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Boom gallows for Weekender?
#1
Hi Any advice for measurements or recommendations or experience with a boom gallow on a Weekender?  I spoke with a Pocketship owner who said it tames the swinging and eases reefing.  I like the control of jib-alone downwind, and I drop the main when it’s gusty on this point of sail.  When doing this, even with a topping lift pulled high or set low, choppy waters makes the boom on this small boat swing. I believe a gallows would be just the thing to control this.
I guess we have 2 gallows options: to position at the taffrail OR across the companionway - that would have me ducking under it and subtracting this seat position.  a standard gallows above the taffrail would indeed be reached by the boom (barely) but may crowd elbow room for the helmsman. 
My Weekender has wheel steering and the standard boom length.

Any thoughts?
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#2
When I reef, I simply tighten up the sheet as  much as I think I can get away with and go about my business.  My policy is that if I am reefing underway, especially downwind.  No matter what I am still sailing the boat while I am shortening sail.  If you drop your boom into a gallows, you take that safety margin away.  I have a single line reefing system on my weekender, which only takes me less than a minute to tie in all the while still controlling the boat.  I only reef while sailing up wind, so the angle of attack takes care of the angle of the boom.  I seldom reef while underway, but when I do, I  can usually do so without standing up or letting go of the tiller.  If you want to reef while sailing downwind, your  best bet is to strike the main all together and reef the sail while it is laying on the boom and the jib is handling the sailing.   

For most other situations, I simply tighten up the sheet and let the sail act as a wind vane.  I seldom do that, because it is safer to strike the main if I am going to be busy with other things. 

Take this for what you paid for it.  I am a relatively new sailor, and I am easily frightened.  Therefore, I don't like to let go of control of my boat.  When it comes to reefing, doing it at the dock is the best bet.  Having said all that, I don't see a benefit to a boom gallows on a weekender.

Al
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#3
Agreed, a gallows is great for parking the boom, such as trailering or storage, but a lousy idea underway. The rig needs to be setup, eventually to your preferences, which require experiences. I set the topping lifts a few inches longer than the boom height at full hoist, so when the halyard is eased off, to take in a reef, the topping lift keeps it off the deck, while you tuck in the reef. Some bobbing a weaving is normal, but depending on the reefing system you use, can be made to go quickly. A gallows would also affect the way the boat sails, both with the sails up or down. With the sails down, the gallows will constantly bring the boat into the wind, which may or may not be especially helpful or desirable, depending on what you're doing. On much larger sailboats, you'll sometimes see a gallows, but these aren't nearly as affected by its presence as a small boat. A temporary gallows for over the road and storage uses makes a lot of sense, but one on the water, not so much.
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#4
Thanks for all the info guys (and the quick response).
For sure you have more sailing experience than I – I’m basing my query mostly on a choppy day where my first mate (and wife) got boomed on the head; I’m trying to make things better. Again, the CLC PocketShip has a gallows so I thought i’d ask. Interesting to hear you seldom reef while underway. So far I too set the reef while on the trailer prior to launch depending on the wind prediction and either leave it or have shook it free - but just daysailing, I have not overnighted yet; this is in my plans this summer.
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#5
I was worried about getting clobbered by the boom on my weekender when I built it.  I have a bad back and can't bend over to get out of the way so I raised my mainsail 7 inches  by lengthening the bottom of the mast.  I was cautioned that it would make my boat more tippy, but so far as I can see it is not noticeably worse than any other weekender I have sailed with.  It would be a reasonably easy modification to your boat if you want to try it.

Al
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#6
(05-14-2018, 03:23 PM)Al Stead Wrote: I was worried about getting clobbered by the boom on my weekender when I built it.  I have a bad back and can't bend over to get out of the way so I raised my mainsail 7 inches  by lengthening the bottom of the mast.  I was cautioned that it would make my boat more tippy, but so far as I can see it is not noticeably worse than any other weekender I have sailed with.  It would be a reasonably easy modification to your boat if you want to try it.

Al

Yes! Lengthen just the part below the tabernacle.  Here’s an idea: have a 4” wrapped line from the gooseneck ring to the tack (and add a mast hoop), and go loose-footed. This would raise the main and thus the clew 4”. Not the 7” gain you mention but no rework of the standing rigging.  Maybe I should first check if the mast has 4” to spare over the throat...
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#7
Raising the boom is a good idea for some, particularly those that aren't as mobile as they once were. You can raise it a foot, but you'll run into "lead" issues with the halyards, in some cases. Take a picture of your rig, with the main hoisted, so we can see how much you got for moving the halyards, if necessary. 4" - 6" is probably fine without having to move halyards, but much more and a fair lead into the throat "crane" is where the first "fouled lead" will show up.

Conversely, you can just add to the stub in the mast box, which will solve lead concerns. You can "scab" something on, as previously described or redo the stub, which is a better idea, for strength. A foot of additional height isn't going to cause your boat to capsize, though shrouds and headstay may need to be lengthened. Not much of a big deal, given the benefits it'll provide the forehead of the skipper.
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#8
(05-17-2018, 02:27 PM)Paul Riccelli Wrote: Of all the photos I have of my boat, none show the entire mast with the sail up. I’ll get the boat out of the garage, raise the sail and take a photo, and post it in a few days. Till then, see attached minus the gaff etc.


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