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Tanzer 22 Sail Tuning

Be sure to keep a record or a log of your races and how your boat and sails were set. This way you'll learn what is fast and what isn't. With the information you accumulate you can develop your own personalized tuning guide to your boat and the conditions you most often sail in.

FAST TRIM

It is important and helpful to mark all your sheets, halyards, tracks, outhaul, backstay etc... Keep records of your tuning set-ups, the conditions you sailed in and how your speed was in that condition. It is essential to know how your boat was set-up so that you will be able to duplicate good settings or avoid one that were not successful. The accumulation of good settings for various wind and water conditions will allow you to get the boat going well quickly and effortlessly so that you can then concentrate on the tactics of the race.

MAINSAIL:

Be sure that your main is hoisted completely. At this point the main halyard should never be adjusted. The floating gooseneck should be locked high so that there is no tension on the luff of the main. In higher breezes lock the gooseneck down 3" below the light air setting and use the cunningham to adjust the draft from there. Trim the mainsheet hard enough to make the top batten parallel to the boom. This can be checked by sighting underneath the boom on the vertical plane. In smooth water and high pointing conditions, trim the main harder to cock the top batten slightly to windward. If the mainsheet is too tight the boat will slow so it is important to be aware of the mainsheet tension at all times. In very light air or lighter-choppy conditions the batten should twist off slightly to ensure good air-flow over the upper leach. A good rule of thumb is to try to stall the upper tell-tale 20-30% of the time. If this can be achieved and maintained you will be working near optimum trim. Of course fine tuning and adjustments must be made for varying wind and wave conditions.

The boom should always be set on the centre line as long as the helm and healing are under control. This means that in very light air the traveller will be well to windward with the sheet eased to keep the boom in the centreline. As the wind increases lower the traveller down while increasing sheet tension to keep the boom on the centreline. As the breeze increases more (over 16 knots) lower the traveller to leeward 6 inches to keep the helm and heeling under control.The lens foot (the panel nearest to the boom) should not be fully opened when sailing to windward. To set the outhaul properly, use the following guide:

OUTHAUL TENSION:

As the wind increases Outhaul Tension is increased

CUNNINGHAM:

The cunningham is used to position the draft in the main. Your goal should be to keep the max draft point at 50%. In a new sail the cunningham should not have to be used until 12 knots when it should be applied sufficiently to remove any wrinkles that appear in the luff. Above 18 knots it should be tensioned further to move the draft forward in the upper part of the sail and also to relieve the helm by opening the bottom batten. As you main gets older you will need to apply the cunningham sooner to maintain the max. draft at 50%.

BOOM VANG:

We use no boom vang upwind to 12 knots. At 13 knot we snug the vang andthen progressively tighter to 20 knots. High vang tensions help bend the mast below the spreaders and flatten the main. It also allows you to play the main in puffs without losing leach tension.

BACKSTAY:

We do not tighten the backstay until we feel the boat is becoming overpowered. Tightening the back stay has one main effect. It tightens the headstay thus flattening the entry of the headsail and eases its leech, thus increasing pointing ability and reducing healing.

GENOA/JIB TRIM:

The standard method of determining genoa lead position is to head up slowly and watch the genoa luff. If the top breaks(inner telltale flutters high up before low down) it is because the foot is trimmed harder relative to the leech of the sail, and the top is twisting into the breeze. To correct this, move the lead forward to increase leech tension and reduce twist until the sail luffs evenly. If the bottom breaks first then the reverse situation is true and the lead should be moved back to correct.

#1 GENOA:

The genoa was designed as an All Purpose design (0-16 knots) and to especially excel in conditions where power is needed(chop).

In very light air we are looking for a smooth luff to keep the draft forward and make steering easy. Halyard tension and backstay is minimal to allow for maximum headstay sag for more power. It is also important to keep the sheet eased some so the leech will open to reduce stalling (sail 2-3" from the spreader tip). Over-trimming the genoa in these conditions can seriously reduce boatspeed.

As the breeze increases we trim harder to power up (sail just touching the spreader). We also allow some wrinkles to form in the luff to flatten the entry for better pointing. Increasing backstay tension but leaving the halyard tension eased will also improve pointing but the steering groove will get narrower. It is imperative that you stay aware of the water conditions as the breeze changes. If conditions are flat water in medium wind but lots of chop keep the backstay eased than if it were pointing conditions and apply extra halyard tension to keep the draft forward.

