Rig Tuning, Part 5—Sailing Tune

The goal.

To recap, in Parts 1 to 4 we:

  • Centred the rig athwartships—Part 1.
  • Set the rake—Part 3.
  • Set the prebend—Part 3.
  • Chocked the mast at the partners (keel stepped only)—Part 4.
  • Set the backstay/forestay to sailing tension—Part 4.

Now it's finally time to go sailing and finish our tuning job. The good news is that, because we did such a great job before sailing and really understood what we were doing instead of just guessing or following a bunch of rules of thumb, this part is going to be easy, rather than the perplexing struggle that the sailing tune can degenerate into if the basics are not right.

In fact, all we need to do is:

  • Tighten the shrouds to sailing tension
  • Straighten the mast in the athwartship plane while sailing.

Easy-peasy, and should not take more than a couple of hours.

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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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