F35 Which of the 3 reef points are most useful?

F35 Which of the 3 reef points are most useful?

Postby Mark K. » Sat Aug 12, 2017 2:02 pm

Hello,
My 1994 Freedom 35 mainsail has 3 reef points but only 2 can be readied in advance. Right now I am set up to use reef #1 and #2. My question is if I decide to switch over to the third reef should I get rid of reef #1 or #2? I am based out of Boston MA and the winds in the city can be very gusty, swirly and frustrating.
Thank you,
Mark K.
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Re: F35 Which of the 3 reef points are most useful?

Postby BillSmith » Sat Aug 12, 2017 3:21 pm

Define "get rid of"'. Just change the existing reef lines to the higher point or ? Is your reefing down through the boom in single line fashion and routed into the cockpit?

We sail our F35 Pedrick on the San Francisco Bay. Afternoon winds often outstrip a full sail configuration. Reefing is an often occurrence.

The three reef points allow you flexibility. Our single line reefing is temperamental, but works. Currently configured at the lower of two points, as you describe. There are days that deeper reef might be desirable and we've consider moving. Having only owned the boat for just over a year, still sorting out a sail plan.

Gets down to what is your range of conditions. As you know, the main of these boats is huge. Reefing makes things 'easier'. If you are racing, you might want the first reef for stabilizing the boat to specific winds and keep the first two reefs. If you like to sail in howling conditions, reroute to the deepest reef point.

If I were sailing the North Bay here more often, I'd set the system to include the third reef.
Bill & Carole Smith
Freedom 35 Pedrick
SweeTART
Coyote Point
San Mateo, CA
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Re: F35 Which of the 3 reef points are most useful?

Postby bobr » Sat Aug 12, 2017 7:46 pm

My first reef did very little to reduce the sail area and added a lot of spaghetti to the cockpit. I removed it and don't miss it. I am in an area where the wind is usually under 20 knots and I don't race.
Bob R.
1995 Freedom 35 (Pedrick)
"Liberty"
Old Saybrook, CT
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Re: F35 Which of the 3 reef points are most useful?

Postby Camino » Sat Aug 12, 2017 10:38 pm

You may want to consider keeping reefs 1 and 2 as they are -- internal to the boom and add the third external to the boom - easy enough with 2 cheek blocks and a couple of eye straps and a block at the mast base. I have not had my Pedrick long enough to say for certain as I'm figuring my own reefing system - my other boats had 3 reef points - this will as well soon enough. Inside sf bay I used reefs 1 and 2 with previous boats. Outside is another matter (hence the third- which I used exactly once in a near gale developing into a gale. But again I don't have the experience yet with the pedrick.
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Re: F35 Which of the 3 reef points are most useful?

Postby mike cunningham » Sun Aug 13, 2017 6:34 pm

I find the 2nd and 3rd reefs are most useful upwind on the freedom 30. By the time I want to reef at 18 to 20 kts apparent, I just go the second which gives me pretty much max boat speed. Off the wind, a very competitive sailor might want to get more sail up. I rig with a snap shackle and block at the leach. This allows me (in theory) to move the reefing line down to the first reef cringle. It is doable but involves a lot of thrashing about, consequently I don't do that very much.
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Re: F35 Which of the 3 reef points are most useful?

Postby Camino » Sun Aug 13, 2017 8:07 pm

Mike - good info. So you also often or near-always by-pass the first reef and go right to 2? Hopefully my new reefing lines will come in Tuesday and by Thursday morning I should be good for a trial run. Just from the look of my main the first reef looks like it'll take the belly out of the sail with building wind. I'll find out. I've put in reefs with this boat at 16 and a bit less to see how all lines work but definitely need higher air experience with her. There is a number of us in the bay it seems - we should try for a rendezvous sometime :)
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Re: F35 Which of the 3 reef points are most useful?

Postby jamesorr » Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:24 am

On a related topic, I have used all three reef points (typically end up at reef 3 when the wind is steady at 35+, gusts 40+), however, with the in boom reefing on my boat (Mull 32), I do not have enough line in the "system" to accommodate rigging reef 3 and raising the sail all the way. Therefore, I usually rig reef 1 and 2 (giving me 3 positions, full, 1 and 2), and will rig either 1 and 3 or 2 and 3 if the conditions look like they will warrant reef 3 (which of course precludes raising the sail all the way without re-rigging 3 to 1). Others seen this? Other approaches folks use?
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Re: F35 Which of the 3 reef points are most useful?

Postby gamayun » Mon Aug 14, 2017 3:51 pm

I concur with Mike but will also add that it depends on how old and baggy your sail is. In my old sail with 3 reef points, reef #1 did nothing to reduce weather helm. It was also footed in the boom so couldn't really flatten it and it had a huge belly. I have an F38 and 3 years ago I bought a "racing/cruising" laminate/dacron sail from Quantum that I love! They built it with only 2 reef points, which everyone cautioned me was a mistake, but the Freedoms are different, right? The second reef is super deep, appearing to reduce sail at least 60% because I thought I might substitute that as the storm sail. At reef 1, and at about 20 knots true, the boat is still at hull speed. At 30 knots true, I'm at #2. This was recently tested offshore in these conditions and large sea state. In the bay, I tend not to reef until it's above 22 knots true wind when singlehanding and above 26 knots true if I have crew. I've never gone to the second reef in the bay even at 32-34 knots. I'm not sure how the F35 is different in these respects. As to the storm sail, I heard of a Wylie owner who has turned an old sail into one he can hank on the mast and hoist. I am liking this idea and think it would work on Kyntanna even with the lazy jacks. That would allow me to drop everything and hoist a teeny tiny sail in anything above 40 knots (theoretically). Given the conditions we regularly have here, it would be possible to check this out but I'm a bit of a chicken about putting myself knowingly into winds like that. As to meeting up, it seems there are at least 6 active Freedoms in the SF Bay/Delta area. Let's plan a rendezvous and compare projects! I'm sure a yacht club would host us or we could do a raft up at Treasure Island.
Kynntana, Freedom 38
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Re: F35 Which of the 3 reef points are most useful?

Postby GeoffSchultz » Mon Aug 14, 2017 5:18 pm

I have a 40/40 and have found that unless you get the 1st reef super tight that it adds too much belly to the sail. I use the electric winches to crank the reefs lines down super tight and have been able to get a reasonable sail shape on the 1st reef. In general I find that going directly to the 2nd reef works well. You'll have much better weather helm, speed, heel angle (and a happier admiral) by reefing early .

-- Geoff
BlueJacket
1997 Freedom 40/40
http://www.GeoffSchultz.org
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Re: F35 Which of the 3 reef points are most useful?

Postby Camino » Mon Aug 14, 2017 8:53 pm

Geoff - I have a new main and have been figuring on how to get the belly out of it with vang and main sheet. Good on cranking down on the reefs. I'll be finding out very soon I hope. On the rendezvous- Treasure Island raft-up sounds perfect. That is a tremendous anchorage for the night and we may be able to get in on the dinner at treasure island yacht club Saturday night. Is it possible to plan on sometime in October (week 2 or so? I'm out of town in 2 weeks). If we can get some dates I can check with Treasure yacht club on dinner availability. ?
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