 #2 GENOA:

This sail is a heavy air genoa used in conditions when the boat is becoming over powered (17-24 knots). It is designed with a full entry and a straight-back shape which generates sufficient power while twisting the leech open to open the slot and reduce heeling. As with the OD #1, adjustment of the backstay and halyard are critical to the performance of th this sail. Although the backstay and halyard tensions will be higher than with the OD #1 we still can have a range of adjustment to optimize performance. When power is needed ease the backstay tension to increase the depth of the sail. When over powered increase it and apply more halyard tension to keep the draft forward.

Always be aware of the sheet tension as it is the main adjustment of the genoa. If it is too far out then you are not reaching the full potential of the genoa, but if the genoa is overtrimmed you will stall the entire sailplan by closing the slot. Any change in wind strength or water condition warrants an adjustment of the sheet.

Max. genoa size weather depends on crew weight and sea conditions. The heavier you are, the longer you can keep your genoa up. If you are experiencing difficulties steering and keeping the boat flat and driving, it is time to go down to the jib. With an experienced crew the Triple Mitre can be carried over 22 knots but generally 18-20 knots steady is a good time to switch.

 100% JIB:

If the wind is under 20 knots or there is large seas, keep the lead forward to make the bottom of the sail full while twisting off the leech a little. The top batten should lie 10-15 degrees below centreline. As the breeze increases or the water flattens out you can trim harder. Now the top batten will lie 0-10 degrees below centreline. If the breeze increases further move the lead back one more hole.

SPINNAKER TRIM:

With all models, all the basics apply but constant attention to the guy and sheet trim is essential for optimum performance. Lower the pole in very light conditions to keep the clews level. In moderate broad reaching and running conditions keep the pole level, but in heavy reaching conditions raise the pole 6 inches to open the leach. Constantly play the guy to square or oversquare the pole for maximum projected area at all times. An efficient system for launching and retrieving the spinnaker an be an advantage. Although your north spinnaker comes with a turtle we recommend a deep cockpit launching system. Ask your North sail consultant about one.

 DOWNWIND MAINSAIL TIPS:

Release the cunningham and outhual after rounding the windward mark. Reaching apply enough vang to close the leach some but be sure not to choke it (keep the tell-tales flying). Running the top batten should be in line with the boom. If the breeze is up wait on releasing the outhaul until you know you need the power. If you are over powered while beam reaching with the spinnaker keep the outhaul in firm and apply cunningham tension to extra flatten the main. Trimming the main is done by letting the main out until it luffs, then pull it in just enough to sop the luff. Check this trim often. When in doubt, let it out!

GENERAL NOTE ON DOWNWIND SAILING:

In light air maintaining boatspeed is essential. Look for wind and try to stay in lines provided they don't take you from where you want to go. If there are no bands of wind try heading up a few degrees to increase boat speed. Once you are moving better bear-off to as long as you can maintain speed. We have found that "double slotting" is not always best because it tends to starve the spinnaker. When double slotting be conscious of how tight the spinnaker must be trimmed to keep it flying and try to judge whether you think it is getting choked. In heavy air maintain control is a primary concern. When reaching watch for the puffs coming across the water and bear-off just before they hit. If you wait until the puff hits you may not be able to bear off as the boat will heal over and you will lose helm. The result of pulling the helm over hard to maintain control increases rudder drag and slows you down. Broaching is an obvious drawback. Anticipation of puffs maintains if not increases your speed. Once the puff is on you can determine how much control you still have and then gradually head up to maintain your desired course. If you cannot lay the mark, first ease the genoa off(if double slotting), then dump the main(see downwind mainsail tips). If you still can't lay consider dropping the spinnaker but wait as long as possible because a decrease in wind pressure may come and you may then lay-up.

Constant adjustment of all sails for conditions is the key to good speed. Sail the boat flat and use your crew weight to your advantage so depowering if sails is done to the minimum needed.

Remember, use this guide as your beginning but develop your own technique through testing and racing while compiling your own records on what is slow and what is fast.
 

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