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 Post subject: A few thoughts on performance
PostPosted: 24 Nov 2020 14:00 
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Able Bodied Seaman

Joined: 06 Aug 2020 09:02
Posts: 42
While I dig deeper into all my projects, I've done enough sailing on the T37 now to have some opinions on performance. As a racing sailor, I'm always looking to wring every last once of performance out of a boat even while cruising. To that end, I've come to the conclusion that the T37 greatly benefits from a hydraulic backstay regardless of the fact that you are lucky to get 1 inch of bend from the mast. The headstay tension control and resulting control of the headsail shape make it worthwhile. I have found that I can drastically change the draft location and depth of my cross-cut foam luff roller furler this way and it is especially beneficial while close hauled. In addition, I found that while the initial stability of the T37 is not great because of the higher VCG, once heeled the boat stiffens up considerably because of the high ballast/displacement ratio. Therefore, we can hold a decent amount of sail and I am not considering a reef or reducing the headsail until upwards of 15 knots true wind while close hauled and more like 20 cracked off. I therefore had North Sails design me a new mainsail with "max roach", adding nearly 6" onto the leech in the middle of the sail. I also had them increase the hoist and went with full battens and loose foot. The added power provided by the depth in the lower third of the sail is significant. And, even with the extra area, I find that the boat still balances out quite well and I don't have excessive helm with a full main, which can be controlled with some twist (the mid-boom traveler is very effective). To maximize shaping control I added purchase to my outhaul and ran the control line back to a cam cleat in the cockpit. I also added purchase to a cunningham which is still on the mast for now. I removed the small winch for the board control line and added a cascading purchase that can now be hand-tended. This makes it easy to adjust the board on the fly and I find that the board makes a massive difference in helm feel and steering characteristics. The other thing I did recently that is really nice for driving is replace the standard Edson 36" wheel with a Lewmar folding 40" wheel. This wheel allows for much more comfortable driving positions being 2" further outboard and alse dished aft. Of course, a feather or folding prop is a must in my book. I use a MaxProp 3 blade feathering. This winter I will remove the board to conduct maintenance on the pennant, conduit, and thru-hull hose. I will take the opportunity to fair the board with templates, seal, and paint. Lastly, I'm fiddling with the idea of attaching a CB gasket like we do with dinghies. It might be not worth the aggravation, but there's an appeal to reducing all the turbulence in the slot. I will have to make an assessment of this. Beyond having a clean, smooth, and fair bottom and good sails, I'm wondering if anyone else has optimized their T37 in other ways. Low stretch halyards always help. I already have oversized primaries (Lewmar 52s).


 
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 Post subject: Re: A few thoughts on performance
PostPosted: 24 Nov 2020 22:52 
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Skipper

Joined: 13 Feb 2011 21:19
Posts: 249
Location: Canyon Lake, TX
Lots of good points. And they apply to cruising,too.

My navigation routing program tells me that from Boca Grande to the Dry Tortugas is 134nm. At 5knots, it takes 26 hours and 47 minutes to make the passage. Find a 1/2knot and the time reduces to 24 hours and 21 minutes. Maintain 6 knots and you arrive after 22 hours and 20 minutes.

Finding half a knot is usually as easy as trimming the sails correctly. I'm guilty of not really trimming for speed while knocking around in the bay as most destinations for me are like 2 hours away and what to do with the rest of the day?

But let the Admiral spot another boat near us and she's checking the mainsail telltales and making "suggestions".

_________________
Wayne
Master and Commander of the Sailing Vessel Impetuous
Rider of Waleli Honda 1800 VTX
Subservient to no man except SWMBO
Any day without dock lines is a GOOD day!


 
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 Post subject: Re: A few thoughts on performance
PostPosted: 24 Nov 2020 22:56 
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Skipper

Joined: 14 Jul 2012 20:36
Posts: 435
Having a solid vang is important. Losing the topping lift helps and just use main halyard when not sailing. Also the traveler needs to be upgraded. We also added another purchase to the main sheet, you really need to get on a mid-boom sheet. One Touch Lewmar winch handles are the best and is one of the only pieces of hardware we carry that top race boats use. The centerboard is so neutral it will not drop with any added resistance. Use the outboard sail tracks when off the wind, to barber haul. You really can't add hoist to the main without a penalty, to the black lines. Having a 2+2 main is nice, with the top two battens full. Adjust halyards to match winds.

_________________
Hull #208, Puff Card
Southern Chesapeake Bay


 
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 Post subject: Re: A few thoughts on performance
PostPosted: 25 Nov 2020 11:33 
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Able Bodied Seaman

Joined: 06 Aug 2020 09:02
Posts: 42
I've considered a solid vang but they are pricey and I have other priorities. It just seems that with the mainsheet on a winch and the traveler properly adjusted I can exert the necessary downforce to control leech tension. If I could find a used one I might do that. I hate the boom topper.

My last mainsail of full top 2 battens and was OK but I really prefer the full batten setup for lightwind shaping and overall stability. Add to that, the full battens should extend sail life. There's some penalty for the extra weight but this is a cruising sail and the dacron is pretty heavy.

Good points about how a little bit of added speed reduced long passage times. Highly recommend the larger wheel diameter BTW. Don't be afraid to go 42" if you can find a folding.


 
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