As I write, we are closing in on revealing the Adventure 40 design, but before we get overwhelmed by all the cool details in the renderings, and the resulting discussion, Maxime and I think it's important to finish writing about the specification that drove the design—we gotta know where we were heading to understand if we got there.
We have already covered:
So that leaves the rig. Let's dig in.
I have mast head sloop converted to have an inner staysail, not a true cutter. To support the side loads on the mast I have fixed additional, aft lower shrouds. It works well as I can run off wind with minimal loss of boom out angle.
Guess which chain plates started leaking? The starboard new, additional lower aft chain plate, about 20 years in, easy to fix, no big deal at the end of the day.
I never really used my staysail as it was an old Dacron sail, but I bought a new staysail made in Vectron and what a difference, especially in strong winds. I am now wondering about changing my almost new roller reefing head sail, for a “working jib” but with more area than a pure working jib. I reckon that would be optimal for me with the staysail.
My masthead rig is a deck stepped, single set of straight spreaders, cap shrouds, lower forwards and aft shrouds (original standard set up), plus the new lower afts, is raked about 12″ aft, slight bend in mast by inner forestay, 10mm 1×19 wire. I have no adjustable backstay, just fixed. It works okay for me and I use a mini reef when the wind gets up to depower the main sail, in lieu of flattening with a backstay adjuster.
For me, the cutter style works and I don’t miss the backstay adjuster, it is simple but strong rig.
Looking forward to see the final decision for the A40.
Sounds like a good rig. Changing the jib might indeed work out well. Have a read of our cutter chapters first since there are a bunch of details that will make a difference, see further reading. As to not missing a back stay adjuster, you may find it’s one of those things that we don’t miss until we have one, although with a mast head rig, the pay off is not quite as dramatic as with fractional. And, as you say, a flattening reef is a good option too, although it does not flatten the upper sections of the sail like mast bend does.
Big fan of Z-Spars (U.S.Spars in North America) having a 20-year old Beneteau 473 with Z-Spar masthead rig. We completely re-rigged the mast in 2018, and every part we wanted was available ex-stock from U.S.Spars, arriving within one week on our rigger’s shop-floor in NZ (he was impressed). All this at very reasonable prices that we couldn’t match in NZ.
On this alone, perhaps specify the A-40 mast as a standard Z-Spar foil section, to use all standard Z-Spar parts – no deviations. Then require the A-40 mast + boom & pole to have their own rigging diagram page on the Z-Spar / U.S.Spar web-sites so A-40 customers can order spares after market, by clearly identified part-number. And give owners a Z-Spar or U.S.Spar parts login / password in their boat manual.
This reduces costs and yard-time when it comes to rig renewals (which many A-40s will be doing every 10 years or less) – a big cost if any custom parts are needed. For example, we replaced the Z-Spar cast-aluminium mast plate, mast collar and mast shoe in 2018, not because they were worn. Rather, they were so in-expensive, not replacing them seemed a false economy.
Best regards. Rob
That’s great to hear and a huge endorsement of Z-Spar. Let’s just say my experience with Sparcraft has been different, even though they are the suppliers of J/109 standard masts. Anyway, I’m all for using standard parts and sections.
Cutter rig, no genoa, no paint on the mast.
I am really starting to consider buying the A40 although it sounds a bit small in terms of accommodation for more than two permanent crew.
I guess that just reflects the fact that 40-ish feet is simply too small for 4 proper bunks in two separate cabins – let alone 6 in three cabins, as typical boat this size has.
At least the designer seems to respect the ethos of seaworthiness, maintainabilty and good sailing characteristics over useless rear cabins.
Yes, she is definitely a two person boat with occasional guests. I’m hoping there will one day be an Adventure 47 to 50 for those who want to cruise with four.
