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Venture 21 questions from a novice

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2019 1:48 pm
by Girasole
Though I did get a basic keelboat certification on SF Bay I am a sailing novice in every way. I own an early V21 (1969) which came with good gear including almost new main, three head sails, electric trolling motor, trailer, and electric mast raising system. I have done a lot of detail work on it including topside paint, interior cabinets, and replacing/refinishing wood and keel winch.
I have only sailed it a few times and it handles well and is quite responsive. I doubt the mast and boom are original, and compared to pictures and specs on and it has a second set of chainplates forward of the stock ones, though it was sailed with upper and lower shrouds clipped to the original plates. It is set up with cutter standing rigging, though the seller and I have only sailed it with the smallest fractional jib on the aft forestay.
The mast has a slight bow in it and at some point a couple of the shroud turnbuckles got deformed somewhat. Shroud tuning might not be enough to solve this but I want to try before attempting another approach.
In order to tune the shrouds I purchased shorter turnbuckles but they are also somewhat more delicate. What I got was these, which say they have a 1700+ pound breaking strength: ... F8&psc=1.
So my first question is whether any of you more experienced types think these are or are not adequate for this boat, sailed for any foreseeable future on the central and Sierra lakes and reservoirs?
My next question is trying to understand the cutter rig. I have never seen a photo of a V21 sailed as anything but a sloop, with a single headsail. Does the forward forestay only support the mast up higher than the rear one, which connects some way further down the mast? I don't see how you could run two headsails without the leading one fouling on the more rearward stay, nor how you would winch or cleat off a second headsail. Further, two of the headsails which came with my boat are “mast head” rather than “mast fractional,” if those terms make sense. So if I were to use either of them it seems to me I would have to unclip the rearward forestay from the deck eye and lash it someplace so I could attach the sail to the forward stay.
I'd appreciate any comments or education on these items anyone is willing to supply. The mast looks more robust than in any of the V21 photos I've looked at...similar to a Dwyer DM-5: ... =DM-5+Mast. The gooseneck does not allow furling the main as shown in the repro MacGregor manual I have.
Thanks in advance for any responses

Re: Venture 21 questions from a novice

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2019 5:35 pm
by Maraquita
I have no experience with the V-21, so take all with a grain of salt. My older boat was an early 70s V-25.
So, for what is is worth:
Don't worry about the roller furling gooseneck. The system was not very good (in fact, it was terrible!) If you don't have them already, a good sail loft can add reef points (grommets) to your main. Install 1 set about 2/3 of the way up and you should be good for inland lakes. 2 sets would be the "deluxe" version.

If I am reading that Amazon add correctly, those turnbuckles have a 5 MM screw thread. I agree that that is pretty small. It will probably hold the mast up OK, but if you trailer the boat, I guarantee that you will bend one while securing the rig in the first year. (at least I would!). Roger used old school chain plates for rigging the stays and for a trailer boat I don't believe they can be beat.

You are right, the front fore sail on a Cutter will have to be pulled around the the rear forestay at every tack. For a lake sailer I can't believe it would be worth the trouble. I would remove the extra forestay and go back to a Sloop. I imagine that this boat was originally a fractional rig. Place the forestay at the attachments your manual calls for. If one of your sails fits the resulting triangle at about 100%, use that and go sailing. Lake sailors do a LOT of tacking, and the extra performance allowed by a "superior rig" is just not worth the hassle eery time you change course.

The only thing I can imagine to explain the forward mounted shroud support is that is was used either to hold the gyn pole or temporary "baby stays" in conjunction with the mast raising system.

Good luck, have fun, go sailing!

Re: Venture 21 questions from a novice

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2019 8:01 pm
by Girasole
Thank you so much for the reply. I thought the same thing about the cutter rig...more trouble than it is worth at least for the benign lakes around here. The fractional jib run on what I am calling the aft forestay is 1005 at the foot, and about 80% relative to the aft forestay on the luff. So that pretty much is what you suggsst. I took measurements and used the info on sailboat data and I got very similar figures to what that site claims as specs...but the measruements are from the forward forestay.
The boat sailed quite well set up as you suggest. With any puf of air at all, no matter how gentle, she wouls really hum..literally. Seemed to be "happy" when the keel cable started "singing."
The specs on sailboat data mark her as almost a racing design in terms of the calculations. I do know the owner before the fellow I bought it from were racing it. The two other headsails I have are a masttop jib which is 100% along the foot when run on the forward forestay and another masttop which is 1about 130% (Genoa?). I ahve not tried either of these yet. The winds are sultry and gentle in the summer on the reservoirs here...perhaps 4 knots or so, and I though I have only sailed with the fractional I think the masttop 100% is the one to try...but has to be run on the forward forestay.
I appreciate your opinion about the turnbuckles. I think they are the only option at this point though as I suspect the shrouds have stretched over time and the beefier ones on them now (though at least two have the kind of distortions you allude to) may not allow tuning the shrouds adequately.