Latest News: Forums Cruising Topping Lift

  • This topic is empty.
Viewing 4 posts - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)
  • #3439
    Mark Hill

    Dear cruisers,

    Do YOU use topping lift.

    No point asking the racers.



    Hi Mark

    No. If I need to support the boom (e.g. when motoring in a calm) I just pull in one of the reefing points which lifts the end of the boom high enough so that it doesn’t bash my head when it swings about.

    One thing I have done is to make my halyard long enough to use as a topping lift – I take it to the end of the boom and haul away. I’m not decided whether this is of much use as the boom sits in a crutch when the tent is up anyway so I don’t really need it – bad point is that it means I have a fairly long halyard tail to get tangled up. I also thought that it might be good for getting the boom out of the way when anchored for fishing but it’s too difficult to get the sail off the boom when afloat – easier just to drop the lot in the boat.




    I agree with Keith, but perhaps there is one reason to have topping lift installed: hoisting anti-inversion gadgets.
    All the best!


    I have fitted a ‘topping lift’ or masthead line and use it for the following reasons:

    1. Hoist a secumar automatic inflation cushion, which I use as additonal masthead bouyancy (see inversion topic).
    2. Hoist a mast head light if required for anchoring or night sailing.
    3. Support the back of the boom when using a boat tent, admittedly as belt and braces with a boom crutch but it does mean that the boom does not drop on you if the crutch slips.

    I would not cruise without one as it has a variety of uses. If motoring or rowing with the sail up I scandalise the main, as Kieth doe,s using the reefing line (you have to remove or lengthen the kicker).

    I prefer this arrangement as it leaves the main halyard free for other tasks (support front end of boom for boat tent if sliding gooseneck misplace) or just out of the way. It can of course be used as a back up topping lift (everything in a W should have two uses….)

    As to having the sail in the way with the boom held up – just roll it up and secure it to the boom with bungee ties (simple enough to make up yourself) – there is no need to remove it from the boom. This looks neater, keeps the sail clean and out of the way (especially from fish) and will reduce the likelihood of damaging a sail batten in the bottom of the boat. This also keeps the sail out of the way inside the boom tent.

    A topping lift is easy to fit with a cheek block at the top of the mast and a cleat on the mast or tabernacle and provides a multitude of uses (as well as drying washing/clothing). Very much worth it in my opinion but mostly for supporting masthead bouyancy.

Viewing 4 posts - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.