Foam luff or no foam luff?


I'm currently collecting quotes on a new storm oriented jib, and since the sail will hang on a foil, the question came up as to whether I wanted a foam pad in the luff.

Here's what's important to keep in mind. Emerald is a cutter rig. This sail would actually be my staysail, which has a sail area of about 100 sq feet. I use the staysail extensively with the yankee (genoa) in normal sailing, and when the wind blows up, the yankee gets stowed on the foil and I sail with just the staysail and main. Several weekends ago we had one of those wonderful days where the local marine buoy showed minimum wind speed at 22 knots gusting to 24 knots - just perfect for this sail combination. In a scenario like this, there isn't any need to furl up the staysail.But here's the big question, I hope to do some coastal cruising here, and with that in mind, the sailmaker asked if I wanted a foam luff with the thought that if you were off shore and it was blowing 35+ and you wanted to furl the staysail, you would want the pad. As of now, we are looking at 7.5 oz dacron, foot and leech lines, a flat cut, medium draft, no roach but haven't figured out the foam pad in the luff. I want good pointing performance out of this sail, which is why we're talking the flat cut to it and not having the sail oriented to reaching, which is I believe somewhat common on a cutter rig (please correct me if I'm wrong on this perception of the staysail often being cut for reaching more than pointing).

Any thoughts would be much appreciated on both the design of the sail and "better" approaches I've not thought of and if the foam luff makes sense given my intended use.

I've attached a shot of the sail plan of the cutter rigged 31's in case that helps visualize the sail plan for those not familiar with this specific boat.



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