New sailplan for a "good old boat" - foolish idea?

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by Anatol, Jul 26, 2018.

  1. Anatol
    Joined: Feb 2015
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    Location: los angeles

    Anatol Senior Member

    Hi all,

    I have owned a 36' strip plank mahoghany sloop for 12 years - custom built in the 60s, boat of classic Rhodes/Alberg style, an example of exquisite craftsmanship. 8 tons, sea kindly wineglass/cutaway forefoot, tiller, spruce mast and boom. I've been very conservative about changing it, and have resisted 'modernizing'. But the rig is crazily low aspect - 34'luff, 17' boom - and doesn't point well. The boom is beast and crashes around in light downwind sailing. I am now at the point of customizing or changing boats. While my boat is without doubt a classic and I love it, I know the exchange value of old boats. So I might just mess with it.

    The other day I had a (potentially foolish) idea. Convert it to a ketch, use the boom as a mizzen mast. (As a kid I was
    enamored of the H28). It would be nice to increase windward performance by increasing leading edge, and it would be nice to get that skull-crushing log out of the cockpit. This would leave me with roughly a 3:1 aspect main, and a similar small mizzen, behind the tiller, say 15' luff, 5' foot. (Height and position of mizzen would be designed to leave the existing single backstay in place)

    I know that some substantial structural work would be entailed, but its a solidly made boat and my boatbuilding/carpentry skills are equal to the task. I know quite enough about sail balance to understand I could be walking into disaster. So - please tell me why I'm insane, or give me advice :)

    thankyou in advance, oh wise ones.





     
  2. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    Could you define what you mean by not pointing well? A boat of that design was expected to do about 45 degrees compared to about 35 degrees for modern racers. Also, carbon fiber or kevlar/mylar sails are going to have better performance than if you have sails made of woven fabric.
     
  3. Anatol
    Joined: Feb 2015
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    Location: los angeles

    Anatol Senior Member

    Thanks
    I'm getting close to 45 deg. The big rectangular mast can't be helping :)
    You're no doubt right, better sails would help, but its a cruiser, I won't be going with carbon or kevlar. They'd cost more than the boat is worth and don't last...
    I wonder if losing 5-6' off the back of the main (with a new(er) dacron sail, would alter performance or balance than much? In strong winds I often sail with a 100% jib and a reef in the main (~30" less luff, and at least than much lost on the foot) and balance is nice.
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2018

  4. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    New sails will improve pointing significantly.
     
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