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Old 16-04-2015, 08:12   #1
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Pole Lift Rigging

Now that I finally have my pole (a 25 foot carbon pole off a TP52), I need to put together rigging for it. I don't know how to do this, so maybe someone can give me some tips.

I have a track for the the pole on the front of my mast -- 32mm T-track. At the top of the track is a small turning block.

I have seen Oysters rigged with a lovely dedicated winch and endless line for this. I think this is too complicated and expensive for me -- at least for this stage.

So I was thinking just to sling an 8mm line through that turning block (it doesn't look like it will take anything bigger), attach another line to the car, and just haul the car up and cleat it off on both ends. Simples, right?

But I am on the hard right next to a gorgeous old Swan, and it has quite heavy tackle for its pole lift. I was surprised. 10mm or maybe even 12mm rope with double purchase both above and below.

Why would you need that? Is there so much load on this?

Maybe it's because it's for a regular spinnaker, which might need to be adjusted under load, rather than use as a whisker pole?
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Old 16-04-2015, 09:27   #2
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Re: Pole Lift Rigging

I've never wanted to adjust the pole height once the sail is set, so I do not see the need for block and tackle to move the car under load.

Maybe higher performance people tweak the pole height for certain conditions?

Our pole is set to exactly the same place, every time. I've sewn whippings onto the foreguy, afterguy, and topping lift to mark where they should be cleated off. This makes it less fiddly and it feels luxurious to swing the pole out and have it pop right into place without having to adjust anything.

I need a downhaul for the pole car. Maybe you have a nicer ball bearing car with less friction that will let it fall on its own. On my boats, with ~[pole weight]*0.5*tan(angle of topping lift to mast) of the poles weight pushing directly into the track and twisting the car, it doesn't fall on it's own. This is with a heavier aluminum pole and a non-ball-bearing car. Maybe your carbon fiber one will fall on it's own, since there's less weight to twist and push the car in on the track, and you have proportionally more weight on the ends with the weight of the car and the pole end.

Oh, and I am against the pair of cam cleats that riggers seem to want to put on the continuous loop for adjusting the height of the car. It's not as secure as just having a little more slack in the continuous line and using a normal cleat. We use our whisker pole in heavier weather, to keep the jib from shaking the rig when going downwind, and like everything to be well fastened in place.

By the way, I've seen people who set the outboard pole end right at the clew of the sail. They move the pole forward if they partially roll up the sail, to keep it right at the clew. I've never done this -- I don't mind there being lots of sheet between the pole and the clew. Do you guys know if there's a reason to keep the pole end close to the clew?
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Old 16-04-2015, 09:57   #3
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Re: Pole Lift Rigging

Quote:
Originally Posted by msponer View Post
I've never wanted to adjust the pole height once the sail is set, so I do not see the need for block and tackle to move the car under load.

Maybe higher performance people tweak the pole height for certain conditions?

Our pole is set to exactly the same place, every time. I've sewn whippings onto the foreguy, afterguy, and topping lift to mark where they should be cleated off. This makes it less fiddly and it feels luxurious to swing the pole out and have it pop right into place without having to adjust anything.

I need a downhaul for the pole car. Maybe you have a nicer ball bearing car with less friction that will let it fall on its own. On my boats, with ~[pole weight]*0.5*tan(angle of topping lift to mast) of the poles weight pushing directly into the track and twisting the car, it doesn't fall on it's own. This is with a heavier aluminum pole and a non-ball-bearing car. Maybe your carbon fiber one will fall on it's own, since there's less weight to twist and push the car in on the track, and you have proportionally more weight on the ends with the weight of the car and the pole end.

Oh, and I am against the pair of cam cleats that riggers seem to want to put on the continuous loop for adjusting the height of the car. It's not as secure as just having a little more slack in the continuous line and using a normal cleat. We use our whisker pole in heavier weather, to keep the jib from shaking the rig when going downwind, and like everything to be well fastened in place.

By the way, I've seen people who set the outboard pole end right at the clew of the sail. They move the pole forward if they partially roll up the sail, to keep it right at the clew. I've never done this -- I don't mind there being lots of sheet between the pole and the clew. Do you guys know if there's a reason to keep the pole end close to the clew?
Should it be a continuous loop? I guess that saves cordage.

What diameter rope are you using? I am thinking that 8mm should be plenty, and I'm not sure anything bigger will fit through the turning block.
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Old 16-04-2015, 10:10   #4
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Re: Pole Lift Rigging

I'm guessing ours is ~6-8mm. I don't feel it's ever under much load. Our pole is set horizontal, so no portion of the sheet load is trying to move the car vertically: the line is only for the weight of the pole and friction in the car.

I like the continuous loop. It means you don't have to coil two lines when you move the car.

So our hardware is: two blocks at the top and bottom of the track. And a cleat at about elbow height, to keep the loop in place.

