Whisker pole set-up

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Chachere's picture
Chachere
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Whisker pole set-up

I'd be very interested in seeing photos/diagrams/write-ups of how members have set up a whisker pole for winging out the jib, for those that have done so.   In particular, given the geometry of the foward lower shrouds, what control lines do you use, where are they attached, etc.   

Matthew Chachère
s/v ¡Que Chévere! #466
1985 C36 MKI tall rig fin keel M25
Homeported in eastern Long Island, NY

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dlincoln3
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Posts: 108

I guess no one has done this?  I plan on setting this up on mine at some point soon.  I bought a whisker pole (which is really a spinnaker pole from a Catalina 25) and a ring bracket for the mast.  Right now I'm trying to figure out the best height at which to mount the ring.  I'm thinking slightly above boom level on the front of the mast.  I'm not sure if I will need a topping lift for it or not (it isn't very heavy), but if I do, I have a spare halyard I can use.  I will try to remember to report back when I sort it all out.
 

Don Lincoln
"Nancy Lynn"
1993 Catalina MK1.5, Hull 1238
LaSalle, MI (Lake Erie)
Universal M-35AC

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Ray Taylor
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Posts: 79

Our whisker pole set up is pretty simple and we’ve used it with our 36 and our former Catalina 28. 

One pole end attaches to an adjustable car on the mast track and the other the clew of the sail.   To make it easier we now keep a small dyneema loop on the clew ring that makes it easier to attach (and unhook).     Simple as that.   Easy to set, easy to jibe, we can furl the sail with the pole set and we use it regularly.

The jib sheets keep the pole in place, both up/down as well as fore/aft.      The goal of the height adjustment is to keep the pole level with the water and it depends on how the sail is sheeted and the height of the clew.   

Forespar recommends a 12/22 adjustable whisker pole for our boats but we were gifted a 10/20 and it works fine.   For reference our pole is 2.5” diameter on the large side, 2” small side and we seldom extend the pole because our working sail is 95%.   

I’d have some reservations using a fixed mast ring on our boats, and a whisker pole for a Catalina 25 seems small.   

I'll take a photo next time we're out. That said, it may be a few days becuase our forecast calls for strong winds for the next few days.    

Best regards,

Ray

Ray & Janice Taylor
"Mizu"
Hood River, Ore.
#2113 2002 TM
 

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dlincoln3
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I agree the Cat25 spinnaker pole might be too small. It was free, so definitely worth a shot.

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Don Lincoln
"Nancy Lynn"
1993 Catalina MK1.5, Hull 1238
LaSalle, MI (Lake Erie)
Universal M-35AC

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Chachere
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What about other control lines?
For example, how do folks keep the pole from pressing against the forward lower?  Do you have a foreguy, and where does it attach to the boat?
Pole lift?

Matthew Chachère
s/v ¡Que Chévere! #466
1985 C36 MKI tall rig fin keel M25
Homeported in eastern Long Island, NY

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dlincoln3
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Posts: 108

My experience on other boats is that a foreguy or topping lift are usually not necessary, but I'm not yet sure on the C36. I saw on one of the YouTube channels I follow where in a pinch the lazy sheet was used as a foreguy, routed through a block at the base of the forestay. This would only work if you're going to sail downwind for days without jibing.

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Don Lincoln
"Nancy Lynn"
1993 Catalina MK1.5, Hull 1238
LaSalle, MI (Lake Erie)
Universal M-35AC

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Ray Taylor
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Posts: 79

Most of my experience is with a Spinnaker and Spinnaker pole.   We’ve been using a Whisker Pole for a couple years so I’m sure there are others whom are better qualified to answer this question.   This is simply how we are doing it……

Our last boat came with a Whisker Pole, without support lines that would commonly be used with a Spinnaker Pole.   So, I used the pole as  set up by the previous owner.      Simply, one end of the pole is on the mast track and the other on the Genoa clew.     

Sheet the sail, pulling it back to the foreword intermediate shroud.   At this point we are done.    Sail tension and gravity pulls the sail foreword keeping the pole in place.     If you were worried you could use the lazy sheet to provide tension that would help lock the pole in place.  We don’t do this and have sailed with this configuration with TWS in the high 20’s.    It has been rock sold without a problem.   

Jibing is super complicated.   Turn down wind, ease the sheet and pull across with the lazy sheet.   Done.   Too much sail out, pull in the roller furler line.  Done. 

Although some caution is required that your pole is not extended out far enough that it will touch the forestay.  We run a small headsail so this is rarely a problem.   If you run a headsail larger than 100% you will probably  need to take some action prior to jibing.  E.g.   Shorten the pole.    Dip the pole,  Remove the pole thenreset as you would a spinnaker.    

 

I attached a photo taken earlier this week.   Our good friend Nate setting the pole height on the mast.   

Ray

Ray & Janice Taylor
"Mizu"
Hood River, Ore.
#2113 2002 TM
 

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dhickmanii
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Joined: 7/27/18
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We do this all the time.  I have a line control 21' telescoping whisker pole.  We have a fixed ring in the mast about chest high.  I plan to change that to an adjustable ring soon for my symmetrical spinnaker.  As far as using the pole, we clip it into the sheet and then the other end into the mast ring.  We then ease the sheet while extending the pole unit it flies like we want it and is off the forward shroud.  We then tie the lazy sheet around the bow cleat as a foreguy to keep it off the shroud. It's good for broad reaches and runs. The crew in the photo is tying off the lazy sheet. 

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Chachere
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Thanks, this is all very helpful.  
On our last boat (a C27) we poled out the jib often, but our C36 has a very large (i.e., huge) Genoa, plus the forward lower shroud is, well, more forward, so its often been more problematic to do this.   My concern, too, has been that if the boat yaws around and the jib gets backwinded the pole would bash into the shroad and something might get damaged along the way.   Obviously, I need to keep the Genoa partially furled, and the idea of using the lazy sheet as a foreguy / preventer seems like an approach to try.  Or maybe use the tackline we have rigged for our Assym spinnaker for that purpose...

Matthew Chachère
s/v ¡Que Chévere! #466
1985 C36 MKI tall rig fin keel M25
Homeported in eastern Long Island, NY

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