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Old 13-07-2012, 09:41   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Azul
I know that the sheave was not lubricated for at least two years, who knows how long before that, it is supposed to be lubricated q 6 months. On other threads it has been noted that going aloft with one halyard and no backup safety harness on another halyard is not smart, especially for a rookie... and now suddenly it is "good advice." I hadn't tried to decipher the equation of figuring out the furler system to see how that halyard works because I don't want to trust my life to one halyard and possibly rusty hardware holding it in place. The standing rigging from the deck looks to be fairly new and completely without corrosion, and the chainplates have been upgraded.

If I can get the mainsail to work I may try to find someone to go along on the delivery that knows how to sail, but I am not intending to take the boat offshore or into high winds without thoroughly inspecting the standing rigging and otherwise preparing the boat. I am not getting any takers to motor along in the heat for 8 hours a day down the ditch. And anchoring out without a masthead light is not optimal.

Thanks for the idea of pulling on both ends of the halyard, I will try that when I get back to the boat.
Good advice vs. bad advice. All advice on the net is worth what you pay. There are compromises to every solution. One halyard hoist not ideal, as John notes the genny likely shares the sheave with the main, could be also frozen, one way to find out. Unfurl the genny and try to exercise it. Exercising the main halyard is also an idea. As we kick things around options are exposed and debated. The ideal solution is a bucket crane but clearly you have no access to one. Also if you joist yourself you may need to unloed the sheaves - tying yourself off with appropriate climibing knots is viable. As is one halyard hoisting and tying yourself off to mast every ten feet or so as a safety fall.

Then we mustn't lose sight if the real problem we are trying to solve. Get a slightly neglected boat from Chesapeake to NC.

Sail it or motor it. Motoring as you state may be an option with its own drawbacks. Contaminated fuel, unknown condition of engine etc. dinghy as a tow vehicle as an option. You have the right thinking. Backups to your backups.

So what if you can drop the genny halyard and not the main at the end of it all. Can you secure a turning block on the genny halayard and run a temporary main halyard through this? Yes it is on the front of the mast and may mot pull all the way to the top. It may be enough to make the mainsail useable for the delivery.

In regards to contaminated fuel. Why not plan on the fact the tank is contaminated and rig a temporary tank and jerry can the amount you need. Clean the filters, rig the temp tank and you may have done enough to ensure reliable aux power. Jury rigged main halyard and you can get the boat home where you can plan the masthead work properly.

In regards to anchor light, rig a second block on that genny halyard and hoist a temporary anchor light or rig it to a spreader burgee halyard. No law says the anchor light has to be at the top of the mast.

Finally in regards to the standing rigging looks can be deceiving. Your great photo of the masthead shows at let surface corrision on the shroud attach and where the wire goes into the turnbuckle fitting. Could be a non problem but there is definitely something visible.

Good luck in whatever you decide but as I am just spitballing here it is most fundamental to be a troubleshooter and consider all options or combination of options before rejecting anything out of hand, even free climbing the mast which is not such a ridiculous idea. I've seen, admittedly way younger and fitter crew, free climb all the time.
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Old 13-07-2012, 10:38   #17
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Re: Frozen Mainsail halyard

Thanks Ex-Calif, great response! You seem to understand the situation ie how to best get a neglected boat home where I can carefully bring her up to date without being stranded in the middle of the dismal swamp or at the mercy of a shade tree diesel mechanic. The ideas you have raised are well thought out, especially the idea to use an auxiliary fuel supply.
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Old 13-07-2012, 10:53   #18
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Re: Frozen Mainsail halyard

[QUOTE=Azul;989660]I know that the sheave was not lubricated for at least two years, who knows how long before that, it is supposed to be lubricated q 6 months. On other threads it has been noted that going aloft with one halyard and no backup safety harness on another halyard is not smart, especially for a rookie... and now suddenly it is "good advice." I hadn't tried to decipher the equation of figuring out the furler system to see how that halyard works because I don't want to trust my life to one halyard and possibly rusty hardware holding it in place. The standing rigging from the deck looks to be fairly new and completely without corrosion, and the chainplates have been upgraded. "

