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Thread: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

  1. #36
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    Default Re: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

    Quote Originally Posted by Todd Bradshaw View Post
    I'm not sure that is true. The amount of twist available on a sail with a fairly low aspect ratio is limited, and there is nothing you can do with any sheeting system to change that.
    With the sheet running through sheetlets attached to the boom, and the 3 battens it would certainly be reduced.
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  2. #37
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    Default Re: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

    Unfortunately I only had a very light breeze, but you can see how the sheeting arrangement keeps the leech quite straight.
    7069FB3C-DCB1-44A6-9314-443A0A32D816.jpg
    without freedom of speech, we wouldn't know who the idiots are.

  3. #38
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    Default Re: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

    Yes, but considering that the wind itself is twisted up higher above the water, you will rarely encounter conditions where the top of your sail is not over trimmed if you are pulling it inward like that. There simply aren't typical situations where that sort of trim is ideal.

  4. #39
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    Default Re: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

    Quote Originally Posted by Todd Bradshaw View Post
    Yes, but considering that the wind itself is twisted up higher above the water, you will rarely encounter conditions where the top of your sail is not over trimmed if you are pulling it inward like that. There simply aren't typical situations where that sort of trim is ideal.
    I noticed with Redwing that sailing to wind i got better performance and more rudder control with the sheet eased. Close hauled she would want to round up. The top two panels have reduced camber.
    without freedom of speech, we wouldn't know who the idiots are.

  5. #40
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    Default Re: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

    Quote Originally Posted by WX View Post
    It could be argued that constructing any sail involves complexity. The beauty of JR sails is the fact they can be made out of any flexible material, be it Dacron sail cloth or blue poly tarp. There is some complexity in rigging the sail bundle, but that only has to be done once. Sheetlets, also once rigged don't need further attention. Battens once fitted won't need touching. On a 10.5 ft boat you could be rigged and sailing in the same amount of time as any other rig.
    Sure--I don't disagree. But that's pretty much the same as saying, "After you deal with all the complexity during the build and rigging..."

    That doesn't strike me as the same thing as not dealing with that level of complexity in the first place. If performance were somehow significantly better, I could see how additional complexity at the start is offset. But it doesn't seem obvious to me that such is the case. What can a junk rig do in a small boat that a lug rig can't do with less complexity? That was my point.

    Tom
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  6. #41
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    Default Re: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

    Not arguing, just asking... if in a particular small dinghy that has a great rowing and sailing hull form, BUT often precludes moving quickly forward and aft to reef (doing anything at the mast) in imposing wind/weather without giving "pause " wouldn't the ability to reef suddenly in place, one panel (or more) at a time an "inverse" level of complexity-in actual use?

    I just returned from a 5 week trip on our 31 ft. er with my wife and there were a couple of sudden gusts that immediately overpowered the rig/dinghy and after reading a lot of Junk rig books (Halser, Van Loan, assoc. public pages, etc.) on board, thought, man, the ability to reef instantly IN PLACE appealed greatly.

    In the PNW the water temps are between 38 degrees F to approx. 45 F on average and as a dry suit scuba diver for many years, I have ZERO desire to experience a capsize.
    It's not "practical" to wear a drysuit or wet suit during the summer so jiffy reefing is atractive IF the baggy sail on the boom isn't a detriment for the rest of the outing.
    (Balanced Lugs). Can these systems always work fine from one seated (unchanging) position?

    There are many high aspect ratio Junk sail plans. Do they address the issue of twisted wind up higher as opposed to low aspect Junks? (Not including the slotted sails, etc. )
    I've read many times that easing the sheet helps in some cases going to windward but not sure why that helps (at least with flat sails).

    By the way, archive.org has The Practical Junk Sail online for free if anyone here would like to see what's involved with the sails/rigs in general. Van Loan's book is very short/simple and has a bare bones Canoe Sail that closely resembles a junk rig that's done small/simple and with no blocks (curtain rod rings). This rig was very popular in the 1800s/early 1900s and there are more in depth books about that rig out there (possibly out of print now?)