Hi John, Maxime, Your analysis above doesn’t correlate entirely with our own experience of using a jib sloop rig for cruising: When we get rid of overlap, the mast must get taller so as to have enough sail area. We have the standard Beneteau masthead rig designed for a 130% overlapping genoa. To go offshore, on the advice of Doyle Sails we swapped to the jib using their high-modulus STRATIS construction. Mast remains short and we do not sacrifice speed, using modern sails materials and techniques. Low-overlap “blade” type sails are: Harder to trim well. Strange because we find our jib easier to trim upwind and downwind than the genoa was. Upwind at 13 knots TWS, we are at VMG cross-over. Between 10 knots and 13 knots we are slightly under-sailed with the jib. But in winds under 10 knots (12 knots in a steady breeze) we achieve a faster VMG upwind using our Code 0, compared with our previous STRATIS 130% genoa. Reduce visibility to leeward. This is true when close-hauled as our clew is quite low to maximise all-round performance, but with inboard sheeting we can easily look to leeward of the sail. Non-issue once outboard sheeted as enough gap opens under the foot to keep an effective watch. Don’t roller reef or furl well. We have three vertical battens in the leech so the jib furls and reefs well. Our first reef (with batten on the furl) is about 20% roll and second a 40% roll. This maintains a nice blade shape due to having a high aspect ratio sail. For us this is a big benefit over an overlapping genoa, especially offshore. To maintain decent trim as the wind speed changes, they must either be reefed or the jib sheet block continuously moved. We find the 103% jib not sensitive to windspeed sheet angle position and we leave it on our aft stop all of the time. Easing or tightening the jib sheet is enough adjustment. Only when reefing the jib do we move the lead forward on the tracks. We carry full jib upwind to 25 knots and reef above that for balance. When bearing off to a reach, the crew must re-reeve the jib sheet outside the shrouds to get a decent set. Yes, the leech quickly opens up spilling wind as you bear away, unlike a genoa which is more forgiving. But there is a good solution – twin outboard tracks on the cap-rail with twin sheets (inboard and outboard) each side. We swap from outboard to inboard sheeting using a turning block (with integral sheet lock) mounted on the cockpit coaming, near the sheet winch. We have to take a care to bring in any slack in the lazy sheets before tacking, to avoid tangles. These are simple tricks to learn (I guess much like tacking a cutter rig). Some extra Pros & Cons on jib / code sail combo: With short rig, the jib needs the Code 0 to provide the… Read more »
I think the difference in our analysis is one of degree. For example low cut can mean a bunch of different things. For example the blade on my J/109, even with battens, furls poorly, and the does not reef at all well.
As to not moving the genoa car, as you say it must be moved whenever we reef, and also any sort of reach requires a barber hauler or moving the sheet, as you do. Neither are required with a high cut jib topsail. That’s a big win that needs to be experienced to fully appreciate.
So overall I think the difference between out views in that your point of reference is an older low cut genoa, which has many of the same issues as a blade and some of them worse. For example a high cut yankee furls and reefs way better than either, as we found on our McCurdy and Rhodes 56 when we changed from a #2 genoa to cutter rig.
Also, while sloops are generally a bit closer winded than cutters in smooth water, don’t assume that’s always the case. We won our class twice in the Newport Bermuda race rigged as a cutter, including the second race with a lot of light air windward work in swell where a properly set up cutter can be very fast.
Also, as soon as the sloop starts to reef the headsail, a cutter has a speed and weatherliness advantage since the two sails are rolled less. And then when the wind really gets up the cutter with just the staysail sheeted in hard will slaughter a sloop with a jib deeply reefed.
Anyway, all that said, as I wrote in the article, the A40 can be sailed as a sloop, just as you do, for those who wish to go that way. So the overall point here is we both agree that big overlap genoas suck, even if we come at the solution to that differently.
As the cost of light air sails and better cloth, the savings on a shorter mast should cover a lot of that. But anyway, I think we will find that the cruiser who is willing to go with budget Dacron sails and no downwind sails is not sailing performance oriented and will tend to motor when the wind is down. Also, as I wrote in the post, I would not like to see a very short rig. My guess based on Vincent’s designs is that even with the “shorter” rig she will have more sail than most cruising boats being sold today.
Seems like the A40 keeps getting better with every new article you put out. A mini-fractional, cutter rig with bowsprit, masthead spin halyard, backstay adjuster, and composite chainplates? Now we’re talking! Combined with the smart spec for the keel, this rig sounds like a sailor’s dream.
Seems like this configuration will allow for a range of personalization and performance options depending on the owner’s preferences and how much they want to spend on sails.
With the various affordances being built into different parts of the boat to allow owner customization, and now this more flexible rig concept (if I am understanding it all correctly), the A40 is really becoming a user-configurable “platform”, in a way. Hopefully folks will understand how that goes hand-in-hand with the “no options” principal: They actually have more freedom than they would if they had to choose only from a manufacturer’s options menu, while enjoying the financial benefits of pure economy of scale for the basic boat.
