A sloop is a sailing boat with a single mast typically meaning one headsail in front of the mast, and one mainsail aft of (behind) the mast. This is called a fore-and-aft rig, and is known as a Bermuda rig. Sailboats can be classified according to type of rig, and so a sailboat may be a sloop, catboat, cutter, ketch, yawl, or schooner. A sloop usually has only one headsail, although an exception is the Friendship sloop, which is usually gaff-rigged with a bowsprit and multiple headsails. If the vessel has two or more headsails, the term cutter may be used, especially if the mast is stepped further towards the back of the boat.
The name originates from the Dutch sloep, which is related to the Old English slūpan, to glide. In naval terminology a sloop-of-war refers to the purpose of the craft, rather than to the specific size or sail-plan.
After the cat rig which has only a single sail, the Bermuda rig is the simplest sailing rig configurations. It is the most popular yacht rigging because it is easier to sail with a smaller crew or even single-handed, it is cheaper since it has less hardware than more complex rigs, and it sails well into the wind. A limitation is that when a boat gets over 45 feet in length, the sails become so large that they are difficult to handle, although modern technology is helping with this.
The headsail can be masthead-rigged or fractional-rigged. On a masthead-rigged sloop, the forestay (on which the headsail is carried) attaches at the top of the mast. On a fractional-rigged sloop, the forestay attaches to the mast at a point below the top. A sloop may use a bowsprit, a spar that projects forward from the bow.
- Mast aft rig, a single mast rig with a mast further back than a sloop or cutter
- Chialoup, an historical type of sloop produced in the East Indies.
- Bermuda Fitted Dinghy: a scaled-down sloop used for racing in Bermuda.
- Hope: an example of a traditional sail-powered oyster-dredging sloop.
- "SLOOP | meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary". dictionary.cambridge.org. Retrieved 2019-05-12.
- "Figure 2.20. Long-term care expenditure has more than doubled in 12 years". dx.doi.org. Retrieved 2019-05-12.
- Jones, Gregory O. (2001-12-06). The American Sailboat. MBI Publishing Company. ISBN 9780760310021.
- "Cutter | sailing craft". Encyclopedia Britannica. Retrieved 2019-05-12.
- "Sloop". dictionary.com. Retrieved 12 May 2019.
- "What's in a Rig? Cat Rig". American Sailing Association. Retrieved 12 May 2019.
- "Sailboat Rig Types: Sloop, Cutter, Ketch, Yawl, Schooner, Cat". Jordan Yacht and Ship Co. Retrieved 12 May 2019.
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