. Should the uphaul/downhaul be an endless loop? Should there be two lines so the hoop doesn't trip and jam?
 

CAPTAIN FANTASTIC

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I use a snuffer for my cruising chute; has to be rigged carefully, but when rigged, it works very well and makes life so much easier for hauling up and down the chute; i can not imagine me using the chute without a snuffer when sailing single handed.
 

duncan99210

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Having used a cruising chute without a snuffer and then acquiring one, I wouldn't be without it. It's a simple one with just a ring at the mouth, no shaped plastic insert. It has a continuous loop of line to operate it running up the inside of the sock to pull up the sock and outside for hauling it down again. When stowing it in the bag, the bottom is left just outside the bag before stuffing the rest of the sail into the bag: this leaves the head of the sail as well as the tack and the clew at the top of the bag, making it easy to fix lines on before hoisting. With a bit of care whilst packing the sock operating line will be in the right position to simply hoist the sail out of the bag when required with no untangling required.
A point to note is that the ring on the mouth of the snuffer has, IIRC, a simple three legged bridle on it so that the ring is pulled evenly rather than a single point of attachment which would lead to jamming. When putting the snuffer together with the sail, you need to make sure this bridle runs easily round the sail.
 
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Solent sailer

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I have just been given an assymetric spinnaker or cruising chute. With the tack fastened to the stemhead fitting using the drop nose pin, and a very short bowline on the head, I can just get it hoisted with a taut luff.
I also have a snuffer which is far too long, so probably off a much larger boat. I plan to cut it down to suit, but as it came without any "string" I'm wondering how best to rig it. Should the uphaul/downhaul be an endless loop? Should there be two lines so the hoop doesn't trip and jam?

The rope is an endless loop, quite a bit longer then the snuffer bag so you can always get hold of it, we usually pull the snuffer all the way up then tie the bag off to keep it tightly at the top and to keep the hall down rope on board.
hope that helps.
 

Seajet

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No I won't.

Obviously with hanks I was referring to non-foil headsails.

No metres of unrestrained sailcloth, I have good old netting on the foredeck guardrails - yes you get bounced around, might even get wet, but when I explained the roller alternatives like poorer pointing and opportunities of failure at the worst moment to a super-engineer non-sailor chum who came on holiday, he replied " well this is what it's all about isn't it ? ".

With a boat of 30'+ again I'd still stick to chutes/asymmetrics.
 
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Porthandbuoy

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Paul / Duncan

Both your replies imply you hoist the chute from a bag into the empty sock ( which has already been hoisted ). Correct?

I would have thought you could stow the whole "chute in the sock" as a manageable sausage and hoist it as one before pulling the uphaul and flying the chute. Wrong?
 

Bobc

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There's no way I could use a spinnaker or crusing chute on my boat without a snuffer. I usually sail 2-up (me and SWMBO), and the potential for things getting out of control would be far too high.

With it, I can happily hoist, fly, and douse the kits in 20kts single-handed.
 
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