Simplicity Boats    Rigging ideas... simple snotter

Here's Polysail Dave's cool twin leg of mutton sprit sail. Now I know twin mains are not new, but this seems a very simple application of the concept making it more available for smaller boats.

Some ponderings about this kind of rig...

If you start with a folded over, mirror image sail you could stitch right down the folded edge to make a sleeve sail, like a wind surfer with a little reinforced opening for the sprit like Dave shows.
Upside: no need to lace the sails to the mast
Downside: curving the luff (leading edge) to impart shape becomes tricky.

If the sprit were on the "outside" of the two sails, say the port side of the mast, sailing closed it would have the usual good tack, bad tack of an ordinary sprit sail. But when running opened, ( if the sprit were on the outside/front of the sail) there wouldn't need to be an opening for the sprit. (just a small one for the snotter)  True, the sprit would distort the sail when opened fully, but it shouldn't matter much since you're running anyway.
Downside: if the second sail accidentally swings around the mast the end of the sprit could damage it if their is no opening or flap.

Of course if we were to put  the sprit between
the sails we might be eliminating the "bad tack" by always having an " outside" smooth sail (but an inside distorted one) 
Downside: My guess is in "the real world" it might not work out so easily. Both sails might misbehave and wrinkle, or the disruption of air flow on the inside of the sail surface might be more problem then expected. And might not ;-)

Well this sure seems like a great way to kick butt down wind without anything as fancy or difficult as a spinnaker. I've also heard that trimming both sails out past the mast creates an automatically self steering boat down wind.

Simple snotter arrangement.

This snotter approach might be useful for Polysail Dave's doubled sprit sail as once you establish the sprit and snotter length it need extend only slightly (3ish inches?) past the mast minimizing necessary window size.

This is a simple way to experiment with sprit placement as it requires no mast hardware.

Starting with one end of your snotter (I use a few feet of 1/4" dacron or nylon line)
1. Tie a constrictor hitch to mast. This is an amazingly useful knot that is really just a clove hitch with a twist. Here are two animations of the knot. )I got them from Craig O'Donnel "Cheap Pages." Much great stuff there, check it out.) 

Right handed constrictor hitch. Left handed constrictor hitch.

2. tie a loop near the mast (I use a figure eight knot "in the bite." This loop functions like a small block, could have a "thimble"or a short piece of poly butyl tubing in it to reduce friction, but I haven't found it really needs it)

3. snotter goes through slot (rather deep slot, maybe 2") in end of sprit and returns to loop 

Three options now.
4.a. snotter runs through loop then down to cleat on base of mast. (this  makes adjusting snotter easier while under way)

4.b. snotter runs through loop and back to end of sprit where it is secured in the slot as you would around a cleat.

4.c. snotter has 2 or 3 strategically placed knots that slip  into slot in sprit for different sail tensions.

Any ideas or insights into these arrangements? Write me.

David Beede

Back to Simplicity Boats Home Page