Master Class  Squibble collects together what the great ones have said.  This is a precis (remember them at school?) of the articles that have appeared in Squibble in past issues. We have not tried to edit out repeats - if two or more people give the same advice, it must be important. Some advice appears to contradict what others say. There is obviously more than one way to skin a cat - or sail a Squib. If in doubt, check the original article. The context will explain things better. PREPARATION Dave Best  • Sand down hull (burnish) before meeting  • Marks on jib and main sheets and jib halyard. Gerard Dyson  • Keep it simple. Proper blocks and cleats do not need loads of rope  • Rollerball blocks on everything that moves  • Tapered spinnaker sheets  • Main cunningham, kicker and backstay led to the both side decks  • Barbers a hand spread, thumb to little finger, from centre line Nigel Harris  • Bottom, keel and rudder smooth. Fiddling with the strings won't make a slow hull go fast  • Fico spinnaker pole outer end fitting  • Tapered spinnaker sheets Jenny Riley  • Jib barber haulers 2:1 purchase - one pull, both pulleys come into the deck  • All pulleys and cleats ball bearing  • Toe-straps adjustable for crew and helm RIGGING Mike Probert  • Cannot use a set up to give best speed both upwind and down  • Tension is not the issue. Mast rake is  • Adjust the outer and inner shrouds to suit wind strength  • Apply tension to mainsheet, kicker and outhaul to suit upwind conditions of the day  • Tension the jib halyard, if you need to - there might be enough jib tension already Nigel Harris  • Plenty of mast rake, very loose shrouds LIGHT WINDS Mike Probert  • Lots of twist in the sails and sail free  • Adjust main and jib sheets constantly, easing sheets, sailing free in the lulls, gently pulling in and pointing higher when more pressure  • Take up slack on backstay to prevent top of the mast bouncing around Gerard Dyson  • Weight low and forward in light weather Mark Thompson  • Do not move forward in light airs. Stay on point of balance Nigel Harris  • No backstay, kicker or jib cunningham  • Centre the main  • Sit forward of the track  • Keep the boat heeled to leeward  • Keep movement of tiller to a minimum Jenny Riley  • Practice roll tacking to improve speed out of the tacks. Beware of stopping the Squib when tacking STRONG WINDS Mike Probert  • Increase rig tension for more mast rake  • No need to adjust mainsheet and traveller - bending of mast top de-powers main  • Mast rake at maximum - opens the jib slot and depowers. (Elbow on aft deck - deck to boom less than elbow to top of clenched fist)  • Mainsheet very tight and boom a couple of inches off the centre line with traveller centred  • Main cunningham used rarely - only in extreme conditions  • Backstay in force 4 plus - only slightly  • Mast foot forward only in extreme conditions GUSTS Mike Probert  • If over-pressed, pinch a little  • Softer rig - mast top to falls away in gusts  Jenny Riley  • Feather up in gusts, to reduce heeling  • Flat is fast - spill wind early  • Kicker on hard to hold boom down when mainsheet released STARTING Dave Best  • Speed off the line  • Maintain trust in your settings  • At gun, go to your settings and leave it at that Mark Thompson  • Bad start, cross behind the fleet, get clear air Christian Brewer  • Superior boat handling is key  • Take accurate line angle using compass  • Boat head to wind in clear patch to determine wind direction  • Less than 90 degrees to line angle, pin is favoured; more than 90 degrees - committee boat end  • Determine how many boat lengths mid line buoy is above or below the line  • Check position relative to mid line buoy for reassurance. Often the middle of the line sags  • Hand bearing compass to judge whether over or behind the line  • Less than your line angle, you are over  • More than your line angle, you are behind  • With 12 seconds to go, should be accelerating into space  • Stationary when gun has gone is a no-no Nigel Harris  • Start conservatively  • Try for right end, but really aim for clear air  • Keep calm, look around, check where opposition is.  • Don't be tempted to tack straight away  • Don't pull everything in tight. UPWIND Mike Probert  • Lot of mast rake for upwind speed  • Jib cunningham tight to deck except in extremely light conditions Dave Best  • Clear air critical  • Go out to one side or the other. Fewer boats there than down the middle  • Tack less often  • Each unnecessary tack costs 3-4 boat lengths  • The crew calls tacks - knowing tacking angles Mark Thompson  • Be willing to bang the corners on the first beat  • Be religious about keeping mast vertical Gerard Dyson  • Traveller often right up to windward and mainsheet in further than you might think  • Correct jib halyard tension may differ from one tack to another  • If you are not going well, let off jib halyard tension a little  • Barber haulers not set same for each tack. - punching into waves or sailing down crests  • Don’t tension