The J14 is an easy boat to set up and the following guide should be enough to make your boat competitive:
Make sure the hull is down to weight at 66kgs
With regard to the hull take careful note to the condition of the under side of the Hull making sure that it is fair, has no imperfections and is sanded back with 400 wet and dry paper. Also ensure the boat does not leak. If it does the chances are is that the fittings in the cockpit are leaking so arm you self with a vacuum cleaner with it working in reverse (blowing our air) and a bucket of soapy water. Apply the soapy water around the fittings and then put the vacuum cleaner inside one of the inspection ports. You should quickly see by the bubbles where the leak is coming from.
Make sure it is straight and has either a set of spreaders or a stiffener inside it up to the hounds. If you are single handed set the side stays and forestay at the minimum heights up the mast available i.e. 3600mm (measured from the deck of the boat) If you are sailing double handed or you are a crew weight over100kgs - set the stays at Maximum height of 3900mm
This is easy. First measure up the mast from the deck 3900mm and make a mark with a felt tip pen. Then measure from that point excluding the mast track to the transom at deck level of the boat. This measurement should be 4500mm. This mast rake applies to all crew weights whether you are either single or double handed.
Set these up with no fore and aft rake but with 30mm projection from the stay being in a straight line.
Centreboard and rudder
Make these to the size that you think will suit you with in the rules. The rudder should be straight up and down. The best way to check this is to set the rudder up in its stock with the boat on the trailer and look down the leading edge of the rudder. If when you turn the tiller the leading edge of the rudder sweeps in an arc the rudder is not far enough down. The helm should have no load. The centerboard should be of maximum size however if you are single handed it pays to chop 150mm off the length. When sailing to windward in light winds have it straight up and down, then as the breeze increases progressively raise it as the boat gets too powerful. A good indication or correct height of the centreplate is whether or not the boat can be sailed flat. Remember to have an angle cut in the leading edge so the vang will clear it when gybing.
Mainsheet and bridle- this very important piece of equipment has to be accurate in length. When sailing on the wind in the light conditions the mainsheet should be on tight enough so the mainsheet block on the boom meets the apex on the bridle. This will ensure the boom is on the centerline and by doing this you will point well.
The bridle needs to be long enough so that when the mainsheet is full on the boat does not stall. The bridle needs careful set up and should ideally be adjustable as it controls twist in the Jollyboat's roachy main.
The measurement from the centerline of the boat to the fairlead where the jib sheet runs through should be 210mm. You will generally ease the jib sheeting angle as the breeze increases.
This sail control helps keep the leech of the main tight and this helps you point. Start applying van tension as soon as you are fully hiking. This will help keep the large roach under control.Be mindful of the amount of vang tension you use down wind as it can break the mast. The vang should only be enough to hold the boom level.
The cunningham and outhaul
These controls help depower and power up the mainsail. The basic rule is, the harder it blows the more tension you apply. In recent years the cunningham has become an increasingly important tool for mainsail twist control.