Interview with Andrew Eales, Scotland, Beneteau 21.7 & Trogear Custom Bowsprit
“We are overjoyed with the performance and ease of use of our Trogear Bowsprit. It has enabled us to use a top down furler with our new asymmetric Spinnaker and the performance as a whole package has far exceeded our expectations.”
Andrew Eales, Scotland
Why did you decide on the need for a Bowsprit overall?
Although we have been sailing cruising boats on the West Coast of Scotland for many years we purchased our Beneteau 21.7 with a view to inshore ‘day’ sailing and some club racing. After the first season racing the 21.7 it became apparent we needed a Spinnaker and having never used one before we set about planning the best way to set one up on our boat – First step was the Bowsprit…..
How did you find the Trogear Bowsprit?
I watched about a million You tube videos on ‘Bowsprits’ and one that caught our eye in particular was the Trogear bowsprit.
If you considered other options, what made you select the Trogear?
Every other 21.7 we saw had a standard ‘pole type’ extending Bowsprit mounted on the deck of the boat. This allowed about a meter of extension forward of the forestay, however I was unhappy with the ‘side loading’ ability of this system and we wanted a system that could accommodate the higher sideways forces exerted by both a top down furler and a Code zero. The obvious choice quickly became the Trogear with its triangulated design and bobstay combined.
The Trogear for our size of boat however only provided about half the forward extension of the 1 meter on offer with the competition. After speaking to Trogear directly in France however they offered to make a custom Bowsprit at the length I required at a competitive price compared to the standard option. This was the solution we needed and ordered it straight away.
Were the install instructions clear? How was the install process overall?
The installation instructions and videos were clear and easy to understand. Our Beneteau 21.7 being more compact than the one in the video presented its own challenges regarding the anchor locker positioning, however all queries were answered promptly by Trogear ensuring a smooth installation.
It is always an anxious moment drilling a hole in the side of your boat ! – however after all the technical support I had received it was a very straight forward operation. We did use a laser level in addition to the stick on tape measures as used in the video, which confirmed our measurements.
We use a Karver top down furler and an asymmetric Spinnaker which was custom made to suit the dimensions of our boat with the additional Luff provided by the lower mounting of the Trogear Bowsprit. This was produced by Owen Sails of Oban.
Can you share a bit about your sailing experience with the Trogear?
We wanted a Spinnaker to make us more completive when racing. Having never used one before and observing others struggling with deploying and stowing such a powerful sail we wanted a more user friendly option. In addition we felt a racing advantage could be achieved with a method of quickly deploying and stowing the spinnaker (short leg racing). We also wanted the option of a code zero at a future date. Using the Trogear bowsprit allows all of this and has performed faultlessly so far.
On arrival at the boat setting the spinnaker up is straight forward and fast with the Bowsprit pivoting up to allow connection of the furler prior to raising the spinnaker. The bobstay then positions the bowsprit correctly level prior to tensioning the torque rope of the furler.
How was the overall sales experience?
Our experience in dealing with the guys at Trogear Europe was excellent. They understood our requirements from the outset and answered all my emails with endless questions promptly and swiftly. After taking some dimensions of our boat and producing some drawings the offer of a standard and a custom Bowsprit was offered. After the Bowsprit had arrived they continued to provide support regarding installation and rigging which was invaluable and made the process very straight forward.
Anything else you’d like to share?
We have had many admiring comments on how well the whole system both looks and performs and overall was well worth the investment and effort. We would not hesitate in recommending Trogear and their products.