How it works
If you look at the photo above you can see a track along the bottom edge of the yard, there is also one along the top edge.
The sail is furled around a vertical mandrel inside the mast, one for each sail.
Each clew of the sail has an outhaul that comes out of the mast, along the feeder arm, around the roller and down the track to the end of each yard. At the end of the yard it goes around a roller and back through the yard to the captive winch located on the top of the truss.
To set the sail. The mandrel brake is released, the captive winches then pull on the four outhauls and the clews of the sail are pulled out of the mast, along the feeder arm, around the roller and to the end of the yard. The middle of the sail comes out from the mast and sets in the middle of the yard, creating a fully curved, aerodynamic sail than never really changes shape.
To furl the sail. The winch brakes are released and the mandrel then rotates, pulling on the inhauls which attach to the middle of the sail and pull it across the feeder arm into the mast, it then furls around the mandrel until the clews are fully ‘away’
Advantages. It takes us 75 seconds to set or furl each sail, each mast can set/furl one sail at a time, therefore we can set/furl three sails at a time and all 2400 sqm of sail in less than 7 minutes. To gybe we just rotate the masts as the yacht turns
Disadvantages. It is not quite so easy to tack but as we get used to operating the system we are learning fast and are getting better with each one.
Numbers so far! 19.6 kts under power, 18.6 kts sailing with only 5 sails up in 35 Kts wind, 3.5 kts in 3.2 kts wind ghosting along, 29 degrees max heel angle (capping rail under water)
Any question please ask away, I love talking about this amazing yacht