Nicely set up balance lug rig photos.

Any reasonable sailor can look at the pics to the right and see that this rig is doing all the right things.

The twist is controlled, the sheeting angles are relatively narrow and the boat is moving along nicely in a light wind and a leftover chop.

This is what I mean when I say that properly set up traditional rigs can be effective.

The picture is of me sailing my first design – the BETH sailing canoe on Lake Burley Griffin in Canberra. It is the boat that helped me work out how to set up these types of sails properly – I already knew from my racing background what the basics were but there are some specific things applicable to traditional rigs.

The balance lug rig shown here is certainly one of the candidates.

Getting these rigs to work well is more a question of detail – just getting little things right – get them all right and the boat will GO! At the bottom of this post I have a link to information about setting up both lug and sprit rigs for good performance.

The main areas are just like other modern boats
1/limiting sail twist
2/getting the right depth in the sails
3/making sure the sails work with the spars to depower the rig in a gust and power it up in a lull.

The two main things with the Balance Lug are to reduce stretch in the halyard and to use lots of downhaul tension in medium and strong winds. But there are lots of other details too – I’ve put a page on my website explaining a lot of the details.

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