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- 19/12/2006 at 12:13 pm #3407
Season’s greetings to all!
I’m thinking of changing the position of the genoa tracks on “Cockle”. They are currently mounted on the outer slat of the forward benches, which I don’t think gives optimal pointing ability. Additionally, for various reasons I feel that if I’m going to bother to move them to the inner slat I should be certain that I end up with a technically better solution than at present.
The cars at the moment are a Holt Allen product, with a spring-loaded button to adjust fore/aft and an integral fairlead and cam cleat. Each cam cleat is mounted on a somewhat flimsy extended plate inboard of the sliding part of the car, with, crucially, nothing to support it from underneath. This is a source of minor irritation to crew, as one side in particular keeps getting bent downwards, making it difficult to cleat the sheet into the jammer.
Although I could improve this setup by providing support under the cleats, there seems no real need for anything more than the fairlead to be adjustable fore/aft, so I’m thinking of swapping the cars for blocks (adjustable fore/aft on the [repositioned] tracks) and then leading the sheets back via fixed ratchet blocks over/through fixed cam cleats. This makes the whole system more user-friendly, and places the cleats in a fixed position (which we can select to suit us rather than having it dictated by the sheeting angle).
I would be very interested to hear any thoughts on this, especially from anyone who has a similar setup on their boat, or who has a better solution to the same problems.
Cheers.19/12/2006 at 6:48 pm #4944Bob HarlandParticipant
The system we use is similar to your proposal – a moveable block on the track, back to a fixed ratchet turning block then to a swivel Ronstan combined fairlead/camcleats. We have been using that since 1998 and it works a treat. It makes it easy to trim the genoa wherever you are sitting in the boat and there is less strain on the sheet for the crew as the ratchet blocks takes a fair amount of the load..
I pinched the idea from Tim & Ruth Jones.
The only drawback is that the camcleats get in the way a bit when the crew is trying to snooze on the thwart.
bob19/12/2006 at 7:27 pm #4946AnonymousInactive
I use the same system – works very well.
I also have the same problem with crew falling asleep – obviously too easy on them.
W77319/12/2006 at 8:45 pm #4949
Thanks for the quick replies guys.
Bob, I’m guessing that your combined Ronstan unit would be something like an RF58 (http://www.sailboats.co.uk/Product~Ronstan_Swivel_Base_Large_Cleat_RF58.html)? I’m seeing another unsupported camcleat – is this a robust bit of kit? I don’t want to swap one problem for another…
I must admit that I hadn’t thought of using a swivelling cleat, but it makes a lot of sense.
Just a couple more questions – for now anyway – would I use a ratchet cheek block, and if so, would it also mount on the inner slat of the forward bench? Any particular kind or make of block – I’m thinking of going fairly large, but I’ve no experience with these blocks, so I’m a little daunted by the range available, auto-ratchet etc., not to mention the cost!
Thanks.20/12/2006 at 5:36 pm #4951AnonymousInactive
Dave, I use rachets that you can turn on and off, auto’s can be difficult if the crew is not quick enough to put load on the rachet.20/12/2006 at 6:45 pm #4952
Can you just remind me how the ratchet blocks are fixed on Miss Quinn, Simon? And do you also have swivel fairleads/cleats? (I should remember this, I know…)22/12/2006 at 2:52 pm #4953Bob HarlandParticipant
Dave, those Ronstan RF58 swivel jammers look the same as ours, the camcleat base is pretty solid – you will not see that flex, also remember that the blocks are taking a lot of the strain.
The ratchet blocks we use are RWO – switchable on/off – http://www.sailboats.co.uk/Product~Rwo_Mini_Ratchet_45mm_Single_Port_R5437.html
But I would add that we have had 2 fail over 8 years. I would guess you will want some supporting springs or collars. Cheek blocks might be okay – just depends on the run of the sheets – with a fixed block it will be more difficult to get a clear run for the sheet.
I cannot comment on modern auto-ratchet blocks, personally I like to know if they are on or off.
You will want a backing pad if you are fixing to a GRP thwart12/05/2007 at 4:51 pm #5232gvjonesMember
Here’s a question. I too am repositioning the fairlead tracks. I’m just wondering about shortening them too. They are 30cm – seems like the standard length – but it there any reason why they shouldn’t be shorter? With the racing genoa the fairlead block position will never be varied by more than 10cm max. Is it the case that the remaining 20cm is purely for use with reefed or smaller headsails and therefore won’t be needed if one never uses such things or is there a class rule or some other good reason for keeping with the standard length? My crew would love an extra 20cm of comfy light airs lounging room!14/05/2007 at 7:56 pm #5238AnonymousInactive
You are correct, the necesssary adjustment to the genoa sheeting angle is only small. I think 25mm either side of the medium winds position. I see no reason to have a longer track although I have never seen a shorter one.14/05/2007 at 9:19 pm #5241SwiebertjeParticipant
You are correct, the necesssary adjustment to the genoa sheeting angle is only small. I think 25mm either side of the medium winds position. I see no reason to have a longer track although I have never seen a shorter one.
Not quite Matt, the position varies much more between different sails. For example my P&B racing Genoa needs a mean track position very close to the thwart while my Banks Genoa setting is some 120 mm further forward. To accommodate different cuts the track needs to be longer then the 50 mm one uses with a certain sail. This can already be the case with two sails from the same sail maker. No sail maker can cut and sew sails so accurate that a track of 50 mm would always be sufficient.
If you have Genoa reefing available (like your Holman furler) the fairlead needs to be able to slide forward even further. Again this depends on the sails cut and also on the furl characteristics. I had some asymetric cut foam added the luff to help keep the sail shape when reefed. This forces the sail to furl in a peculiar way. I have to move the track some 250 to 300 mm forward when it is reefed to storm jib size.
Don’t you need to adjust your fairlead position when you reef your genoa?15/05/2007 at 3:37 pm #5243AnonymousInactive
Dave, mine are attached to the vertical part of the side deck just above the thwart.15/05/2007 at 4:32 pm #5245
Merry Christmas Simon 😉15/05/2007 at 8:01 pm #5247AnonymousInactive
Good point Swiebertje – hadn’t htought about different sail makes. I have had Macs the last two times and noticed no difference in sheeting angle.
Ratchet blocks – I have Harken switchable cheek blocks mounted on the thwart on a block thick enough to bring them just above existing side seat level. Position is critical though – too far outboard and the sheet passes round too much of the block and it is too effective.
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