Do you remove your head sail?

sailaboutvic

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We had the worst storm so far this winter with winds over night touching 63mph and it's expected to continue blowing and not easying at all for the rest of to day .
The noise of the wind going through the rigging is bad enough without the sounds of the mooring line coming to the end of there stretch as the boat rock to a angle before rocking back , it's all part on living on board but it's the sound of flogging sails that get me .
At first day light , I when out on deck to check on the lines to find two boats that's been left had the furling head sail unfurl and other then some flapping bits the sails are no where to be seen .

Why do people leave there sails on over winter espically head sails .
I know local boats may want to go out the odd weekend but it don't take that long to put it back up , once we all had to hank our sails on and off every time we sail .
I suppose it keep sails makers pocket lines .
Is all this new tec stuff making us that lazy?
 
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ctva

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Always remove both main and genoa. I suspect it is a combination of ignorance, laziness and too much money. Even seeing dinghies left inflated and either on deck or davits is surprising.
 

Robert Wilson

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Next time I leave my boat in the water over winter, I shall definitely remove my headsail (not my main as it will be well and truly lashed and under it's cover - which will also be lashed!)

I made the mistake of leaving my headsail on in 2014/15 and had to stand on shore (a mile away across the sea loch) and forlornly watch the sail shred itself to bits.
Costly, but at least I now have a lovely new replacement sail :encouragement:
 

Praxinoscope

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I Always remove all sails for the Winter, I also wash and hang up to dry for the Winter all the running rigging. Doesn’t take long to ‘mouse’ all the halyard runs ready for re- running the halyards in Spring.
 

Robert Wilson

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I Always remove all sails for the Winter, I also wash and hang up to dry for the Winter all the running rigging. Doesn’t take long to ‘mouse’ all the halyard runs ready for re- running the halyards in Spring.

I also remove mine to wash them then replace my good sails with the old ones which I keep as spare (I keep everything as spare and my garage loft is a veritable Aladin's cave!!)

But at least the one I lost was not my new 135% genoa!
 

Biggles Wader

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I take the headsail off if I am leaving the boat unused for more than a couple of weeks but I have no sacrificial strip so sun damage is more of an issue. It only takes a few minutes to do each time I go sailing.
 

Sandy

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I am afloat and in commission so the head sail is up. There must be at least five wraps if sheet round the sail and a sail tie to keep it furled. The main is cosy in its sail cover.
 

sailaboutvic

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I think we be surprise how many don't , a quick guess in this marina no more then six boats and we one that have removed our sail . Our main which is a inmast furling has the outhaul is removed and the last bit of the sail wrap around the mast and tighten back , that has a canvas cover and that is also tightened back also the gear is locked .
In the days when we had sliding main that also came off every year washed and put away .
It does matter how many times you have your sheet wrap around the forstay once the wind gets a small part of the sail you can almost say there going to be some damage .
 
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RichardS

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We remove our headsail after our last sail of the year, usually October, and raise it again for our first sail, usually in May. However, it remains up and furled from May to October and there are summer storms as well as winter storms so it's all a bit of a gamble. :ambivalence:

Richard
 

Poignard

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In the yard where my boat is kept there are boats left all winter with sails bent, fenders out and mooring lines attached to cleats. No doubt there is an unfinished meal on the cabin table. :D
 

sailaboutvic

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We remove our headsail after our last sail of the year, usually October, and raise it again for our first sail, usually in May. However, it remains up and furled from May to October and there are summer storms as well as winter storms so it's all a bit of a gamble. :ambivalence:

Richard

As you say Richard , it's is a bit of a gamble , and I know like us your on board for most of the summer so you can deal with a problem quickly .
All the boats in this marina have been left for the winter even the local once we very rarely see anyone checking on them on a sunny day ,

And sail are not the only item to think about , we leave our cockpit encloser up all winter as we no board nice to sit out in the morning and have a coffee even on a cold day when it's can be warmer out side then in side ,
but many leave them up over winter to keep there cockpit dry and go home , over the years we seen many of these also damaged beyond repair , early hours of the morning my partner had to rush out and zip our all back up as it was about to take off , lucky for me I just fallen back asleep again and didn't hear her getting up :) or it would had be me .
 
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johnalison

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We have given up winter sailing and so always remove both sails, whether afloat or ashore. In the past I have left an old jib in place - the worn leach had been cut down. Even in the season I always wrap the spinnaker halyard round the jib in a tight spiral in the opposite direction to the furled sail, this being a much better safeguard than a single tie lower down. I wouldn't want the additional windage of a sail in place when laid up ashore.
 

savageseadog

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I've seen furling jibs unfurl in storms many times, sometimes damaging more than just the sail. When I suggest to put extra ties on or take sails off prior to bad weather people often just don't believe it can happen.
 

sailaboutvic

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I've seen furling jibs unfurl in storms many times, sometimes damaging more than just the sail. When I suggest to put extra ties on or take sails off prior to bad weather people often just don't believe it can happen.
Your right people just won't have it , I do this or I do that and no change it becoming unfurl ,
The only way the sail is not going to get unfurl is if it's no on there in the first place .
For sailor who should know how powerful the wind can be , we do take some risk .
 

Bathdave

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I've left the Genoa on again this winter as I did plan to do some winter sailing

For the second year running I have not taken the boat out and now regret not removing it

I have seen a couple of boats in our marina shred their genoas through them unfurling

I put some wraps of the spinnaker halyard around the Genoa and tie off, and I put a stopper knot on the furling line
 

colind3782

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Always over winter. I found that even a furled sail with ties around it can unfurl with enough wind. Cost me €300 for repairs the last time and at least I can sleep when I'm 1000 miles away.
 
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I have been in marinas on quite a few occasions and seen furled headsails trashed but the majority are not trashed, they stay in place, secure on their foils. When I roll away my genoa I stop and pull the sail tight on the sheets, about 4 times and finish with around 3 wraps of sheet, then pull the sheets tight and secure on their cleats. When pulling back on the sheets I always get about a 1' of sheet back as the sail pulls tight around the foil. There has to be a bit of effort to get the sail tight and secure on the foil.
 

doug748

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.....

I put some wraps of the spinnaker halyard around the Genoa and tie off, and I put a stopper knot on the furling line


If it must be left on, this is probably the best way to tackle it.

Also useful even if you remove your sail, I picked up this tip on the forum only last year: Wrapping the halyard around the foil helps prevent the naked extrusion from oscillating wildly in strong winds by shedding vortices.

See the photo of the helical chimney stack strake, on this page:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vortex_shedding

It's not a great idea to loosen the backstay much either, esp if it leaves the forestay saggy
 
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