Those all look to be full on (Pro) race
boat installations. The kind where every tiny bit of weight, down to the gram counts. Thus the rings instead of blocks. The friction level using them isn't as low as a good block, though of course they're lighter & cheaper. But unless you keep the lines running though them drum tight, you'll hear'em banging on the deck
, when you're off watch, trying to sleep (which also wears on their slick anodizing & the lines running through them). Where as DIY standup blocks are a no brainer.
Also, if it's not obvious, race
boats have easily 2-4x the number of lines of cruising boats. Some of which are being almost continually tweaked. And weight, as in a guy to tweak them, anywhere forward of the pit is a big no no, as it slows the boat a tiny fraction. Thus things get led; aft, & as much as possible/is practical, to both windward rails. So that the crews can tune things while being hiked out.
It's VERY important to seriously think about what lines you want to lead aft on a cruising boat. Because a lot of the time, such determines if sail changes & adjustments can be made single-handed, or require 2 crew.
- For instance, if all of your halyards forward of the mast have their tails led aft, then you've essentially just dictated that headsail changes are a 2-man (minimum) operation.
While if you have a winch
on the mast for one of your often used jib
halyards, & it's tail is long enough to reach the bow. Then it's a lot easier to do headsail swaps single
handed, especially if said headsail is going up/coming down the groove in a foil. Not that changing a jib
with hanks, which has a halyard
led to the cockpit
is all that much simpler when solo, all told.
Or with reefing lines, for example. How do you plan to lead the clew lines aft, but without them impairing the boom from swinging freely, all without chafing the lines at; the forward end of the boom, ditto regarding the blocks at the base of the mast?
On top of which you then have to ask the same kinds of questions for the tack's reefing lines, in addition to how to have them pull both down & forward. Then down to the deck, & aft. Again, sans chafe.
So, just for the main, assuming you have 3 reefs
, that means that you're leading the following aft:
- 3 clew reefing lines
- 3 tack reefing lines
- Main Halyard
- Vang (possibly)
- Sheet (possibly, & it could even have both ends led aft depending on the setup)
- Topping Lift
Ergo 12'ish lines (not including a couple of optional ones which I left out). Plus, there's the additional possibility of a Trysail, perhaps with a halyard of it's own. And then there's the myriad of lines which one can have for things forward of the mast.
Also, keep in mind that it's best to have a way to keep track of which line does what, even in the dark. As at times you may not be able to reach for, have time for, or be able to use, a flashlight. Though color coding, & different textures/tactilites for various lines does help.
Plus (as pictured) it's a bit of a real estate fight at the base of the spar (even without a Trysail bagged, & attached to it's track, on deck). And then there's the cost of the jammers (clutches), & the fight to get good, fair leads to both them & to the cabin
And, it's a good idea to keep any line that's highly loaded, secured via a self tailing winch
, backed up by a horn cleat. Not just secured in a clutch
, as the lines last a fair bit longer thusly.
Oh, & one other key item. Aside from the need for structural reinforcements around the base of the mast (on deck, & in it's cores), plus a big backing plate belowdecks (possibly bonded [glued] to the deck).
There's also the factor of the loads on winches near the companionway
. On some boats, these loads can be sufficient to make it impossible to open or close the hatch
fully (or at all). And or puts stresses into the cabin
top deck which it just wasn't designed for.
Such is a rarity, but a consideration. Especially if say, you start adding sails
which have multi-part purchases/extra high loads on their halyards. Though it, of course, depends on the boat, & where these new "toys" are mounted.
It's best to sketch out all of these things on paper first. As in what you'd like to lead aft, & where. Plus thinking through the utility & user friendliness of your proposed new setup.
Then get the dimensions of a couple of different makes of hardware
which you'd consider using for each task. Following which, armed with; a measuring tape, some masking tape, dimensional cardboard cutouts of your proposed hardware
, & a non-permanent marker, go down to the boat & try mocking things up.
Oh, & I almost forgot, when considering such mods, you also need to factor in where the tails of all of these lines are going to be neatly stowed. Yet easily retrievable, such as if you need to drop a, or all sail in a hurry.
My apologies if I've given anyone a headache, I'm just trying to (semi) thoroughly explain what goes into these kinds of systems. As there's a bit more to them than meets the eye.