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Old 17-05-2010, 09:49   #16
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these guys have really good prices.

Rigging Only - mechanical wire terminations
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Old 17-05-2010, 09:59   #17
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Originally Posted by rebel heart View Post
I would have fashioned a temporary stay (or two) and had a spare on order before I even typed the post to ask questions. No joke, you need to get that thing switched out ASAP. Busted standing rigging violates the three core rules (water out, you in, stick in the air).

We took our spar off a year ago and had a lot of work done. Some of the costs are here if you want to see them (check the 10/30/2009 time frame):

Rebel Heart - The boat and her crew - Expenses & Costs
OMFG $1300 just for the FOAM for cushions....
I read it was expensive but I had no idea....

sorry, I dont mean to hijack.....carry on
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Old 17-05-2010, 10:27   #18
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This seems as good place as any to ask a question I have been contemplating for a time. How much permanent stretch typically occurs in wire rigging? If you pull a stay off of a boat and that stay has been well tensioned for the last ten years, How much has it stretched?

I ask this because to me it is important to get the replacement as close as possible to the proper length of an unstretched length of wire, not to duplicate the ‘stretched’ length of the old rigging. Is it so little that it does not matter in the computation?

I do know that you can’t re-tension old rigging with the simple elongation measurement method, as it can get it too tight.

Um Saudade
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Old 17-05-2010, 11:58   #19
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We've had rod on our boats for over 30 years. No way would I ever go back to wire. Rod is pretty much bullet proof, no corrosion, no broken strands, lasts forever. Worried about the rod ends? Re-head them and add some screw.

That said, for this particular boat (OP)wire is fine, no reason to change.

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Aren't you glad you don't have rod rigging? Old bronze open barrel turnbuckles will last longer than you will if they don't turn red.
regards,
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Old 17-05-2010, 12:53   #20
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OMFG $1300 just for the FOAM for cushions....
I read it was expensive but I had no idea....

sorry, I dont mean to hijack.....carry on
Yep. BOAT = bust out another thousand, as we all know. And like you said, that's just for the foam itself. We have a lot of the cloth material on there as well that we're making the covers with.
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Old 17-05-2010, 13:03   #21
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You can do your own rigging with mechanical turnbuckles. Personally don't know whay anyone would hire a rigger to do it unless you have a paralyzing fear of heights. I favor Norseman but StaLok and others are probably just as good. You can pick up the terminals on Ebay for an excellent price if you get lucky. Checking the rigging shops on the internet will find you the best price, otherwise. I bought 316 wire from Swensens here in Alameda for around $100 for 42'. Had previously bought 9/32/7mm Norseman terminals for around $30 each, total cost was under $200 to do my headstay. Buy 316 wire, not 304. 304 is slightly stronger but way more prone to rust and pitting than 316. Any savings in wire costs are probably going to be eaten by shorter life span definitely by the headaches of stains on the topsides and deck.

Doing your own rigging is no big deal. Did my previous boat with Norsemans without any previous experience. Bought a several hundred feet of wire, the terminals, wire cutter, and went at it. Read the instructions and carefully did the first one which took me around an hour because of my unfamiliarity and caution. After that could whip one out in less than 10 minutes per fitting. Did all the terminals on our Westsail 32 in a day and that's a lot of terminals with the bobstay, whisker stays, boomkin stays, etc. Seems to have worked okay as we sailed off to SoPac and never had a problem.

Replacing rigging every 10 years is a conservative time limit. Possibly good for Florida and the Tropics but probably to short a lifespan for a boat in temperate climates with shorter sailing seasons. It's the swages that limit the life of wire rigging. If you use mechanical terminals, they will last virtually forever so you throw the limiting factor to the wire. Swages typically give you little if any warning that they are going to fail. A failure testing article of seasoned swaged wire fittings found almost no visual indication of impending wire failure. Some swages with severe cracking exceded the wire strength while visually pristine others failed at low tension. Wire will definitely tell you it's getting tired by a broken strand. I still wouldn't wait for that to make a change. Inspection for pitting of the wire strands and general overall condition is a less painful measure of life limits. We had very poor life with NavTec turnbuckles in the Tropics. First set had significant cracking after two years, the second lasted only a bit longer. Stick with bronze open bodied turnbuckles, they will outlast several wire replacements.

I've looked at synthetic rigging and it's intriguing. The UV effects are still not clarified so doubt that it will be cheaper than wire if their current 6 year lifespan holds. Haven't tried to splice the stuff but hear it's really simple and quick to do, however. Know that a professional spliced two thimble into my new topping lift while I waited. Don't know exactly how long it took but it wasn't long as I was surprized they'd finished so quickly. I really liked the idea of do it yourself splices and deadeyes for rigging. Always been a fan of KISS and that's about as simple as you can make it. Also, the weight savings is significant over wire.
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Old 17-05-2010, 15:29   #22
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Roverhi,
Did you sta lok the tops too? I planned to have the tops swaged (mast side) and sta lok the hull side myself. Don't know why my brain decided this...

