Sail Inventory and Usage


The 5 batten North 3DL (the Dave Cattle design) is beautifully shaped and very fast but you need be careful not to hook the top batten on the backstay.


Use up to 14-15 knots (slighly less if gusty).
UK Mylars seem to be good up to 12 knots

I use a LIGHT # 1 (3DL) from 0-8, a AP #1 (3DL) from 8 to 18, (barberhauled above 14) Helps on long legs where the wind has built and you don''t want to peel yet. I also use a LIGHT #1 in really light air since the lighter sails 'set' quicker - be sure to go to the AP #1 once the wind is up, or it will stretch quickly.


There are many of the opinion that this is wasted weight and should be removed from the boat immediately.

Sailing in a heavy air venue (Cape Town), we find our No.2 an invaluable asset. We use it from 15 to 22 knots wind range. With this sail we can point very high and sustain 6.4 knots upwind. In big swells (but not choppy) the sail works exceptionally well and we have won several races convincingly with superior upwind height and speed. It is a sail that requires a lot of effort and experimenting to get the hang of it. It took us two seasons and we now are able to consistently duplicate settings. Despite the general consensus in the USA that the #2 has no place on the J27, we have proved otherwise.

Blackadder agrees with Trygve. The #2 is a great sail that drives nicely, does not get overpowered and yet gives you the horsepower needed to get through chop and waves. It is also contra indicative for trim and thrives on being sheeted in really close or touching the shrouds.

#3 (blade)

Use above 15 knots,
I wait until 18+/- , If I can barberhaul the #1
Smackwater Jack comment: If you are sailing with 1100lbs (500kg) of crew weight, you will only need to change to the blade at 25 knots (providing you have a #2 in your wardrobe)


Not really necessary to have one. We have used ours twice in 5 years. Once when we tore our blade and the other on a very tough night sail with seasick crew. (SWJ)


.6oz AirX symmetric in all airs, but I use an asymmetric (Code "0") on long reaching or fetching runs.

1.5S is a North crossover spinnaker that is between their standard 2S downwind VMG spinnaker and a flatter more reachy 1S. I like it as you can go downwind and reach with it. The 2S does not reach well but is great downwind. As a weight we would use the .5 oz - up to around 20 true in windward/leeward racing as you are going dead downwind by then and the sail is only seeing around 10 knots. But I do recommend careful cloth selection, I personally prefer AirX cloth or the Contender equal. See the North Sails Spinnaker Coding page for more information (and a great chart).

SWJ: I recommend 3 spinnakers on board. One full max size .5oz conventional kite for breeze up to 12 knots; one full size .75oz conventional kite for heavier breeze; one assymetric .9oz spinnaker for long close reaching legs in breeze up to 12 knots as well as for deeper reaching angles in stronger breeze (also cut at max size)

Jib Top:

Try an older #1 genoa and have your sailmaker cut the clew about one meter above the deck. This is a nice sail to use on tight reaches when it is too strong for the asso. Sheet the sail onto the rail (adjustable stopper car) with a spinnaker sheet. (SWJ)

  • Blackadder
  • Independence
  • Nut Case
  • Tesser
  • Thin Float
  • Smackwater Jack