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Old 13-10-2015, 13:53   #16
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Re: Fit a mainsheet traveller system or leave well alone?

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Originally Posted by Kiwi. View Post
It takes a really really powerful vang to replace a traveller on a 40ft plus boat and there is no room for one on a Swanson 42 as the dog house gets in the way. With a powerful vang you also have two adjustments to make when you want to change the angle of attack without changing the main shape. A powerful vang also changes the mast and boom curvature which may or may not be desired. Finally a vang cannot replicate the effect of a traveller set up to windward which can open the upper leach of the main.

Our Bavaria 49 has a traveller that's only about two feet long; it is definitely on the make it longer list. Even at such a small size we have a 4:1 purchase on it and use it often.
Of course, on some boats the physical dimensions may make a boom vang not work, although I cannot conceive of one which would cause the mast to bend. You want the leech to be somewhat opened off the wind, but closed when close hauled. That is the advantage of using the boom bang rather than the traveler; setting the boom vang to have the leech somewhat open off the wind, automatically closes it when you sheet in for close hauled sailing.
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Old 13-10-2015, 14:20   #17
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Re: Fit a mainsheet traveller system or leave well alone?

My boat came with a horrible pin type of traveller deal that was absolutely useless and no vang. PO had rigged up some klunky preventer deals that didn't work very well.

Bought a "catalina 30 upgrade kit" from Garhauer that contained a new traveller, rigid vang, all new mainsheet blocks, and new jib cars.

It was worth every penny. The traveler is now my main angle-of-attack control closehauled out to around a beam reach when I start to ease the mainsheet and throw on some vang. Coming back upwind, I can control twist, AOA, leech tension, etc very easily. When powered up and going upwind, the sheet would need a winch to pull it in, but I can easily move the traveler by hand. I can drop it in seconds in a gust too.

Get a good traveler. I love having one.
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Old 13-10-2015, 14:26   #18
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Re: Fit a mainsheet traveller system or leave well alone?

Well, it's not often you get so close to a consensus on CF.

I'll take the "yes" vote as carried.

Kiwi, you make an interesting observation about the deckhouse interaction with the vang. I'll look again when I am down at the boat, but I don't think the deckhouse restricts the vang purchase all that much. From memory our vang is at 45 degrees to the boom and mast, and meets the foot of the mast, so I am not sure it could be improved? If my trig serves me correctly moving it further out on the boom will not improve the advantage if it cannot also go further down the mast to maintain the angle? Anyway, the current 6:1 vang feels like it gives a fair bit of control.

I am a bit concerned about the 4:1 purchase suggestions. I was hoping to avoid that much rope lying around, but Roland's idea about making a temporary setup is clever so I will do that. I think the Swanson has a pretty conservative sail plan for a 42 footer, so hopefully 3:1 will be strong enough.

Thanks all for the good advice and ideas,

Matt


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Old 13-10-2015, 16:09   #19
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Re: Fit a mainsheet traveller system or leave well alone?

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Originally Posted by jeepbluetj View Post

It was worth every penny. The traveler is now my main angle-of-attack control closehauled out to around a beam reach when I start to ease the mainsheet and throw on some vang. Coming back upwind, I can control twist, AOA, leech tension, etc very easily.

.
Different strokes for different boats. I handle all those trims with only my main sheet--and no winch. But then again, I do a lot of solo sailing and fast single sheet controlling is important to me.
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Old 13-10-2015, 17:35   #20
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Re: Fit a mainsheet traveller system or leave well alone?

I am certain that if I raced the boat I would not hesitate to fit the traveller control system. Hence my question was posed as a cruising boat.


But reading the responses here, I can see enough cruising folk who reckon it is warranted to think I will give it a go. I will check the local chandlery for a decent secondhand setup first.


Matt
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Old 13-10-2015, 18:30   #21
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Re: Fit a mainsheet traveller system or leave well alone?

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Originally Posted by GILow View Post
I'll take the "yes" vote as carried.

I am a bit concerned about the 4:1 purchase suggestions. I was hoping to avoid that much rope lying around, but Roland's idea about making a temporary setup is clever so I will do that. I think the Swanson has a pretty conservative sail plan for a 42 footer, so hopefully 3:1 will be strong enough.
My thoughts: Get a GOOD Traveler System, PERIOD. You'll both reduce how much the boat heels, & also increase your speed by 1/2kt+ Upwind, & down.


Still, if you're sold on working with what hardware you have, there are sliders made for the track which you have now, that have low friction inserts built in. Try Ronstan & Schaeffer for starters.

