Multiple Jibbed schooners...

Ok, I’m probably over stepping my abilities, but I’m working on building a schooner for a scale project. I know on a sloop type jib how you run the leads, but how do you run them on a schooner that has multiple jibs flying above the deck without interfering with the lower ones?


Don’t forget to have fun!!!

contact a member her by the name of john dowd. he has a rc schooner the canadian schooner BLUENOSE. he mihgt be able to help you
long live the cup and cris dickson


Have you tried running two sheets, one attached to each end of a servo arm or even a continuous sheet wrapped around a drum such that when the port sheet is trimmed, the starboard sheet is eased (and vice versa)?

Take a look at the sheeting diagram for a gennaker that Doug Lord came up with: .

Something along those lines should work. You would not need the middle section (which is designed to induce slack for when the gennaker is stowed in the tube) and probably would not need the 2:1 purchase on the outer two legs either. but the basic concept should work.

I would rig up a drum winch system (continuous loop) below deck. Then hook up the sheets to the loop so that the port sheet is led to the shuttle car from the aft end of the system and the starboard sheet is led to the shuttle car from the forward end of the system. Then when you move the winch one way and the shuttle car moves say forward, the port sheet will trim while the starboard sheet eases. vice versa when the winch is turned the other way.

If you are really clever, you can rig up the system so that there are different “gain” settings (different amounts of sheet travel for the same total travel of the shuttle car). Then you could hook up all the sheets for any sails you need to tack to this same system (such as squares and multiple jibs or genoas) and trim them all on a single drum.

  • Will

Edited to fix link

Will Gorgen

I had been wondering if a “loop”, anchored to the deck on one side of the deck, running up through a block of sorts on the clew of the sail, and running back towards the winch on the other side of the deck. If it’d work, I would think it would be allowed to pivot to the wind freely until it hits the limit of the sheet tension. Possibility???


Don’t forget to have fun!!!

I don’t think that would work, Travis.

The loop would have to be loose enough to let the clew of the forward jib pass over the luff of the aft jib. I think the sail would tend to pull clew to this apex point when it was billowing out in the breeze. It is simple enough to try, but I think you are going to find that it does not work.

  • Will

Will Gorgen

That’s what I figured would happen…

Have you tried a seperate double arm servo with the port sheet attached to one end and the starboard sheet attached to the other end? That seems like the easiest route. The continuous loop drum winch would work as well, I suspect.

But those seem like pretty obvious solutions. I’m surpriesd you have not tried them…

  • Will

Will Gorgen

Attached is a picture of the “cheater” rig on Yankee III, “enhanced” to show how the sheets run. The secret is a batten than runs from the tack of each foresail at right angles to the luff. Using this, whose dimensions and thickness you’ll have to determine by experiment, you can then run the sheets at any angle. Note that the jib sheet actually runs forward to the staysail stay attachment point. It’s kind of an “inside out” wishbone rig, with the stiffener inside instead of outside the sail. Then you put a healthy roach on both sails to fool the eye into thinking the sails actually overlap, which they don’t: the batten is just long enough to clear the staysail stay (in the case of the jib) or the mast (in the case of the staysail). The sails set and draw well with this arrangement. It’s not my invention – I got it from an 1895 article by Franklyn Bassford, who used the trick on a jib topsail.



Download Attachment: [ YII.jpg]( Boebert/200477221045_YII.jpg)

The 3 jibs on my ship are controlled through a set of sheet blocks down to a winch drum with fishing weights pulling up the slack.

I have some pics of the sheet blocks…etc at my new site:

I can upload more if interested.

Edited to say that I can not get the “Insert a file” button to work to upload all my pics…so click the below links to see other pics.

Always choose the lesser of the two weevils!

Download Attachment: jibs1.jpg

Mr Happy, (or can I call you Hog?)

It looks like you can only set up your jibs to sail on one tack or the other, but cannot switch tacks while sailing. Is this right, or am I missing something?

Do you trim the jibs with the same sail control as the mains?

Is that the correct positions for the fairleads? It seems like the fairleads are too far forward and the foots of the jibs are too bagged out. Did the kit recommend thoise positions or did you pick those yourself? You may want to try them a bit further aft…

  • Will

Will Gorgen

Hey Will…you call me whatever you want…just don’t call me “SHIRLEY”…lol

Everything is set up according to manufacturers specs. I’m not sure what you mean about the fairleads being too far forward…but the jibs can be close hauled quite tightly with no “bag” in the sails. They are controlled together along with the 2 gaff sails (fore and aft) from a double drum winch.