Question regarding the running backstays. Could both sets of anchors you mentioned be provided, the forward set for use with full main/upwind and the aft set for when reefed down? Or would the complication outweigh any possible convenience? Just curious about it, as I’ve never sailed a cutter.
Btw, as a sail trimming enthusiast, I’ll cast my vote for the mini-fractional rig with adjustable backstay. Perhaps a configuration using an economical block system instead of hydraulics can be found, that also preserves access and headroom underneath the arch.
Thanks as always for another compelling article!
You are totally getting it on the idea of a “configurable platform”. For example Rob could sail the boat just as he does his present boat. I need to do a better job of making that clear, maybe in a future article about just that.
As to providing both anchor points for the backstays, that could be done, but would add expense and complications. Not only would the French team need to engineer the two high load anchor points, they would also need to figure how the stays should be tensioned in each configuration, so, to me anyway, not worth the agro and expense.
I enjoyed reading the description of the A40 rig-your excitement shows!
A few brief notes from my experience:
We have a true cutter rig on our Dix43. 108% yankee on a Furlex 400 and now the small staysail on a Furlex 300. Originally we had a hank-on staysail, but found that it was rarely used. Now with the furler we use the staysail frequently. It really adds pointing ability and power upwind. Definitely strike it when the AWA is approaching 90. We do not have runners but rather permanent “aft intermediates” as the designer calls them. Granted, they do interfere with the main boom being let out to a super-wide angle, but he trade-off is worth it to me. All sails Dimension Polyant fabric, heavier than “normal”, although I might go with Hydranet next time. But these sails will last me another 3-5 years.
Ditto the double reefed main/staysail heavy air combo you suggested. We did this for 11 days in 2020, Norfolk to Antigua, sailing AWA of 55 with the resultant increase in AWS to near 30 for 90% of the voyage. It may have been slightly slower than running the headsail, but much easier on the rig and crew. And perfectly balanced, so easier on the AP. Doublehanded offshore and in our 60’s we have found comfort and safety to be paramount over squeezing out an extra knot.
Here in Norway we have been using the cruising code zero quite often as we sail between the skerries and the inner lead, with frequent changes of wind direction and heading. With the CZ on a flex furler it is fast and easy to gybe the sail by simply rolling it in, moving the sheet to opposite tack and unfurling. We even leave it up and furled now when the wind picks up beyond AWS18 and we opt to use the yankee. Our CCZ is useable from 60-170˚, although this latter figure will only be achieved in flat sea conditions.
Finally, regarding weight aloft: Have you considered using dyneema rigging instead of stainless? My pal Barry just refit a Garcia 50 and saved hundreds of pounds aloft by using the fiber rigging. Not sure what the cost analysis is, but worth investigating? Easily field repairable, too, it is remarkably tough stuff.
Keep up the good work!
Brian on Helacious
Sounds like a good rig, and very like the one that worked so well for us for 30 years on our McCurdy and Rhodes 56.
As to Dyneema rigging. That would run against a core A40 value of only using widely tried and proven tech, so I would not like to see that, even though I think that some form of rope rigging will one day take over in the cruising world.
More here: https://www.morganscloud.com/2016/11/22/the-unknown-unknowns/
Agree on synthetic rigging. It seems still to have problems with creeping. I don’t fancy retensioning the rig when I go to cold high latitudes, then easing it off again when heading for the warm.
I am always impressed with how much I learn from your articles, especially the compare and contrast aspects.
As to a cutter rig on a 40-foot boat, I have pushing 70k miles of ocean and coastal cruising miles on Alchemy and can confirm all you say about its versatility and ability to move the boat well. Versatility, and ease of use, often goes hand-in-hand with poor sailing characteristics and a dearth of options: limitations the cutter rig (especially where the mast is close to amidships) addresses well. A low-cut staysail and a higher cut jib topsail just plain work synergistically together and a modestly sized and strongly built asym in a sock fills in the gaps. In those miles I have never wanted more than a deeply reefed 3rd reef in the main and the staysail rolled in a bit: so no storm tri or storm jib and the attendant complications.
For a cruising couple, I would say that most will want the staysail to be roller furled: it is just really nice to be able to change gears quickly and easily and let the off-watch sleep when changes are called for.
