Liz and I recently spent five days cruising the Gulf Islands on Xian. We learned a few useful things that might make your sailing a bit better, and we thought we should share them.
Furling the foresail is easy enough but it is important to keep both sides of the furling line secure and tight so that there is no slippage of the drum at the bottom of the furler that sometimes allows the sail to “raise” itself, at inopportune moments! Secure the line on the dedicated cleat so that both sides of the line are held securely against the drum.
Reefing lines are run from the cockpit, mostly. The first reef must be put in manually at the sail as the line (green marked, starboard side) is not quite long enough to be permanently attached to the sail at the reefing points at the leech and luff. The luff and leech ends have hooks that can be attached to the sail when needed, and they need to be secured when not in use. The second reefing point can be attached permanently to the sail before sailing, and can be completely operated from the cockpit. The reefing lines must be allowed to run when raising the mainsail if they are attached to it to allow the main to be raised. You will of course need short lines to tie off the reefing points between leech and luff.
The clutch on the anchor windlass must be tightened right down in order for the gypsy to pull up the chain and anchor. There are faint markings every 25 feet on the anchor chain – faded out paint – that you need to watch for carefully as you put out the anchor. There is a plan to improve the marks by applying new paint. The anchor chain needs to be stowed manually as it comes in or the windlass will jam up and stop the process. Sometimes too you will need to adjust the chain as it comes out of the locker to prevent outgoing jams.
The refrigerator works very well and keeps things quite cold. We only ran it when the engine was running or when we were on shore power, and at the end of day five we had two frozen bottles of water that had not started out frozen. Watch your veggies!
If you have any questions about Xian, we might be able to help. Call or email.
Donald and Elizabeth PATON