Every year, both experienced sailors and novices are killed by accidental jibes. It’s no surprise that more and more offshore rules and recommendations mandate a permanently installed preventer or brake that can be operated from the cockpit. By adjusting the line that runs through the brake and back to the cockpit, you create enough friction to hold the boom in all conditions. To jibe, just pull in the mainsheet. Preventers and other boom brakes are much more difficult to use, and are either an 'on or off' system, where as the Dutchman Brake allows you to do controlled jibes simply by adjusting the tension on the line. The Practical Sailor called the Dutchman Boom Brake “the best choice”.
Controlling your boom when sailing off the wind is one of the most crucial safety related steps. The Dutchman Boom Brake makes keeping the boom controlled easy.
The Dutchman Boom Brake uses a line wrapped around a series of sheaves to control boom movements. The 2 top sheaves are fixed. The bottom sheave can be adjusted to provide less friction in light winds. The principle is the same as wrapping a line around a winch. With 2 wraps, one person can hold, or ease as needed, the considerable load on a genoa sheet.
The Brake is attached to the boom where the vang normally attaches. A line is run from an attachment point at or near the aft lower chainplates, through the Brake, and back down to a turning block near the opposite chainplate. You must be able to adjust the Brake line tension from the cockpit, and ideally from the helm, by running the brake line itself back along the side deck. You will use either a winch, or a block and tackle to tension the brake line.
Unlike with other brakes or preventers, which are on or off devices, the Dutchman Brake allows you to precisely control the friction so you can make fast, easy controlled jibes without the need to touch the mainsheet. The knob is a light air adjustment and allows you to get rid of about half the friction so the boom will come over on it's own in light air. Other brakes require you to remove one or more wraps, which means disassembling the Brake set up every time you are in light winds.
The Dutchman Brake has been built and constantly refined in Connecticut since 1994, and has been successfully used on more offshore voyages than any other Brake sold in the US. The Practical Sailor called the Dutchman Boom Brake “the best choice”.
It's the proven Brake.
Dutchman Boombrake BB250 BB250
Intended for use with boats 20-30' LOA
with Maximum Sail Area of 250 Sq/Ft. and utilizing A Hard Vang system.