main raising tips

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WhiskeyTango
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Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2011 9:29 am
Sailboat: MacGregor 26M

main raising tips

Post by WhiskeyTango » Sun Sep 28, 2014 6:40 pm

Trying to make it easier to get the mainsheet on my 26M up. I consistently have three problems when pulling on the halyard:

1) Halyard gets hung on one of the bolts about 10 feet up on the mast, necessitating a trip to the base of the mast to shake it loose.

2) Luff of the sail hangs on one of the cleats about 4 feet up the mast--- necessitating a trip to the mast to shake it loose.

3) After pulling up the sail as tight as I can, it often drops 6 or 12 inches while I am tying it off, leading to scallops along the luff.


Looking for suggestions on all three subjects. Can't imagine how you can safely singlehand this boat.

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mastreb
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Sailboat: MacGregor 26M
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Re: main raising tips

Post by mastreb » Sun Sep 28, 2014 10:52 pm

I'm guessing you've got sail slugs, because problems 2 & 3 don't happen if you're bolt-roped. Single-handing these boats requires an autopilot IMHO, which allows you time to go to the mast to hoist the main.

Problem #1 has not been satisfactorily solved by anyone that I know of. It's a bizarrely constant problem, and its why I gave up on leading the halyards aft. Solutions I've considered but never tried:

1) Acorn nuts

2) bondo, hardening clay, or "sugru" built up around the bolt in a hemispherical shape

3) cutting the bolt off about 1/8th of an inch inside the nut.

4) removing all the foam from the mast and using flush lead-in blocks to run the halyard inside the mast.

Others may have a simple solution that can actually be accomplished.

The solution for problem #3 in your case is to mount a rope-clutch just forward of the winch you use to haul the halyard.

raycarlson
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Sailboat: MacGregor 26M
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Re: main raising tips

Post by raycarlson » Mon Sep 29, 2014 6:34 am

Only reason I could imagine why you have these issues and ive never had them would be location of fasteners and components. I know all mast components at the mac factory are just eyeballed when locating, and drilled freehand, so they can change from boat to boat. I have three lever type gaurhauser clutch type things that my dealer installed on the lines led aft option, so once you pull line thru its not being released until you raise the clutch lever. the first two problems don't exist or ive never experienced them with my rigging, I do have nylon looking sail slugs every foot or so, but not macgregor sails, my boat came with upgrade Kelly-Hansen sails, maybe they help somehow.

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Tomfoolery
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Sailboat: MacGregor 26X
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Re: main raising tips

Post by Tomfoolery » Mon Sep 29, 2014 6:46 am

I don't understand how the sail drops so much while cleating it off. Hold tension, and use a cleat hitch, all with the same hand, or hold tension with one while cleating with the other. Once you take a turn around the cleat, it doesn't take much to hold it while you take a couple of X-turns around the cleat.

If raising from the mast, put a quick trucker's hitch in the halyard, take a turn around the cleat, up to the loop you just formed, then tension and cleat.

You need to be pointed into the wind to raise the main. You can do that without an autohelm - just leave the OB running in neutral, boat pointed into the wind, raise the main (takes seconds if you have slugs), then use the OB to fall off if it hasn't already on its own.

Maybe the X is very different, but it's an easy boat to single-hand, once you learn its quirks, of which there are a few. :wink:

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Sloop John B
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Re: main raising tips

Post by Sloop John B » Mon Sep 29, 2014 10:46 am

Get a pre-feeder for the mainsail. It installs just below the bolt rope feed opening. Only thing that screws up is head snagged in spreader or battens snagging. Calm or into the wind no problem. With slugs, I don't know of shortcuts.

WhiskeyTango
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Sailboat: MacGregor 26M

Re: main raising tips

Post by WhiskeyTango » Tue Sep 30, 2014 12:48 pm

Just spoke to Cheryl at Blue Water, Seattle dealer.

She suggested the following fixes:


Remove cleat from port side of mast; this is a factory fitting that is not needed with Lines Lead Aft option

Remove spreader and jib bolts, shorten them, and put them back in the reverse orientation.

She noted that the bolt rope tends to shorten with time, while the sail stretches. Since the two are sewn together for the bottom few feet, this
causes a mismatch leading to scalloping even with tight halyard. It is not uncommon, after a few years, to undo the stitches linking the two together
which allows the main to slide on the bolt rope, resulting in better luff shape.

Will try above and report back.

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