Also, you can rig up a purchase system for windward adjustment on the gear you already have.
Just shackle, or tie a double block to the bail which holds the primary sheeting block to your track slider. Their should be room to mount them to the bail, underneath of said block.

Then, simply mount a set of blocks, plus a cam cleat onto the deck, on either side of where the traveler track ends. That'll give you however much purchase you like.


*Regarding having a lot of loose line in your cockpit: Try (loosely) tying the tails of the 2 traveler control lines together. For the most part, it'll keep things from getting underfoot, & or too messy.
Call it a "semi-continuous loop", non-permanent type.
Just be sure to leave enough slack in the middle of the line so that it's still easy to operate both ends even with things tied together.

There are a couple of other traveler setup tricks. And they surely add to a traveler's user friendlyness, & flexibility. Though, such comprises maybe a page of text. But if there's enough demand, I'll post it.

Also, for the confused, & or misinformed. A Vang & a Traveler are not interchangable. They serve two different purposes, when properly setup.
Any & all racing boat have both for a reason. Which can be found in any basic (quality) sail trimming guide.
Where the; how, when, & why, of using each will be explained.

BTW: Regarding used traveler setups. Often enough, you can find a good quality, pre-loved Harken setup in a variety of places... including Ebay. And usually, at most, they'll need a new set of bearings, & some end caps. Which take all of about 10min (combined) to install all of the above.
Just be sure to buy the same generation of track, & traveler cars. As there are 2-3 different styles out there.

Also, if you have to reload bearing in a Harken car, & don't have their blue, factory bearing loading track. Just use some toothpaste, or shaving cream to hold the bearings in place until you get the car onto the track. And then use a hose to rinse out said goo, that's holding the bearings in place.
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Old 13-10-2015, 18:35   #22
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Re: Fit a mainsheet traveller system or leave well alone?

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Originally Posted by UNCIVILIZED View Post

There are a couple of other traveler setup tricks. And they surely add to a traveler's user friendlyness, & flexibility. Though, such comprise maybe a page of text. But if there's enough demand, I'll post it.

+1 Demand.
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Old 13-10-2015, 19:05   #23
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Re: Fit a mainsheet traveller system or leave well alone?

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Different strokes for different boats. I handle all those trims with only my main sheet--and no winch. But then again, I do a lot of solo sailing and fast single sheet controlling is important to me.
The winch is necessary due to the load on the sheet with the way it was run. Doesn't really matter. Traveler is my main control. Smooth as silk. I've got a fully battened main and I typically have to let the sheet out quite a bit to get some good twist in it. Then travel back up to power up. Reverse to flatten the main and depower it on the rare occasion we get actual wind here in socal.

I don't see how you can control AOA and twist with a single line. Unless you're controlling twist with the vang.
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Old 13-10-2015, 19:49   #24
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Re: Fit a mainsheet traveller system or leave well alone?


Guys, sorry to be a tease, but I'm going to have to post this later. I'm going crosseyed from trying to turn technical diagrams into text which makes sense.
There's a bit of info here http://www.harken.com/content.aspx?id=3914 as well as elsewhere on the Harken site. Ditto on other manufacturers sites.
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Old 13-10-2015, 20:55   #25
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Re: Fit a mainsheet traveller system or leave well alone?

I have a 38' yawl with a relatively short end-boom traveler with 4:1 purchase. When I bought the boat, I presumed that I would really never use the traveler for all of the reasons stated in the comments above. However, it's wonderful to allow more twist in the main when sailing in light air, and to travel it "down" in heavy air. I use it all the time. However, it has to move easily using ball or roller bearings. If it doesn't slide on its own, the rest of the stuff makes little difference.

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Old 13-10-2015, 22:01   #26
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Re: Fit a mainsheet traveller system or leave well alone?

Guys, there’s one other thing which came to mind, not in relation to “tricks” for setting up a traveler’s control lines. But regarding putting together a setup which is strong enough for a given vessel/mainsail.
AKA it's directly Safety Related (SIC).

What popped into my head was that a single slider for 1 ” track probably isn’t sufficiently strong enough for the mainsail on a 42’ boat. Especially to handle the loads from things like accidental gybes, or say, if the boom gets dragged through the water @ speed while being held by a preventer, etc.
So if this is the case with your boat, then you need to buy, or make, a piece of hardware which links several small cars or sliders together, called a Car Coupler. Like this Harken or this Harken

This shows how they work. http://www.harken.com/uploadedFiles/...t/PDF/4512.pdf It's just a link to the manual for one of the bigger Car Couplers on their site. You'll see similar items, some of them in fact made of plate (on the outside) linking multiple cars together on Maxi's, & other big custom boats.

