Originally Posted by Don C L
Well, how about free standing masts with wish bones and lazy jacks? Just a thought. Full battened sails
could be easier too... though they do have drawbacks too...
Free standing is by far the most reliable system. Drop it in and forget about it until it needs repainting.
It is also safest. Release the main sheet and the rig weathercocks and the boat stops, regardless of wind
strength or direction.
And easiest. The main can be raised, lowered or reefed on any point of sail, with no shrouds to rub against. It will flex in a squall, effectively an automatic first reef. Gybes are low stress as there are no shrouds to hit. They are no stress if the sail is eased out over the front of the boat, then pulled in on the other side.
It also has a lower centre of gravity and less drag than a stayed rig.
Up front costs are very similar to a stayed aluminium rig. Long term it is cheaper.
On the down side, a single mainsail
is harder to hoist as it is heavier. Electric
winches or winch
handles overcome this.
is further forward in the boat (opens up the saloon
, closes up the forepeak) and the long boom can be a problem running square in a boat which rolls. Schooner or ketch
configuration resolves these. Wyliecat Performance Yachts: Wyliecat 66
and Farfarer - Nigel Irens Design
A wishbone boom is above head
height in use, acts as a very effective vang and can be lowered to the deck
by releasing one line. Tie some strings under it and it stows the sail without needing lazy jacks.
An alternative is a ballestron rig,
which is also self vanging and resolves the long boom/big mainsail
issues. It also significantly reduces the sheet loads, but has a little more maintenance
, sheet and track).
Etamax (Etamax Engineering - Composite Materials Engineers
) filament winds unstayed masts which is the lowest cost, most reliable method. They include tapered joins so the masts can be cheaply shipped in 2 pieces and glued together on site. The masts have a built in sail track which overcomes one of the usual weaknesses of a carbon mast
. With the current
strength of the US dollar vs the Aussie dollar, they are probably the best value for money
in masts at present.