Furling Flatcut Reacher

It might look like a Spinnaker but it's not a Spinnaker!


What you are looking at is an FFR. The Furling Flatcut Reacher is a hybrid sail developed by One Sails about 10 years ago. It's particularly useful in light airs such as what we experience here on the Equator.

But it's not restricted to just light air. Its operational range 2-20 knots and goes 70-130 degrees although we used ours to get 140+.

So in this case the sheeting point is correct. It's just outboard of the Screecher and inboard of the Spinnaker.

In the tight stuff, you sheet it as it is in the photo.

When you want deeper angles, you run the sheet through a tweeker which is outboard/forward of the sidestay. Not only does this circumvent any issue with the shroud but allows control of the twist in the sail for optimal performance and varying angles and wind speeds.

But the species has moved on. We now use what is called an Integrated Furling System. The IFS is constructed from structural membrane and being structural material, carries all the sail/working load unlike a 'nylon' sail.

The great advantage of this.

With the 'cloth' now carrying the load, the luff bolt rope is a simple 4mm dyneema cord replacing the 8mm that is in the old furling sail. Without the encumbrance of a large bolt rope, the sail fills and the luff projects forward which makes it fly better and develop more power.

The IFS is much more malleable than the original FFR and tunes significantly better by using the Halyard tension to alter the camber/draft. Effectively, easing 15cm of halyard tension adds about 5-10 degrees of angle downwind. Very handy, very versatile as we can now carry the IFS to within 5 degrees below jib angles, going upwind in light air. But same thing, run the sheet through a tweeker and we can achieve 140-160 degrees with this sail.

Anyone who has raced with an FFR in the inventory knows they are very effective sails. The one in the photo is now 7 years old, so robust enough!

The IFS is not only more efficient but being constructed from Structural cloth means the shape remains stable throughout the entire life of the sail. Our IFS on our Corsair is now approaching 4 years old and looks as good as new.

When we first got our IFS, Paul Eldrid of One Sails was onboard. Paul was really impressed that our little Corsair Dash 750 could sustain long runs of 17+ knots! These hybrids are really effective and membrane can easily carry the entire rig load. Instead of having load bearing points, the sail loads are distributed across the whole sail. We'd expect the IFS to out live all the sails we have.

Thanks for your input, hope you find it interesting😉



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