Online Book: Sail Handling Made Easy, Chapter 12 of 27

Roller Furling Head Sails On “Morgan’s Cloud”

Phyllis Nickel looks out into the sunset during a windward sail in The The Gulf of St Laurence, off the west coast of Newfoundland on `Morgan`s Cloud`.

Later in this book you will find a chapter by Lane Finley on the benefits of traditional hanked-on sails over roller furling.

We have long used roller furling on Morgan’s Cloud and would not be without it. The thought of changing headsails that can weigh over 100-pounds dry, and far more wet, doublehanded on a wildly tossing foredeck, every time the wind changes, gives me the horrors. I served my time as bowman on an ocean racer and I’m not going back!

However, roller furling, as Lane so rightly points out, is not without its disadvantages. Here is how we manage those disadvantages and the compromises we make:

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Meet the Author


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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