Thread starter #1
Howdy Folks,

I was given a spinnaker sail that I was told would work on my C-14
I've never used a spinnaker but would like to try. I know the obvious ( used in light downwind sail conditions, used with a spinnaker pole) Other than that I am open to any info. Spinnaker pole... where to get, how to connect to mast ,how to rig, is one neccessary? I've gone to several online sail supply places and have not seen anything.... any clues? Thanks
A free spinnaker is going to cost you good money to rig. You'll need to add a spinnaker halyard to the mast that will have a block just above where the forestay is attached to the mast, a cleat for the new halyard, a new piece of line for said halyard. That line needs to be long enough so the spinnaker can be fully doused into the boat and still enough line at the cleat end to hoist it from the cockpit. For ease in hoisting have the halyard lead through a turning block near the base of the mast. You'll need a basket or bag to douse the kite in and out of so the sail is not loose in the boat between flying time. You'll need a spinnaker pole with pole ends , trip line between the ends and a bridal that will attach to the topping lift for the pole.. Also an eye strap on the bottom of the pole for a bungee down hauler that is made to the base of the mast(another eye strap). One mast ring for the pole mounted 3 ish feet off the deck to the front of the mast. For the topping lift , another block attached to the mast about half way between the forestay and the base of the mast. Topping lift cleat and line for topping lift. Two tweaker hooks fastened to the deck near the shrould base (one hook mounted on either side of the boat). A swivel turning block on top for the deck near the transome on either side of the boat. A ratchet block mounted on the deck just aft of the jib track(matching ones on both sides of the boat. One spinnaker sheet long enough for the whole set up. That should be it. Lots of screws, nuts washers, some springs and some sealant.

Or just get a whisker pole and a mast ring for the jib so its easy to wing on wing down wind as the boat was designed. It will work nicely.
Hmmm, this is another long one so I'll have to break it up again.

Part One

I think fan pretty much laid out the details, but I don't think it's as bad as he lays it out to be. I've never seen a Capri 14 with a spinnaker, but my Laser-2 had one and I can describe how that was rigged. It didn't use an uphaul or a downhaul and used a whisker pole instead of a true spinnaker pole. It was designed to be hauled and set quickly on a very tippy boat. It worked fine, but I also had to make use of the trapeze to keep it under control. It was actually a lot of fun ... but I was much younger then.

Anyway, here's how it was rigged: There was a nylon bag securely fixed to the front of the cockpit. Kind of like the cuddy cover on the Capri but baggy enough to hold the spinnakker and with a cover to close it up securely for storage (lots of velcro, as I recall). The halyard went through a block attached to the mast, just above the forestay. The two ends of the halyard were (1) attached to the head of the sail and (2) ran through a clam cleat at the base of the inside of the mast. When the sail went up, the halyard went in the bag and vice versa. The sheet/guy was a continuous line that ran from one clew, into the cockpit and out to the other clew. There were two cam cleats on either end of the cockpit for securing the guy end. You kept the sheet end in your hand. The whisker pole was clipped onto a ring at the mast about 3-4 ft above the deck. Before use, the pole was slipped through a pungi on the boom so it could slide along the boom for deployment.
Part Two

Everything was set up on shore, before launching. You carefully bagged the sail so the head and two clews went in last. You carefully attached the halyard to the head so that when it went up, the halyard would pull the head out from underneath the foot of the jib and up in front of the forestay. You then carefully attached the sheet/guy to one clew, walked it around the nearest shroud, through the cockpit, around the outside of the opposite shroud, around the outside of the forestay and back to the sail where you tied it off to the other clew. You really have to visualize how this thing is going to fly as you're packing it. The whisker pole is pungi-ed to the boom.

Once you're properly set up, you get out there and position the boat so the wind is coming from the quarter on the side that has the bulk of the guy/sheet. That is, the side where the guy/sheet takes a long trip around the shroud and forestay. Upon the proper order from the skipper, the crew lifts the high side clew to the whisker pole and slides the whisker pole out from the boom, clipping the other end to the mast ring. Once that's done, the crew hauls like crazy on the halyard, with one hand (and teeth), while pushing the sail from the bag forward under the foot of the jib so the spinnaker is actually deployed from under the jib. Once it's up, the crew cleats the halyard, cleats the whisker pole end and sheets in the end that's under the jib. All this time, the skipper is trying to hold a steady course while laughing his butt off watching the crew struggle to accomplish what few octopuses can. The jib, by the way, stays up the whole time.

Now it's up and two people have three sails to trim. It's a rush. From here you can change course, but if you jibe, you'll have to reset the whisker pole to the other side. Dousing the spinnaker is easier than launching it as all the lines are where they belong. In fact, I think I learned how to pack the spinnaker by setting it up once on a windless day, dousing it and watching where all the lines went.

So this is what your up against. It can be a lot of fun (in a focus/intense sort of way) but you need crew who is a willing as you are. And plan on getting wet the first couple of attempts.
I didn't lay out a bad picture,but it's realistic. I did leave out the cleats for cleating the pole guy while trimming. Even CFJs rig the pole with a topper so the kite can be trimmer correctly. Did your Laser II have a pole launcher like a 505? Great system on a 505.

We don't even know if the kite is the right size for the boat. Maybe its too large to be rigged fractional and since the C14,2 has no backstay or carbon mast, rigging masthead is out. The good news is its not my time or money. Bad news its Jeremy's time and money.

Jeremy, have you sailed the C14.2 with a whisker pole yet off the wind? Try that first as it will improve the Downwind performance by quite a bit when sailed right. You'll get better speed and vmg while keeping the boat stock and saving your wallet.