The one place where I would suggest carbon fiber is in the whisker pole. In many days and many miles of wing and wing sailing, I believe it far better (both far easier and generally faster for cruising boats) to just head for destination (wing and wing) than to tack downwind. And my cf pole is 14 pounds and handling it on the foredeck in ocean swell in no way scares me like my old clunky aluminum pole did.
MY best, Dick Stevenson, s/v Alchemy
I agree on all of that, except the need to have the mast near the middle of the boat since I don’t think that’s a requirement for a true cutter. We will, as before, need to agree to disagree on that one. And I agree on carbon poles. That said, we will need to look at cost and given that this is a smaller boat than yours a carbon pole might not be worth it. The other option, and probably the best, would be to deliver the boat with no pole and let owners make their own call on carbon or not and extending or not.
thank you for the comment!
“A modestly sized and strongly built asym in a sock fills in the gaps”: yes, in my mind this should be the preferred solution regarding light air sails – although of course owners will be able to experiment with anything else, including code zeros, if they wish.
It seems to me like the points above are trying to get the MOST performance out of the sailplan on all points with the LEAST amount of effort (ie not moving car positions fore/aft, inboard/outboard, not changing headsails, etc).
If that’s indeed the goal, I’m surprised the Solent rig didn’t make it into this discussion yet. Of all the boats I’ve done a bunch of miles on offshore (between Mia & I we did a complete Atlantic Circuit on KINSHIP in 2012/13), the Bob Perry-designed Saga 43 with a Solent rig had what I felt was the optimal setup. Two furlers right at the bow, one just behind the other. The headstay furler was masthead, with a typical 120-135% overlapping genoa; the Solent furler was set just aft of this, and just below the masthead, high enough to not require runners. Then there was an inner forestay, removeable, for heavy weather storm jib, with runners, but only needed in the really rough stuff.
The Solent jib was self-tacking and was the working upwind jib. The big genoa was for reaching and off-the-wind, plus you had your masthead spin halyards for light-air sails. The only downside was in very light wind inshore, where tacking the big genoa was impossible without rolling it in. But for offshore work, this rig was near to ideal (and so was the boat for that matter, I love the Saga 43!).
I agree, there’s a lot to like about the Solent, but then there are a lot of downsides too. In the end the downsides outweighed the up.
I also think that a lot of the benefits of the Solent rig have gone away in recent years with the advent of easy to use removable roller furlers.
More here on our thinking and why the Solent did not make the cut: https://www.morganscloud.com/2020/05/28/cruising-rigs-sloop-cutter-or-solent/
Perfect solution – very excited. Cutter rig is the way to go.
Mind you, I’m surprised you’re in favour of roller reefing. Most other sailors who care about sail shape and longevity are pretty agin it, even if they’ll tolerate roller furling. Although quite a few would rather drop the sails than leave them up furled, because of windage and it’s detrimental effect on progress to windward. I guess with the A40 we can leave the jib-top on the forestay for long downwind passages and only drop it to the deck on upwind passages with windspeeds above it’s operating envelope.
The proposed rig sounds fine without seeming to require roller reefing:
0-5 knots = full main and code zero
5-10 knots = full main and jib-top & stays’l
10-20 knots = depowered full main, jib-top & stays’l
20-30 knots = depowered full main and jib-top
30-35 knots = 1 reef (77%) main & jib-top
35-40 knots = 1 reef (77%) main & stays’l
40-45 knots = 2 reef (57%) main & stays’l
45-50 knots = 3 reef (36%) main & stays’l
50-55 knots = trys’l (25%) & stays’l
55 knots + = heave too or deploy drogue
The exact transition wind-speeds might be different, but with 3 headsails and 3 mainsail reefing points to choose from is there ever really a need to partially deploy any of the headsails? Can’t they be simply up or down?
My thoughts on roller reefing headsails are here: https://www.morganscloud.com/2012/03/23/handling-roller-furling-sails/
And here is the other view: https://www.morganscloud.com/2012/03/08/hank-on-sails/
On balance, I think the roller reefing works better for this boat, particularly on a true cutter.
As to your wind speeds and sail combos, in my experience that’s way too high on the wind speed. Even on our big powerful McCurdy and Rhodes the first reef in the main went in at 14 knots true and rolls started to go into the headsails at 17 knots true. By 25 knots true we would be two reefs in the main and and both headsails rolled well down. Three reefs and just a scrap of headsail at 30 knots true, and heaved-to at anything consistently over 40.
