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Old 23-01-2010, 09:05   #1
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Main Halyard Twisting

I hoist my 2/1 main 65 ft X2, from the electric winch in the cockpit of the catamaran. After I remove the line from the winch the line is nastily twisted.

1. Does anyone have a solution for this?

2. At the tip of the mast the halyard's eye is fixed to a non movable pin. If I changed that pin to a rotating fixture, non fixed, would this alleviate any of the problem. I notice that the twisting, that I believe starts at the winch, eventually works its way forward.

Many thanks
david
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Old 23-01-2010, 10:04   #2
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More details, pleae. My last boat had a 2:1 halyard.

Does the headboard block swivel? It should not, it should be fixed fore-aft.

What type line?
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Old 23-01-2010, 10:46   #3
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Hello Tom
Excuse my ignorance but what is 'headboard'?

Line is West Marine T900 Technora/dyneema Double Braid.

If I may....The line has an eyesplice at the top into a pin at the top of the mast, fixed. It comes down to a loose but fixed block on the head of the sail. It goes back up and into the mast. Then down the mast and in a series of 90 degree turns end up in the cockpit at the electric winch.

Thanks foryour thoughts
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Old 23-01-2010, 12:51   #4
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Toss the twisted halyard in the water, let it trail behind you, then coil it in. No more kinks!
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Old 23-01-2010, 12:59   #5
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The headboard is the metal plates that reinforce the head of the sail...

Quote:
Originally Posted by dpollitt View Post
Hello Tom
Excuse my ignorance but what is 'headboard'?

Line is West Marine T900 Technora/dyneema Double Braid.

If I may....The line has an eyesplice at the top into a pin at the top of the mast, fixed. It comes down to a loose but fixed block on the head of the sail. It goes back up and into the mast. Then down the mast and in a series of 90 degree turns end up in the cockpit at the electric winch.

Thanks foryour thoughts
... or exactly what you said.

I used the same line. It must be the 90s, loaded upon raising, but loose on lowering.

Yup, try towing it for a few minutes.
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Old 24-01-2010, 21:16   #6
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It looks to me like the winch does put a little twist in the halyard as it works. So I try to haul by hand as much as possible.
But if you neatly coil the halyard after raising the sail, you might be twisting the halyard as you coil. When the sail is lowered, this twist goes up the mast. I coil the halyard in a figure 8 to keep this from happening.
Just a thought.
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Old 24-01-2010, 23:49   #7
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I have a similar main halyard set up and have had the same problem - Intrepid and Thinwater are on the money. Drag it behind for a while and the twist will disappear, at least for a while.
Good luck!!
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Old 26-01-2010, 21:08   #8
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Good point.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ggray View Post
It looks to me like the winch does put a little twist in the halyard as it works. So I try to haul by hand as much as possible.
But if you neatly coil the halyard after raising the sail, you might be twisting the halyard as you coil. When the sail is lowered, this twist goes up the mast. I coil the halyard in a figure 8 to keep this from happening.
Just a thought.
Neat coils without figure-8s are the mother of many tangles.That, and I would always flake the line out before lowering.
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Old 27-01-2010, 04:45   #9
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Originally Posted by thinwater View Post
Neat coils without figure-8s are the mother of many tangles.That, and I would always flake the line out before lowering.
After coiling the figure 8s (long ones, about 5 feet, because of the long 2 part halyard), I flip it upside down on the deck. It usually feeds off the coil nicely when lowering the sail. I'm not always ship shape, but I always coil the halyard this way ASAP so the sail can be dropped quickly.
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Old 27-01-2010, 10:38   #10
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Change to a single braid line like Vectran or Amsteel. If you use an electric winch, do away with the 2:1 system. It means you now almost have twice the length of line and it takes twice as long to hoist the main. The winch already takes care of the hard work, you can use 1:1.

Having had experience with both types of line mentioned above, I would prefer Samson Amsteel now because it is much more resistant to UV. Watch diameter and check if that works on your self tailer and rope clutches. I had to change the clutches. These ropes are more slippery so they need more turns on the winch and a really good clutch.

