Navy 44 Sailing Guides


Safety Considerations:

(1) Due to wind/weather conditions when shaking a reef, harnesses may be required.

(2) Avoid stepping in the bight of the reefing line.

(3) Ensure personnel remain clear of the boom and mainsheet partners to prevent injuries from erratic movements.

(4) This evolution requires constant communications.


General Situation:

Assume sailing on a beam reach or closer to the wind in moderate to heavy conditions.


Required Positions:

(1) Helmsman.

(2) Mast.

(3) Main Halyard.

(4) Mainsheet.

(5) Reefing Line.


Sequence of Events:

(1) Helmsman calls out "Prepare to shake the reef" and crew removes sail ties from reef points and clew and takes positions.

(2) Mast checks mast ensuring sail slides are free to run, takes position on the windward side of the mast, and reports "Ready" to Helmsman.

(3) Main Halyard ensures halyard is clear to run, uncleats or removes halyard from the self tailer, removes excess turns from winch, and reports "Ready" to Helmsman.

(4) Reefing Line ensures stopper on reefing line to be eased is open, removes line from self tailer ensuring it is clear to run, and removes excess turns from winch.  Reports "Ready" to the Helmsman.

(5) Mainsheet ensures vang and sheet are clear to run, takes position facing the main and report "Ready" to the Helmsman.

(6) After receiving "Ready" reports from crew, Helmsman calls out "Shake the reef" and maintains course, anticipating the boat's tendency to fall off once the main is eased.

(7) Mainsheet eases sheet, releases vang and is ready to trim.

(8) Reefing Line dumps reefing line simultaneously with sheet and halyard easing; continue easing as halyard is trimmed, ensuring reefing line is slack.

(9) Main Halyard eases halyard as the sheet is eased; halyard is eased only enough to remove cringle from reefing hook.

(10) Mast unhooks the cringle as soon as the halyard is eased then jumps halyard once the cringle is freed.

(11) Main Halyard trims halyard after cringle is freed, putting on extra turns as the halyard comes under tension.  Works with Mast to watch luff tension as halyard is ground in; person watching height calls "High".

(12) Once halyard is "High", Mainsheet trims sheet and vang.

(13) Main Halyard and Reefing Line make off and coil respective lines.

- This page last updated 05/04/2005 -