Here are some more thoughts on actual usable wind speeds at sea: https://www.morganscloud.com/2007/10/01/gale-force-is-a-lot-of-wind/
Any update on the timeline for the adventure 40? What is the best and worst case?
this is difficult to estimate at this point. Just to give some idea, a reasonably fast case would be having the A40 prototype in water by the beginning of 2024, and then the very first of the series by late summer 2024.
But it all depends on the discussion with builders, and on the arrangements we can find (and on the impact of the current economic situation…). This will be the main subject for this fall. And before that, an important moment will be when we reveal the design by Vincent and team, and learn from you whether we’ve gone the right path!
I’m planning on my boat acquisition in the next 2 years and hope that fits within the A40 timeline.
I’d much rather have a new, well-designed boat than retrofitting an older boat. I understand it’s a big undertaking to build and introduce a new boat build.
I will remain hopeful for the A40.
It sounds like it will be really nice rig.
I like the idea that with the buyer choosing sails they can adjust the setup for their own use profile/preferences. Although I don’t think that this flexibility should be at the expense of making one setup close to perfect.
Is it possible to use forward jumpers (I hope this is the correct term) on the mast instead of running backs?
I have seen them on other boats supporting an inner forestay but I’ve no idea what the disadvantages are.
Perhaps cost or not as effective support.
interesting question! I fear it falls into “too much complexity and non-standard parts”, and suspect (I’ve never used such a setup) that it wouldn’t allow to tighten the inner forestay as much as running backstays do. But depending on what experience by John and others tell, the question could be asked to the mast manufacturers.
Jumpers, there’s a blast from my distant past when we used to get towed out to the start line by a steam launch in Luders 16s which had jumpers. https://sailboatdata.com/sailboat/luders-16
Kidding aside, the only offshore boat I remember with jumpers was the Saga 40: https://sailboatdata.com/sailboat/saga-40
it’s an interesting idea and of course the advantage is that you can get rid of runners, at least in theory. That said, if we do that and are offshore in big seas I think the jumpers will be very heavily loaded. Of course that’s a guess and for the mast builder to opine on.
But there are big issues with jumpers that I do know about:
Thanks I’ve learned more about them.
Sounds like there may be very specific situations where they can work well but for the adventure 40 they will not be an ideal solution.
Now you mention it I can imagine it’s possible to get some very strange mast curves if badly tuned, or backstay tension is adjusted while sailing.
Regarding the necessity of running backstays with the cutter rig: I know the design might be antithetical to your current preferences, but The Lyle Hess-designed Bristol Channel Cutter incorporated an effective and proven alternative to runners. A permanent aft intermediate with upper attachment at same height as upper staysail attachment point shares the aft-most (outboard) chainplate with the aft lower. Also worth noting is that this design does not rely on swept-back spreaders either. Granted, this is an admittedly low-aspect mast by modern standards, and is also a very stout section, but nonetheless is a very proven design with countless ocean miles. Here is a drawing that illustrates the concept: https://capegeorgecutters.com/_boat-designs/bristol-channel-cutter-28/
Yes, I have seen that on several relatively traditional boats. It would take a spar engineer to say for sure, but I think that would only work on a very short mast. A rule of thumb is that for shroud or stay to work the angle it makes from the mast must be greater than 12° otherwise the load is just too high—this is why boats have spreaders. The other issue is that if I remember right, as that angle gets lower the loads go exponentially.
Also, I’m guessing that the BPC will have a quite low maximum healing moment, due to her slack bilges and shallow draft. On the other hand the A40 with her tighter turn to the bilge and deeper bulb keel will be way more stable and therefore load her rig way higher.
Add this all up and my guess is that the to make the loads on that stay manageable the chain plate would need to go a lot further aft on the A40 and that would preclude easing the main properly.
All that said, I could be wrong so it’s worth asking the spar builder and hull engineers.
