Difficulty pulling block to block

Discussion in 'Laser Talk' started by Adam Sails, Aug 16, 2017.

  1. Adam Sails

    Adam Sails Weekend Sailor

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    When I sail my laser, I always find it difficult to pull block to block for upwind legs, and when I manage it, it is hard to maintain tension on the line for long periods of time, it sometimes results in some wrist pain the following day.

    I sail an old 1981 Laser Standard with the original kit e.g. the 3:1 kicker etc. I cannot afford to buy upgraded parts right now to make it easier to sail.

    Any tips on how to make pulling block to block upwind easier?
     
  2. LaLi

    LaLi Active Member

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    You obviously lack strength, and that will fix itself through training. In the meantime, try 1) using both hands for pulling in and holding the sheet, 2) leading the sheet behind your forward knee for some extra friction, and 3) although torrid won't like this :D, cleating it at least occasionally.

    Also, an easily-adjustable vang would help. You do NOT have to buy anything expensive for that; a couple metres of thin low-stretch rope, one or two small single blocks, and a swivel will do.

    What ratchet block do you have, and what kind of rope do you use for the sheet?
     
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  3. Jaap Schellekens

    Jaap Schellekens New Member

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    Apart from strength (which I gradually developed) a found that a new ratchet block helped me a lot. My old one was not very grippy. A less slippery sheet may have the same effect (at lower cost).
     
  4. torrid

    torrid Just sailing

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    Real men neither eat quiche nor cleat the mainsheet.

    Vang tension will definitely help. When two blocked you, you are both pulling in the boom and and bending the mast. Having the vang on will do some of the mastbend work for you, and keep it from bending back straight when you sheet out in a puff.

    This is a way to add some purchase to the old-style vang with blocks instead of thimbles and loops:

    [​IMG]

    RULE CHANGES General Background
     
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  5. Adam Sails

    Adam Sails Weekend Sailor

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    I use a 6.5mm anti-twist mainsheet, I have a standard Harken 2.25 inch ratchet block. I have a vang swivel and a few spare small blocks laying around, I will try to experiment with some systems, I sail at a casual club so the members aren't fussed about official rig rules etc.
     
  6. we66er

    we66er New Member

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    As per the other comments, more vang tension is essential. I used this method before I could afford a 15:1 Rigging an Old Style Laser 6:1 Kicker – Rooster blog . It worked well for me at the time. However, when I did go to a 15:1 I started to lose time in races because of the amount of kicker rope that ended up in the cockpit when I cranked it on.

    I have now settled on removing a purchase from the 15:1 to make it 12:1 and adopted a different technique for getting it to block to block ie. pulling on the mainsheet hard when rounding the windward mark to get it block to block, then whilst holding this with one hand, take up the slack in the kicker. Takes a bit of practice but this would work great with an old style 3:1/6:1 kicker.
     
  7. Adam Sails

    Adam Sails Weekend Sailor

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    Quick question still related to the topic, does the rig size make any difference to how difficult it is to pull in the mainsheet in decent wind?
    I am 17 and I do fall under the recommended weight range for the standard rig package, however I find it's manageable at my club as its a small inland lake, I do not take my sailing too seriously as it's a reasonably casual club.
    Thanks a lot, this kicker set up really helped me today, it was a windy one and had a few capsizes but it was a lot smoother and didn't have to constantly keep taking slack out of it.
     
  8. LaLi

    LaLi Active Member

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    In reality, the class rules don't limit you an awful lot. If you don't use mid-size, or triple blocks, or more than two moving lines, your vang is likely legal.
    It's actually an 8:1. Funny how even Steve Cockerill can't calculate a simple purchase...
    It should, as there's an 18 % difference between the sail areas. In practice, the Radial is easier to sheet (block-to-block) than the Standard mainly because the mast is softer. Don't know about the 4.7.
     

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