Non-class racing sails

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Postby Guest » Sun Jan 27, 2002 11:11 am

Is there anybody having had the occasion to try Sobstad Genesis sails ? Any feedback would be appreciated as I'm in the processes of evaluating some possible choices, and these look sexy at least. Compliance with class rules is not a must as I will hardly do class racing in my area.

Thank you all
Massimo Polo

Postby Guest » Tue Jan 29, 2002 12:46 pm


You might want to check out the new North 3DL RM. It is developed specifically for smallboats like the J80.

Jay Lutz

Postby Guest » Wed Jan 30, 2002 11:11 am

Dear Massimo,

When I first got my J/80 I bought a Sobstad Genesis sail.
I paid good money for it and I had nothing but trouble with it. It soon ended up in the bin.
I can not tell you whether the strong winds where to blame for it or I may overstreght the luff.
I do not know whether this is a isolated experience or whether sobstad has no working expeienced with J/80 sails.

Anyway the leech colapsed very soon. After some 4 or six races.

I then got my local sailmaker to cut a jib out of pentex 15 T and 20T on the leech. Three years later I still use the same jib and I use it in a lot of heavy air.

I also got Jay Lutz to cut me a cuben fibre jib and main. This are the best sails I ever used, by a mile, but they come at a price.

I can strongly recommend Jay advise, he understand what he is talking about and he knows how to cut sails for a J/80. With the cut from Jay I sail higher the I ever thought possible.

I am sure you will be very pleased with whatever Jay is recommending. Ask him for the difference of 3DL and cuben fibre and check what you feel is important to you.

He also makes nice mains and his kites are just brilliant. Just make sure you are clear what angles you most likely are going to sail, so you get the right code sail.

I would not buy sails anymore from anybody unless the actively sail in the class. Do not get impressed with the glossy brochures, just ask whether the sail J/80, if they say no go somewhere else. Sails are very light I get mine done in Texas by Jay (North) and ship them to Australia. (very cheap)

Enjoy the boat, good choice

Bob von Felten
Cafe Latte Down Under

Postby Guest » Wed Jan 30, 2002 11:21 am

Dear Massimo,

I used Sobstad Genesis sails when I first got my boat. I regret my experience was negative. After 4 or 6 races the leech colapsed and it soon ended up in the bin.

I then got my local sailmaker to cut me a pentex sail 15 t and 20 T

Very durable I still use it.

I also got Jay to cut me a jib and main out of cuben fibre. Not cheap but the best sails I ever got. I can point so hight, I did not think it would be possible.

He also cut me 2 kites. Jay understand the J/80 and sails them. Whatever he recommend I am sure you will be very pleased.

Ask him for the difference for the 3DL and the Cuben fibre, check it with what you want and make up you mind.

When you need a kite, talk to Jay, he makes some brilliant kites, make sure you tell him what the most often used sailing angle is downwind so he can cut you the right code (more reach or more running)

Luckily the sails are very light so I get jay to cut the sails and send them to Australia. The shipping costs are quite nominal.

Based on my experience you will get a sail straight out of the box which works and gets the best out of you boat.

Stay clear of glossy brouches and stick to the proven performers.

Kind regards

Bob von Felten
Cafe Latte
Down Under

Postby Guest » Wed Jan 30, 2002 5:32 pm

Jay, Bob :

thank you very much indeed for your suggestions. I agree than the best thing would be to ask someone who has experience with the boat, which I feel and understand is the case of Jay for sure. Unfortunately this is not the case of our local sailmakers. Nevertheless, being italian I guess I would find it very unfavourable in terms of cost to buy in the USA even sails made out of conventional (= class compliant) fabric. Maybe I'm wrong because I have no data. But I also know for sure that italian Sobstad loft does not have specific experience on J/80 so it could be a risky choice, apart from the incredible failure that Bob mentions. The same "unexperience with the boat" however I feel does apply to italian North loft.
So, Jay's suggestions and - why not - offers are welcomed ! Windward-leeward courses are standard here therefore nothing different from normal class races.

