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Thread: Sail stop at bottom of mast track

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
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    McHenry, IL, but sail out of Racine WI
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    Sail stop at bottom of mast track

    At the bottom of the mast track, Ariel 82 has a "swivel bracket" to keep the mainsail sliders on the track when the sail is down. To take the sail off (or to take a slider or two off when reefing), the swivel is pivoted 90 degrees and the sliders come off. I think this was original issue.

    The problem is that occasionally the swivel is inadvertently pivoted the 90 degrees and, when dropping the sail, all the sliders accidentally come off.

    Does anyone else have a different or better system to retain the sliders on the rack that is a bit more deliberate?

  2. #2
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    Southern Maryland
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    Although a picture might be appropriate, I think that very piece of metal is something I have been looking for, for quite some time.
    Anybody know where I can get one?
    -km
    aka, "sell out"
    S/V Beyond the Sea
    C&C 35 mkIII

  3. #3
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    If someone can take a picture, it should be easy enough to get a machine shop to build one - or, if you can get a piece of stainless, a sharp drill, and a grinder, you could make one in an hour.

    So the picture, with dimensions, need be the object.

    If you don't currently have one, how do you hold the sliders on?

  4. #4
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    Sep 2001
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    Santa Cruz
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    On Pathfinder we use a slide on the track. The slide is the same size that is used for the sail. I drilled a small hole in the slide and tapped it to receive a small bolt. This is mounted at the bottom of the track. (the track extends to the goose neck)

    We have a reefing system similar to what is described by others. I refer to it as slab reefing. All the lines are led to the cockpit starboard side. A quick overview would be go to the starboard side of the cabin top (on starboard tack if possible), release the main halyard from the horn cleat and lower it to a pre marked location. On either side of the halyard a set lines led to a pair of cam cleats. The operation is quick and simple. Ease the main halyard, pull on the forward reef line, pull the aft reef line, reset the halyard if needed. I put in a reef on Pathfinder in less than thirty seconds and will shake it out just as quick.

    A couple of key points about the system: Never leave the cockpit (security), all lines led to the starboard side (starboard tack right away if needed), all lines are single purchase, boom is held by rigid vang system. Prior to the rigid vang we had a topping lift led to the same area of the reef lines so the whole operation was done at one spot in the cockpit. Quick, easy, and often used.

  5. #5
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    Ed: Do I assume properly that you have a Cunningham on your sail to flatten the lufff rather than a downhaul on the boom?

    If I understand you correctly, rather than a reef hook, you use one of those lines tied to the reef kringle at the luff to reduce the sail at the luff. Right? If so, is there any reason why the luff reef/kringle could not just be tied to a cleat on the mast rather than to a hook or being led back to the cabin?

    Is your system still practical with two sets of reef points, or would there be so many lines that you might feel like you were sailing a clipper ship, or the lines get fouled? How many lines do you now have on the cabin top? As an aside, I have a problem running lines back to the cabin (rather than being on the mast) because the cabin top, just aft of the mast, is where I mount the life raft when cruising.

  6. #6
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    Northern MN
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    track gate photo

    Here's a lousy photo of the gate. It's just too cold to take good pictures today.
    Attached Images  

  7. #7
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    Theis, Yes I do have a cunningham. The boom is fixed. You are also correct to assume that the luff line passes through the kringle. The line is made fast on the mast (near the boom) travels up through the kringle and then down to a block at the base of the mast. From there it is lead to the cockpit.

    The leech line is attached to a cheek block on the aft end of the boom, the line is attached to the block passes under the boom and then up to the leech kringle, back down to the block and then forward to the mast, travels down to the base and then aft to the cockpit.

    One or both of the lines could terminate at the mast. My issue for leading them to the cockpit is for safety. We do have a main that has a second set of reef points that we use for open water cruising and distance deliveries. If I put in the first reef I will often set up the sail for the second reef using the cunningham and outhaul. By just disconnecting these two lines and running them through the second set of kringles we are ready if needed. This does require me to go to the mast but the cunnigham is terminated with a hook so it is a quick trip to just unhook and then reattach.

    As far as lines lead to the cockpit, I guess the easy answer is everything. Three halyards, two reef lines (starboard), cunningham and outhaul (port), vang, topping lift, and foreguy ( mounted to a bridge over the hatch). I suppose if I had to I could run more lines to the cockpit but for now we are pretty happy with the way she is rigged. I forgot we also have a set of spinnaker twinger lines that enter the cockpit at the forward section of the combing.

    Do we feel like a windjammer clipper ship? Not at all. The only line that we have that seems to find a way of fouling is the main sheet. I tend to think that problem just goes with owning an Ariel with the main sheet hanging down around the rudder post (gig)

    If we are racing, the loose lines are tossed into the cabin. We we cruise everything is cleaned up and coiled and hung in a proper way to allow freedom of movement.......ed

  8. #8
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    Interesting. As for the clutter of the sheet line, I saw an interesting idea last year to avoid sheet clutter. It is a small bag that is attached to the side of the cockpit towards the stern. Take the line and lead it into the "pouch". I don't have one, but am curious to know if it is practical to avoid having the main sheet wrap around everything, including my shoes, and the seat underneath where I am sitting.

  9. #9
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    I have crewed for a number of different boats over the years. Some of the larger yachts have had bags that would snap in place to hold excess line. My experience is that they end up being very good trash collectors. That being said, with the addition of the bridge over our hatch I do plan on making a bag that will carry the lines passing over the cabin top.

    I think I will wait to hear your comments regarding a bag to carry the main sheet.

  10. #10
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    My thinking is that on numerous occasions I need to let the sheet out substantially, and find I am sitting on a section, so I get up to let more out and find I am standing then on another portion, and then having gone through that, find it is caught around the back of the tiller, or hooked on the autohelm. The procedure could be a cartoon if it wasn't for my wrath and explicatives - and this is compounded if there are guests on board. Recognizing those pragmatic circumstances, and how easily my anchor line comes out of its bag, to have a sheet bag (and I have seen some) makes a lot of sense. I'll try it next weekend or when the boat gets back in the water, which ever presents the more suitable circumstances.

  11. #11
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    Jan 2002
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    McKinney, TX (but sail in MI)
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    43

    line bag

    I have those bags attached to the cabin for the halyards that run to the cockpit. For lines that aren't messed with for many hours on end, they are fine. Just a pain when you are dropping the sails. (The lines seem to get tangled no matter how organized you put them in.)
    Too Contagious (1966 Ariel #392)

  12. #12
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    Santa Cruz
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    Theis,
    You put a big smile on my face with your comments about the main sheet. I know what you speak. At one time I gave sailing lessons for a local school here and used a little song with new students. Pick your right foot up - put you right foot down, Pick your left foot up and shake it all about ...... By the second lesson we would get to song down to just "shake it all about" which we cause everyone to start doing a Russian dance in the cockpit. I am sure it made for a strange sight for some of our local boaters.......ed

  13. #13
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    Ed: Great idea. I think you have found the answer to freeing up the main sheed when guests are aboard. Sing your little sea chanty and pull the line at the magic moments. That way no one will notice or be embarassed (I might even do it when sailing solo) Thanks.
    Last edited by Theis; 12-18-2003 at 06:55 AM.

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