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 Sheet Thickness
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alfreddiaz
Deckhand

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USA
23 Posts

Initially Posted - 07/20/2018 :  13:01:16  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
My current sheets for my 150 Genoa on my C25 are about 5/8 inch thick. The problem is they are getting old and they don't fit my Self Tailing winches. It's about time to replace them, so I want to go with thinner line so I can use the self tailers. These are not the ones with the nice knuckles, but poor-man self tailers that you wrap up the base of the winch and snug into the tailer.

I would love to hear what some of you use for your foresail sheets on your C25? Especially if you sail a 150 Genoa or larger:

Type
Brand
Diameter
Strength
Weave
Length
And anything else I should consider

Grip is also important. I am going to lose a lot of grip going to a smaller diameter. On the positive side, I will be able to use my self tailers.

Finally, what would you advise the minimum weight load for the lines should be?

Thanks.

Sailor Al of Carried Away
Walla Walla, Wash.

Steve Milby
Past Commodore

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USA
5130 Posts

Response Posted - 07/20/2018 :  19:43:06  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
3/8" lines. If you race, use the expensive non-stretching lines. If you cruise and daysail, inexpensive Sta Set will do well. You should always wear sailing gloves to protect your hands, mostly from rope burn, but they'll also make it more comfortable to handle smaller lines. 5/8 is way too big. I only use 7/16 on my C&C 35.

Steve Milby C&C 35 Landfall ("Captiva Wind"); Cal 25 ("Fahrvergnügen")
Past Commodore
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alfreddiaz
Deckhand

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USA
23 Posts

Response Posted - 07/20/2018 :  22:09:40  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks. I will be shopping for 3/8. I am still curious about the minimum load. I don't want to get anything that won't hold to strong gusts.
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Davy J
Master Marine Consultant

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USA
1411 Posts

Response Posted - 07/21/2018 :  04:10:31  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
If you have these "Winchers" as your "self tailer":





You might need to drop down to 5/16" sheets. As I recall, that is what I had to do to get them to function properly.






Davy J


2005 Gemini 105Mc
PO 1987 C25 #5509 SR/SK
Tampa Bay
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Derek Crawford
Master Marine Consultant

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USA
3187 Posts

Response Posted - 07/21/2018 :  07:55:57  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
IMHO 5/16" is plenty big enough. On my 155% genoa I had 1/4"

Derek Crawford
Chief Measurer C25-250 2008
Previous owner of "This Side UP"
1981 C-25 TR/FK #2262 Used to have an '89 C22 #9483, "Downsized"
San Antonio, Texas
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Stinkpotter
Master Marine Consultant

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Djibouti
7883 Posts

Response Posted - 07/21/2018 :  20:20:53  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I strongly prefer single-braid for sheets--like New England Ropes Regatta polyester (even though I never had it on my own boat). The soft finish and knobby texture is super nice on the hands, and it coils and lies much more nicely than double-braid. While not super-low stretch, I don't feel that's as important as it is for halyards. (You can get Dyneema or Vectran single-braid, but I don't think I'd want them for sheets.) 5/8" diameter seems excessive on the C-25. 1/2" is plenty big for handling, and 3/8" seems adequate on that boat. 5/16" is fine, although might not feel as nice to work with. See what each size feels like, imagining that you're pulling it off a winch or controlling it as you ease the sheet. Of course for very light air, bigger is heavier--which is probably why Derek (a hard-core racer) had 1/4" on his big genny.

Dave Bristle
Association "Port Captain" for Mystic, CT
PO of 1985 C-25 SR/FK #5032 Passage
Now on Eastern 27 Sarge (but still sailing when I can).

Passage, Mystic, and Sarge--click to enlarge.

Edited by - Stinkpotter on 07/21/2018 20:31:26
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Steve Milby
Past Commodore

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USA
5130 Posts

Response Posted - 07/22/2018 :  03:01:27  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
5/16 or 1/4" is fine if you use the more expensive low stretch line. If you use the less expensive line that most of us find satisfactory, 3/8 is the better choice. The smaller the line, the more it is likely to stretch.

If you use line larger than 3/8, you'll soon regret it. In light air, it's excessive weight will prevent the sail from lifting and taking the shape needed to move the boat. It will also be stiffer and fatter and won't run through the blocks smoothly. Use the correct line and wear gloves. They have saved me a trip to the emergency room more than once.

