Knothead- thanks for the reply. I do use regular spreader boots that do allow airflow. The wires are not seized to the spreaders though. There is a bolt that keeps them from flopping out when loose (like stepping the mast). Otherwise, once tight, only the tension keeps them in the slot, and has for 30 years. I just assumed this was "normal".
I don't entirely agree with your statement about the shrouds being overdue. The boat is only used about 4 months a year, and the mast
is unstepped and stored most years. There were zero meathooks / broken strands in the old wires. Of course, there could be weakness just inside the swages, and that is the reason I replaced them - to be on the safe side.
However, there are many, many boats up here, coastal sailing in Nova Scotia
, with original 20 - 35+ year old rigging
. Very few stories of losing rigs.
I think that those who advocate replacing rigging
every 5-10 years are buying
demands and consumerism, as opposed to a real need for new rigging. Of course, if the sailboat has sailed tens of thousands of miles, and / or been used year round, it certainly would shorten the life span.
Most local sailors think I am nuts for replacing after "only" this long!