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Old 25-08-2014, 08:31   #1
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Galvanized standing rigging - a few reservations

Hey guys,

So the job of replacing the standing rigging is coming up, and I pretty much had it all figured out. But then I read a post here about galvanized wire and did some more research. I'm thinking of using this instead of SS, but am left with a few questions I'm hoping you could shed some light on.

1. Thimbles

On a normal terminal there is a hole just as big as the clevis pin going through it. This makes for the most ideal distribution of the load. Wrapping the wire around a thimble will probably mean chosing a pretty big thimble to reduce stress from bending the wire. This in turn means a big point load where the thimble pulls on the clevis pin.

Ideally the solution would be a solid thimble with a hole in it the size of the clevis pin, but those seem near impossible to find and hard to fabricate... Any thoughts on this?

2. Maintenance

So it seems galvanized wire will need maintenance in the form of washing it down with fresh water every now and again and every six months a rubdown with boiled linseed oil.

Alternatively it should be possible to paint it in some tar like. Substance, wrap it with cloth and tar again. I'm not sure about the specifics, but the idea is to cover it up further from the elements, delaying corrosion further. This means not being able to inspect the wire anymore though... What would you do?

3. The wire itself

While it is fairly straightforward to find standing rigging SS wire, there are literally hundreds and hundreds of types of galvanized wire. High strength stuff, cable for antenna masts, cable for cable cars, 7x7 cable, cable with rope core, 1x19 cable,... What cable would you use and why? And more importantly, how do you verify having a good quality source? I can imagine huge differences in the quality of the steel and galvanizing?

Thanks!


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Old 25-08-2014, 08:43   #2
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Re: Galvanized standing rigging - a few reservations

Regarding #2, what you want to do is "worm, parcel and serve" your rigging. This isn't the alternative, this is the first choice.

Rinsing and oiling regularly is the alternative.
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Old 25-08-2014, 10:10   #3
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Re: Galvanized standing rigging - a few reservations

Does this also apply to the small diameter cable found on small sailing yachts? All I can find on the subject seems to be from square riggers and the like... It seems pretty much impossible to worm a cable that's only 8mm in diameter :s
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Old 25-08-2014, 12:11   #4
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Re: Galvanized standing rigging - a few reservations

Well why not? Just use smaller yarns.

I don't know what everyone else does....well yeah I do....I see lots of bare rigging in every marina. But me? I'd do just cause it looks shippy. I like shippy, so I'd do it even with stainless.
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Old 25-08-2014, 12:26   #5
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Galvanized standing rigging - a few reservations

Double post
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Old 25-08-2014, 13:56   #6
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Re: Galvanized standing rigging - a few reservations

Thimbles - use heavy duty type. Crosby makes both light and heavy duty versions. Reinforcement can be welded in if necessary, it is normally not necessary.

Protection from corrosion - you are not using tar to protect the wire. This is not the 19th century. Ditto for parceling and serving. You are using coal tar epoxy. Wrapping with a thin layer of cloth tape, followed by more coal tar, simply provides a thicker layer of protection. You do not need to rinse or otherwise baby this.

Wire - you should get a basic education on this. Different wires have different properties and are better suited to different tasks, whether the wire is made in stainless or carbon steel. That said, for standing rigging you will probably end up using 1x7 or 7x7. 1x7 is the closest thing to rod rigging you can get, it is very stiff. You must use EHS grade. 7x7 has more flexibility and is still almost as stiff as 1x19 stainless steel. It is only available up to 3/8".

Only buy wire made in a reputable country. US, European, etc. I would use Korean wire. I would not touch Chinese wire, the gamble is not worth it in my book.
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Old 25-08-2014, 16:02   #7
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Re: Galvanized standing rigging - a few reservations

How frustrating, 3/8inch is 9.5mm roughly. Plenty, as I only need 8mm. However, in the Netherlands it only seems available up to 6mm...

Thimbles, is this what you mean by heavy duty?

DIN3091 Heavy-Duty Wire Rope Thimble - China Ringging Hardwares

This is pretty much exactly what I was talking about, but they seem pretty much impossible to come by. Somewhat more common seem to be the ones that are a full "oval" rather then just a metal gutter. I'm not sure if the full oval ones would make any difference as far as the load is concerned though...
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Old 25-08-2014, 16:15   #8
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Re: Galvanized standing rigging - a few reservations

Why are you looking at Chinese components?

Go to a commercial rigging website. Crosby in the US is very good. You will see light duty, heavy duty and solid thimbles. Heavy duty will be fine. Bear in mind that with commercial rigging equipment that you are buying equipment for professional, commercial work. There are huge liabilities for its failure. Quality control and reliability are very high. This is a different world from most yacht hardware.
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Old 25-08-2014, 16:18   #9
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Re: Galvanized standing rigging - a few reservations

Quote:
Originally Posted by Orchidius View Post
Hey guys,
2. Maintenance

So it seems galvanized wire will need maintenance in the form of washing it down with fresh water every now and again and every six months a rubdown with boiled linseed oil.