Steve Milby C&C 35 Landfall ("Captiva Wind"); Cal 25 ("Fahrvergnügen")
Past Commodore
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islander
Master Marine Consultant

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USA
3267 Posts

Response Posted - 07/22/2018 :  08:31:57  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
I strongly prefer single-braid for sheets--like New England Ropes Regatta polyester (even though I never had it on my own boat). The soft finish and knobby texture is super nice on the hands, and it coils and lies much more nicely than double-braid.

I strongly agree. Regatta has a fuzzy covering that greatly improves the grip it has on self tailors. Doesn't hock or twist like double braid.

Scott-"IMPULSE"87'C25/SR/WK/Din.#5688
Sailing out of Glen Cove,L.I Sound


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Dave5041
Former Mainsheet Editor

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USA
3733 Posts

Response Posted - 07/22/2018 :  11:08:10  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Regatta is one of the best improvements I've done. 3/8 is much easier to handle than 1/4 and more than strong enough. I have Vectran halyards, and you would not want to be handling them a lot.


Dave B. aboard Pearl
1982 TR/SK/Trad. #3399
Lake Erie/Florida Panhandle
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Stinkpotter
Master Marine Consultant

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Djibouti
7883 Posts

Response Posted - 07/22/2018 :  13:17:44  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I got curious... WM says 3/8" Regatta stretches from 2-4%. On a hard-sheeted beat (much more tension than off the wind), that might translate to something like 2-3" on a genoa sheet (clew to winch)--probably as you're winching it in. I doubt I'd notice. I was going to switch to it after using it on a friend's boat, but went to the Dark Side instead.

Dave Bristle
Association "Port Captain" for Mystic, CT
PO of 1985 C-25 SR/FK #5032 Passage
Now on Eastern 27 Sarge (but still sailing when I can).

Passage, Mystic, and Sarge--click to enlarge.
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alfreddiaz
Deckhand

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USA
23 Posts

Response Posted - 07/23/2018 :  12:55:30  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Wow. I have been sailing almost 5 years with too heavy of lines. And yes, Steve M., I have noticed the lines are too heavy in light winds.

So I have always wondered why I couldn't use my self tailers. I had bought the boat from a widow who knew nothing about her. And I was new to sailing; still am. A couple people at the club helped me rig her, but they have much bigger boats, in the 30s. So I think they were used to larger sheet lines.

As I recall, I think I have a set of lines that are 1/4 or 5/16 lines with shackles. I thought they were for my spinnaker (which I have never flown because I pretty much sail solo). So they must be for my Genoa.

All of you, thank you for the vital information. Should have asked you guys long ago. And thanks DavyJ. That looks to be the exact same size as my winch and tailer.


So here is one more question: Do you guys use a single line for your foresail tied at the center to the clew? (That's what I currently have). Or do you use two lines with snap shackels attaching to the clew?


Thanks.


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Dave5041
Former Mainsheet Editor

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USA
3733 Posts

Response Posted - 07/23/2018 :  13:55:03  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
You can get banged by shackles or a heavy knot and both hurt, but only one draws blood. I use a single line. I've tried a variety of attachment techniques, but now just pass a midpoint bight through the cringle, pass both ends through and pull snug (cow hitch). Dedicated sheets on a roller furler for the entire season makes life easier. It doesn't slip but can be somewhat difficult to remove. Before I had the joy of a roller, I would splice a 8"- 12" line with a stopper into the sheet near the midpoint and an eye on the other side of the midpoint, pass the eye through the cringle, push the line and stopper through through the eye and pull tight. The line must be long enough to stay slack under load and the thickness of of the components must be sufficient to prevent the eye and line from pulling through the cringle. This approach is very traditional, puts minimal mass at the end of a flogging sail, and is easy to remove for sail changes without leading new sheets.


Dave B. aboard Pearl
1982 TR/SK/Trad. #3399
Lake Erie/Florida Panhandle

Edited by - Dave5041 on 07/23/2018 14:01:35
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Dave5041
Former Mainsheet Editor

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USA
3733 Posts

Response Posted - 07/23/2018 :  14:08:26  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
As an aside, Pearl had 5/8" sheets when I got her because the previous owner had a lot of arthritis in his hands. Almost three times the weight of 3/8" will really drag the sail down in light air.


