Jib Reefing, also referred to as Headsail Furling, provides a quick and easy solution to shortening the sail when the breeze freshens.
Headsail Furling, also known as Jib Roller Reefing, is a system designed to enable a yacht's headsail to be rolled around the forestay for the purposes of reefing (shortening sail) when the weather conditions dictate. The luff rope of the jib is attached to a groove in a foil section on the forestay. A swivel at the top and a drum at the bottom facilitate the rotation (rolling). The operation can then be carried out from the relative safety of the cockpit by means of a furling line led aft around the stanchion bases.
Headsail furlers have been an integral part of yacht cruising and racing since the 1960's. The original concept can be attributed to Englishman Major E du Boulay who used a design based on a roller blind. The design was then improved with ball bearings in 1907 by Major Wykeham-Martin. The familiar modern shape is based on the work of the American professional rigger Murray Scheiner in the 1960's.
Headsail Furling Systems can make an important contribution to safe and stress free sail handling on any sailing yacht.
Jib/Genoa Reefing Plus Factors
- Shorten sail and stow your jib or genoa from the safety of the cockpit
- Avoid the issue of dropping the sail onto the foredeck and storing it below without soaking everything in salt water
- More cabin space – less extra bagged sails to stow
- Makes shorter handed sailing more attractive - larger boats, fewer crew
- Allows for a larger more powerful Genoa as the standard fit foresail because reefing is so convenient
- Improved Visibility – Rolling the genoa by a couple of turns will greatly improve your view forward
- Manoeuvrability – Reduce the sail area to a point which helps rather than hinders your boat handling in tight spaces - sail your boat on and off moorings with more confidence
- Speed control – time your landing according to daylight and tidal conditions
- Heel Control – reduce heel to improve comfort aboard, especially when someone is in the galley
- Reduce motoring – it’s so easy to let the genoa out to take advantage of any temporary improvement in the breeze
- Easier Spinnaker and Gennaker hoists and drops – roll up the jib to clear the way for launch and recovery of your downwind sail
Make your selection from leading manufacturers: Harken, Selden, Profurl and Plastimo
All these designs share the same basic principles:
- A rigid foil is assembled in sections to cover the length of the forestay.
- The foils have an external groove designed to hold the genoa along the entire length of the luff.
- This is achieved by sewing a boltrope into the luff of the sail.
- The sail is shackled to a halyard swivel which allows the foil and sail to rotate without twisting the halyard.
- The entire length of the foil is attached to a furling drum at the bottom which can be rotated by a furling line.
The beauty of a roller reefing system is that the sail can be rolled away to suit the conditions with ease.
This is of special benefit to those sailing short-handed or when it is prudent to avoid leaving the safety of the cockpit.
Roller reefing systems can only be used with flat sail shapes.
Gennakers and Spinnakers have too much camber to roll neatly around a foil: Top Down Furlers are the solution of choice for Asymmetrics.
Most models of roller reefing supplied by Jimmy Green Marine have a 'do it yourself' self-fit friendly design and come with a detailed installation manual.
The Jimmy Green Rigging Team are on hand to discuss your particular installation and help you to determine the best solution for your yachting.