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Main halyard?

Started by gbr1918, 12 Nov 2017, 11:11

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We had our main halyard break this morning.  Halfway up the first beat >:( !   It's got (or rather, had!) a ball on the business end and it's the sort where you tuck a loop through the hole in the headboard and then put the ball through the loop.  It looks like it broke where it goes through the headboard.  Question 1 is:  Is this the best way to make the halyard fast to the sail or is there a better way?
While I'm re-rigging the halyard, I'm wondering if I should also change the cleat.  It's just got a clam cleat with a block below it, so it's pretty convenient to haul the halyard right up to the top and then nudge the rope into the cleat before letting the tension go.   The main has dropped down a couple of times while we've been racing though so it obviously isn't foolproof.   Would I be better with the sort of cleat you figure-8 the halyard round or is there any other kind people would recommend?  I did think about having a soft eye in the end of the halyard and using a rack, dunno if anyone thinks that's a good idea?
Any suggestions gratefully received!


This is the standard modern set up.
There will be wear at the head board which means you buy it slightly long and then adjust. It usually lasts a year between adjusting.
At the bottom. The grip cleat is the best solutions. I had two cleats on my last mast. You will notice on a carbon one as the mast bends the sail will drop a couple of inches. This is due to the mast effectively shortening. You can pull up again. Creating a loop and stepping into it works well, but causes mast compression.
The other issue is slippage with new ropes. They are coated and very smooth and will slip when new. Some classes recommend a single pass with 400 grade wet or dry to make sure it grips. No more than a single pass though.
The alternative is a haliard lock at the top. But that introduces a whole new level of potential pain.
Andy Mck<br />3529


Thanks Andy.  Sounds as if I should stay with the current setup then.  I don't think I'll go for a halyard lock - it's nice to be able to get the main down before lee shore landings.  It  means the crash happens at manageable speeds!   Dave

PS The old halyard is 5mm, braid cover and dyneema core, and the core has broken up where it goes through the headboard.  Your advice to clip the end of the halyard once a year is obviously excellent.  100mm should do it nicely!  Dave


Just another thought. On fireflies Many use an adjustable main halyard.
A simple 2 to 1 set up to a floating cam cleet.
Allows you to re hoist once you have mast bend, and then release a bit when you want a straight mast, and more twist in a powered up sail. It works because of the fixed clew. But may be useful to keep the sail at the top on a carbon rig.
I do wonder looking back if the tendency my rigs had to invert on the run was because I used a lot of main halyard tension.
Andy Mck<br />3529


Mmmm, good tip on the halyard adjust.  Definitely one to bear in mind, that. 
As regards the mast inverting, whenever I see it on 3405 it always means we've dumped the shrouds and I've forgotten that the mast ram's still pulled.  :-[   There's just so much string!   We haven't wrecked our ancient ally mast yet, but it doesn't look good!  Dave

John m

I now use a 2:1 main halyard.  Tied to the top of the mast passing through a shackle which I fix to the headboard.

I use a cleat. I also use splicing rope.  I splice in another piece of spare splicing rope to thicken the rope where it cleats.  This really helps it lock into the cleat.  I maintain a reasonably long tail so that I can adjust the cleating position as it wears.  You can also reverse the halyard to move the wear point.


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