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Outboard Headsail Sheeting Tip

Hopefully this will kick off other great go fast tips being added to this thread!

Of the MANY enhancements we've made to Jester, one of the best and least expensive (costs nothing!) projects we've done is to drill holes in the toe rail.  We do a great deal of main & jib racing, and one day while experimenting with outboard sheeting using a snatch block on the ONLY padeye on the toe rail, we were immediately impressed by the speed gain.  This prompted us to figure out a way to add some adjustment to that equation so we could move the snatch block fore and aft under varying conditions and sail selections.  If you sail main and jib this is a must do, you'll love it!

One of the running jokes on the boat is how many holes I've drilled in Jester for various reasons over the years.  Adding hardware, electronics, or whatever, I'm the guy who gets the "joy" of making the boat lighter (ha-ha) by drilling whatever holes may be necessary.  My most nerve racking hole drilling adventure was drilling and tapping the holes in the carbon fiber mast to add cam cleats for the addition of an adjustable spinnaker pole track system.

Anyway, back to the toe rail holes.  Due to the curved toe rail on the C&C 99, the holes obviously had to be drilled from the outside of the toe rail.  For that reason, it is imperative that you put a piece of plate steel on the deck so you won't damage it as the drill bit pops through the toe rail.  I first started with a pilot hole, then in 2 steps worked my way up to the final diameter which if I remember correctly was 3/4".  Given I no longer live where the boat now does, I'll confirm that with the owner at a later date and update this tread if it's other than 3/4".

At first I drilled holes 2' apart, but we soon realized that 1' spacing was needed to fine tune things further.  After the holes were drilled I used an electric die grinder to slightly round the edges of the holes.  We find that over time our most used holes will get a burr at the top where the shackle from the snatch block makes contact under load.  A quick touch up with a file from time to time takes care of that problem.

I've posted a few pics that when zoomed in enough will show the holes quite well.  I will add that we rarely if ever use the most forward holes, though they did come in handy for adding the webbing on the bow which is great for keeping sails onboard during sail changes!

Uploaded files:
  • Last-Days-in-the-Bay-6-15-14-11.jpg
  • Jester-promo-pics-1.JPG

Unrelated to the topic, where did you get the aft rail seat?  Thanks

I made them out of 3/4" plywood.  On the underside I epoxied a couple of 3/4" x 1" strips of wood to straddle the rail, and I did this along the back rail and side rail, this keeps the seat from sliding around.  Along the back rail I used another piece of wood fastened by a single screw onto one of the strips, leaving the screw just loose enough so this piece spins.  On the other end of this piece and in the opposite strip I buried a couple of rare earth magnets to keep this end in place.  This keeps the seat from lifting off the rail.  I used steel tubing for the leg, and it inserts into a base which is held in by a removable pin.  Removing the leg makes them easy to store.

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