Sails Overview

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Symmetrical Spinnakers

Spinnaker coding explained: Most spinnakers fall into five mold shapes to suit different wind speeds and wind angles. In the 1-5 numbering system, the even numbers designate running shapes and the odd numbers are reaching sails. Lower numbers designate lighter wind sails and higher numbers are for higher wind speeds. Code Zeros were invented after the original numbering system and they are very flat spinnakers for light air close reaching; they are a must on boats with non-overlapping genoas. 


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CODE ZERO LIGHT AIR REACHING S1 LIGHT AIR REACHING S2 LIGHT AIR RUNNING S3 MEDIUM AIR REACHING S4 MEDIUM / HEAVY RUNNING S5 HEAVY AIR SPINNAKER
Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description:
Light Air asymmetrical reaching sail that meets the minimum definition of a spinnaker. While it is a very small spinnaker, it is nearly three times the size of a light No. 1 on a boat with non-overlapping genoas. Light Air Reaching Symmetrical Spinnaker. In the past would have been called a VMG spinnaker. Used in winds to light to sail deeper than 110 degrees AWA. Light/Medium Air Running Symmetrical Spinnaker. Full size with big shoulders designed to fly at deep angles. Medium Air Reaching symmetrical Spinnaker. Wider and deeper shape than the S1. Yet narrower and flatter than the S2 and S4. Medium/Heavy Running Symmetrical Spinnaker. Smaller shoulders than S2, yet still designed to fly at deeper angles. Heavy Air Reaching Asymmetrical Spinnaker. Short on the hoist, or flown from the hounds instead of the masthead on a fractional rig.
Apparent Wind Speed: Apparent Wind Speed: Apparent Wind Speed: Apparent Wind Speed: Apparent Wind Speed: Apparent Wind Speed:
0 – 10 knots 0 – 10 knots 6 – 18 knots 10 – 20 knots 14 – 30 knots 20 – 35 knots
Apparent Wind Angle: Apparent Wind Angle: Apparent Wind Angle: Apparent Wind Angle: Apparent Wind Angle: Apparent Wind Angle:
45 – 70 degrees 70 – 110 degrees 110 – 170 degrees 70 – 130 degrees 120 – 170 degrees 90 – 170 degrees
Materials: Materials: Materials: Materials: Materials: Materials:
Light laminate or 1.5 oz. nylon .5 oz. nylon .6 to .75 oz. nylon .9 to 1.5 oz. nylon .9 to 1.5 oz. nylon 1.5 to 2.2 oz. nylon
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