RE: roller furlers, downhauls and bilge pumps

Rye Gewalt (
Sat, 15 May 1999 07:16:01 -0400

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West Wight Potter Website at URL
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I wanted to thank everybody for their helpful comments on the furlers
and make a few additions.

I'm a cruising sailor and, as Larry Costa said, am looking for the
luxury of making the jib just disappear when the wind gets out of hand.

One of the nice things about the furler that was standard on the Siren
is that the jib is raised in parallel with the forestay. The two hole
in the tack (I think that's the term -- the place where the forestay and
the jib are attached to the bow) were spread out so that the Bartons
furler was slightly behind the forestay. In that manner, the jib could
be attached and removed as usual (in the furled condition) and the
forestay remained in place. Both the Bartons and Harken units require
just under 2 inches to clear the forestay. Unfortunately the bow tack
points on the '19 are too close together to allow the furler to be
installed behind the forestay.

When under sail, the jib and furler would take the load and the forestay
would loosen up considerably --- quite an eye-opener with respect to the
amount of load the stays take and how much everything deforms when under
sail. With all the talk about rigging failures, it would be heartening
to have such redundancy in the forestay system given that the furler
mechanism has many more potential points of failure that a simple

At the moment I am enjoying the downhaul system suggested on the list.
It certainly has the advantage of being quick and inexpensive and it
fits the "keep it simple" rule that seems the characterize much of
Potterdom. BTW I thought the recent discussions of using a fixed
parachute cord topping lift to be a classic example of "keep it
simple". That would free up one of the cleats on the bottom of the mast
where there is already enough confusion.

In that vein, there has been some conversation about getting water out
of a swamped or overturned boat using electric bilge pumps. The web
page at shows a manual
do-it-yourself pump made from PVC pipe that looks quite effective (and

Somehow I seem to find myself drawn to stuff made out of plumbing

Regards all

Rye Gewalt
Springfield, VA
'90 HMS18 short rig