If you must sail with a spinnaker, sail with an owner that is rigged with a spinnaker 1st to see how the systems work first hand or consider buying a boat that was designed to sail with one, you'll be better off instead of having a one off design. my 2 cents. :)

Get out to So CA, and we'll go for a sail on a boat or two with a spinnaker.

Your absolutely right about verifying the structural integrity of the Capri. I HAVE NO IDEA whether the Capri is built to handle a spinnaker. I only described my experience to help Jeremy visualize the simplest possible rig ( no fancy pole launcher, no trimming tools). We never messed with trying to keep the clews level and the pole did drag the clew into the water when the winds were very light. Also, from my vantage point, hiked out to windward, I rarely got a good look at the leeward shoulder of the sail. However, I did race with my spinnaker and it was an interesting challenge. Good crew made all the difference (especially when we broke the tiller cause we were putting too much force on the rig).

So, yeah, I agree, a spinnaker is a bit of work and expense. But it can be learned if one is willing ... and one has willing crew. At the same time, I agree completely with your two-cents. When I bought my Laser-2, it was one year old, and came complete with the appropriate spinnaker, blocks, cleats, trapeze and harness. I had to try it out.
Thread starter #7
Caerus and Bob,

Thank you both for your thoughtful responses. I really appreciate you two taking the time to help out " the rookie" (me). Both of you have given me a much greater understanding of how the whole spinnaker thing works. I think given all the information, I will probably try a whisker pole with the stock jib, if in fact I can do that with my current rigging. My main motivation for this dialogue is that I feel like a kid with my first car, I want to make it faster. I do still have some questions around using a whisker pole. My C14 is I believe a mod 2 its a 1991. It is equipped with a roller furling, hence my forestay is part of the jib itself. On the top of the mast there is a wire approx 1ft, connected to a small cylander, the jib wire connects to this cylander and I believe runs thru the jib and connects to the furling drum. I primarily single hand my C14 so the roller furling comes in very handy. My questions are these
1) Would I be able to use a whisker pole in addition to the roller furling?
2) If so how? If not what type of performance gains could I expect and would it justify removing the roller furling?
3) Is there a boat specific whisker pole/mast ring? Where do you recommend getting one?
4) Is this whole setup something I can manage single handedly, or will I need crew to assist in deployment and management of sails?

Thanks for your time and attention!

The roller fuller jib will work with a whisker pole. Up wind the pole will be sitting in the boat not attached to the jib. As you turn the boat to go down wind, you of course ease the mainout, bring the jib to the weather side of the boat, hook the pole on to the jib clew (you may have to add a 1.5" ring to hook to) and the other end of the pole to the mast ring. Trim the jib with the weather sheet. To jibe the boat steer down, release the pole from the mast end,bringing the pole back into the boat some, jibe the main, push the pole to weather and forward. Re-hook the pole to the mast. Trim the jib with the weather sheet.

It can be done single handed but is much easier with a friend. I like to sail with crew for this reason and I've already heard all my own stories.:D

Pole length is 7'8" , 1" or 1.25" tube depending on the pole ends used. See West Marine RWO pole ends model # 313380, RWO# R4220 or 313430 (RWO R4230). The aluminum pole can be purchased at any good metal supplier. Pole ends are availible at sailboat supply shops. other than west, like apsltd.com .

Mast ring Forespar FORSP#404011, west marine # 111567.
I just purchased a whisker pole for my Mode 1. I ended up getting it from Catalina. The pole was $78.11 with shipping total of 87.62. The part number is 81709.

When I received the pole it is 7'8" long and 1" tubing, it included the mast ring. It appears the pole is made by Fore Spar. I am hoping to install it and give it a try this weekend.

I probably took a little longer to get it from Catalina, but the price was better then from any other place I shopped.


You mentioned you have a roller furling jib. I want to add roller furling to my rig and was wondering if you could answer a question for me:

My jib appears to be set up for roller furling, by which I mean it has a wire luff and the wire is sewn into the sail at the tack and head of the sail. So far so good. The issue I have is that the wire luff seems slack within the sail. That is, if you look at the luff of the sail through a light, you can see that wire can move around in there. Is your jib that way?

I thought the wire luff should be taut within the sail from tack to head. I'm debating whether to undo the stitching, pull the wire taut, cut it, crimp a new end on it and resew the end. But if yours is slack like mine then I can save myself some work.

Anybody else familiar with the wire luff on the jib?
Thread starter #12
reply to Caerus

Sorry I took so long to reply,
I need to pull my sail out and look to make sure but I believe that there is some play inside the sail, however the ends have been secured w/ rigging tape. I will check it to see if I can offer anything else.

Don't pull your ends apart. Just run your fingers along the luff (when you can get to it) and see if the wire within the sail is taut.

Thread starter #14

Hey Caerus,

Sorry for the delay, had to dig out sail bag.
I pulled out the jib and it appears that the forestay wire is sewn into the sail. There is a stitch right behind the wire. I hope that answers your question


Thanks for the input.

On my jib, the tack and the head are actually the crimped ends of a wire cable which are sewn to the sail so that if you twist the cable, it twists the luff of the sail. The wire cable, between the two ends is loose and free to move within the luff of the sail.

Are you saying that the wire cable within the luff (i.e. between the two ends) is sewn all along the length ... or just at the ends?

I unstitched the ends off of mine to inspect the crimps so I have a chance to sewn them back on correctly. I'm just wondering what "correctly" is.