How to control outhaul and leech tension

How can I have separate, individual controls for outhaul and leech tension?

Any pictures you can share?

From you clew tie your outhaul around the end of the boom(probably as you have it now) and also put a tie down around the boom. Now the vang controls the leach tension more directly. I’ll post a picture later, I’m still having my morning coffee.

Here’s a picture

Are you asking for ways to adjust either and/or both while on the water sailing …:question:

i.e. - outhaul up wind, inhaul downwind allowing more/less twist and flatter/fuller sail.

Don: That looks good!

Dick: It could be on shore, the simpler the better… just want to control them independently…

Marino -

I mount my boom a distance behind the mast, and to the deck. (multihull) When sheeted in the further back on the boom you can attach your mainsheet, the more pull downwards it will have for leech control upwind.

As the mainsheet is released for downwind sailing, the boom swings out, and the sail attached to the mast at the tack, and to the boom at the clew creates two different radius of movement. This will cause the clew to move inwards to the mast (slightly) and cause a fuller camber. It also will release leech tension so sail will twist off downwind. Wil Gorgen, some time back (and probably in archives) did a nice job of explaining how this works. Since a traveller requires a wide deck to work effectively, a standard vang is best (in my opinion) for a monohull.

There is also a way to attach your clew outhaul to your winch arm, so as you sheet in, it (winch arm) will also tighten your clew adding more outhaul. When sheet is released and winch arm moves in other direction, the tension is removed from the clew and wind makes sail fuller, pulling clew in toward mast. You just have to make a small sliding “car” on boom, to allow clew to move forward and back on the boom. Once you figure out the engineering, it is simply a matter of adjusting the clew-line to winch arm for amount of travel needed. You could also run your sheet in a “s” configuration, coming through deck, through a block to control boom location, then out to a block on end of boom and back to clew. When sheet is tightened it also pulls backwards on clew, tightening it and removing camber from the sail. Unfortunately, the clew is always dependant on the mainsheet tension, so you couldn’t keep a flat sail and still release mainsheet tension - a drawback, perhaps.

For multihulls, unless the wind is extremely light, we seldom sail directly downwind. Instead we gybe back and forth sialing a very deep, broad reach. We sail a bit farther than dead-downwind, but hopefully we sail faster to make up the extra distance. Thus, since sails are usually close-hauled, and we are reaching, the vang isn’t too critical for our needs.

Here is another solution. The black fitting is not fixed to boom and slides.

Question: The black band acts as the leech tensioner, whilst the outhaul is control via the bowsie, right? If so, then applying more leech tension, will affect the outhaul, is that correct?


How do you control leech tension? Do you need to un-tie the knot and re-do it?

That is correct, sorry I did not be more specific with pic. This works very well. The zip tie is there because the original fitting, a grommet, became ineffective.

Leach tension(twist) is controlled with the vang.The outhaul and leach adjustment should not interfere with each other. The vang will pull straight down and the outhaul will pull(suprisingly) out. If the outhaul effects the leach tension I would say that it is pulling at too steep an angle. I guess if you were just using the outhaul to adjust both before that your boom might be to short to get a nice low angle on your outhaul. In this case you might have to juggle them a bit. I’m thinking that this is the way to go.