In the last few decades, sail handling has come a long way and it has changed not only how people sail, but how long they can continue to keep sailing. Devices like roller furling for headsails and push button mainsail control have allowed people getting up there in age to keep getting out on the water and enjoying their boats. There is no need any more to go crawling around the foredeck to drag down a genoa in a stiffening breeze or to wrestle with reefing a mainsail. Instead, much sail handling can be done from the safety of the cockpit. There are, however, pros and cons to each device so let’s take a closer look at things starting with mainsail handling systems.
In the early 80’s Ted Hood, the famous founder of the sail making company that bore his name, saw a need for some kind of device to manage mainsails. Read more.