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    I have great difficulty in taking off and resecuring the split rings securing my mast pivot pin in place. Is there a better way? Does anyone make a pivot pin with (for example) a drop-head so it can be put in and and taken out quickly whilst remaining secure?


    You can get drop-nose pins in a very wide range of sizes and styles. You’ll need to shop around the web, because it is outside the range of the standard pre-packs, and of course you won’t find the larger sizes in chandlers that primarily support dinghies. e.g. a quick search finds http://www.makefast.com/marine_section/quick_drop_pins.asp


    Thanks, very helpful!



    I am sure I will upset some purist but, trailing my boat as I do, I also became frustrated with the fiddly split rings so I swapped one end for an ‘R’ spring clip (if that is the correct name but it looks like one – it is like the spring clip on my trolley wheels but smaller). I keep the split ring on one side (port – where the asymmetric goes) and use the R clip on the other side for convenience.

    I find this much easier and have so far had no difficulties.


    Thanks, I’ve already ordered the drop nose, I’ll buy an “R” clip to go with my original pin and act as a reserve!


    That said, the idea of a drop nose pin is tempting – what size did you order and from where?


    From the company that Howard (above) mentioned. The pin is relatively cheap, three pounds or so, carriage ten pounds. Other suppliers, including mail order chandleries (mailspeedmarine.com; marineprepacks.com; marinemegastore.com, etc.) also offer more expensive pins (spring loaded, they say). A web search for “drop nose pins marine” or something similar should bring them up. It hasn’t arrived yet, so I can’t comment on how successful it will be.


    Oh yes, size, 8mm diameter and 150mm length. We’ll see how it fits.


    The “R” clip is more satisfactory, the clip is larger than the drop head and the “R” clip is much cheaper.



    couple of questions since I’m also sick of split rings…!

    150mm length? I cannot see that length spec’d on http://www.makefast.com/marine_section/quick_drop_pins.asp
    The longest is 120mm… did you really mean 150mm or has their stock changed? and does it need to be that long? (I’m not near my boat to check…)

    did you understand which of the codes (BH suffix) implies the one with finger grip + hole vs one with grooved ring??? I’ll probably just give them a bell…

    Finally, anyone any experience with pins for other areas such as shroud plate pins and jib/genoa pins…?
    Holt fast pins?
    the spring loaded drop-head pin at top of page: http://www.makefast.com/marine_section/quick_drop_pins.asp ?




    Yes it does, (but measure your boat!) it has to go through the mast and the supports at both ends, that’s why the “R” clip (a couple of pounds for two) is a much better buy! The only advantage of the drop nose pin is that it has a securing point at one end, so you can tie it on. Solution is to keep one of the split rings and tie that on.


    Ah, thanks, penny dropping…. you were replacing the WHOLE pivot pin with a large drop-nose pin. But instead prefer to keep the original pivot pin and use an R clip at one end instead of split ring, correct?
    (And as you noted, if you keep it at the R side of mast no danger of the R clip snagging spinnaker for those of us with continuous halyard/downhaul)



    Exactly – the “R” clip avoids lots of fiddling (with cold, wet hands) and only costs a pound or so.


    Gotcha… thanks Chris.
    Still gonna investigate drop-head or fast-pins for shrouds and the various other places with split rings! 😉


    Dave Bevan

    I replaced the split-pin with an R-clip on our MKII, with a short lanyard to ensure it didn’t get lost.

    Because it’s still in tension, the R clip sits flush with the tabernacle, and is less likely to snag than a ‘keyring’ type clip. I always worried that the lanyard might actually pull the R-clip out if it accidentally got caught, but this has never happenned.

    Stainless ones are available but I didn’t bother – I had some already so just used one of those, and when I sold the boat 10yrs later, it still had the same clip!

    Might try R clips on the shroud links too, because they’re easier to fix to the boat, and equally ‘expendible’ when you drop them. Drop-nose or fast pins look like a good solution, but they’re relatively expensive compared to a clevis pin and ring/r-clip.

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