Emmelène meets Tammy Norie

Chris Boxer has written about our recent meeting at Bembridge on the Isle of Wight. You can find his post on Emmelène’s blog.


Emmelène has a split junk rig, which means about a third of the sail area is ahead of the mast and formed of conic sections called “jiblets”. These direct airflow over the main part of the panels abaft the mast. The slot effect helps the air stick to the back of the mains and so increases the stall angle, and thus how high you can point. To make this work the luffs of the main sections need to be tight near the mast, like the luff of a Bermudan main.

It’s quite like sailing a stack of small pivoting Bermudan rigs!


It’s often said that the Coromandel’s mast is too far back. Tammy certainly suffers from weather helm, especially on a reach. But Emmelène has none at all. It’s quite spooky.

If anything she could do with moving the centre if effort aft a touch. The sheets are perhaps a little too relaxed and sometimes it was hard to persuade the sail to swing out.

This is no fault of Chris’s. He bought the rig second-hand to replace the poor “hi-power” rig that came with Emmelène. In fact it was the exact rig the Practical Boat Owner featured in their comparison of junk and Bermudan rigs (using identical Splinter 22s I think) a while ago.


I look forward to meeting Chris again and perhaps trying it all out in more varied conditions.


A full set of photos is on Flickr. And a set of photos taken by Chris.


Filed under Logs

17 responses to “Emmelène meets Tammy Norie

  1. robertsmme

    Isn’t the issue about sail not swinging out to do with rake of mast.


    • I have heard (and it makes sense) that forward rake causes the sail to swing out (forward) but I wouldn’t like to rely in that effect in a bumpy sea on a small boat.

      • Annie

        Actually, I’ve found that this is exactly when a forward rake to the mast really does help!

        • That’s very interesting to hear. While I was with Chris I had another look at the options for taking Tammy Norie’s mast. I can definitely get around 5° when I beef up the mast step. Emmelène’s step had already been updated, but he might also be willing to do the experiment. We should also consult the split-rig experts!

  2. Antoine Maartens

    I want this for Siskin!!

    • But Antoine, I’ve already visited you! 😉

      • Antoine Maartens

        And how very welcome you would be to visit again! Or if I ever were to get the cohones to cross the pond, the other way around.

        I meant the split rig.

        • Yes, I know really. When I meet Chris again (in a few weeks probably) I plan to get more details and will share what I find. I’m writing messages on my phone at the moment and don’t have a lot of tools.

      • Antoine Maartens

        I am looking at the Peter Hill incarnation of this development. Have a look at his rig in the latest instance of the JRA publication. Seems a sensible manner to pile a lot of manageable sailarea on a small boat.

        Other query: you mention lack of luffing tendencies on Emmelene. Was this on both tacks. Siskin is stable on the starboard tack (I guess because of the outboard in the water) but energetically luffing on the port tack.

        Do you recognize this and how was this on Emmelene?

        • Hi Antoine, this is Chris, on Emmelène.
          I agree with you about Peter Hill’s rig and would defer to him on all subjects related to junks.
          Of course, Richard may well have additional things to say about his analysis of my rig, but I can offer you my own view, after just a few sails with the split-junk: there are no / very few tendencies to luff on either tack.
          Again: I have not tried the rig in strong winds or big waves. So this is very much an initial impression. But I’ll keep you posted, and no doubt so will Richard!
          Please come and see us soon in the UK, Antoine. If not, we’ll have to do a “reverse-viking invasion!”

        • I haven’t had enough time on Emmelène to say much more yet. In looking forward to more experiments.

  3. Antoine Maartens

    Sounds like there might be a next year coromandel / corribee junket in the stars. I would have to muster quite some courage but would really be a dream come true for me – crossing the North Sea under sail.

  4. Antoine Maartens

    Emmelene’s sail makes complete sense to me. Oaks great too.

  5. Pingback: Aerojunk Coromandel | Tammy Norie

  6. Pingback: A New Rig | Tammy Norie

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