Been sailing for 35 years and never have i used more than one halyard. Use a harness and a safety line. By the time you have a bosun's chair, bucket of tools, halyard and safety line, another piece of clutter just seems bad to me. It also makes the person below have to attend two lines at two places.... which can be a recipe for disaster in itself. Take some wd 40 with you. SPray liberally. If it wont break free, then knock the pin out and clean up the sheave and pin. You need to get up there to figure it out! Maybe you need to get a knowledgeable person to help, or go up there and you do the cranking. Given a choice I would go aloft as opposed to cranking any day!
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Old 13-07-2012, 11:06   #19
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Re: Frozen Mainsail halyard

If the 1 halyard does not make you feel safe, you could use a climbing harness. 1 halyard and a prusik around the mast. I have climed a rope with just a couple of prusik knots before. It would be a great safety device in the event that the 1 halyard you are using gave way due to unknown integrity.

I have a cal 27 and If I were solo, I would climb the mast free and push a prusik up in front of me. Its very, very painful and hard, but can be done. That prusik let me take breaks and rest on my harness. Don't ask how I know.

halyard for hoisting and prusik for safety is what I would do if I were in your shoes.

Where on the chesapeake are you located?
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Old 13-07-2012, 11:15   #20
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Re: Frozen Mainsail halyard

My fat ass has been sent up the stick on 1 halyard (because the others were already stuck at the top). The line should be a LOT stronger than what a person weighs. But given this boat has been sitting I would sure bounce up/down on it while on deck for a long time first!

Does the boat have separate topping lift that could be used as a backup?

Plus even if the main halyard sleeve is frozen it doen't mean the line can not be used as a backup. Winch up on the head sail halyard, take the slack out of the main halyard, repeat!
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Old 13-07-2012, 19:54   #21
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Re: Frozen Mainsail halyard

Azul, I vote for the single halyard and an independant safety harness. The winch grinder at deck level needs to give 100% attention to the halyard he is tending, not fiddling with 2. If the halyard breaks ,the safety harness might let you get pretty beat up but not hit the deck from 40 feet. Dont laugh at this, but you might want the halyard grinder to wear a safety helmit in case you drop something. A can of WD 40 from mast height can do major damage to a skull and guess what happens? The grinder lets go of the halyard and you are both injured. Take a small tap hammer up and hit the axle shaft back and forth. It will help the WD40 penetrate. On another note! If the diesel packs up while underway, dont tow the boat with your dink. Tie the dink along side at full throttle and use the ships rudder to steer. It works better. ___Another 2 Cents worth.____Grant.
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Old 14-07-2012, 00:15   #22
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Re: Frozen Mainsail halyard

Aloha,
Congratulations on the new to you boat!
I know you're in a hurry but take a deep breath!
You can fix that halyard!
The first thing you have to do is get a close look at it. WD40 is ok but freeing something frozen requires something like a strong penetrating oil like PB Blaster and once it's free then a shot of lubricant.
There are other ways a halyard can be frozen and that could be that the wire has gotten jammed beside the sheave so take lots of tools with you the first time you go up there. Take vice grips, thin screwdrivers, small hammer, sand paper, rags, and whatever else you think you might need. If there is a light up there that isn't working sometimes just taking the bulb out and sanding the terminals will get it going again.
One halyard and bosun's chair and a piece of line to tie around the mast and move up will be plenty. Yes, on the hard hat for the guy hoisting you up. Give him some help by using your arms and feet to climb with too.
Good luck and and let us know what you discover.
kind regards,
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Old 14-07-2012, 07:43   #23
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One caution on PB Blaster - don't use it in a plastic or delrin sheave. Take a can of it and WD40 up and use the appropriate one. Good luck!
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Old 14-07-2012, 10:58   #24
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Re: Frozen Mainsail halyard

