Q&A: Staysail Stay: Roller Furling And Fixed Vs Hanks And Removable

Question: I’m refining the deck layout on the 41' voyaging boat I'm fitting out from bare hull. She will be sailed as a sloop, but fitted with an inner forestay for heavy weather. I am currently weighing the benefits of keeping that sail on a furling unit versus hanking it on to a removable stay. As she will be sailed shorthanded and pointed away from the equator, I like the safety and flexibility of having the sail ready to go on a furler, but worry about the problems of tacking the genoa through the 5' slot between headstay and inner stay when sailing in normal to light conditions. I am wondering what your experience is with this, and how you balanced the equation.

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Meet the Author

John Harries

John was born and brought up in Bermuda and started sailing as a child, racing locally and offshore before turning to cruising. He has sailed over 100,000 miles, most of it on his McCurdy & Rhodes 56, Morgan's Cloud, including eight ocean races to Bermuda, culminating in winning his class twice in the Newport Bermuda Race. He has skippered a series of voyages in the North Atlantic, the majority of which have been to the high latitudes. John has been helping others go voyaging by sharing his experience for twenty years, first in yachting magazines and, for the last 12 years, as co-editor/publisher of AAC.

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