Also, I am researching guality of cable but am unable to find any reference to who makes the best quality cable (plenty of reviews for the fittings like sta lok, norseman and such) can you recommend a cable brand or are they all pretty much the same?

Erika
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Old 17-05-2010, 22:30   #23
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as for getting fittings on ebay.. I am not sure I trust them.


I am considering replacing the shrouds with spectra. Would I still use turnbuckles or is there a simpler way which works well? I figured I could drill 3 holes in a piece of aluminum but it would be hard to get enough tension.
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Old 17-05-2010, 23:17   #24
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Why wouldn't you trust a new fitting. A Norseman or StaLok is a Norseman or StaLok no matter what its source. If it weren't for Ebay, I wouldn't have the self-tailing winches, Garmin GPS, Raymarine autopilot and instruments, windpilot self steering, the steering wheel, Manson Supreme Anchor, Lewmar windlass, Montgomery sailing dinghy, ICOM ham radio and the insulators for the backstay antenna, bilge pump, cabin heater, Taylor stove, Sailor Prop, and much more. No way I'd be able to afford this stuff for my old boat if I had had to buy it new or rely on West Marine. Not to say that I haven't done my best to keep West Marine in business.

With synthetic rigging you can use deadeyes. You tension the rig as best you can then go for a sail. Tighten the lee side on one tack, then tack over and tighten the new lee side. Probably take a few times on each tack to get the mast in column and you may have to do it over a couple of days to get enough variation in wind strength to get the proper tension.

Some people go with swage tops and mechanical bottoms to save money. Probably only a saving if you are hiring it done. Swages fail from corrosion. The idea is that the upper fittings face down so water wouldn't get in and pool providing the electrolyte for corrosion. If you do the work yourself, the additional cost of the terminals is paid for by not paying someone else to do the rigging. FWIW, some people say end for ending swage terminal rigging each year or so increases its life/reliability.

Don't know manufacturers, just alloy for rigging wire. Use 316, not 304. Wire bought from any reputable source will almost surely be from a quality manufacturer.
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Old 18-05-2010, 06:18   #25
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Originally Posted by roverhi View Post
It's the swages that limit the life of wire rigging. If you use mechanical terminals, they will last virtually forever so you throw the limiting factor to the wire. Swages typically give you little if any warning that they are going to fail.
Wrong, Wrong, Wrong. God I hate it when people spout this kind of misinformation.
"Virtually forever". That is as silly as whoever said that rod rigging last forever.

Swages fail from corrosion. .
As do mechanical fittings. Funny enough, swage cracks start appearing just about the time that the wire should be replaced anyway.

Roverhi, I admire you for making your own rigging, I agree that lots of people are capable of doing the same. But a lot of people aren't. A lot of people simply don't want to. They would rather do what they get paid to do and then pay someone to make the rigging for them. Just like people who take their cars to the mechanic. Different strokes.
I like it when people do their own rigging. I like hands on customers. But I wish that people would keep their uninformed, patently wrong opinions to themselves. Or at least admit that it's pure speculation at best. Do you really think that riggers just lie to people? Or do you think that it's possible that we actually have a clue about what we are talking about. What decades of experience has taught us.
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Old 18-05-2010, 07:09   #26
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Who told you that?
There is always a weak link, but it isn't always, or even usually the turnbuckle. Unless of course, they are closed body stainless turnbuckles or NavTec stainless turnbuckles.
Just to be curious, what's wrong with NavTec Stainless turnbuckles?
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Old 18-05-2010, 10:15   #27
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Just to be curious, what's wrong with NavTec Stainless turnbuckles?

They fail much more often than bronze open body turnbuckles. There is a built in cavity in the lower part that seems to be designed to hold a puddle of water. Not to mention the recall of the stainless screws that they were first made with.
In my opinion, they are a poor design and entirely unnecessary. I have never understood why they were even made in the first place. Some engineer sitting at a desk who just wanted to make an inferior product that costs a lot more than a traditional turnbuckle. Just because it looks different I suppose.
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Old 18-05-2010, 11:07   #28
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That forever comment was a little poetic license. Nothing lasts forever in a marine environment except maybe gold. Mechanical terminals do last a long long time, however. The Norsemans I put on my Westsail in 1976 are still in use with their third set of wire. Even the highly loaded Bobstay fitting has held up despite getting constantly dunked in salt water. The mechanical terminals may also develop crevice corrosion and crack but not like swage terminals.

