Archive for February, 2005


Small Boat Rigging Talk

February 20, 2005   

* Our discussion will deal with what you can do to optimize your boat’s rigging whether you race or cruise.
* This is a large subject so I am going to stick to layout, installation and your choice of hardware not standing or running rigging.

Rigging Issues
*ith any boat there are 3 things to consider:
* Hardware Layout – The best are usually the simplest with the least holes and friction.
* Hardware Selection – The right components are essential
* Installation – Doing it the right way!

* Take photos of your current layout
* Identify what worked and what didn’t
* Identify your use of the boat – shorthanded (lead things back), fully crewed (jobs), inshore, offshore (no holes), cruising (cheaper), racing (hi tech), one design (rules)
* Identify parts that you can build into boat instead of adding on later i.e. toe rail
* Do your research – take pictures of similar boats, talk to people who have sailed the same type of boat
* Draw plans of new deck layout and ‘live’ with this for a while

* Carbo vs. bullet blocks, forged vs. stamped
Provides initial suggestions (not necessarily the ideal) based on standard sail area formulas, boat length and displacement. Gives you an idea of working loads.
* Keep to one manufacturer if possible so everything looks similar.
* Harken – blocks, Spinlock – jammers, Lewmar – winches, Equiplite – shackles

Installation principles
* Use stainless fastenings – right length, right head, right type and phillips throughout
* Use backing plates where necessary
* Create compression plugs in cored areas
* Tap where possible
* Use bedding compound (but not as a sealant)
* Below the waterline use G10 or wood blocks epoxied to the hull
* Use Tef gel when putting stainless fasteners into aluminum or carbon
* Installing tracks? measure from center line not from edges of boat i.e. Moore 24
* Pop rivets – aluminum if filling holes stainless if installing hardware
* Compression tubes when installing parts on a boom

* Remove old hardware and throw away parts that can’t be reused I.e. screws and nuts, keep old line for ‘dummy’ rigging, washers, backing plates.
* Identify rotten core, remove and rebuild
* Grind, sand, clean, fill, fair, sand
* Dry fit all hardware including drilling holes (tap if solid glass), create ‘kits’, tape off ½ inch
* Sit in the boat to figure out the best location for cleats in terms of ergonomics.
* Over drill holes, remove core (see chapter 7 of west systems book) – fill with neat epoxy using syringes, than go back for a second go with epoxy mixed to catsup consistency with 406 colloidal filler and 205 hardener
* Remark holes by drilling small ‘dimples’
* Roll on deck


Review your deck plan & layout
Utilize available resources, especially West Marine, Harken catalog, etc. (west advisor)