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Author Topic: Stack pack pros and cons  (Read 1302 times)

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John Langford

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Stack pack pros and cons
« on: September 22, 2016, 09:21:07 AM »

I am reposting this from another forum where it was lost in a broader discussion.

I have the dutchman and like it but I cruise a lot and every afternoon and morning slacken or tighten the Dutchman monofilaments and put on or take off the sail cover, deal with the sail ties etc. I also need a new sail cover and have been thinking about the stack pack option. The pros look obvious: no hauling around of canvas cover, faster deployment of main etc. But what about the cons? Do the sides of the bag bang around when the wind gets up? Does the bag interfere with the loosening of the loose footed main when going downwind. Can the lazy jacks be left up or do they interfere with the sail when sailing? If you don't put on the nose piece all the time are you degrading the luff of main significantly? Are some manufacturers' models better than others? For instance I notice that Doyle seems to use very heavy lines for the lazy jacks instead of something thin and light like Spectra.

I would be interested in hearing views from those who have a stack pack of some kind.
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John
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Ranger Tug, 29S

Ekutney

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Re: Stack pack pros and cons
« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2016, 02:23:33 PM »

I have a stack pack (installed by Chesapeake Sailmakers) and do not have any Cons at all.  I've included my response to your questions:

Do the sides of the bag bang around when the wind gets up?
Very little.

Does the bag interfere with the loosening of the loose footed main when going downwind.
No, the lines on my configuration are connected to blocks (one on each side) up the mast with lines running back down to the mast (about boom level), this allows for dropping the sides of the bag.

Can the lazy jacks be left up or do they interfere with the sail when sailing?
I leave mine up and they do not interfere with the main.

If you don't put on the nose piece all the time are you degrading the luff of main significantly?
I leave the nose piece on, will check next time I go out.

Are some manufacturers' models better than others? For instance I notice that Doyle seems to use very heavy lines for the lazy jacks instead of something thin and light like Spectra.
I only have one data point there but Chesapeake Sailmakers came very highly recommended.

I have had the boat out only a few times since having the stack pack installed but it seems to do very well in light to medium air.  It sure does make dropping the main quick and easy.  I just have to make sure I check for birds since they do like to find all kinds of places for taking a nap.
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Ed Kutney
1986 C34
S/V Grace #42 shoal keel
Universal M-25
Magothy River
Severna Park, MD

"No one could make a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could do only a little."
Edmund Burke

Sue Clancy

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Re: Stack pack pros and cons
« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2016, 02:44:30 PM »

I am also looking at getting one of these or making my own. So far I like the design of the Mack pack because it does not have a "nose piece" to put on. It has fasteners that attach to the mast which allow the cover to stay up and cover the front edge of the sail.

Most other designs other than Mack Pack I have seen use battens or pvc pipe along the top edges to hold it open which is a negative that I have seen in the Mack pack from a few people who said sometimes the sail lands in top of the pack rather than in it. The battens seem to help with this issue. So if I make my own I will add these.

I also like the continuous zipper on the Mack pack. Not many I have seen have that.

Ed if you could post some photos of yours that would help us understand the pulleys and the front edge along the mast in yours.

Sue
« Last Edit: September 22, 2016, 02:46:44 PM by Sue Clancy »
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Sue and Brian Clancy
Former owners - 1987 C34 Mk I #272
Home Port - Westbrook, CT

britinusa

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Re: Stack pack pros and cons
« Reply #3 on: September 22, 2016, 03:38:56 PM »

We have the Doyle Cradle Cover (their model of the Mack Pack)

We take the 'nose cone' off prior to hoisting the sail.

I also ease the lazy jacks before hoisting the sail.

We do not have the continuous zip line like the Mack Pack, and wish we did! So much so that I plan on installing one.

Biggest issue? We're getting water inside the pack, it pours out when we start to hoist the sail and dirt builds up where the water  builds up.

Paul
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Paul & Peggy
1987 C34 Tall Rig Fin Keel - Hull # 463

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karista

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Re: Stack pack pros and cons
« Reply #4 on: September 22, 2016, 04:01:03 PM »

I checked out both, the Doyle pack and the Mack Pack last December at the St. Petersburg boat show. They are both well made.
I elected to buy the Mack pack primarily because  it did not require a loose footed Main, mine is on a rope track on the boom. The Doyle will only fit on a loose mounted main.  The other reason, was the Doyle underside is completely closed, not allowing water to drain out, the Mack Pack is open under the underside allowing the water to flow out. It has a zipper on top that allows for quick closing the pack.
I am very happy with it, and would never go back to the old cover setup.
If you decide on the Mack Pack, and have the standard rig they will have the dimensions, they send out their Rigger to take the measurement for my boat.
Price was approx $900+/- and installation was $300.
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Bernd, 1990- Hull 1012, Tierra Verde, Fl

John Langford

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Re: Stack pack pros and cons
« Reply #5 on: September 23, 2016, 09:35:05 AM »

Thanks to everyone who has contributed so far. a couple of thoughts from the Pacific Northwest.

 We traditionally get a lot of rain during the winter. Having water build up inside the bag would not be good. Some systems install tracks along the length of the boom and have drains every two feet or so. I wonder if the systems that are fastened with slugs in the boom track drain more effectively.

I have seen some systems that have a zipper but leave it exposed to the sun. My experience is that if a zipper that is not protected the cloth material In the zipper will rot in a couple of years.

UK and North also make packs. Both seem to have one continuous zipper. The North system uses slugs in the boom track. I will do some research on them and report back.
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John
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DaveBMusik

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Re: Stack pack pros and cons
« Reply #6 on: September 23, 2016, 07:16:13 PM »

I have a Stack Pack with a rope cord. It is nice to have the main corralled while lowering. It does gather a bit of water. I've wondered about lifting the topping lift a bit to have it drain out the front but had not been a huge issue during our very dry summer.
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Dave Burgess
Water Music
1986 C34 Hull #206, Fin Keel
Yanmar 3YM30
Noank, CT
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