Dave B. aboard Pearl
1982 TR/SK/Trad. #3399
Lake Erie/Florida Panhandle
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Stinkpotter
Master Marine Consultant

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Djibouti
7883 Posts

Response Posted - 07/23/2018 :  20:43:41  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The cow hitch Dave describes is as simple and compact as it gets, but I've found after a season of sailing it can be almost impossible to break loose. It also creates a vertical piece that can catch on a shroud during a tack. That said, that's what I used.... But I especially agree with not using metal shackles on the jib or genoa clew--they can be dangerous to somebody who goes forward in a blow. Everything up there can get crazy--heavy metal objects on a flogging sail can make it that much worse!

Dave Bristle
Association "Port Captain" for Mystic, CT
PO of 1985 C-25 SR/FK #5032 Passage
Now on Eastern 27 Sarge (but still sailing when I can).

Passage, Mystic, and Sarge--click to enlarge.

Edited by - Stinkpotter on 07/23/2018 20:45:34
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Steve Milby
Past Commodore

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USA
5130 Posts

Response Posted - 07/23/2018 :  21:16:35  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Attaching two jib sheets with bowlines works very well and bowlines are easy to tie and untie, and you can untie them and store them out of the weather. I've tried many different types of knots, including the cow hitch, and they all can snag on the rigging. The way to cope with snagging on the rigging does not depend on a particular knot. It's a matter of sail handling technique. When you tack, you should watch the clew as it passes around the rigging. If it snags, release your pull on it. As the boat rolls and the wind blows, the clew will swing away from whatever it is snagged on. Then you can pull it in. In very light air, that technique might not work, because the wind is too light and the water is too calm. In that case, the better course is to have a member of the crew go forward and walk the sail around the rigging when you tack. Trying to do it while you're seated in the cockpit doesn't work well in light air. It also helps to have your crew move to the new leeward side while you tack in light air. Their weight will cause the boat to heel slightly, and that might be enough to let the clew swing away from the rigging.

Steve Milby C&C 35 Landfall ("Captiva Wind"); Cal 25 ("Fahrvergnügen")
Past Commodore

Edited by - Steve Milby on 07/23/2018 21:23:43
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islander
Master Marine Consultant

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USA
3267 Posts

Response Posted - 07/24/2018 :  03:21:41  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Shroud rollers on the forward lowers helps in minimizing snags.

Scott-"IMPULSE"87'C25/SR/WK/Din.#5688
Sailing out of Glen Cove,L.I Sound


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dasreboot
Admiral

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715 Posts

Response Posted - 07/24/2018 :  05:37:12  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Nowadays with rope with the hi tech low stretch cores, you can use just about any size you want without breaking. 1/4 warpspeed has the same strength as 3/8 sta-set with less stretch.

Todd Lewis
Eowyn 87 TR/WK C25 #5656
ARWEN 84 TR/SK C25 #4031
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dasreboot
Admiral

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715 Posts

Response Posted - 07/24/2018 :  05:43:24  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Nowadays with rope with the hi tech low stretch cores, you can use just about any size you want without breaking. 1/4 warpspeed has the same strength as 3/8 sta-set with less stretch.

Todd Lewis
Eowyn 87 TR/WK C25 #5656
ARWEN 84 TR/SK C25 #4031
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Stinkpotter
Master Marine Consultant

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Djibouti
7883 Posts

Response Posted - 07/24/2018 :  06:36:43  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
...except single-braid (Regatta) is so much nicer.

Dave Bristle
Association "Port Captain" for Mystic, CT
PO of 1985 C-25 SR/FK #5032 Passage
Now on Eastern 27 Sarge (but still sailing when I can).

Passage, Mystic, and Sarge--click to enlarge.
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vipermagic
1st Mate

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USA
67 Posts

Response Posted - 07/24/2018 :  08:28:01  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I use 3/8" Samson trophy braid. Its a little scratchy - but it holds onto my well-loved winch drums very nicely.

I also use a single sheet, with both ends lead forward and tied to the clew.

79 C25 #1433 SR/FK - 'Carina' - Destroyed by Sandy
84 C25 #3817 TR/SK
Cleveland, OH
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