Latest News: Forums Technical Highfield lever installation

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  • #27752
    Alison Corfield

    How do I fit a highfield lever in a mark 1 mast?

    Bob Harland

    Hi Alison, I guess the clamp will not fit in the in the groove? or there is no groove? – could you post a photo of the mast and some details of the highfield lever you have please.


    Alison Corfield

    Hi, i bought the highfield lever from trident marine, the back plate will fit in the mast slot where it opens for the main sail, but then this needs to slide down past the gooseneck to a suitable position ( not sure what this is) and then somewhow the front lever needs to screw into this backplate to effectively clamp it into position. I do not know how to do this, also the fixing bolts i have are wider than the mast slot so not sure what to do about that either!


    Dave Barker

    As Bob says, a photo would be really useful here. As always please let me know if you can’t easily post photos – sometimes the website doesn’t allow all users to do this.

    Contact details in menu if required – always happy to try to help 🙂


    Hi Alison,

    If your gooseneck is riveted in position and you don’t want to de-rivet and then re-rivet it back into position, it may be possible to fit the Highfield Lever via the bottom of the mast. If the slot runs all the way down to the mast foot, then by removing the mast foot, (mast will have to be taken down and mast foot with pulleys removed, normally held in by short screws).

    It is possible to widen the slot enough by carefully using a screwdriver to open the slot enough to allow the Highfield fixing screws to slide in the slot. I’ve done it myself though I never like bending aluminium.

    Regarding the correct position of the Highfield lever in the slot, that will depend on your jib halyard. The Highfield lever needs to be high enough in the slot to allow it to tension the jib halyard, but at the same time not so high that it fouls on the boom or gooseneck when closed or interfere with the kicking strap lower down either. Because of the higher tensions associated with a Highfield Lever, you also need to allow plenty of space below the boom so your hands can firmly hold the lever, especially when you are releasing tension.

    You also may end up having to get the jib halyard length adjusted if it is too long to allow sufficient tensioning of the halyard when the lever is tensioned.

    I would also suggest that if you can get hold of a tension gauge when fitting it, this will make setting up the position of the Highfield for getting the correct tension using the lever easier. I’d set it up on the middle slot for normal tension if you can, so you can lower tension for lower winds and get the halyard up one extra slot for higher winds.

    Hope this has not confused you too much.

    (15 minutes later)  Just realised that coming up from the bottom  won’t work either because the lower kicking strap attachment will stop the Highfield lever from sliding up from the bottom.  Looks like it’ll be easier to derivet and rerivet the goosneck and you’ll probably have to widen the slot a little to get the fixing screws down the slot.

    Sorry! davdor.


    Hi Alison,

    This is a fiddly thing to do and much easier to show than describe.

    1  Hoist your genoa and make a mark on your mast where the halyard comes to.

    2  Position your highfield lever, fully undone, so the halyard will just hook over it or a couple of cm lower than the mark you made on the mast.

    3 Mark the centre hole of the highfield lever on the mast.

    4  Use a 5mm drill to drill through the mast sail track.

    5  Remove the highfield lever backing plate

    6  get two thin pieces of wire and thread them into the two outer holes on the backing plate

    7  Keeping hold of the wires you can now slot the backing plate into the slot in the mast and line up the center hole with the mark made on the mast in instruction 3 and hole in instruction 4

    8  You now need a second pair of hands to line up the center hole of the highfield lever at right angles to the slot and screw the two parts together.

    9  Remove the wires

    10  Twist the highfield lever so it is vertical

    11  Drill through the outer holes of the highfield lever into the mast groove and no further

    12  Screw in the two outer screws.

    When drilling the mast slot it is very easy to break a drill especially if too slow a speed is used.

    All the above assumes your halyard is of the correct length to accommodate your highfield lever.

    Another option is to take your boat to the cruising conference and it can be done there.


    Alison Corfield

    Thanks all, I will have a go

    Ian Fitzpatrick

    I fitted one last week and couldn’t easily slide it in from either end. Not without removing various rivers etc.


    Luckily unscrewing both screws on the backing plate as far as they would go meant the plate would just fit in to the narrow part of the slot – at angle. Once in it could be straitened and tightened.


    It was an unbranded one from an eBay seller, so not sure how easy it would be to find another. And the mast is an olden golden proctor.

    Alison Corfield

    I completed this exactly as outlined in the post above by john1162 – very happy thanks?

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