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Old 03-28-2018, 08:09 PM   #1
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steadying sail

I hoisted the steadying sail of my Marine Trader 38 today for the first time. It strikes me as comically undersized. My boat rolls a LOT in choppy water, and I am skeptical that a sail this small is going to generate a roll dampening force of much magnitude. But, this is my first steadying sail on my first trawler, so I seek the wisdom of those who have flown steadying sails down through the ages. What say ye?

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Old 03-28-2018, 08:31 PM   #2
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I donít think these were designed to carry a sail. Most of the time the mast is too far forward.
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Old 03-28-2018, 08:40 PM   #3
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For the sail to be effective you need to have enough force on the sail. So you need to adjust the boom so the sail is being effected by the effective wind. Now, I donít think in your situation it will be effective at all since the O2 tent over the flybridge is going to block the wind to the sail.
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Old 03-28-2018, 09:07 PM   #4
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Quote:
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I donít think these were designed to carry a sail. Most of the time the mast is too far forward.
how could it be back any further ?
I have a similar boat but no sail or tent.
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Old 03-28-2018, 09:11 PM   #5
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They sre not true sails but taught canvas, sail materiel sheeted flat and hard.

They just are supposed to provide resistance against rolling, high enought to be effective.

Theory is, beam wind, worst rolling, flat sail prevents rolling back into the wind ...and small sizes may be enough.

Suggest most read up on steadying sails despite knowledge of sailing, similar in toll reduction, but really 2 different animals.
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Old 03-28-2018, 09:12 PM   #6
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It will be worthless. Maybe without canvas it would help reduce sailing at anchor.
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Old 03-28-2018, 09:14 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by psneeld View Post
They sre not true sails but taught canvas, sail materiel sheeted flat and hard.

They just are supposed to provide resistance against rolling, high enought to be effective.

Theory is, beam wind, worst rolling, flat sail prevents rolling back into the wind ...and small sizes may be enough.

Suggest most read up on steadying sails despite knowledge of sailing, similar in toll reduction, but really 2 different animals.
so the enclosure may be helping also. instead of hindering ?
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Old 03-29-2018, 01:00 AM   #8
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The positive of a steadying sail was to allow me to recognize a boat that I could take off of my list when I was looking. If it was uncomfortable enough that its owner resorted to a sail, then still wanted to sell, I wouldn't want it.
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Old 03-29-2018, 03:17 AM   #9
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Think of a steady sail as the feathers on an arrow. It helps keep a heading into the wind at anchorage. Presumably the same direction as the predominant swell. Most find it easier to pitch than roll.
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Old 03-29-2018, 06:44 AM   #10
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That's useless. Unfortunately, your boat isn't configured for a steadying sail. My sails help somewhat.
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Old 03-29-2018, 06:55 AM   #11
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theres a diffetence between a riding sail and a steadying sail...

Jay Benford NA in his writings dicusses streadying sails and the size required to be effective.
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Old 03-29-2018, 07:04 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psneeld View Post
theres a diffetence between a riding sail and a steadying sail ...
Unfamiliar with the term "riding sail." (To steady boat while at anchor versus reducing rolling while underway?) While my mainsail is smaller than the jib, the mainsail is most easily handled. Still, jib and main together can add a half-knot from a beam wind if not approaching hull speed.
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Old 03-29-2018, 08:24 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by markpierce View Post
Unfamiliar with the term "riding sail." (To steady boat while at anchor versus reducing rolling while underway?) While my mainsail is smaller than the jib, the mainsail is most easily handled. Still, jib and main together can add a half-knot from a beam wind if not approaching hull speed.
Mark, from my design readings, your setup is a "sail assisted" trawler.

A riding sail is a sail normally on a temporary mast, near the transom, to help a boat to ride bow to wind and wave. They sometimes are sheeted a little off center to counter current, maybe other reasons that I am not familiar with. May still be common, but I cant say for sure they still are, on New England lobster boats. I believe they are used both while at anchor and while working pots.

A steadying sail is sheeted flat, down the centerline and the stiffer the material the better. It is as high as practical to provide rolling resistance. It is not designed to be sheeted any other way to get assistance from the wind as that might detract from its primary purpose, but certainly a captain could play with it to see if both steadying and asdist could ge accomplished.
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Old 03-29-2018, 09:51 AM   #14
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Seattleboat guy your sail is not going to help much.
I have a motorsailer Schucker that rolls like a pig in the mud without any sail up. It has a very round bottom. Anyway I had a flat mainsail built to help stop some of that roll and it makes a big difference and probably is more than 4 times the size of yours and it helps even if there is no wind at all. Many of the old trollers used these type of sails in Alaska in the old days. You can have a sail that is too big and and a big gust will try and lay you over.
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Old 03-29-2018, 10:31 AM   #15
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We looked at adding one on Hobo. With the existing mast and boom it would be ~100 square feet. I’m from a sailing background and I talked to a sail maker/designer, too small. It wouldn’t work as a steadying sail but it would look nice.

As psneeld mentioned, I think it would work as a riding sail. We had one on our sailboat. With two head sails it moved around at anchor a lot. When we added a riding sail, it held us pretty steady into the wind, put less strain on the anchor and increased our comfort.
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Old 03-29-2018, 11:08 AM   #16
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Hi Seattle Boat Guy.

Your anchor/riding/steadying sail looks particularly small for you size and weight of boat.

My Grand Banks 32 (about 20K pounds all up) came with a sail about that size or maybe a bit bigger. I tried it as an "anchor sail" to hopefully reduce the boat's desire to sail around the anchor. Not particularly effective. in about 15-20 kts of wind, with no current, the boat tended to wander through an arc of maybe 90 degrees over the course of a minute or so. With the sail deployed, that was reduced to maybe 60 degrees. Barely worth the effort in my opinion, but might be more effective in a higher wind situation. I have also heard that if you are under way and must deal with the rolling caused by a beam sea, that a steadying sail might help reduce the rolling. Given the small size of these sails as limited by the mast and boom size that typically come with our trawlers, I doubt that the sail would be very effective at that as well (but I don't actually have any experience setting the sail while under way). Basically, I think these sails on our boats are mostly "for pretty."
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Old 03-29-2018, 11:43 AM   #17
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My last Sailboat was Ketch rigged. This allowed me to hoist the mizzen when at anchor. With the Mizzen up, the sailing around the anchor was lessened enough to encourage me to try a smaller sail, out at the end of the boom. That worked extremely well. The boat stopped moving altogether, except when the wind shifted.
Yours is too far forward and is blanketed by the O2 tent to have a similar effect, though the size looks right.
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Old 03-29-2018, 03:20 PM   #18
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thus why riding sail and steadying sail are really not the same..... but often thought so....
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Old 03-29-2018, 09:27 PM   #19
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I donít think thatís gonna be nearly big enough.

Mine works well, but it was a fairly involved setup.

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Old 03-30-2018, 12:17 AM   #20
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Seattleboatguy,


It looks like you have about 50 square feet of sail area there. On your 38 foot boat you may notice a slight improvement in a heavy wind, but don't expect too much.


In a nutshell, if the sail causes your boat to heel, it will decrease the rolling motion. I doubt if you'd see any heeling (or reduced rolling) unless you had 20+knots of wind on the beam. - and then you'd want to make sure your rigging is suitable to handle the force of 20 knots of wind.


My 30 foot motorsailer has 300 square feet of sail area. Most "proper" 30 foot sailboats have 360-600 square feet of sail area. In a beam sea with 20 knots of wind, the rolling on my boat is reduced by about 90% with the sails up. In 5 knots of wind, the sails do little or nothing.
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