North Sails LOFT NEWS

Story Contributors: Austin Powers

XP 44 BOMBSHELL GOES WITH HELIX

A Match Made In Heaven

Helix

North Sails expert Austin Powers out of our Annapolis loft gives us a glimpse into Bombshell‘s test sail with her new 3Di sails featuring Helix technology.

John Congdon, an XP44 (Bombshell) owner sailing out of the Rappahannock gave North Sails’s new Helix load sharing technology a go on his new 3Di 600 downwind Code 0, 75% mid girth. On this particular boat, John was doing a lot of cruising with a mix of some distance racing on the horizon. When setting up the sails and inventory this winter there was an emphasis on trying to have sails with a lot of crossover so as to not have to store piles and piles of sails down below. With the Helix sail we are able to get reduced luff sag, less tack load on the sprit, and the ability to manipulate the sail shape to get to broader sailing angles than we were previously able to achieve with a cabled sail. In our first test sail, between the code 0 and the A1 we were able to cover the majority of tight reaching and broad reaching angles that we will see in our races. This is a game changer for boats who do not want to have to carry 4 to 5 reaching sails, and instead can cover broader ranges with 2 or 3 sails. That means less sail weight, less sail changes, and faster sailing.

Helix

Bombshell cruises towards the Rappahannock river bridge with the tack slightly eased as the wind moved aft. On a traditional cabled sail, the entry of the sail makes this more difficult when trying to sail broader angles.

Helix

Helix

If you are looking for more out of your next code sail, whether it be sailing angles or versatility, give Helix Load Sharing a try. Get in touch with us today to learn more. 

Story Contributors

XP 44 Bombshell Goes With Helix headshot
Austin Powers

Sail Expert — Annapolis, Maryland

Austin started his sailing career at Fishing Bay Yacht Club in Deltaville, VA, racing Optis and Laser Radials in the FBYC junior race program and sailing with his parents on their cruising boat. The sailmaking industry was always on his...

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