28-2 Genoa Sizing


New Member
I am preparing to purchase a new Genoa for my '89 28-2, and wondering if anyone has experience with sizing of headsail for this boat. I am not a racer, but don't necessarily want to feel like I am standing still either. Considering a 135% Genoa in an Elite Dacron material. Comments please. Thank you

Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Blogs Author
Based on many discussions here on genoa size, I don't think you can go wrong with a 135. Some of us have gone smaller, however.

The idea is that with roller furling we basically have one headsail, and furl it to different degrees. Big headsails are of light material to work well as light-air sails. However, if you enjoy sailing in 25 knots occasionally with the genoa furled 80 percent, that's tough on lightweight material.

So it's a compromise, as usual. Dacron is a fine sail material, and the heavier it is the longer it lasts. If you're working with a local sailmaker or rep, I would value their opinion more than my generic remarks.

Any new genoa is great. Be sure to get a foam luff. Oh, and welcome to the Ericson Yachts forum.


Sustaining Member

I second Christian's 135 recommendation. We've used our 135 for the past four years and have found it ideal for the light cruising we do on Lake Champlain.

Frank Langer

1984 Ericson 30+, Nanaimo, BC
We have a125% headsail on our E30+ which has served us well in both light air and stronger winds in the Gulf Islands and Strait of Georgia. We reach hull speed and more with it, so no complaints, though I know a 135% is a common choice. I'll have to think hard when it's time to replace ours in a few years.

Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Blogs Author
One other factor that is not often raised: the great fun of a dinghy is the ease and speed of tacking with a simple jib.

Our cruising boats tend to have overlapping headsails. We're used to dragging them around the mast, along the stays and over the spreaders. Great flapping and scraping followed by, unless the crew is paying attention, a good deal of winching in. It wears out sails and gets them dirty. We assume the overlap is necessary. Is it?

Every ten percent less overlap means 50 percent less drama. I used to put a 90 percent jib on in spring, and love it. It cost very little in speed if the breeze was at reefing levels.

A factor, that's all. Today when out for an afternoon sail in 10 knots, I often set my roller 120 at jib size. I can short-tack with two fingers, no need to ask for help, no fuss.