Quote:
Originally Posted by gjordan View Post
Azul, I vote for the single halyard and an independant safety harness. The winch grinder at deck level needs to give 100% attention to the halyard he is tending, not fiddling with 2. If the halyard breaks ,the safety harness might let you get pretty beat up but not hit the deck from 40 feet. Dont laugh at this, but you might want the halyard grinder to wear a safety helmit in case you drop something. A can of WD 40 from mast height can do major damage to a skull and guess what happens? The grinder lets go of the halyard and you are both injured. Take a small tap hammer up and hit the axle shaft back and forth. It will help the WD40 penetrate. On another note! If the diesel packs up while underway, dont tow the boat with your dink. Tie the dink along side at full throttle and use the ships rudder to steer. It works better. ___Another 2 Cents worth.____Grant.
And yes, towing alongside is not only easier...it's really not even possible to tow with a line from a RIB! Dont ask how I know!
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Old 14-07-2012, 15:13   #25
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Re: Frozen Mainsail halyard

It is not possible to fix a problem that has not been diagnosed. Pulling the halyard back and forth might do more damage than good-you haven't diagnosed the problem. Your solution is 1.) climb the mast with your free halyard and diagnose the problem, 2.) pull your mast and diagnose the problem or 3.)motor it home with an auxiliary tank as Ex-Cal suggested and diagnose the problem after it is hauled. The key phrase here from my English 101 class is: diagnose the problem. Good luck.
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Old 14-07-2012, 16:22   #26
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Re: Frozen Mainsail halyard

FWIW,

From the photo it appears that the halyard is wire rather than rope. To me this suggests that it isn't a case of the sheave being frozen, but the wire having jumped the sheave and become wedged between the sheave and the masthead box. IF it was a frozen sheave, one could almost certainly get the halyard to move back and forth when not loaded, and I gather that this isn't the case.

IF this scenario is correct, then PB blaster or WD40 will not help the situation. It may be possible when at the masthead to drag the wire out from its wedged position, but this can be pretty difficult. Additionally, the wedged wire will likely have jammed the sheave onto the pin to the point that driving the pin out will be difficult. Not an easy job to do from a bosuns chair, but not impossible.

So, if I was in your place I would check the genoa halyard's condition visually, especially in way of the splice to the rope tail. If it is sound, I would use it to be hoisted to the masthead by someone who is experienced in such tasks. I would use a safety line prussick'd to the mast if worried about the integrity of the system as others have suggested. Once at the top a visual inspection will quickly reveal what the problem really is. If it is a jammed wire (as I suspect), then forcing it up from its jammed position may release it. Taking all the tools suggested earlier as well as some leather gloves will give you a fighting chance, but it is possible that you will not be able to get enough force on it to succeed... depends on how hard someone has winched on the halyard in its stuck condition! In that case, I fear that dropping the mast will be required, or attacking it from a crane.

If that isn't possible, then as others have said a motoring trip, perhaps aided by the headsail when appropriate is your best bet. I'm not familiar with the voyage ahead of you, but seems like folks mostly motor up and down the ICW anyway, so perhaps that isn't such a bid deal.

Good luck with you endeavors, mate!

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 14-07-2012, 18:07   #27
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I'm kinda agreeing with Jim, looks like a wire halyard too me. Had those in my Bristol until I replaced them after changing out the sheaves. I think the halyard has jumped out of the sheave.

By the way, if you decide to go top side, don't take the tools up with you. Have everything in a soft bucket on deck, attach a very light line to the bucket and carry the other end of the line up with you that you can then haul up the tools if you determine you will be able fix the problem. No since in hauling tools until you know what you are facing.

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Old 14-07-2012, 18:14   #28
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Re: Frozen Mainsail halyard

It could also be a broken Halyard wire or two inside the mast as was the case in my situation.
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