I've seen people set the inboard end of the pole low, so it is not horizontal. I believe they do this to shorten the effective length of the pole, to make their jib fuller, less flat. I've never felt the need to do this. This would add a load on this control line, though not much, since the angle is still small.
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Old 16-04-2015, 10:53   #5
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Re: Pole Lift Rigging

Do you use an afterguy on your pole, or is a foreguy alone enough?

I am setting up permanent barber haulers with stanchion blocks, clutches, turning blocks, all of which I can use for the foreguys, which should be very convenient. Just unreeve the barber haulers and reeve the foreguys through the same setup.

But if I'm going to be using after guys, I'll need to think about more clutches.
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Old 16-04-2015, 11:16   #6
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Re: Pole Lift Rigging

I use both a foreguy and afterguy. I like having the pole held in place no matter what the jib is doing. It allows us to roll up the jib, or jibe, without messing with the pole. We tend to do this at night, and just leave dealing with the pole until morning. I also like to use the pole in stronger winds, to keep the scrap of jib from pumping the rig, and like having the pole held firm.

I've only ever used the mooring cleats at the bow and stern for the foreguy and afterguy. Since we have the guys marked it does not feel like much work to cleat them off and then pull the pole down and swing it out. Before I figured out to mark them, it was work to run back and forth to adjust the guys and topping lift properly.

Amel's have a nice system where you can adjust the foreguy from near the mast, but I feel that only makes sense because they have double poles. With a single pole I'd still have to go to the bow to loop the foreguy through a turning block. At which point I may as well just make it fast to a mooring cleat.
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Old 16-04-2015, 11:31   #7
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Re: Pole Lift Rigging

Quote:
Originally Posted by msponer View Post
I use both a foreguy and afterguy. I like having the pole held in place no matter what the jib is doing. It allows us to roll up the jib, or jibe, without messing with the pole. We tend to do this at night, and just leave dealing with the pole until morning. I also like to use the pole in stronger winds, to keep the scrap of jib from pumping the rig, and like having the pole held firm.

I've only ever used the mooring cleats at the bow and stern for the foreguy and afterguy. Since we have the guys marked it does not feel like much work to cleat them off and then pull the pole down and swing it out. Before I figured out to mark them, it was work to run back and forth to adjust the guys and topping lift properly.

Amel's have a nice system where you can adjust the foreguy from near the mast, but I feel that only makes sense because they have double poles. With a single pole I'd still have to go to the bow to loop the foreguy through a turning block. At which point I may as well just make it fast to a mooring cleat.
This is incredibly useful; thank you very much.

If you're going to use an afterguy, then I guess you can just cleat off the foreguy and forget about it. I guess the afterguy will lead fair to an aft quarter mooring cleat, and could be just cleated off. Or if I wanted some tension on it, I guess I could use my barber hauler system. Hmmm.
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Old 16-04-2015, 11:43   #8
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Re: Pole Lift Rigging

I like two controls on the pole: one up, one down. And I fit ours to the center of rope or wire vees that run between the ends.

If the pole is heavy, I like the up-lifting control to be upwards of 8mm dia. The down-pulling one I like at least 10mm dia, unless there is a purchase. Size not for strength, for man-handling.

I do not like sailing without pole controls as the oscillations tend to get too extreme then.

There are n ways to skin a cat and how you do yours is up to you. Avoid basic mistakes like attaching the control lines to the center of the boom etc. and you will be fine. You can always adjust and modify your rig later if you find some control is not handy or too heavy.

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Old 16-04-2015, 13:11   #9
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Re: Pole Lift Rigging

For the butt end of the pole, I just used a spinnaker pole slide car on the mast track. I didn't bother with the block and camcleats to raise/lower the pole. I'm able to adjust the height as needed, though it is not as easy as it would be with a dedicated set of lines/blocks. You can always replace the slide car with one with ball-bearings and add the line/rigging later (that was my original plan).

In the past, I've been on boats with the continuous loop. I found that with 2' extra (enough to tie off the line on the cleat), you can cleat off the position to fully secure the pole. If I were to add this, I'd add a small cleat and extra line to the loop/length.

I rigged top and bottom bridles on the pole, using 1/8" dyneema and a bunch of brummel eye splices. I debated whether to use stainless rings to attache the topping lift and foreguy. I decided that I didn't want them and made butterfly loops instead. Seems to work, plenty strong and not that expensive, so you can replace every few years if needed.

With a small pair of Harken composite blocks, I rigged a foreguy. One block laced between the bow cleats (more dyneema) and the other attached to the midship cleat. These were used to lead the foreguy to the aft cleat. I originally had the foreguy lead back on both sides and this was too much confusion.

Yes, afterguy. You might as well secure the pole as much as possible.

Topping lift I used the spare jib halyard.

All the runs are clean and it is pretty easy to trim the chute. Everything is removable, so I didn't need to drill holes in our deck, mount blocks, cleats, etc.

I also seem to use the pole to pole out the jib. The boat is very stable and fast.

For version 1.2, I'm pretty happy.
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