    I've done some "thought experiments" and sketches but I have a musician's aesthetic/artistic brain (and a few learning disabilities) and would definitely need help from someone with better math skills and an actual workshop to build it for me or with me. Otherwise I'll likely have to go with a Balanced Lug or unstayed Marconi in the end.

    It's fun that this thread has expanded to a good discussion beyond it's original question/intent. The rig is definitely still evolving and isn't (always) what it used to be. Especially (as always) appreciate Todd's input here as he is a natural teacher. and there aren't many traditional sail builders around who understand what we're about in the "sail & oar" zone.

    Cheers, DB

  7. #42
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    Default Re: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

    Quote Originally Posted by WI-Tom View Post
    Sure--I don't disagree. But that's pretty much the same as saying, "After you deal with all the complexity during the build and rigging..."

    That doesn't strike me as the same thing as not dealing with that level of complexity in the first place. If performance were somehow significantly better, I could see how additional complexity at the start is offset. But it doesn't seem obvious to me that such is the case. What can a junk rig do in a small boat that a lug rig can't do with less complexity? That was my point.

    Tom
    I guess to truly answer that would require a practical test. At the end of the day it's a matter of what you are comfortable with. I have yet to put a JR on a small boat. I do plan to put one on a Bolger Cartopper, when I do I'll know more.
    without freedom of speech, we wouldn't know who the idiots are.

  8. #43
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    Default Re: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

    Anybody remember a sail design that was split into sections horizontally? The sections could be sheeted to mimic a normal sail or the top section could be allowed to twist way off to depower. The idea is hovering in the back of my mind and was either something I saw somewhere or a bad dream.

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    Default Re: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

    100 sq ft junk rig in action.

  10. #45
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    Default Re: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dinghy Pipedreams View Post
    Not arguing, just asking... if in a particular small dinghy that has a great rowing and sailing hull form, BUT often precludes moving quickly forward and aft to reef (doing anything at the mast) in imposing wind/weather without giving "pause " wouldn't the ability to reef suddenly in place, one panel (or more) at a time an "inverse" level of complexity-in actual use?
    Good question. That was my original thinking when I experimented with building (never sailed with it) a cheap polytarp junk rig for my Bolger skiff 10 years ago.

    But in practice, I decided that (for me), the added complexity wasn't going to be worth it because:

    1. A lugsail already has built-in "instant reefing" down to zero sail area just by uncleating the halyard and dropping the entire rig--the weight of the yard will ensure this happens quickly. I've done it a couple of times at bad moments. You could run the halyard aft to do this from the helm if you wanted to.

    2. I concluded that it's unlikely (not impossible, of course) to find myself in a position where #1 isn't a sufficient safety measure. Once the rig is down, things calm down dramatically, and you can move to oars and not worry about reefing at all if it's that bad. I had to do this just this past summer on my trip to Georgian Bay, when I was getting knocked down several times in a row after rounding a headland and coming out into severe gusts in open water. I'm sure it's a faster move than reefing with a junk sail.

    3. Left untended, most boats (I think) will lie beam-on to the wind. That puts them in a bad position if the waves are big. So, will I really want to drop the sail and leave the boat untended to tie in a reef? A mizzen reportedly solves this issue by holding the bow into the wind, but I've chosen to go without to avoid various other complications. Instead, I'll drop the rig and take to the oars, which gives me better control and far less chance of capsizing.

    This is a very biased and personal view, and many smart people may reach different conclusions. But the ability to drop the entire sail instantly is a splendid safety measure, and you don't need to mess with sheetlets or battens for that.

    On a side note, I do find that it's practical for me to wear a drysuit in summer--in conditions that warrant it, it's going to be cold and wet and windy anyway. And when it's not that bad, you can undo the top and tie it around your waist to cool a bit, and get it back on reasonably quickly if you need it.

    (Again, these are "my" answers, and not the "right" answers for everyone).

    Good luck! If you do try a junk rig, I'll follow along with great interest.

