Sunday, December 30, 2012
I was out practicing gybes recently and doing them rather badly, catching the transom too often and even lassoing the boom a couple of times with a half hitch. I tried to break the gybe down into steps I had learned and methodically do them right. But somehow the mainsheet kept ending up in places it had no business being. I was sure I was sheeting it in at the right time - just as the wind starts to push the clew over. I was holding the sheet near the block and raising my hand quickly - but it didn't seem to be enough, so I tried a couple of other things. First, I tried what one of my Australian friends had suggested - hooking the sheet near the boom with a finger as it comes over, drawing it down to take out the slack. But that wasn't very satisfactory. Then I thought maybe I was being a bit timid in raising my hand sufficiently - worrying about the boom coming over and not taking out enough slack. So I tried pulling sideways instead of up and it worked quite well. I was able to pull without thinking of where the boom was and also by pulling to the side I was not interfering with crossing over.
So, for now, I will be be making lateral moves and pulling over.