My rig' kinda old school
, but hey, it works... so I leave it alone. And also it’s designed so that me going up a rig as a 1 man show is still a no brainer AND safe. Keeping in mind that in addition to my boat(s) over the years, I've been the BMW on several Large of racers. And as such have had plenty of occasion (and the capability) to go up 100' sticks solo… for most kinds of jobs which you can name. Which is reflected in the following list/description.
1st off, Primarily I run a 6:1 purchase
(or needs be 5:1) with a triple with a ratchet block on one end, & the ratchet can be switched on/off @ the lower end. Fitted with 600’ of 7/16" Regatta
Braid led through this setup. The size is good grip wise, runs freely through my blocks, & doesn't induce a hernia when I lift
the whole rig in it’s duffle.
The block's shackles are Loctited & safety wired (with Spectra thread, & Stainless Steel
Wire). And I tie off the upper end to a halyard with a bowline. In a place of the line where there’s NO splice (even in the core).
For a safety, I tie in a single
, oversized, block with a ratchet, again to a halyard. Through which is run a piece of colored line, such that neither I nor anyone on deck could ever get my lines confused.
Said safety line gets tied to my harness at the one end, through an auto locking, screw gate, carabiner which runs thru my harnesses belt.
As to my "chair", it's a customized climber's harness with a few extra security
attachments, in addition to pockets & lanyards for gear
. Plus a bit of added extra padding in/on the waist belt, & thighs. A NICE to have item if you’re up there for half of the day.
On one side, I have a sheath/holster for; a customized Crescent Wrench which has a LOOONG Marling spike welded to & integrally serving as the wrench’s butt end. Also, said spike is drilled for and fitted with a lanyard. Next to it, in the same custom sheath is a pair of Large semi-needle nose Vice Grips: Again, with a phone-cord type lanyard.
On the other side of the harness is a sheath for several screwdrivers, especially BIG ones, in addition to one or two standard sized one(s) with various swap out tip type bits (again, on lanyards). Plus a splicing wand http://www.briontoss.com/catalog/splicinggear.html
… And a spare “McGuyver” ‘Type’ PocketJ. Commonly used to hold some of the following (depending on my “mission”);
a headlamp type flashlight, a Makita screw gun/drill – with drill bits & driver tips (plus small bolts to tap into sheaves), a tube of Loctite and or Never-Seize, spare cordage (both large & small diameter), seizing wire (often enough Stainless, & or Spectra for seizing spreader tips), a small container of various sizes & types of screws + bolts (don’t you just HATE it when you work & sweat HARD to get up there, & then drop the one fastener which you have that you need), spare bulbs for the spreader lights, steaming light, & or tricolor), a tube of tef-gel www.tef-gel.com
, a masthead instrument wand, combo wire stripper/crimpers, micro torch, a rag (possibly with cleaning
agent, or Flitz metal polish, small camera
, halyard pre-feeding line/kit, self-amalgamating rigging
tape, friction & duct tape, serving/parceling line, sand paper & or small files, etc., etc.
AND, a water
bottle, plus possibly a few cocktails in a can too.
NOTE: They’re not listed specifically, as when I’m onboard a vessel, I ALWAYS carry; 2 folding rigging
knives (minimum, with 1+ of them on lanyards), a marling spike with built in shackle key, a kite fid, & a small Mini-Mag flashlight or similar.
A few other KEY mods to my chair;
I always have an extra carabiner (often 3 actually), one of which has 2 adjustable for length webbing foot loops. And given that this carabiner is movable, along with the adjustability of the loops, I can set things up, once I get to the masthead, so that I can standup (still in the chair) so that I can see and or work on things, literally on the top of a spar.
Spare buckles for every connection on said chair are kept in my rig climbing kit. As is a small sewing kit, with various sizes of needles, a sail maker’s palm, pliers, spectra thread, extra webbing. Spare cotter, clevis, ring, & split pins of various sizes. A soft canvas
or standard bucket, & a messenger line for same, long enough to reach the deck.
If you've got plenty of crew, just tie your chair into one halyard, & lead it back to a primary winch
. With the caveat of a safety as mentioned above. And have them grind you up, in high gear
Also, if you use your anchor windlass
, the setup's more or less the same as above, with plenty of crew. Albeit make sure that the man on the windlass
is a cool hand, & knows just to keep only enough tension on the hoist line so that it keeps you in place up the spar, but otherwise spins freely, if the windlass
gets stuck in the "On" position.
Nothing fancy, just requires a cool hand/head. But it's worth having a chat with them prior to "suiting up".
NOTE: I'd be far more leery of doing this on a powered self-tailing winch
, as errors with one of those could get far more dangerous, a lot more quickly, if the winch operator isn't quick on his feet so to speak.