    Tom
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  11. #46
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    Default Re: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

    Thank you Tom for your detailed response and things to think through.

    r.e. speaking with Junk Rig folk and talking with Lug sailors:

    Sadly I won't be able to attend the PT Wooden Boat Fest. this year after all to seek out you all and the junk sailors from Mystery Bay. (exposed directly to a family member with covid on Wed.)....I'm negative so far but don't wanna take a chance visiting your boats and mingling in crowds in case I'm asymptomatic.

    If anyone sees them and they'd be willing to chat via email or phone please ask them to drop me a line? Here's my addy in case you are willing to pass it on:
    captgrimek@gmail.com. (Is there a PM section on this board?)
    I was hoping to meet some of you and reconnect with some performers we shared (other) Festival Stages with over the years. Super bummed but hope you all will post some pics.
    Last edited by Dinghy Pipedreams; 09-09-2022 at 04:05 PM.

  12. #47
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    Default Re: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

    Reefing a JR is simply easing the halyard and dropping the required number of panels.
    without freedom of speech, we wouldn't know who the idiots are.

  13. #48
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    Default Re: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

    Quote Originally Posted by WX View Post
    Reefing a JR is simply easing the halyard and dropping the required number of panels.
    That's the appeal in theory for sure. I'll be keenly interested to hear how it goes if/when you try it in your Cartopper--if you think that makes it worth the change from a lugsail, with such a small boat.

    Certainly in a bigger boat--say over 100 sq ft mainsail--a junk rig has lots of appeal. Maybe it's far more translatable to very small boats than I'm thinking it will be. Do you have definite plans for when you'll be re-rigging your Cartopper? (That's the first small boat I ever sailed, actually--with a boomless spritsail. Nice design).

    Tom
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  14. #49
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    Default Re: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

    Quote Originally Posted by WI-Tom View Post
    That's the appeal in theory for sure. I'll be keenly interested to hear how it goes if/when you try it in your Cartopper--if you think that makes it worth the change from a lugsail, with such a small boat.

    Certainly in a bigger boat--say over 100 sq ft mainsail--a junk rig has lots of appeal. Maybe it's far more translatable to very small boats than I'm thinking it will be. Do you have definite plans for when you'll be re-rigging your Cartopper? (That's the first small boat I ever sailed, actually--with a boomless spritsail. Nice design).

    Tom
    I'm a bit occupied with rebuilding a Hartley TS16 at the moment.,,which will be junk rigged. I know someone that did it with a lot of success.
    The Cartopper has a leg O mutton rig which I have come to dislike on the Cartopper. It requires careful handling in a good breeze when gybing. This thread has got me thinking about the JR conversion, and I may just do a simple flat panel blue poly tarp sail for it. I've closed in the bow and the stern for greater flotation. Cartoppers are impossible to bail out when they capsize.
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  15. #50
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    Default Re: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

    Youtube perusals pertaining to Junk Rig small boats & dinghies:


    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OPEZStS0rn8
    Reefing the Junk mainsail on a Peep Hen

    Catspaw 12' "Boo" with Junk Rig newbie at the the helm in the PNW:
    anyone know Jeff Clithero and where he's located these days?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zsm7Z_1RNvk

    9' 4" clinker dinghy:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XqKIa6b9BiUm

    Data/Tests Bermudian vs Junk West of Scotland
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gR2LZ2u9Fng

    It's commonly advised (Hasler/Van Loan, etc.) that one can get approx. 10% more sail area with the Junk rig when replacing a Marconi rig so that seems like a potential "advantage" on a small dinghy in light airs...

  16. #51
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    Default Re: Junk Rig (for Dinghy) Designer/Builder in WA State?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dinghy Pipedreams View Post
    It's commonly advised (Hasler/Van Loan, etc.) that one can get approx. 10% more sail area with the Junk rig when replacing a Marconi rig so that seems like a potential "advantage" on a small dinghy in light airs...
    I'd pick a junk rig over Marconi myself, any day of the week. But junk vs. lug is a different question. But obviously it (junk rig) can be done in small boats.

    Tom
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