Alternatively it should be possible to paint it in some tar like. Substance, wrap it with cloth and tar again. I'm not sure about the specifics, but the idea is to cover it up further from the elements, delaying corrosion further. This means not being able to inspect the wire anymore though... What would you do?
This is an excellent procedure for a swing bridge designed to last 100 years.
Was also done when labour was very cheap.

Would you do it on a boat ?????

Washing down in fresh water is more important for stainless than galv. Also more advisable on a windy coast than in a marina with fresh water on the surface from nearby river.
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Old 25-08-2014, 16:21   #10
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Re: Galvanized standing rigging - a few reservations

The link was just what popped up when I googled heavy duty thimble pictures, nothing behind it . I'll look into it a bit further!

Cable wise, assuming I won't be able to find 7x7 in 8mm as I need it, what would you suggest using? 1x7 is not the right tool for the job according to Brian Toss himself:

using 1X7 galvanized EHS for rigging? - SparTalk

Apart from that I've heard people say it's too stiff to wrap around a thimble (without damaging/kinking the wire or its galvanization).
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Old 25-08-2014, 18:35   #11
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Re: Galvanized standing rigging - a few reservations

Yes, I've read from a number of sources that 1x7 can't be formed around thimbles. It's not true. There are a number of sailboats rigged this way, the wire does form around the thimble without distortion and the resulting rig does work well.

I've read Brion's statement about 1x7. I'm not sure what he bases his statement on, but again, this wire does work well in the real world. I know of guys that have been sailing with it for the better part of 20 years, including lots of deep ocean work. Most of the big commercial towers, radio masts, high tension towers etc are rigged with 1x7.

There was another thread on this subject just a few days ago. I'd suggest doing a search and pulling it up. It addressed a number of points well.

1x7 takes a lot of force to form around a thimble. It is definitely doable, a commercial rigging shop should have no problem.

If you want to get a genuine reality on this, as opposed to opinions from me and others, just buy a short length of 1x7 in the diameter you plan to use, take it to a shop and have them form it and swage on a sleeve. As an engineer, I can tell you that there is frequently differing opinion about what will/will not work. A quick experiment is worth a lot. Observable reality.
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Old 25-08-2014, 20:37   #12
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Re: Galvanized standing rigging - a few reservations

you need to get edjumucated on the trad ways if you're going to do this. look into brion toss' books (rigger's apprentice) and website, and check out his blog. there is plenty of info on the web about this. Online catalogues from reputable companies like Crosby also contain a lot of good info. this is old tech - data is out there.

galvy rigging is tried and true, solid and easy to setup, handle and maintain. it does take more elbow grease (and other types of grease); but can easily outlast modern stainless and for a lot less $$.

there is also a middle ground approach that uses galvy wire and swaged (or spelter cast using epoxies or zinc) end terminals similar to what you find on modern stainless rigs. threaded ends, solid eyes, fork ends, ball ends and sockets etc. can all be done in galvanized rigging too; although those fittings are expensive compared to hand splices or even wire clips/clamps.

Yes - I said wire clips/clamps. The cast body type with two nuts and a U-bolt. they are ugly, skin rippers, line foulers, and rust generators - but they sure as **** work just fine for making an eye (or a joint) in a piece of wire. parcel em up and put baggywrinkles near them and you'd never know they were there...

...I've owned and run a few boats with galvy rigging. loved it for it's simplicity and reliability. Once replaced 2 lower shrouds on a 75' gaff ketch with one continuous piece of 3/4" clean galvy wire I found in a skip... just wrapped both ends around the mast at the hounds, secured with 3 wire clips, and brought the ends down to cast-in-place eye sockets. Worked a treat for 8 years, and took less than an hour to do.

but, my current boat is all stainless. sleeker, less windage, more suited to the aluminum stick and rig. I probably won't change, but if I was forced to replace a stay in a remote location and could only use galvy - I wouldn't hesitate for a second!

Do a little more research, and good luck-
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Old 27-08-2014, 16:41   #13
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Re: Galvanized standing rigging - a few reservations

For suppliers of good quality gal rigging look for manufacturers of commercial lifting equipment. In order to save money (they have to load test lifting gear) get them to stamp the swages 'not for lifting'. Forget parcelling and serving - yeah it looks 'shippy' but its a lot of work for little return and the guy who suggested it said he'd do it to stainless - perfect way to promote corrosion in ss is air seal it - so take that advice with a pinch of salt. Best thing about gal is it will eventually look so embarassingly rusty as hell that you'll replace it long before it loses any strength.
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Old 27-08-2014, 17:47   #14
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Re: Galvanized standing rigging - a few reservations

It's not air sealed, it's oil sealed.
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Old 28-08-2014, 01:30   #15
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Re: Galvanized standing rigging - a few reservations

I found a source, see:

Wire rope/stays from Korea, What to Think?

As for maintenance, I don't think I'll bother with the extensive maintenance. I'll was/rub it down yearly with boiled linseed oil, but for that price I can easily replace it should it get too nasty anyway .

That only leaves the question of thimbles...
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