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Rigs for Racing - Boats and Sailing

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RIGS FOR RACING - BOATS AND SAILING With regard to rig, almost all rigs are good, provided the sails are well made, well set, and the boat well handled ; almost everyone has his own fancy about rig, according to what rig he has won races, or seen others win races with. I am particulary fond of some shape or form of dipping lug for almost every class of boat, provided you can get men to handle it properly ; I have already in a previous chapter pointed out some of the advantages of a dipping lug, the prin cipal one being that it allows a boat to lie closer to the wind than any other sail, but it should also be remembered that in racing with a dipping lug, you are dependent to a great extent upon the skill of your boat's crew, far more so than with any other rig ; if the crew make a mess of dip ping the lug at a critical part of the race, they may lose a race for you which you would other wise have won ; but notwithstanding this pos sibility I prefer it to any other sail, and the best rig that I know of for an ordinary 30 foot man of-war cutter, is a good large dipping lug foresail and a standing lug mainsail, with the mainmast stepped at the after thwart, and if it is found that the sails lap over each other too much, the foresail can easily be carried forward a little more, by rig ging out over the bows a short stout bumpkin, about two feet long, to hook the tack on to. This rig with an extra lug to set as a square sail when running, and a jib to set of the wind only on a flying bowsprit, will get about the best sailing out of an ordinary cutter. In order to

get the mainsail to stand properly, there should be a wire mainstay taken to a bolt clenched through the keel, not more than four feet from the mainmast, otherwise it interferes with dip ping the foresail.

The following dimensions make a good dipping lug foresail for a 30 foot cutter.

The foremast yard arm should be dipped, and the halyards rove from forward, and the shrouds taken well abaft the mast, as in all dip ping lugs, the tendency is to drag the mast over the bows when the sail is hoisted.

Water ballast only should be carried, and this should be regulated according to the wind that there is ; thus in a light wind if there is a full boat's crew in a boat, very little ballast, perhaps none, will be necessary, and in a fresh breeze about eight or ten barricoes of water will generally be sufficient for an ordinary 30foot cutter, less than that for smaller boats, and more for launches and pinnaces ; but it must of course be remembered that the amount of ballast to be carried must be regulated, not only by the strength of the wind, but also by the amount of sail which you propose to carry.

I have already made some remarks about " trim " so that I presume no one will think of starting for a race, without having previously found out by actual practice the best trim of his boat upon all points of sailing ; to neglect this is inexcusable and deserves failure.