They can only be set on one tack or the other…but it is not a big problem. Not much of the sails overlap the others as you can see pretty well from the photo here:

Since this is my first ship…I am in a huge learning curve and welcome all the help I can get.


Always choose the lesser of the two weevils!

Hey Robert (that’s much easier than either Hog or Mr. Happy),

How much access do you still have to the below deck area?

I think you mentioned in another thread that you had a double arm servo for trimming your squares? If I were you, I would attach two jib sheets to the forward two jibs - one on either side of the forestay of the sail behind it. You could probably pass both sheets through the same fairleads you already use. Then attach the sheets to the same servo you are using for the squares. If you attach the sheets further out toward the ends of the arms (you may need a longer arm for this) than where the squares are sheeted to, you should be able to get the sheet travel you want to allow enough slack in the sheets so that you can sheet out for reaching without the windward sheet pulling tight.

You may want to rig up your squares sheets so that the essentially stop sheeting in at a certain point in the servo swing. I’ll sketch up what I am thinking of and post a sketch later…

  • Will

Will Gorgen

OK, here is what I came up with:

Download Attachment: servo1.jpg

This is a top view diagram with the front of the boat is at the top of the diagram. The servo shown in the middle of the diagram functions to trim both the squares and the jibs.

The servo horn is a 3 arm horn. The jib sheets are marked in red and the squares sheets are marked in blue (very patriotic and all).

There are 3 servo positions shown in the diagram.

Position 1 which has the solid lines for the sheets is the close hauled position for port tack. Notice how the starboard jib sheet is pulled tight to trim the jib to that side. The port jib sheet has some extra sllack in it to allow the sheet to lay lazily over the forestay of the jib behind it (overlapping jibs). The squares sheets are trimmed so that the starboard squares sheet is pulled somewhat taught and there is slack in the port sheet. This will cause the squares to be angled as if on a port tack (but if they are furled, this is really irrelevant - only the yards will be moving).

Position 2 is a reaching setting. Notice that the starboard jib sheet (dashed red line) has been eased. The starboard squares sheet has NOT been eased (this is important to note). At this point you would want to unfurl your squares. The port jib and squares sheets are not shown (the diagram is crowded enough as it is) but they are still slack.

Position 3 is a dead run position. The starboard jib sheet (red dotted line) has been further eased. The port jib sheet still shows some slack, but if the sail billows out this slack will be taken up. The key to the whole thing is that the port and starboard squares sheets are equal lengths at this point and there is no slack in the squares system so the squares will be held centered by both sheets.

Obviously, the system would work the same way for starboard tack with the servo continuin to turn further counter-clockwise.

The key to making this system work is to get the turning blocks or eyelets for the squares sheets mounted forward of the servo. The angle at which the servo truns to make the squares sheet pass directly over the servo axis is the point where the squares stop sheeting in and begin to ease. But the jib sheets will continue sheeting past this point.

I show both the port and starboard jib sheets exiting through a single fairlead in the deck you can have 2 fairleads if you want, or whatever. This is really just to show how the servo arrangement works.

You may want to hang small fishing weights from the squares sheets to take up the slack that is induced in the system as you suggested earlier.

If you have multiple jibs that each need a different amount of sheeting, then you can have multiple holes in the jib sheet arms at different radii to give the different amount of sheeting needed. The length of the squares arm may need to be longer or shorter than the jib arms depending on where the sheets are attached to the yards and how much sheet travel you need to trim the yards around.

What would be really neat would be to have an additional servo that could furl and unfurl the squares. Then you would really impress 'em at the pond!!!

Let me know if this diagram needs more explaining and I will fill in more of the details…

  • Will

Will Gorgen

Multiple Jibbed schooners <font color=“red”>AND SLOOPS</font id=“red”>

Thanks Will for the ideas.

I have started to think about the rigging on the J boat that I propose to build. I would like to be authentic as possible to the orignal boat with the double jibs, even a quad jib. Its only a few sketches at the moment on the back of coasters/paper napkins from the local pub “[:-drunk]hic”

I had a jib on a schooner once that worked really well with sheets either side . It had a double arm on a servo and a tripple loop at either arm end controling either sheet. Initially I thought there would be too much friction, but the jib was so small, for the size of the servo, that it had no problem. The nice thing was, I didn’t need a very long double arm wich took up less space in the boat. there was enough slack in the system so that the jib opereated in a very scale like manner. Maybe you could put two jibs on one servo.
Mine was like this little tiney jib the size of a postcard operated by a s-3801

Hey Will…thanks for the time to post all that.

