18th June 2009, 07:55 AM
Roger, thanks for the help this weekend in Worthington. You were pretty busy helping out all those new Sailers. You mentioned I need some work on my "TACK". I know it has something to do with either turning or the position of my sail. Maybe you can explain what I was doing wrong. Thanks Again.
18th June 2009, 12:11 PM
Glad I could help!
As far as your sailing, I saw a couple of things that you might want to work on.
A "tack" on any sort of sailing craft (this includes windsurfers/sailboards for sure)
is when you change directions (change "tacks" actually) by turning your board so that the bow (front) goes up into and through the "eye of the wind" (i.e. the direction the wind is coming from.
On a sailboard, this means you must move from one side of the sail to the other side of the sail.
Your Rio M is a little on the small side for a fellow your size, so you are going to have to learn to manage where your weight goes on the board a little more carefully.
What I saw on your tacking "attempts" was that you tend to move too far forward on the board as you try to get around the front of the rig to go to the other tack.
When you move that far forward, on a board as short as the Rio M, the nose simply sinks out from under you.
Here's what I would like to suggest to remedy this "weight too far forward" issue.
When you want to turn around, rake your sail back until the foot of the sail rests on the rear of your board.
Try to bring the sail back and in until the foot rests on the deck between the back footstraps and a little above (upwind) of the centerline.
Leave the sail in this position and try stepping over the raked back mast so that your feet do not go forward of the mast foot.
To do this "stepping over" you never need to place your feet in front of the mast foot.
When the board is facing pretty much upwind, move your back foot forward and then place your fornt foot on the other side of the mast so that you end up facing the tail of the board with the mast kind of between your knees.
Then move your new front foot back a little on the board and bing your new front foot over the leand back mast until you have both feet behind the mast and you are ready to turn the board the additional
90 deg. so your rig is perpendicular to the centerline of your board.
Your board will turn up into the wind really well if you rake the rig all the way back until it rests on the deck, and do not pulll it back up until you have stepped over the mast and are on the other side of the sail.
Then simply use your new front hand on the mast as a pivot point and lean the rig the rest of the way around until it's perpendicular to the fore/aft centerline of your board on the new tack.
Then sheet in slowly about 10 degrees by rotating your upper boady from the waist.
Your board should sail off on the new tack vey nicely.
Also I noticed (and mentioned it to you a few times) that you tend to oversheet your sail way too much.
In light winds, when you are not planing, it's simply not possible to sheet the sail in and rake it back as you see other sailors doing in higher winds when they are planing.
You were still very much in the "slog" or subplaning mode at Worthington (so was everyone else including all the racers).
So, try to only sheet your sail in until your board moves forward. Do not sheet it in any more, and if you change direcitions (your course) slightly, open up the sail (sheet it out)
and then sheet back in again, but only to a point that gets your board moving.
When you oversheet to the degree that I saw, you completely stall the sail, th rig develops no forward drive, and your board simply gets pushed sideways and downwind.
If you open up your sail to get the best forward drive, you will sail faster, stay upwind better, and overall it will be far easier on you as it takes alot of unneccary strength to oversheet a sail to the point of stalling it.
Sorry I could not break away from all the kids to work with you, but my mission for the Worthington weekend was to improve the skills of the new young sailors and try to get them a little closer to being out racing with the junior fleet.
Give the tack suggested above a try and let me know how you are getting along.
If you can describe the issues you are having, I'm sure I (and the others on this forum) can help you to get beyond them.
Hope this helps,
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