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Dave’s reply has reminded me of what I did when I detuned my boat from race rigged.
I had a wire main halyard with a looped end that you tensioned with a rope tail and a metal tube, sliding the loop onto a series of teeth (which may correspond to your ratchet thing) to cleat (the series of teeth mounted on the mast a foot or so from the bottom).
I fitted a rope halyard and a cleat on the starboard side of the mast just above the fore deck. Not sure of the technical name for the type of cleat but it is about 3-4 inches long and you wrap the halyard around the two “prongs” rather than passing through the cleat and getting the inside to pinch onto the rope. I also used the Wayfarer handbook to guide me through fitting cleats to the boom for reefing and would also recommend it highly. Incidentally next time I might use 5mm rope for the main halyard although it costs more it would be “kinder” to the hands.
Not sure if this helps but if your boat was raced it might take quite a bit of brain work to sort the reefing out……..the book is indispensable.