Baggy Wrinkles

Baggy Wrinkles
S/V Nautica, Hull #614, Built at Whitby Boatworks Ltd., Ontario, Canada 1977, one of the most recognizeable Carl Alberg designs. A masthead sloop displacing 9000 lbs, keel hull, Yanmar 15 hp diesel, LOA 30.27 Beam 8.75, Draft 4.29, roller furling headsail, tiller, berths for 4, interior teak bulkheads, teak cap rail and cockpit teak coamings, 12 volt lighting, aluminum mast support, Harken self tailing winches, in its day was designed for customers as a Cruiser-Racer, the Alberg 30 remains a Classic design of the large Alberg inventory.

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Saturday, September 12, 2015

Winds were supposed to be 10 to 15 kts from the west-southwest, skies partly cloudy, temps about 85 degrees.  A typical setting for early September in South Carolina.

I'd approached the day with casual interest.  In fact, I spent quite a bit of time lying on the leeward cushion while under sail as there weren't any other boats to speak of on the lake, and from that vantage point I had a clear view of my tell-tales and advantaged the Dory with a longer waterline and thus a bit more speed.  I hoped!

And I began too to mess with my genoa during this gentle breeze.  

Baggy Wrinkles has only one genoa track which appears just rear of amidships and is about 22 inches in length.  As with everything on this little vessel, there was nothing about competition or speed in the design of the track at that position, but it certainly affords easy single-handling from the cockpit for me. I guess others may have found this fact too, not sure.

Under a brisk late winter breeze with normal block setting on a port-reach.  The sail shape blossoms ( a good word?) to aft providing lots of rounded sail but not much efficiency.  It sails fine just does not point very well upwind due to this shape.  How to move that and get a better shape?
 So to capture a better sail shape I winched in on my genoa to the best shape possible, then I grabbed the sheet which was entering the spring-block, and lapped it around my shiny winch.  Thinking I really needed a longer track was my first reaction, but everytime I start thinking that way it causes gyrations in my mind about the lack of a traveller, the archaic cam cleats holding my mainsheet, etc.  So I refuse to engage at that level.  I lapped it around the winch and watched the sail shape change.

My little shiny Gibb is doing extra duty bringing the inbound sheet alongside the tied-to the cuddy sheet. 
 It went from about 1.5 feet out to about half a foot from the stays, and the shape of the sail seemed to embrace a better more forward capture of the wind, thus I think getting me along a bit better.  This is all subjective however, cause I did not get up to grab my phone and check the speed over ground or whatever.  Just my feeling.  And that was enough.  I didn't want science to interrupt a good time sailing!
This technique pulled in the clew on the genoa a bit.  I looked at the angle from this perspective to line up the sheets for a bit more scientific approach, well just a bit of science.  You'll have to use your scientific sailor eye to determine how much closer to the stays this brought the sail.  

At least this shaped the genoa a bit more.  We'll see if it is useful or not.
 The problem with this arcane method is that I cannot trust this in stronger winds.  But you know I'll try!  We shall see as we're hoping to put the dory into some wind today and try this technique again with more aggressive conditions.

I just don't want to ruin an already beautiful rub-rail with a long track on this gorgeous little boat.