The Bear Away Spinnaker Set:
- Decides when to set the pole (are you on layline?)
- When the pole is set and the boat is at the mark, bear away and ease the mainsail while calling "Hoist"
- Steer toward the next mark while making finer adjustments to mainsail trim by using the sheet, easing the backstay and checking if other sail controls are eased
- Bring any spinnaker snafus to the crew's attention
- Once the pole is set, grab the guy and begin to prefeed it to halfway behind the jib
- As the skipper bears away, ease the jib out 1-2 feet
- While the spinnaker is being hoisted, continue to pull the guy until it meets the pole, then pull the pole square to the wind
- Grab the spinnaker sheet and fly the spinnaker by continuously easing and trimming
- While keeping weight outboard, assist the foredeck by raising the topping lift
- When the guy is being pre-fed, feed the spinnaker out of the turtle or hatch
- During the hoist, continue to feed the spinnaker out completely
- When the spinnaker is up and drawing, release the jib halyard
- Now pay attention to the mainsail by easing sail controls
- Adjust twing lines
- Help the trimmer with the guy if it is windy
- Move first in setting the pole, making sure bridles are straight and that the guy is through the outboard end and not twisted
- Once the pole is set, return to the rail with the tail of the spinnaker halyard in your hand
- When "Hoist" is called, stand up to raise the spinnaker and watch it go up
- Once the chute is up, go forward to take down the jib
- Return to the mast and flake the spinnaker halyard, then lay it on the deck near the mast
Once the spinnaker is up and flying, everyone must pay attention to their job. The helmsman should always know where the mark is in relationship to his course. The trimmer can never take his eyes off the spinnaker because the minute he does, it will surely collapse. The middleman needs to have full concentration on the wind and wave conditions. Do this by looking in the direction that the wind is coming from and call to the helmsman to go up or down for puffs. Also, let him know where the boats behind you are steering (assuming there are some there to watch)! The foredeck should be ready to jibe the pole at a moment=s notice.
Jibing the Spinnaker, End for End:
- Decides when to jibe (at a mark rounding, on a windshift)
- Readies the crew by saying "Prepare to jibe"
- Stands up, switches hands on the helm and begins to bear away
- Calls for the foredeck to "Release the pole"
- Continues to bear away. When dead downwind, grab the mainsheet and help the boom over while calling out "Jibe ho"
- Steers toward the next mark while adjusting mainsail trim and correcting steering to help keep the spinnaker full
- Take both the sheet and guy in your hands after hearing "Prepare to jibe"
- As the boat bears away, square the pole back to keep it perpendicular to the wind
- When the pole is disconnected, continue to free fly the spinnaker using both sheets to keep it full
- Duck as the boom crosses, then hand the new guy off to the middleman
- Concentrate on flying the spinnaker by continuously easing and trimming the sheet
- Ease the foreguy a few inches and recleat it after hearing "Prepare to jibe"
- Hand the guy off to the trimmer
- When the pole is released, ease the old guy twing off and tighten the new guy twing so it is about 6" off the deck
- After the boom passes overhead, grab the new guy and cleat it in its proper position
- Once the pole is set into place, retension the foreguy
- At "Prepare to jibe," stand up with your back to the mast, to windward of the pole and face forward to ready yourself for a jibe
- When "Release the pole" is called, disconnect the pole from the mast, then disconnect the old guy.
- Next, attach the old inboard end of the pole to the new guy and rotate it outboard and toward the headstay so it touches the other clew. Finally, reattach the free end of the pole to the mast and call "Made" when this maneuver is complete
- Move back into your normal downwind position, always being ready for your next jibe or a quick takedown
In order for a jibe to be successful, the entire team must work together. If one person is incomplete with his tasks, then the entire maneuver will be affected. If you notice that your job seems difficult to perform, it is probably because another crew member is unknowingly working against you. During the jibe, it is necessary that all members keep their eyes forward.
The Windward Spinnaker Takedown:
- Decide when the takedown procedure should begin by calling for the jib to be raised. ALWAYS err on the early side!
- Remind the crew to tighten sail controls while you tension backstay, if necessary and pre-set the traveller
- About 8-10 boatlengths from the mark, ask the foredeck to take down the pole
- Call for the spinnaker to be dropped
- Concentrate on a good mark rounding, no matter what is happening up forward
- Approach the mark wide, then tight, trimming the main as you head upwind
- Continue good spinnaker trim while the jib is being raised
- When the pole is cut, continue to free fly the spinnaker so it does not collapse
- While the spinnaker is being taken down, release and overhaul the sheet (pull it in reverse through the block so there is plenty of slack in it)
- Turn your attention to the jib and its proper trim as you round the mark
- Start the takedown process by raising the jib to its upwind halyard tension setting
- As the foredeck takes off the pole, release the topping lift
- Grab the spinnaker guy in front of the twing
- Begin to pull the spinnaker into the boat when the skipper commands to do so. When the clew reaches your hand, have the halyard released
- Pull the spinnaker straight down the leech into the boat, then gather the foot
- If the spinnaker is not coming down, check to see if your halyard and guy are clear
- Once the spinnaker is stowed below, move weight to the rail quickly
- While the jib is being raised, retension mainsail controls
- Release the pole off the mast and guy when told to do so by the helmsman
- Release the spinnaker halyard when the middleman calls for it
- Stow the pole properly by lifting the inboard end so it is vertical to the mast. Dip the outboard end under the jib sheets and then place the pole to leeward of the headsail
- Secure the pole to the deck by attaching the topping lift to the inboard end of the pole and then attaching the inboard end to the base of the outer shroud
- Always double check to make sure the topping lift and foreguy are clear of the jib sheets so the boat can tack without getting any fouled lines
- Move weight out to the rail
The leeward spinnaker takedown is very similar in that the crew responsibilities remain the same. The difference is that one can take down the chute and then the pole. Also, the foredeck can just store the pole on the windward side of the boat. He rarely needs to worry about a potential tangle of the topping lift and foreguy with the jib sheets. You might take down to leeward in light air (less movement) when you approach the leeward mark on starboard (so chute will be on port side) or when you will want to jibe set at the next windward mark.