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      It looks like it’s time for a new rolling genoa on our new-to-us 2006 Bavaria 30. The leach is pretty shredded – lacking in UV protection?

      I’ve heard that some people have downsized their genoa – obviously to the detriment of low wind performance but allowing better sailing in higher winds and when reefed. We’re not racers, and tend to reef early anyway, so this is appealing to us!

      Does anyone have any experience of changing genoas on the Bav 30 – or ideas, suggestions or advice? Thanks, as ever, for the input!


        Mine is a 2003 Bavaria 32. The previous owner commissioned a No. 3 jib from Jeckells and we use it 90% of the time rather than the original full sized Elvstrom genoa. We cruised last year up the east coast from Woolverstone to Holy Island in Northumberland and the only time the big genoa came out of the locker was when a longish spell of light airs were forecast.

        This summer we took the boat up to Arisiag (west coast of Scotland) and around Skye and the Inner Sound and we haven’t used the big genoa at all yet.

        Like you, we’re cruisers, not racers but having said that I am quite keen to get the best out of the rig at all times and I have hardly ever felt the boat was underpowered. (Quite often the opposite!). In fact the best performance I have ever had out of the boat was last week returning to Arisaig from Mallaig with one reef in the main and the full no3 jib broad reaching in 12 – 14kts of wind. We managed an apparent wind angle of about 40deg and a boat speed of around 6.5 up to 7kts (briefly).

        The biggest factor we have found in improving the boat performance was that we had a professional rigger tune the rig for us at the start of this season after we had the standing rigging replaced. Compared to last season, the difference was marked. Last year the boat displayed quite a lot of weather helm and we often had to reef earlier than I would have wished. This season the boat’s performance has been transformed. She feels much better balanced and more lively and the weather helm has almost completely disappeared.

        My advice would be to go for a new smaller headsail, and perhaps have your big genoa cleaned and repaired for those times when you need it. And pay a professional to set up the rig for you. We used Robbie Storrar who is based in Newcastle upon Tyne.

        I have the email correspondence somewhere between the previous owner and Jeckells (can’t put my hand on it at the moment) and they seemed very helpful with advice on the measurements and spec for the new sail.


          Very helpful, and very interesting, Sandpiper. We’ve found the Bav overpowered (for us) if anything, fully reefed between Cumbrae and Arran at 6 knots in a Force 6. We do tend to reef early, so the idea of a smaller foresail is appealing! Unfortunately, having looked in detail at our genoa it’s clear that the leach is shredded, and has already been repaired twice; our resident sailmaker quoted a reasonable price for repair, but suggested it would be a very temporary measure – the lack of a UV protection strip has really caused problems. I suspect too that the boat has been underused, and this has not helped the situation, as the sail has been left on the forestay for a couple of seasons.

          So we’ll bite the bullet and order a new sail of somewhat reduced dimensions – perhaps 120%. And think about a storm jib too (perhaps hoisted from the spinnaker halliard? It’s not going to have any OTHER function on our yacht!)


            On the new (now old I guess?) design B32’s the foresail is only a jib from the factory, very easy to handle and tacks well in front of the mast.
            Great for upwind sailing as you can get a really sharp “Blade” of a sail…. off wind though performance suffers dramatically.

            Simillary, there is a lot of weather helm as the power in front of the mast does not appear to be well enough balanced with the main.

            Just my observations though and maybe a rig tune would help?


              I’ve had various new sails on Bavarias and and would suggest that you stick with the larger genoa (140%) but pay slightly more for foam inserts at the luff and reefing markers.
              This will then hold it’s shape well when reefed down and keep it balanced as you reef the main.
              Just had a new suit from Kemp sails which I am very pleased with. Also paid slightly more on the genoa to go for a tri radial in Dimension Polyant square rather than Dacron so the shape last better with better load distribution at the tack and clew.


                Thanks, Sundance. According to some of the sites, the genoa is 135%, but according to my calculations, the current one is more than 150%. Odd – my measuring of the boat’s J dimension makes it 2.67m (hence my calculation of 150%) but the stated J dimension for the Bav 30 is 3.1m – odd again.

                Anyway, I’ve had long chats with the sailmaker, and taken your advice about foam inserts. Couldn’t quite stretch to Polyvant, but we’ll have a better grade of Dacron than was used by Elvstrom. And yes, we WILL have UV protective strips!

                Interesting about jib rather than genoa, CaSam: might make for easier handling and better balance, I guess.

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