I’ve made several, for boats running the full spectrum of sizes. Using;
~ Aluminum or Stainless plate for the connectives/sides, IE; the primary load bearing structures in the units.
~ Stainless bolts with compression tubes through; the bail of each Traveler Car, & also where each block was seated into the top of the car with a bolt through it’s shackle.

Note: That on bigger boats, at times these “compression tubes” were in fact sheave shaped discs (made of G10 or Aluminum), designed to pretty much fully fill up the inside of each bail or shackle which they were going inside of. So as to more evenly spread the load of the mainsheet onto the various components in the (DIY) Car Coupler.

Also, & this is KEY. The bolts which went through each hole in the plate of the DIY Car Coupler was grossly oversized for the load it would, in theory, see. As in, on the order of being able to each, individually, carry the mainsheet load, with a Big safety factor on top of that (if they could be made to fit, within reason).
For when Cars are coupled like this, NEVER does each Car see an equal part of the load. And the same of course is true for the bolts & structure(s) connecting them. ESPECIALLY when something like an accidental gybe takes place. Thus the safety factor emphasis.


As to the other Traveler Tuning Tips, I'll try & get to that later.
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Old 13-10-2015, 22:54   #27
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Fit a mainsheet traveller system or leave well alone?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GILow View Post
I am certain that if I raced the boat I would not hesitate to fit the traveller control system. Hence my question was posed as a cruising boat.


But reading the responses here, I can see enough cruising folk who reckon it is warranted to think I will give it a go. I will check the local chandlery for a decent secondhand setup first.


Matt

Just look at garhauer, unless you can find a used one, you will be shocked at the price difference compared to other manufacturers.

Also do a search, the traveller idea comes up every other month. I stick to my guns that a powerful enough vang can replace a traveller, but it might need massive purchase (24:1 or more) to do it, and then it can do it even upwind. If you have end of boom sheeting then traveller is much more practical.

To answer the mast bend idea of using a vang from several posts back. By pulling the boom down, you are putting a nearly equal load by pushing the boom forward (more or less depending the angle, which is typically in the 45 degree range). So boom centered you are using almost as much force to push the mast forward as you are to pull the boom down. Off the wind you start to side load the mast.

Not sure what uncivilized is referring to on load, especially on dragging boom through the water. This could be catastrophic with vang instead of traveller, but normally unloads the sheets and traveller because it pushes the boom back and up. By the time the time the boom is in the water it would be way past the traveller length, and not really under its control anyway (unless the heel is is such that the water is in the cockpit, in which case you have more important issues to deal with).


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Old 14-10-2015, 05:30   #28
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Re: Fit a mainsheet traveller system or leave well alone?

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What about setting up a tackle each side to try it, can usually be done with a few lashings. See if you like it and get an idea of how much purchase you really need. Then if you use it invest in a new traveler.
If the car slides ok on its own with a bit of wind then this is the way to go. I'd start with a three to one purchase port and stb. You can rig them as a continuous line with a couple of jam cleats. Keep the adjustable sliders on the track and use them as end stops.

If you need more purchase shift one of the control lines to a handy windward winch if it's not rigged as an endless setup.

Biggest advantage is control when gybing and safety. Those adjustable stops are nasty if you don't always have the car locked in place, and adjusting them with load on is a nice way to loose a finger!

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Old 14-10-2015, 06:08   #29
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Re: Fit a mainsheet traveller system or leave well alone?

There is another huge benefit of having a long traveller.
My main sheet traveller is around 7ft long and quite far forward as it lies about three quarter of the way down the boom from the mast. This means that when running down wind if I move traveler fully over to the side the boom is on it makes it almost impossible to have an accidental gybe (and even if I do because so much less sheet has to be let out the movement available to the boom is so restricted it will not have the chance to build up dangerous amounts of energy) due to wind shifts so making the rigging of and hassle of a preventer unnecessary.
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Old 14-10-2015, 10:18   #30
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Re: Fit a mainsheet traveller system or leave well alone?

Since the OP is in Aus, I did a bit of googling and Garhauer does have an Australian distributor:

Yacht Mainsheet Travelers

I don't know what a $ is in Au compared to a US $, so I won't speak to prices there. Garhauer is local to me ('bout 20 min away) and is great stuff. Not quite as 'refined' as harken, but much less expensive.
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