I have found that my schooner is most fun to sail with the squares furled. It’s just a lot easier to tack. I think I will sail with the set up I have for a while and see if it presents a problem. I know the sheets cause a little sail deformation at the bottom of a couple of the jibs (due to the sail billowing) when on the starboard tack but I don’t actually notice a performance difference when on the other tack and it is not noticeable from the shore. I don’t have anyone to sail with, much less race, so performance is not a real concern.

The servo controled square sail furling would be way cool![:-batman] Any ideas on that?


Always choose the lesser of the two weevils!


Of course I have an idea for that!!!

You will obviously need another servo to furl/unfurl the sails. A double arm servo is what I have in mind. One arm would pull on a line to furl the sail and the other end would pull on lines to help unfulr the sail (I don’t think you can count on gravity to pull the sails out.

I have 2 ideas for the furling system.

The simplest would be to have loops around the sail. I would think 4 to 6 would do it. These loops would tie to the yard arm, wrap around the sail and then back up to the yard arm and through a small eyelet. From there, you can run them in to the mast and then down the mast through the deck to the servo. You can gang these lines together at appropriate places so that you have just one line for each sail by the time you are below deck. The problem with this system is that it probably has a lot of friction. So simply easing the lines will not garantee that the sails will unfurl. You probably need to force them to unfurl.

The lower corners of the sail are trimmed to either the yard below the square or down the the deck, correct? You would use these two corner sheets to unfurl the sail. As the double arm eases the furling line, it would pull in on these sheeting lines and thereby pull the sail open. This is easy to do for the top squares where these sheeting lines run to the yard below, but this gets a little trickeir for the lower sail where these sheets ideally run to the deck.

You want these sheets to be able to trim and ease with the yards, so you want them hooked up to the sheeting servo. you basically want them to go slack when the sail furns and take up that slack when the sail unfurls. What I suggest there is that the sheet lines themselves can attach to the sheeting servo. Lead the sheets up onto the deck fairly far forward and then lead them aft to eyelets on the gunwale. These eyelet would not be screwed to the gunwale but rather would be held to the gunwale with a line. This line would be attached to the furling serov. So when you furled the sails, this line would go slack and the eyelets would float forward - therby inducing slack in your sheets. When you unfulred the squares, these eyelets would be pulled tight against the gunwale again and take up the slack in the sheets. I hope that makes sense.

My other idea for the furling is inspired by some Roman Blinds that we have at our house. If you are not familiar with Roman Blinds, head on over to your nearest Home Depot or other interior decorating type store and check them out. Basically, the way the roman or festoon blinds work is that you have a series of small loops on one side of the sail that a vertical line passes through the line is connected to the bottom of the sail. when you pull up on that line, It pulls the bottom part of the sail up creating a fold until it hits the next loop. Then it starts pulling up that portion of the sail and so on until it has pulled the whole sail tight against the yard. Now the way I am picturing this, is that instead of tying the end of the line to the bottom edge of the sail, you tie the middle of the line to the bottom of the sail and then run the remainder of the line down to the yard below so that you can pull on that end of the furling line to unfirl the sail. The sheets would operate the same way as described above.

I like the roman shade idea the best, but you probably need to play with it a bit to find out which system works better. The key is going to be getting the system to run free enough to unfurl the sail even in light winds. You may want to consider a shock cord that would pull the furling line loose to help overcome the friction in the system.

I’m positive it can be done. Anyone know where I can find a kit for a ship like this that does not take too long to assemble but that is built for RC sailing that I could use to try out some of these ideas?

  • Will

Will Gorgen

Hi, Travis,
do you understand German?
under Topic Modellbau - Baupraxis - “SY Susanne - Zweischoten-Vorsegelsteuerung” you will find a detailed description how to handle multiple jibs. The description includes also some drawings.

Regards from Germany

regards from Germany

Actually I don’t. But I can use one of those translation sites, or at least try to.


Don’t forget to have fun!!!

What a great site!!!
My desktop icon
“AltaVista’s Babel Fish Translation Service”
has ben working overtime!!!

I think I need a Babelfish translation-

“My three Vorsegel are called fock, kluever and flier. The fock as Baumfock like the grosssegel with a Schot to the Baumnock over the main hoist driven that is nothing new.”

I’ve read this a bunch of times and I’m no wiser. [:D][:D]

Vancouver Island