BATTENS

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Bob Gray:
   Most of us don't have a MS or BZ super flat sail but do race in winds above the recommended wind range for an ABSS or similar speed sail. How effective is using stiffer battens in the top or even the top two batten pockets in raising the wind range for  ABSS type sails? Does moving the halyard forward on the head board help much?

KB [us5219]:
Stiffer battens would definitely help... actually, I have been going the other direction in thought - that is using generally stiff battens on flat sails, except on really flat ice but  medium-lighter winds where you might use lighter battens to help the flat upper section of the sail form its shape earlier.
Halyard strung forward on the head-board might help de-power a sail by twisting the leech, but the real problem is the shape of the sail, and looseness in the leech can cause it to flap and flutter.  (halyard forward would make this worse).  High speeds upwind, I have witnessed my sail leech doing strange and unexpected stuff.  Was going too fast to look up, but the shadow on the ice was bizarre. 
No doubt stiffer battens can help, but at the point where the leech is fluttering, one needs either flatter sails, or to stiffen up the rig ( I know that sounds backwards but in heavy air, everything works differently).

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