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I don't like furling mains, full stop. 

But there was another thread recently about how hard it was for someone to hoist a main on a 35 fter (I think). I said it there, and I'll say it here, check everything for friction. Clean your mast track, and spray a bit of silicon in it, check the halyard sheave at the top of the mast is running freely, clean, fix or replace, and what ever bits make the leisurefurl work, check, clean and ensure all friction is minimised. Dried up grease, dust, general detritus will make any sail hard to hoist and drop. With the extra working parts of a furling rig, you need to be right across all of those elements.

I'm a fan of slab reefing, to to change it out, wont you be up for a new boom and new mainsail? Sounds like $$ to me.

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Agree with Fish re lubricating the track, especially for hoisting.  We had a few problems of the same sort but did two things which now make it very easy to get up and down, and we're 43ft with a large, heavy mainsail.

Firstly, we eased the bearing for the spindle at the mast because we discovered that was one part of the problem, it was just too tight a fit.  Now I can raise the main by hand (at the mast), at least halfway before it needs to be winched.

Secondly, we abandoned the furling line, exchanged the aluminium winch handle socket on the drum with a stainless steel one, and now just wind it down with that.  There's usually at least two of us so one winds the furling drum at the mast and the other controls the halyard.  Much faster, easier and way less problems.  I can do it on my own with gritted teeth and a bit of ingenuity.

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Nothing wrong with Leisurefurl but as Chippie says forget the furling line. Bounce the halyard at the mast with someone tailing and into wind on autopilot and the sail goes up real quick.

If you had an electric winch I guess you could easily do it single handed.

Same with furling or reefing use a winch handle in the drum at the front of the mast with someone controlling the halyard - the sail comes down super quick. (remove the furling line completely as it just makes the whole process too slow).

You do need to be into wind.

With the full length battens it is a very good system, way better I think than the in mast furling.

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Climbed the mast on Firefly two weeks ago and lubed and checked everything from the top to the bottom. Silicon grease. Careful to only spray into the track a couple of times at various heights  - didn’t want the wheels on the cars just sliding on the outside of the track. Continued the procedure on everything on deck. Main whistles up and down now like a high speed train. Makes putting in a reef much easier. Cars go up and down the  track more easily and at a wider range of angles than before. 

 

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Well, we have an electric halyard winch so our mileage differs. But we really like the LF boom, although it has taken a while to figure out all its tricks (one of the upper battens tends to snag on the boom unless the sail is slightly backwinded at that point in the furl, for example).  

I had to grind up the main on a friend's Beneteau 36 a while back and I thought I was going to have a stroke halfway through.

 

MS 

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Have a LF boom and electric winch setup, I would not do it any other way, its not idiot proof but then again I'm not generally considered an idiot when it comes to sailing my boat.

Yes watch the battens and yes go head to wind to raise and lower.

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The theory of lubing the mast track obviously makes sense but I could not believe the difference it actually makes in reality. Yesterday I went up the mast and sprayed the whole track plus the cars. Then hoisted. Previously I started by hand but had to resort to winch by about 1/3 way up. After lubing yesterday I literally pulled the whole mainsail up by hand until it went ‘clunk’ at the masthead. I only put it on the winch for some final tension. This is a 42ft boat with a 15m hoist so not tiny.

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