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Old 21-09-2012, 10:41   #1
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Backstay Questions

Gooood morning everyone,

I am looking at a Beneteau Oceanis 461, and I need your help in schooling me on backstays.

Basically I noticed that the 461 has two backstays that attach to the starboard and port sides of the transom, rather than having a single backstay in the middle of the boat. Is there any difference to this design, and does it have drawbacks?

Also, I notice that many people like to upgrade to a hydraulic backstay. Is this possible when having two? Would I have to upgrade both of them?

The yacht I'm considering is properly outfitted to do some serious cruising, which is why I'm trying to figure out if the backstays are an issue worth addressing, or if I'll be fine. Thanks!

-David
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Old 21-09-2012, 10:49   #2
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Re: Backstay Questions

You don't mention a year, but my guess is that the 461 has a sugar scoop stern and it would interfere with that.
I don't know of any drawbacks, I've had a split stay on my boats in the past and the only problem I had was the bimini top either had to be smaller, or two openings in it for the stay.
You can have two hydraulic adjusters installed.
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Old 21-09-2012, 10:51   #3
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Re: Backstay Questions

It's a 1998 Oceanis 461. This exact one to be exact:

1998 Beneteau 461 Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com
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Old 21-09-2012, 10:52   #4
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Re: Backstay Questions

Is a hydraulic backstay a good investment? What exactly does it provide, the ability to tighten or loosen it easier?
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Old 21-09-2012, 11:05   #5
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Re: Backstay Questions

The hydraulic backstay, properly executed, allows you to tighten the two backstays evenly. Realistically it's only needed to enhance windward performance. Compared to our boat, this shouldn't be a problem on a stock 461.
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Old 21-09-2012, 11:10   #6
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Re: Backstay Questions

Nice boat.

I know there are several people on here that will swear by them, and like them.

I have a friend that has them on his 39ft O'Day and I doubt they have ever been used very much. If you know what you are doing, and how to use them, they can help the performance of the boat. If you don't, you can do some serious damage to your rigging.

Below is a link to a video about adjusting the back stay that should help answer your question:

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Old 21-09-2012, 11:24   #7
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Re: Backstay Questions

Khagan thanks for the video. I like the ending: "you'll probably beat the hell out of your neighbor and piss him off, but hey... that's sailing"

Anyways, it seems like a hydraulic backstay may only be a good tool for a fractional rig if you're going to be doing alot of tweaking? The 461 is a masthead rig I believe, correct?
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Old 21-09-2012, 11:58   #8
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Re: Backstay Questions

As a generalization, yes.

The Beneteau 461 you are looking at looks to be a masthead rig.
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Old 21-09-2012, 12:01   #9
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Re: Backstay Questions

Another case closed. Thanks for all the input!
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Old 21-09-2012, 13:26   #10
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Re: Backstay Questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by DDabs View Post
Khagan thanks for the video. I like the ending: "you'll probably beat the hell out of your neighbor and piss him off, but hey... that's sailing"

Anyways, it seems like a hydraulic backstay may only be a good tool for a fractional rig if you're going to be doing alot of tweaking? The 461 is a masthead rig I believe, correct?
On a masthead rig, you can use the adjuster to adjust the sag in the headstay when working to windward, which effects the draft of your headsail. Most cruisers don't bother.

If you're looking at a boat with in-mast furling, then you're already making some largish performance compromises. I wouldn't worry about a backstay adjuster. I'd guess a tiny minority of cruisers use them.
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