Which is best furling system?

Thread starter #1
I have found a number of discussions in this forum regarding jib roller furling and the potential benefits to the single-hander. I have read them with great interest because I single-hand exclusively, and they have convinced me that it is time for me to try a furler. If I am seeing this right, the rigging guide shows a Harken system from the factory. My mod 1 came with the simple jib setup, and the rigging guide indicates a thicker forestay for furlers, so I will need to replace the forestay. I presume that I will need to have some sail work done as well to accomodate a furling system. With a quick Google search I have found four manufacturers of furling systems (Harken, Hood, CDI, and Superfurl), and I guess that there are more that I haven't found. My question is, which is the most appropriate/best system? Up front cost is a factor (cheap is good), but I also have a sneaking suspicion that there are hidden costs such as the sail work (if it is even needed) and hardware that isn't supplied with a kit. Does anybody have advise/experience/warnings on this?

Thanks for all the great info in this forum! Happy sailing.

The one thing I can contribute is that the Harken small boat system is not designed to partially furl the sail, and is supposed to be used only to entirely furl or unfurl the headsail. I suspect people do it, but I found that in a stiff breeze, when you would want to use this, the jib would unwind in the middle, stay furled at the ends and flog terribly. No bueno.

I don't know if any of the others allow partial furling, but if partial furling is important, make sure to check this.

Thread starter #3
Good info

Thanks for the good information.

I went ahead and purchased a CDI furling system because it does allow for partial furling and it was recommended by the local sail maker. It seems pretty straight forward, although it does require a jib modification. I am hoping to have it all installed before the ice melts. I will pass on my thoughts on how it functions once I have some experience with it.

Happy sailing.