More on the whole stability thing and how it relates to rig loads here: https://www.morganscloud.com/2012/11/30/adventure-40-its-about-displacement-and-righting-moment/
Hi John, I think that the cutter rig as outlined makes a lot of sense although it is certainly not the only option that would work. To me, it is in keeping with the goal of an offshore focused boat with good performance for a couple. It isn’t the rig that a fully crewed raceboat would use but that is not the point. It also isn’t the rig that I would pick for coastal cruising but the removable inner forestay solves for this nicely. If I were doing that, I would go to a soft stay as storing wire stays is a real pain in the neck and can make a mess of your mast anodizing/paint. You and Dick convinced me a while ago that a roller furling staysail is viable as a heavy weather sail also so double furlers might be okay too, especially in a place with a lot of wind like San Francisco or Buzzard’s Bay. In an ideal world, for coastal cruising if being a bit lazier and less performance oriented, I would take a solent rig and if being a bit more performance oriented, I would take a blade jib and a Code 0. On our own boat, we have actually been playing around as when our current suite of sails comes up for replacement, we will switch away from hank-on sails. The biggest reason in our case is the storage space they take up, with a family of 4 being down below with several sails is less than ideal. One interesting thing I have learned is just how much variation we like in sail area, our biggest jib is 460 ft^2 and our smallest is 110 ft^2. In truth, the 110 ft^2 is probably smaller than we really need for our sailing which we have intentionally defined as coastal only right now, 150 ft^2 would probably be okay and on the top end, it is a pretty narrow wind range where the 460 ft^2 is beneficial over something like a 350 ft^2 with much less overlap. I am often amazed when I switch from an overlapped sail to a non-overlapped one and the boat speed barely drops but the boat heels a lot less. By far my favorite sail for our boat is what I call a working jib which is like a blade but with a clew cut a few feet higher although not as high as the picture you have of an Outbound. This is an incredibly versatile sail and provides great lift to drag and allows us to be much more close winded than our overlapping sails. I am sure that it is a little slower than a true blade but given that we are constantly steering around pot buoys and other boats, the extra visibility is well worth the tiny performance hit to me. We have inboard shrouds and sheet outside them but our previous family boat had a very similar sail except fractional hoist sheeted in the slot which was equally great and never required moving leads outside the caps. My experience with this actually very… Read more »
Good analysis and thanks for emphasizing the importance of keeping weight down aloft. Ignoring that fundamental, together with festooning boats with windage causing junk are probably the two things I see out there regularly that make me cringe the most.
I think if I had an A40 I would do pretty much as you are considering: working Jib and A sail for inshore and cutter and the same A sail for offshore.
One thing I’m learning about with my J/109 is that smaller headsails can be made way more effective, particularly in light air, by in-hauling the clew. The standard 109 track is at about 12 degrees (guess) but top racers are in-hauling to as close as 6 degrees and just about everyone in-hauls to 9 degrees. Of course, for this to work well, we need high lift underwater foils.
The point being that modern sail design and construction allows much tighter sheeting angles and that in turn powers the rig up a lot even with small jibs and gets rid of the need for overlap.
We discovered this years ago in the 505. Bottom line, the tracks on many cruising boats are too far outboard to use a working jib effectivly. That said, narrow sheeting angles do require more skill and good sails, so maybe not a good idea here.
In your case, given that your boat leans toward performance, and so do you, I would talk to your sailmaker about cutting the working jib for tighter sheeting angles, and an in-hauler (easy to rig) and see what he or she says.
More on in-hauling here: https://j109.org/forum/viewtopic.php?p=911
Interesting thought, I had never contemplated in-hauling on our boat. I think that our current working jib might have just enough clearance to the spreaders to try sheeting inside the shrouds and trying it out to see if it works. We definitely do not have the most modern underbody and do have noticeable leeway so it would be interesting to see if it works outside of a narrow range of conditions. There also may be some benefit to keeping the groove wide for a while with our kids the ages they are, I want them to feel comfortable driving in more than just flat water. I haven’t gotten on a real raceboat in a few years now but I do remember being amazed at the insanely low sheeting angles and high boat speeds with proper sail trim and driving.
On our boat, I actually think the tracks are too far inboard by a few inches for sheeting outside. With all our jibs, they come up against the shrouds with a lot of draft still in them. The overlapping ones are a bit tricky to go hard on the wind in smooth water and often end up with the bottom few feet a little creased around the shrouds if I don’t rig a sheet outhaul. For our working jib and smaller, the large soft shackle we use for sheet attachment just bears against the cap shroud a little and it is actually quite easy to shape once this has happened.
Yes, in-hauling may not work for your boat and only really works for jibs that sheet inside the shrouds.
