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Home > Technology Update > Measure Twice Trim Once

Measure Twice Trim Once

Cyclops Marine is the name garnering attention in the sailing technology and innovation field. Devised by the minds at Cambridge University in the UK, their wireless load sensor technology, developed in partnership with INEOS TEAM UK, is creating waves across the sailing world as America’s Cup technology is made available to all sailors.

The start gun sounds. You and your crew are in a different gear to the competition. Your boat is pointing higher, you are sailing faster, and already you are pulling away from the fleet. This is your winning gear and your best race, but how do you recall your settings so you can repeatedly hit them?

This is where sailors are harnessing the power of smarttune and smartlink from Cyclops. Sleek, lightweight, robust load sensors that, when attached to a forestay (smarttune) or any soft sheet (smartlink) feed accurate second-by-second data via Bluetooth to a free mobile app or via a gateway installation to a boat’s instruments.

smarttune is a simple to install load sensor that is swapped out for your forestay turnbuckle, it enables sailors to monitor their forestay load, helping them control their forestay sag, headsail shape, mast bend and mainsail shape. Moving on from traditional static rig settings, smarttune is educating us on the dynamic load settings that enable us to accurately set the boat up for optimal performance in all conditions and on all points of sail.

Christopher Daniel, an early proponent of smarttune, shares his thoughts. “Sailing to the polars is about the rig, trim and helm. With smarttune our rig settings will be much more accurate, and we can replicate them rather than going on gut feel. If we know the rig is right, any discrepancies in actual speed to our polars can only be down to our trim or helm. smarttune has eliminated one variable and is a step forward in trimming a race boat.”

A more versatile load sensor, smartlink can be tethered onto any soft sheet under significant load. This technology gives the ability to measure the load on anything from the mainsheet, to code sail tack lines, to backstays and runners.  One owner of J120 class winner at a JOG regatta,  has highlighted the dynamism provided by the smartlink“[having] smartlink on the Jib Top enabled us to hit our luff tension before unfurling and transition[ing] quickly between Jib Top, Stay Sail and Jib combinations.”

smarttune and smartlink are starting to turn heads, with boats equipped with the wireless load sensors making a habit of finishing on the podium in regattas.

“To get the most out of your sails you need to know where you are at,” (Henry Bomby, Round the World Sailor). “The key thing about performance is spending time learning what is the best setting but then being able to repeat that setting over and over again. You don’t want to spend the first half an hour finding your fast setting, you want to go straight to it and finetune from there. Live. Measurable. Feedback.”

Performance is never a single golden nugget; it’s made up of a number of factors. smarttune and smartlink help consolidate those factors, and you can only learn when you have the data available and you know where you are starting from. Peter Gustafsson, winner in ORC5 in the Rolex Middle Sea Race and his class in the Coastal Race, talks about the key advantages this technology brings:

Hit the fast settings every time: “We now have repeatable settings based on the wind conditions and sail plan.”

Adjusting to the conditions: “As the conditions change, boat settings change. For example, conditions in the Rolex Middle Sea Race and the Coastal Race Malta proved shifty and challenging. The load database settings enabled us to change gear quicker and gather more data to analyse. We always have a cheat sheet in the cockpit.”

Up to speed quicker: Sailing as part of a crew can equate to many opinions. We try to be inclusive and involve everyone in important decisions. But then the basic stuff needs to be automatic. With smarttune we hit our fast settings quickly and accurately always ahead of our main competition.”

Safety: “When racing we push the boat and crew to the limits. smarttune means we can quickly see the load going through our forestay safe in the knowledge that we are never overloading it.”

Communication: “Communication is key. smarttune sends live data to our mast instrument display for the trimmers, tactician, and helm to read. Communication across our whole campaign has improved through the data we now receive.”

“With smarttune we have a common number on the mast to work with. With both trimmers and the helmsman in the loop we are more proactive when the conditions change. This leads to meters, that leads to boat lengths that leads to places on the scoreboard,”.

Harness the power of smarttune and smartlink, visit cyclopsmarine.com for more information. #MeasureSuccess #DataHelpsYouWin.

smarttune is available in the following sizes: 5/16”, 7/16”, 1/2”, 5/8”. Prices starting from £1095 (in UK VAT)

smartlink available in the following sizes: 0.6T, 2T, 5T, 10T, 20T. Prices starting from £995 (inc UK VAT)



About Cyclops Marine

Cyclops Marine Ltd, is a technology business led by innovators that have developed load sensors for use in the sailing environment. The Cyclops Marine Smart range of products are a new generation of wireless load sensors created by some of the leading brains from Cambridge University, in tandem with sailors, to produce accurate, repeatable, and meaningful data. Set to become the industry standard, the Smart range, enables sailors to set their boat up for optimum performance time after time. Easy to install, the range provides real-time data that is simple to understand. Cyclops is led by Ian ‘Chips’ Howarth surrounded by an experienced team of both renowned sailors & technical experts. The Smart range is sold through a global distribution network.


For product and distribution enquires:                          

Ian Howarth, Cyclops Marine Limited                            


+44 (0)7778 066880