Saturday, November 28, 2009

Vanuatu Outrigger Sailing Races

Here are a couple of sailing outriggers from Lelepa Island racing in a cultural festival held recently in Vanuatu. I did not know that sprit rigs were in use there. Note the low attachment point of the sprit which prevents any chance of reefing the sail by lowering the sprit. The alternative is to remove the sprit altogether and fold the top half of the sail down and around the mast.
Thanks to Francis Hickey for taking the photos and Don Miller for sending them.


  1. With the bottom of the sprit so low the sail almost looks like a crab claw on a tallish stub mast, with the small difference that the top of the sail is attached to the 'stub mast'

  2. Makes you wonder why they didn't just use a crabclaw or oceanic sprit?

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  4. The plans for the Wharram Melenesia have 2 rigs, a crab claw and a sprit. The sprit rig is similar in that it shows that the sprit can be removed and the sail folded down so the peak is at the tack of the sail. The rig is loose footed though, so I would see if you could use the sprit as a sprit boom so the sail might set better doubled down like that.

    Is it just me, or do those sails look exactly like a kids diamond kite? Pretty cool stuff!

  5. It looks so good in the post.
    Many thanks for your nice posting, I like it.