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Re: Sj23 Tech Tips

A sailboat is subject to maximum leeway when close hauled and minimum,
actually zero, when running. This is true because of the fact that the
force vectors change as the point of sail changes, and a much higher
percentage of side force occurs as we come nearer the wind and pull the
sails closer to the centerline of the boat. Since the main function of the
centerboard is to control leeway, it needs to ba adjusted according to
need, full down when close hauled, full up when running, and
proportionately down at all points of sail in between. The reason for
adjusting it, rather than leaving it down all the time, is to minimize
wetted surface and the resultant drag. Even those of us who don't race like
to make our boats go as fast as conditions will allow, and this is one of
the ways to do that. Every little bit helps.

When approaching a slip with a side wind, it is a very good thing to motor
upwind to the slip, if at all possible. The wind will be tending to stop
the boat, so a slow approach can be made until the last moment, and then a
turn into the slip. That way,the time during which the side wind can blow
on the boat and cause problems is shortened as much as possible, giving
full control for as much of the approach as possible.

I always put the centerboard full down when docking, because that gives the
best rudder control. It's especially important when the wind is from the
side, otherwise you have to deal not only with leeway, that sliding
sideways, but the bow blowing off. Neither of these things is much fun when
docking in a wind, and having the centerboard dwon will minimize both.

I've always been impressed with the rudder control of the SJ23, and have
never felt the need for more rudder under any conditions I've sailed her
in, so long as steerageway can be maintained.


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