Another very good application of Amsteel is for the reefing lines. Here, the non-twisting nature of a single braid, combined with the slippery Amsteel means that the reefing experience changes drastically to the good side ;-)

ciao!
Nick.
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Old 27-01-2010, 11:10   #11
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Got the same problem on my main sheet as it goes through 3 blocks at the rear of my boom and compounds on the track.. the blocks on the underside of the boom twist due to the twisting of the line..
i was told that the "sta-set" line has a problem when used in this application as the inside core is twisted in one direction and the outside in the other when a load is put upon it.. And I could get rid of the problem in one of two ways...One was to weld the block solid to keep it from twisting or to change over to T-900 that has a solid core and wont twist..
Think I'll check out the "Amsteel" first........
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Old 27-01-2010, 14:57   #12
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@Randyonr3: I would not use Amsteel for a sheet because it is slippery and you don't need the low-stretch from it.

But that doesn't change the fact that a single braid does not twist and kink by it's nature. If you flake it on the floor, it just drops into a heap without a single twist.

So, for sheets, I would recommend Regatta Polyester Single Braid from New England Ropes. I have that for my jib sheets now and it is nice indeed. It has a very good grip in your hands and on winches, selftailers, jammers etc. I have this for my jib sheets after reading that Practical Sailor announced it as their top choice for sheets.

For my main sheet, I would need too big a diameter because my sheet attachment is halfway the boom. But I only have a 2:1 purchase there because it always sits on an electric winch. I use some South African brand double braid and just live with the kinks and twists, which ain't too bad because it is a short tail to handle. You have much more purchase so much more length but it also means you don't need a big diameter so I think it'll be great for your main sheet.

You can use a single braid high-tech line for light weather job sheets. Racers do and handle the slippery part by putting an outer braid on the part that is handled by hand and on the winch. You can buy that separate (cheaper) or buy double braid and remove the outer braid where you don't need it. This also works very well for the jib furling line ( part without cover on the drum).

ciao!
Nick.
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Old 28-01-2010, 10:18   #13
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Thanks to all for the discussion
Cant change lines right now....although the change to 1;1 makes sense.

But...the question still remains: Can one put a swivel block at the top of the mast to alleviate the twists that have found their way up the mast from the winch twists.

Is there any down siide to seawater soaking the line?
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Old 28-01-2010, 11:04   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dpollitt View Post
Thanks to all for the discussion
Cant change lines right now....although the change to 1;1 makes sense.
yeah, saves money too...

Quote:
But...the question still remains: Can one put a swivel block at the top of the mast to alleviate the twists that have found their way up the mast from the winch twists.
You must check if there is enough room between the block on the headboard and the pin that holds the end of the halyard. I would use a stainless anchor swivel, cheap type with two jaws, not those fancy connectors. The reason being that the real solution is replacing the halyard so any money spend now is a waste.

Quote:
Is there any down siide to seawater soaking the line?
yes of course there is. I don't understand why people say those things. It's like an old sailorman's trick from the past. I would take the line ashore and straighten the twists out with a helper or two. If you soak your lines, use fresh water with some mild soap like Joy and wash and rinse, rinse rinse. All that dirt coming out hurts the line whenever it is tensioned (internal chafing) so this is a good thing to do as regular maintenance. Same for salt crystals and sea critters, they don't belong in modern lines on a yacht.

ciao!
Nick.
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Old 05-08-2010, 16:08   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v Jedi View Post
Change to a single braid line like Vectran or Amsteel. If you use an electric winch, do away with the 2:1 system. It means you now almost have twice the length of line and it takes twice as long to hoist the main. The winch already takes care of the hard work, you can use 1:1.

Having had experience with both types of line mentioned above, I would prefer Samson Amsteel now because it is much more resistant to UV. Watch diameter and check if that works on your self tailer and rope clutches. I had to change the clutches. These ropes are more slippery so they need more turns on the winch and a really good clutch.

Another very good application of Amsteel is for the reefing lines. Here, the non-twisting nature of a single braid, combined with the slippery Amsteel means that the reefing experience changes drastically to the good side ;-)

ciao!
Nick.
Hi Nick,

Just out of curiosity - what clutches do you use and what size are they for with respect to your amsteel halyards?

Ie. 12-14mm clutch for 12mm amsteel?

Also - did you have to cover or insert stuff into the core to thicken it where the clutch engages or not?

I have Lewmar D2 clutches and looking at Amsteel, but concerned about clutch engagement and don't really want to mess around with covers/snakes in core etc...
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