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Old 22-11-2010, 12:31   #1
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Roller Furler Line: 1/2" with No Core, or 3/8" Yacht Braid ?

So, the 3rd time we used the furler after rebuilding it, the furling line broke. I was not pulling it hard at all - it just rotted out and/or it was too weak to start with. TOTALLY my fault: The Admiral asked me when we were putting it back together "should we replace the furling line while it's apart". "Nah. It looks fine...". All weekend long I've been regreting and reliving THAT remark!

Anyway, we have a Hood 3250 furler, vintage 1990's. It had a 1/2" furling line, with the core removed from the part that goes on the furler. While I LIKE the thought of repeating this, the line didn't look at all in bad shape, and the part with the core is still in very good condition - I wouldn't hesitate to use it for another application. So, it seems that by using this technique, we are using the weakest part of the line for a fairly critical application - and I'm not at all thrilled with this.

Even with the core removed, we use the WHOLE furler up with line.

I'm tempted to replace it with a 3/8" yacht braid line, but 1) it will be more difficult to pull and 2) I'm not entirely sure that I can get enough 3/8" on the furler.

Any thoughts?
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Old 22-11-2010, 12:45   #2
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We have 9 mm (3/8") on our furler (40' boat) and it seems to work fine and has lasted for 25,000 miles of sailing and 5 years. I don't think I would remove the core, since that is the main source of strength.
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Old 22-11-2010, 13:27   #3
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FWIW,

Consider that the cover is exposed to UV and will degrade in strength over time, while the core is protected and tends to retain it's strength.

A 3/8" or 10mm bit of yacht braid will be completely adequate in strength... can't speak to the drum capacity issue, though.

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Old 22-11-2010, 17:39   #4
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Think 1/4" Spectra with a cover. Most will never need another furling line.

FWIW...
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Old 22-11-2010, 18:28   #5
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I have used 1/4" Technora on a large ProFurl for 15 years and it is still fully functional. But having the stanchion roller blocks/pulleys and ball bearing turning blocks makes a big different as there is no wear on the line by dragging it over a static/non-rotating guide. The high-tech line has zero stretch and incredible strength.
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Old 22-11-2010, 18:35   #6
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Use a line that has a spectra core and a polyester cover. Remove the cover for the part that isn't handled or on the winch. That is what I think is the normal way... so remove the cover where not needed instead of removing the core.

ciao!
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Old 23-11-2010, 13:22   #7
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Use a line that has a spectra core and a polyester cover. Remove the cover for the part that isn't handled or on the winch. That is what I think is the normal way... so remove the cover where not needed instead of removing the core.

ciao!
Nick.
On my boat I had the core removed rather than the cover and did fine for a number of years. A couple of years ago I replaced that line(3/8 inch) with a smaller diameter line (1/4 inch) and did not remove any of the core. The pro furl drum is small, but the smaller diameter line does not overflow the drum even though the smaller line is harder on the hands. The line strength should not be an issue since you should be able to furl using direct pull without the need for putting it on a winch.
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Old 23-11-2010, 14:00   #8
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I use a 3/4" yacht braid. While I like single-braid lines, I don't thing they're right for applications where they sit out in the sun 24/7/365.
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Old 23-11-2010, 17:24   #9
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Thanks, All. We are going to look at 3/8 this weekend, and see if it might work on the furler. Otherwise, I'm thinking we will step down to 5/16.

Somehow, the logic of removing the core just doesn't make that much sense to me - the cover is just so weak.
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Old 23-11-2010, 17:53   #10
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I've got 3/8" StaSet line on my ProFurl furler with no problem. Anything smaller than 3/8" would be too hard on my hands. Larger than 3/8" may be two thick to allow the needed wraps on the furling drum. In any case, I'd just use 3/8" on the furler if it will fit.
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Old 23-11-2010, 18:15   #11
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3/8" Sta-Set on my Harken furler (VALIS is a 44' cutter). There's no problem fitting it all on the furler drum, and I'm using the whole line, not stripped. I've not seen any excessive stretch when running partially reefed, and it holds up for at least several years in the sun. Actually, the only problems I've had with the line are cover chafe where I've let the edge of the drum cover interfere with the line (my fault).
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Old 24-11-2010, 00:29   #12
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if you go to 5/16 you can also add a cover on the part you handle to make that 3/8". You can strip the cover from an old line or buy a length of cover-only. If you strip to get the cover... don't forget the messenger line The cover-only you buy already has a messenger line. (I use it from Yale Cordage).

cheers,
DeVerm.
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Old 24-11-2010, 08:23   #13
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if you go to 5/16 you can also add a cover on the part you handle to make that 3/8". You can strip the cover from an old line or buy a length of cover-only. If you strip to get the cover... don't forget the messenger line The cover-only you buy already has a messenger line. (I use it from Yale Cordage).

cheers,
DeVerm.
Oooh. Good idea.
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Old 24-11-2010, 09:37   #14
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In headsails that are going to be reefed I prefer a dyneema core furling line for low stretch. I also like a proper clutch for the furling line and not those silly little stanchion mount ratchet block cleats that harken supplies.
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