The Offshore Voyaging Reference Site

Pete Goss on Mainsail Automation

Sometimes I feel like a voice in the wilderness constantly campaigning for simple rigging systems, so it’s nice to read a well-reasoned article from a deeply experienced sailor on the subject.

I spent a bit of time with Pete a few years ago, and he’s worth listening to, even if we disagree on a couple of boats.

Further Reading

And if you are trying to decide whether or not to automate your mainsail, we have a complete buyer’s guide to that decision…and, yes, it includes the advantages of automated systems.

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Christopher Kracht

Hey John,
Any suggestions for those of us that already have a boat with a roller furling system. The old Hood main furling system (1988) on our boat was the one big compromise we made and are now realizing how much of a hassle it is to remedy. So far, the consensus from several riggers is a new spar at half the cost of initial boat purchase price. One rigger suggested there might be a way to attach a track over the gap in the mast, and a new boom. But they have never performed that and the cost was still up there. Any suggestions would be appreciated.  

Christopher Kracht

Thanks for the information, it a Sceptre 41. What are your thoughts on a used mast? Or if another scepter owner would be willing to trade spars. This might be a bit out there, but we have met a few in the owners group that wished they had a furling main. This is our first time owning a boat, please excuse our naivete.