For example J/109s in PHRF mode with genoas don’t use them. But the interesting thing is that there is now only a 3-6 second a mile handicap difference between a genoa equipped 109 and one with a class blade only. I think a lot of that is that the in hauler makes the blade equipped boat almost as fast on a VMG basis in light air as the genoa boats. And of course once the breeze gets up, the blade boat is way faster.
So I wonder if a really well cut working jib sheeted inside might not be surprisingly fast on your boat, even in lighter air.
As to steering difficulty. Apparently in-hauling does not make a lot of difference up to about 9 degrees. J/109s go in to as close as 6 degrees, but that ups the driver and trimmer skill requirement a bunch and TP 52 go to 4 degrees, but pretty much require pro drivers, although a lot of that is that their foils stall so easily.
Anyway, a lot off topic for the A40, but interesting.
thank you for the input!
Yes, there will be two pairs of spreaders, with the upper one at the termination of the inner forestay.
On continuous vs. discontinuous, we’ve not given thought to this yet. To me discontinous feels more stupid-proof, but it may be just a prejudice. Any thoughts welcome!
My preference for continuous rigging is around the ability to do more tuning and inspection from on deck. I find getting a good initial tune on a boat with discontinuous wire rigging to take an awful lot of sailing around in appropriate wind and taking trips up the mast, probably not something that all A40 owners would enjoy. And with a cutter, you will then invariably find the tune is wrong once the wind really gets up and you are using the staysail heavily. Of course you can pin the rig after getting that first tune but for various reasons like replacing the wire, you end up having to do the whole thing again.
With regards to inspection, it has been my experience that by far the most common failure point with wire is right outside the end termination. From this point, putting more fitting at deck level rather than up the mast is good and you also have less total fittings to go bad so statistically that should help reliability.
Most times when I go forward past the side stays on my twin spreader, fractionally rigged, 26′ racey cruiser I wonder why no-one puts the inners inboard and the caps outboard. Walking through the gap would be so much easier than trying to squeeze past the lowers. Especially if the reason I’m going fwd is to change to a smaller headsail, too late, and there is a lot of heel.
Now I see that it has been done. None other than Vincent Lebailly did it on his Biloup 109! I’m getting excited!
Ho P D,
That’s usually the case with a slot rig, as I discuss in the article above, so probably not going to happen on a true cutter as envisioned for the A40. That said, with the shrouds inboard there should be plenty of room to go forward between them and the lifelines.
one tradeoff to take into account with this slot issue is that the setup you have (with all shrouds outboard, if I understand well) allows placing the jackline well inboard, where it prevents a fall beyond the lifelines. With your lowers inboard, a jackline would have to go between the shrouds, as often seen, and not keep you as safe, or to go inside the lower shroud, which is safe but adds to the issue you report.
With the A40 rigged as a cutter we get the best of both worlds, since the lowers have quite a large angle to the mast, helping going forward while safely clipped on, and, as John writes, there’s enough space between shrouds and lifelines to walk freely, when clipping on is not required.
I would definitely like to see a low friction track and storm trysail track. That said, I would not recommend Tides. I own one on my J/109 an it’s not, in my opinion, robust enough for long term offshore use: https://www.morganscloud.com/2022/04/18/cruising-sailboat-roller-furler-and-track-inspection/
The weight-saving resulting from the decision to build a cored epoxy hull could have allowed for increased ballast within the original overall displacement target, which would have retained hull volume. However, I believe the decision was to reduce the overall displacement instead, which (unless I’m mistaken) reduces hull volume. I hope there is still room to store the light air sails and stays’l somewhere readily accessible when not in use.
Not sure where you got the idea that that trade off had been made in that way. The way the designer and Maxime have come at this is to design a hull with enough volume to satisfy the specification, but no more.
Anyway, yes, there is room for light air sails and it’s easily accessible.
I’d taken the original “target displacement” (8-9 metric ton) as part of the “specification.” And assumed it was as much for for seakeeping reasons as for payload-carrying sufficiency.
All other things being equal, Can a 7-8 ton boat be as seakindly as an 8-9 ton version?
Of course, the lighter boat can have smaller sails & lighter gear, which will be easier to handle (including a smaller drogue to retrieve should the worst come), and easier to build within the target price.
As always, a plethora of pros and cons to chart a path through.
I’m working on the A40 design “reveal” article at the moment. Let’s leave this discussion until we publish that and are all looking at the design itself.