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Old 05-01-2011, 15:47   #1
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'Reaching Strut' End on a Whisker Pole ?

Here's the deal, I got a screaming good deal (like ... free) on a whisker pole thats the perfect length for my Columbia 26. I plan to use it to wing out my genny downwind. One end has the standard retracting pin clasp that you find on normal spinnaker poles, but the other end has the fitting shown below. I researched this and found out this is an end used as a "reaching strut".

Now I'm a cheap sumbitch and I don't want to spend $100+ on a new end fitting for this pole, so I'm looking for ways I can use the pole as is. Any ideas how I would attach this fitting to the genny clew or sheet, in such a way it can be quickly attached/removed? Anyone ever use such a fitting as a normal spin/whisker pole?

Thanks in advance for the great advice I'm sure I'll get!


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Old 05-01-2011, 16:03   #2
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G'Day twister,

Hey, it should work just fine as a whisker pole. You'll need to add a foreguy to control its fore/aft position (a line from the end fitting going to a block on the foredeck and then back to the cockpit). Then just drop the "jaw" over the sheet with the opening facing downward, shove the pole outward until you can engage the inboard end and then pull the foreguy to bring the pole up to the clew of the sail. No worries, mate!

Incidentally, a reaching strut is a short pole used to force the spinnaker guy outward when close reaching with a kite... gives a better angle and keeps the guy off the shrouds.

Enjoy your downwind sailing!

Jim
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Old 05-01-2011, 16:18   #3
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AWESOME Jim, thanks! I was concerned about relying on just gravity and sheet tension to hold this fitting against the clew, but the foreguy idea is great. I'll experiment next time I take the ol' tub out for a spin.
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Old 09-01-2011, 16:38   #4
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I got a deal on a pole the same as yours for my H27, I've thought of what Jim C says but was worried about outboard jaw seperating from clew and polking a hole in headsail. What keeps outboard jaw tight in clew?
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Old 09-01-2011, 16:44   #5
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G'Day Dakno,

If you set the pole with the opening facing downward and keep a bit of tension on the foreguy it should stay in place ok. If it should come adrift, say when the sail gets the air rolled out of it, it will likely just fall free. I really doubt if there is a situation where you could damage your sail.

Cheers,

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Old 09-01-2011, 17:49   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
... If you set the pole with the opening facing downward and keep a bit of tension on the foreguy it should stay in place ok. If it should come adrift, say when the sail gets the air rolled out of it, it will likely just fall free. I really doubt if there is a situation where you could damage your sail.
You can lash the whisker pole/reaching strut to the shroud using a sail-tie or scrap of line. This should keep the strut from falling down if/when it gets loose.
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Old 09-01-2011, 19:28   #7
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You can lash the whisker pole/reaching strut to the shroud using a sail-tie or scrap of line. This should keep the strut from falling down if/when it gets loose.
Gord,

That only works when you are really squared off near DDW. If one wants to carry the pole with the wind farther forward (as we very often do), the pole needs to come well forward of the shrouds.

But really, I doubt if the fitting shown in the OP would fall off very easily.

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 09-01-2011, 19:30   #8
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I second what Jim said in his first post. Making that pole work is all about foreguy tension. BUT NOT TOO MUCH!!!

You'll notice that the pole is somewhat light, and that it could be easily bent. It keeps from doing that by not having the most secure grip on the sheet. In other words, it counts on the sheet shaking it off when things get nasty. When a flogging sheet might bust a similar pole, yours will just let go and say "sorry."

Don't use it in heavy air and you'll be fine.
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Old 28-01-2011, 12:48   #9
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Just to cap off this thread, I've now used that reaching strut to pole out my genny several times. Works great. I rigged up foreguy and it allows me better flexibility on pole position, but I've found it's really not necessary. That roller end of the pole seems to stay secure to the sheet right at the clew without it. So I've re-purposed that foreguy into a preventer for wing-N-wing runs. Works great.

Thanks again all for the advice.
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Old 01-02-2011, 17:23   #10
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OK at the risk of sounding dense... The outboard end of "reaching strut" just lays on top of headsail sheet adjacent to clew. There is a halyard attached to outboard end of "reaching strut" to maintain horiziontal line, there is a fore guy to set angle from mast to clew in relation to centerline of boat, and trim is set with headsail sheet. There is no mechanical attachment between outboard jaw of "reaching strut" and clew or sheet? Is it held in place by gravity? Foreguy tension? Am I overly complicating things?
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Old 01-02-2011, 17:31   #11
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PS shoud I also have an afterguy on above set up or will sheet do?
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Old 01-02-2011, 17:36   #12
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Hey Dakno, I suppose with a "real" race boat, all those guys, sheets, halyards etc. might be used, but I'm a simple guy on a simple boat.

That hook end of the strut just lays over the sheet, and just the tension of the sheet forces the strut to the clew. The roller works real slick, I just lay it over the sheet anywhere, and as soon as tension is applied it just zips right to the clew. So far it's never fallen off, but I'm guessing under rough conditions that may not be the case. A foreguy does offer the ability to position the clew fore and aft, but with no foreguy it seems to naturally want to go to about the right place. My strut is extendable and I was able to tune it's length to keep everything where it looks like it should go. In my case, the ring thingy on the mast that the other end of the strut attaches to (I'm sure it has a fancy name) is held on with band clamps, so I was also able to tune it's position on the mast such that no topping lift or halyard is needed to keep the pole approximately level. Between that pole on the genny and a preventer on the boom, I seem to have some pretty good downwind heading range.

Make sense? I have no idea if this is the right way to do it, but it's working for me!
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Old 01-02-2011, 18:42   #13
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Thanks wristwister, I think Ive enough "how to" now to get on water and get some real life experience. So, you have been out several times in Seattle since mid January? Jeez...you must be very young, daredevil, single, crazy... I thought it was cold and nasty up there this time of year. I have a hard time getting to boat here in Gulf this time of yr. I would say, stay warm, dry , safe but know it would come across as geezer speak. thanks and good sailing.
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Old 01-02-2011, 22:26   #14
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Hey, as far as I'm concerned winter is prime sailing season up here in the PNW. As long as you dress warm, much fun can be had. We have an active winter racing scene up here too. I've been racing my little C26 on Sundays. That's where I've been successfully using the reaching pole. I'm definitely not young, daredevil, single or crazy. I just love to sail!
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Old 01-02-2011, 22:41   #15
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Goosebumps regatta?
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