One of the sailing pubs, could have been Practical Sailor though I can't remember which, did destructive testing of rigging that had been changed out for new. There was no data on time in service, just that it was used. There results were startling. As I said, some swages with really outrageous cracks, looking to be severely compromised, actually failed beyond the wire max strength. Other swages that looked good failed below the wire's rated strength, one way below. There just didn't seem to be much indication by inspection of the actual strength of the swages. BTW, none of these swages had failed in service, they were just wire that had been removed because of age/caution/appearance etc.

Wire gives you plenty of warning that it's getting near the end of it's life. Pitting of the strands, broken strands etc. that decrease the strength but don't cause a catastrophic failure. Swages on the other hand can and do have catastrophic failures which often result in the loss of the rig. I'd be curious to know what the loss factor is between swages and wire.

The stainless part of NavTec turnbuckles used to crack over time. May have been just the effect of warm salt water in the tropics. Mine had way scary cracks that I didn't discover until we were on the passage from Tahiti to Hawaii after only two years in service. The turnbuckles didn't fail and were severely tested in the strong trades but they sure looked like they would fail if you looked cross eyed at them. They may have changed their alloy and solved the problem but I still don't like them. The boat next to me has rod rigging with NavTec turnbuckles that are probably more than 20 years old and still look good but thats in Alameda, CA.

Yes I know there are people who don't want to do their own rigging. As long as you have the deep pockets to pay for it that's fine. For those of us who aren't wealthy, doing your own rigging is relatively easy and a way to cut costs. Personally, if you want mechanical terminals on your rigging, and I'm one, it really doesn't make sense to hire it done as it's so easy to do.
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Old 18-05-2010, 16:33   #29
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G'Day All,

Knothead, here's a query for you: We've noticed that on boats with roller furling headsails there seem to be a lot of wire failures just where the wire exits the upper terminal (including once on our previous boat). My guess is that this is caused by folks using the headsail reefed way down in strong winds. This puts a big point load near the center of the wire and this in turn causes greater than normal distortion of the stay, possibly exceeding the toggles angular movement limits. And the bottom line is fatigue where the wire exits the terminal.

Any comments or other ideas?

And secondly, we encountered a German yacht in Fiji (I think) that had counterfeit Norseman terminals on his rigging, and they were ALL cracking after a shortish service life. Scarey! They looked just like the real thing, except they lacked the etched Norseman logo that appears on the genuine items. So, one should be wary of "bargain" terminals on e-bay or anywhere else!

Cheers,

Jim and Ann s/v Insatiable II lying Church Point, NSW, Oz
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Old 19-05-2010, 06:39   #30
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G'Day All,

Knothead, here's a query for you: We've noticed that on boats with roller furling headsails there seem to be a lot of wire failures just where the wire exits the upper terminal (including once on our previous boat). My guess is that this is caused by folks using the headsail reefed way down in strong winds. This puts a big point load near the center of the wire and this in turn causes greater than normal distortion of the stay, possibly exceeding the toggles angular movement limits. And the bottom line is fatigue where the wire exits the terminal.

Any comments or other ideas?

And secondly, we encountered a German yacht in Fiji (I think) that had counterfeit Norseman terminals on his rigging, and they were ALL cracking after a shortish service life. Scarey! They looked just like the real thing, except they lacked the etched Norseman logo that appears on the genuine items. So, one should be wary of "bargain" terminals on e-bay or anywhere else!

Cheers,

Jim and Ann s/v Insatiable II lying Church Point, NSW, Oz
Nearly every failure of the type you describe is caused by improper installation of the furling system. Many times furlers are installed without the addition of a halyard restrainer. Very few mastheads are set up where you can get away without one. Selden is one of the few manufacturers that places the sheave for the headsail halyard far enough below the headstay attachment point that you don't need one.
There should be about a fifteen degree angle between the headstay and the halyard. If you don't have the angle, then there is a good chance that the halyard swivel will get a little stuck someday and you get halyard wrap. Once this happens, the extrusion that they are trying to roll becomes one with the wire. The wire starts fatiguing at the point where it exits the stationary swage fitting.
In extreme cases, where someone puts the furling line or the sheet on a winch and forces it without noticing the problem, the wire will be twisted completely off and the furler will be left hanging (hopefully) by the halyard. But even if it doesn't break off, the wire will have been damaged and should be replaced. Often it's not and failure ensues at a later date and is often not recognized as being related to the previous halyard wrap problem.
I have seen this happen on dozens of boats. Even ones using Profurls. The wrap stops are a good idea, but they sometimes spin on the wire and they often get old and brittle and simply break. Halyard restrainers should always be used if the angle between the headstay and the halyard is less than 15 degrees.
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