kicker on the wind in light or medium winds Jenny Riley  • Keep the boat flat  • Cunningham, kicker, backstay and outhaul if overpowered  • Both lean out hard Nigel Harris  • Leech of jib follows the same shape as main  • Play barber haulers in unison with jib sheets POSITION IN BOAT Mike Probert  • Never helm from behind traveller except in big waves if bow keeps burying Mark Thompson  • Keep weight over fore and aft point of balance - usually bulb of the keel  • Sit close together, helm astride track Gerard Dyson  • Beating in medium winds, keep legs either side of the traveller TACKING Mike Probert  • Keep mainsheet cleated and release traveller  • Once across the boat, pull traveller, aggressively, right up to windward, then drop it down a bit  • Keep the barber haulers bang in tight. Mark Thompson  • Roll tack in light and medium airs Jenny Riley  • Marks on jib sheets, where rope goes through barber pulley  • Don’t waste strength pulling sheets in too tight, too quickly Chris and Jackie Goodfellow  • Squib carries way through a sharp turn - turns on a sixpence  • Quick but gentle nudge on tiller. Forget about backing jib as in a dinghy, slow long keelboat turns, sail flapping upwind or catamaran “chuck rounds”  • Keep “moment of inertia” down. Cross amidships, avoid weight near the ends  • Look forwards as you tack  • Traveller let down going round and heaved up hard near the new tacking angle  • Mark each sheet  • Overtight jib tension kills slot and speed out of tack.  • Try looser barber haulers  • Bearing away a little after tacking, may find you out in tide Nigel Harris  • Roll the boat  • Go a little too far through tack - then bring in sails gradually, as boat gets up to speed  • Play barber hauler, creating backwinding of main - then let it out until it stops TOP MARK Mike Probert  • Must release kicker in strong winds before releasing mainsheet, else something will break Dave Best  • If tack on the lay line in mid-fleet, boats cross and tack on top, so you fall away.  • Mid-fleeters - overstand enough to stop this  • Do not approach on port tack Mark Thompson  • Have the spinnaker up and filling within 3 seconds REACHING Gerard Dyson  • Kicker and backstay off to prevent broach - on again once gust has passed Jenny Riley  • Release main and spinnaker in plenty of time to avoid broaching Mark Thompson  • Never cleat the spinnaker sheet - play it constantly, using ratchet blocks DOWNWIND Mike Probert  • Ease off everything - haul on jib halyard to pull mast forward as far as possible  • Run as deep as possible if even if jib hooks to windward.  • Get clear air.  • Go one way or the other - not down middle  • If it paid to go left on beat, go right on run BOTTOM MARK Mike Probert  • Re-set the jib halyard first. (Mark halyard to set it quickly)  • Tighten mainsheet etc. to swing the mast back SPINNAKER HOIST Mark Thompson  • Spinnaker sheet cleated to marks before windward mark  • Pole out just before the windward mark when sure of making it  • Helm starts spinnaker hoist  • Crew pulls guy to mark, filling spinnaker as it goes up  • Cleat the guy  • Adjust and start playing the sheet WINDSHIFTS Dave Best  • Wind always shifting to and fro, usually about every 5 minutes  • Use your compass or get your crew to watch it  • If you are near land, use bearings there WAVES Mark Thompson  • Use weight actively to counteract roll of wave  • Initiate surfing on reach by (legal) pumping of spinnaker  • Weight forward going down wave to pick up speed and back as you start to surf Gerard Dyson  • Keep helm and crew weight together  • Assist boat over the waves by movement of upper body GYBING Mark Thompson  • Reach to reach - pinch up to windward before mark, bear away, gybe at mark from broad reach Gerard Dyson  • Helm pulls leeward twinning line down, whilst crew is bringing in pole  • Crew pulls in good length of guy before gybe  • Main goes over  • Helm lets new leeward twinning line off ...and releases new guy as crew pulls spinny boom out  • Old sheet left cleated until after gybe. Helm releases it once gybe complete GENERAL POINTS Gerard Dyson  • Twist gives speed and hooking gives pointing - but less speed  • More fullness in jib for sea - for flat water, flatter sail with harder leech  • Not just barber haulers that control shape of the jib but also jib sheet tension Mike Probert  • Adjustment for kicker and jib halyard to rake mast back (heavy air) and upright (light) is huge Dave Best  • The most important 'extra' on Squib is a great big, black, felt pen Mark Thompson  • Clear responsibilities in every manoeuvre  • Be factual and keep emotion out of it.  • Crew provides maximum information, especially on the beat  • Retain a positive frame of mind. If it is not positive, don’t say it!  • Treat the Squib like a big dinghy  • Get a fitness training regime Jenny Riley  • Whatever crew weight, a top ten place at the Nationals is possible  • Get fitter, so hiking doesn’t hurt so much! 
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