Un-Stayed Masts

Question: I am curious if you are keel stepped or deck stepped. If keel stepped, could you get away without stays since the aluminum deck could be reinforced enough to hold the mast upright? You could keep running backstays in place for heavier winds. Answer: Our mast is keel-stepped. I guess that theoretically we could [...]

Carbon Boom

Question: Did you change your boom to carbon fiber or just your mast? Answer: No, we stayed with our old aluminum boom since it works fine and is in good shape. (Keep in mind that we only replaced the mast because the old aluminum one was worn out.) Also, the performance benefits from a carbon [...]

Rod Rigging

Question: Our Swan 51 is at Morris Yachts for a mini refit this winter and my plan, in addition to everything else, is to start to replace some of the existing rod rigging. It turns out that the rod is 24 years old. Navtec says it should be replaced every 11 years or 30,000 miles. [...]

Reefing Questions and Answers

Chapter 5 of 20 in the Online Book Sail Handling Made Easy

Reefing is one of those areas where the devil really is in the details. Over the years we have answered dozens of questions about reefing. In this chapter we highlight a few of those and provide our answers.

How Much Sail Area?

Chapter 2 of 20 in the Online Book Sail Handling Made Easy

So just how much sail area should a voyaging boat have and how should it be distributed? We examine those two issues in this question and answer chapter.

Slab Reefing And Lazy Jacks

Question: Is slab-reefing (jiffy reefing) and lazy-jacks genuinely viable for a 667sqft sail, given we will be only two sailing our boat most of the time? Answer: Sure, perfectly viable: We have sailed over 80,000 miles with such a system on a mainsail that is only a little smaller than the one on the boat [...]

In-Boom Reefing

Question: Would you, if you had the chance to refit free of cost considerations, stay with your slab-reefing system, or would you yourself seriously consider in-boom reefing? If so, why? Answer: We looked at Leisurefurl some years ago. The system looks attractive but is a 25 to 30K refit for Morgan's Cloud to do it [...]