Ciao !

Massimo Polo

Postby Guest » Thu Mar 28, 2002 10:44 am

Jay, Kerry, Etc...

Expecting my new J-80 next month. Plan to do a lot of PHRF racing as well as class. Can you guys, or anyone else, recommend based on experience and results the best 155 for the buck. Want durabilty, performance, and flexibilty.

Tim Wolf

Postby Guest » Thu Mar 28, 2002 8:17 pm

I have a Kevlar Quantum 155% that I've been pleased with, equal (not significantly better or worse) to the North and UK sails I have owned. I would go with the best loft (service, price) in your area everything else being equal. If you're often faced with light air where you sail (like I am on Lake Mich), the 155% makes a considerable difference --- but you don't need a 155% above 8 kts true, at 12 kts you'll need some meat on the rail. If I had it to do over again, probably would have gotten something a little smaller like 140-150%. In most areas a 155% will cost you 6 secs, while you can go up to 139-140% at a cost of only 3 secs some places --- if you don't already know, you might want to check the rating picture in your area. FWIW.

Postby Guest » Mon Apr 08, 2002 7:51 pm

Dear Tim & Class,
The Issue of adding a Genoa to make the boat perform better is a good idea. But that is only 1/2 the issue. The other consideration is where your rating will end up. On Long Island Sound you can get a 3 second advantage for a 143% Genoa, and a 6 second advantage for a 133% Genoa. I have found that the boat is far more competitive with a 6 second advantage and the smaller Genoa than with the 153%. One of the Keys to the success of the smaller Genoa is that the leech sheets inside of the upper spreader. This allows you to sheet the sail in tighter and point higher. Also the smaller LP is much easer to handle if it gets windy. We have built the genoas with collision windows, to make it easier to see traffic, with the crew on the rail. Keep in mind that a J-80 is a fast, light boat. It doesn’t need much to make it fast.

Postby Guest » Tue Apr 09, 2002 9:55 pm


Just got my 139 for PHRF. Was wondering if there are any pointers for spinnaker sets. Trying to set out of the companionway, we end up with the spinnaker sheet/halyard/ tackline getting fouled up with the jib clew.
Would your trick of adding a cleat to the mast help with the halyard?
Any other ideas?

Bob Stephenson
US 370

Postby Guest » Sun Jun 23, 2002 1:18 pm

Ok, we just finished Dallas Race Week in dead last. We only had 3 other boats in the A - Sportboat class, all finished in their respective final place every race, so either we all had perfectly consistant crew and tactics or the race was won and lost with issue of PHRF ratings. I was racing my new boat with only class sails and equipment at a 120. It seemed like we were doing alright every race until the wind died near the end of the race each night. The next closest rating was a Melges 24 at a 99, all the way down to a Henderson 30 at a 53. Wind was light most of the time. So I need a Genoa for sure, probably a .6 oz chute... any other suggestions for keeping up with a disparate fleet?

Postby Guest » Mon Jun 24, 2002 5:45 am


There is no doubt the J80 "sticks" to the water in light air upwind so if you plan to race PHRF in generally light air I would suggest you consider a genoa. Size will have to do with how the PHRF adjusts your rating based on LP %. First check with your PHRF up on Rush Creek for the adjustments.

I sailed the first Dallas Race Week with a J80 and a 135% genoa and had pretty good results, especially since we started late in the day with a dying breeze.

Jay Lutz

Postby Guest » Thu Jun 27, 2002 6:29 pm


Don't be too disapointed with your Race Week results. In a dying breeze the slow boats suffer the most, (the fast boats run their entire race in the stiffer breeze). A sure formula for unfair results. My experience with PHRF is that the larger the spread in rating the more opportunity there is for skewed results.

Thats the reason I'm buying a J/80. To get away from the PHRF traps. Besides, I looked at your results, the guys you were racing against were NO slouches...

Randy Stewart

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