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Old 18-07-2013, 08:35   #1
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Second Opinion on Running Rigging

This is my first survey and the surveyor claims that these lines are acceptable. My gut tells me NO!. Am I just being a "Felix" and these are good for open water (ie. Grenada to states without island hopping) or should they be replaced?
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Old 18-07-2013, 08:59   #2
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Re: Second opinion on running rigging

You *should* always replace anything but at the same time you can probably use those for quite some time. Surface fraying isn't going to cause those lines to snap. Most running rigging is quite oversized: it's big so it's easier on your hands.

If you're concerned, replace your halyards. A jib sheet (holds onto the clew) that parts is an inconvenience. A halyard that "skies" (breaks off, preventing you from re-raising the main or a jib) can be a serious problem. It's also probable that your halyards are the least inspected components of your running rigging because it's difficult to see them.

But really, you're probably fine.
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Old 18-07-2013, 09:24   #3
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Re: Second opinion on running rigging

The sort of wear that you show is often due to UV damage to the cover of the double braid line. It is indicative that the cover is now considerably weaker than original. However, roughly half of the strength is in the core of the braid, and the core is well protected from UV exposure. Thus, the line is likely to retain something greater than half of its original strength. As Eric says, most running rigging is oversized, so it is likely that the line will hold up for your delivery trip.

However, I agree that halyards, especially ones with no back up (spare halyard) should be carefully inspected for localized wear, particularly where they ride on the masthead sheaves when fully hoisted.

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Old 18-07-2013, 10:29   #4
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Re: Second opinion on running rigging

Swap ends, or shorten up past the wear points.
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Old 18-07-2013, 12:18   #5
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Re: Second opinion on running rigging

I second Ryon's advice. You can almost double the life of a line by end-for-ending it when it starts to look a little scraggly (as these do). This is especially true for halyards since the section that spends most of it's life inside the mast will be virtually brand new having been protected from UV.
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Old 18-07-2013, 17:07   #6
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Re: Second opinion on running rigging

What really concerned me was the green pieces sticking out from under the blue and white line (left picture) seemed like inside breakage rather than cover issue. Wrong?
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Old 18-07-2013, 17:16   #7
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Re: Second opinion on running rigging

Quote:
Originally Posted by lauraj View Post
What really concerned me was the green pieces sticking out from under the blue and white line (left picture) seemed like inside breakage rather than cover issue. Wrong?
I believe that those green bits are from the green trace pics in the cover, not the core. First thing, the core is undoubtedly plain white and second, the coloured strands always seem to break down faster than the white. Dunno why, but I've often seen such.

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Old 18-07-2013, 17:30   #8
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Re: Second opinion on running rigging

I tend to prefer to swap-out old, worn line of unknown age / provenance. Sure - snapping a sheet or halyard won't sink your boat, but it sure as hell is a pain in the ass... particularly if it is a halyard that lets go. Given that basic double braid rope is cheap as chips and that you are going a decent "blue water" passage, if I were you I'd run-in new halyards.
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Old 19-07-2013, 10:36   #9
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I say the lines will be fine. By waiting until you return to the states you will be able to purchase the material you really want instead of settling for what is available in Grenada
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Old 20-07-2013, 10:00   #10
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Re: Second opinion on running rigging

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You *should* always replace anything but at the same time you can probably use those for quite some time. Surface fraying isn't going to cause those lines to snap. Most running rigging is quite oversized: it's big so it's easier on your hands.

If you're concerned, replace your halyards. A jib sheet (holds onto the clew) that parts is an inconvenience. A halyard that "skies" (breaks off, preventing you from re-raising the main or a jib) can be a serious problem. It's also probable that your halyards are the least inspected components of your running rigging because it's difficult to see them.

But really, you're probably fine.
Good advice on the halyards, if only because the consequences of failure at sea are worse than at dock. While I agree I've seen plenty worse, the fact you've mentioned it is significant.

Most lines can stand extra use through the simple if time-consuming expedient of "end-for-ending".

Simply invert the halyards so that the part that rides over the sheave all the time (and no doubt looks worn and even curved) is at the tail end by the winch. Retie the shackle on the other end. All that line that's been inside the mast and looks fresh (except for the bit that rode the sheave and may be able to be cut off if desired) is now to hand.

It's a cheap way to get an extra season or two out of your running rigging.

Another method is to replace anything that shows a bit of wear, but to "second-tier" old sheets and halyards to roles as painters, secondary dock lines, tie-downs and the like. Truly old line is great for splicing practice or decorative knotwork. I keep a lot of "retired" line looped on the pushpit: you never know when six to eight feet of quarter-inch will be needed for lashing something to something. I use half-inch old sheets as cruising spinnaker sheets when the wind is in the upper range for that sail and I want a little bit of weight to aid trimming it. That sort of thing.
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Old 20-07-2013, 16:47   #11
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Re: Second Opinion on Running Rigging

Regarding the above, I heard a joke:

First use lines on your sails, then use them to tie the boat down, them use them to tie your wife down.
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Old 13-11-2013, 15:09   #12
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Re: Second Opinion on Running Rigging

Just an update....Rigging surveyor condemned the halyards and sheets.
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Old 13-11-2013, 16:19   #13
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Re: Second Opinion on Running Rigging

Have never had a halyard or sheet fail from age. Every one that was degraded too far to feel safe with was because of chafe. End for ending, cutting off a bit to change wear points will keep a line going practically forever. Sheets and halyards that are large enough to be kind to the hands are so over and above the strength needed that you could cut them more than halfway through and they'd still survive a long passage. Not to say that I haven't changed a line just because it was old and ugly. The top line in the photo looks to be in great shape. The green marks are tracer threads common to most ropes. Helps in doing a splice and to distinguish one line from another. You can get them with blue, red, green and probably a host of other colors.
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Old 13-11-2013, 16:35   #14
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Re: Second Opinion on Running Rigging

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Have never had a halyard or sheet fail from age. ....
I had a genoa sheet fail this summer. It had a Kevlar core (bad choise) and was cow-hitched to the clew, which put a wicked flex on it every time the jib flogged, I'm sure. A special case, not related to this post.

But in 30 years that is the only one. Every other line either chafed or got quite scary looking and was replaced.

A side note on riggers. I installed a 1/2" Warspeed sheet to replace it; the line was condemed because of a small cover snag near the end. Free.
a. That portion is tail and will never see load.
b. With Warpspeed at least 85% of the strength is in the core.
The rigger also told me that many of his customers "would rather through away a dirty line than a broken one." I do certain industrial inspections; when you inspect as a trade you are forced to be and expected to be quite conservative. You are inspecting not just for the moment, but generally for a specified period into the future.

The best policy is to inspect frequently, and if you see ANY glimpse of core, replace. Sooner if highly loaded (winched hard). And remember that a retired halyard very likely has a good section long enough to be a back-up sheet.
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Old 13-11-2013, 18:24   #15
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Re: Second Opinion on Running Rigging

Mostly what I had heard several times.
...Surveyor said "...due to prolonged UV exposure." From everything on the history of the boat, I can only see that the last time any rigging was worked on was 2001 and the boat has been between Florida and Venezuela for those 12 years. Kind of sounds like he condemned it just because of exposure and assumed age (although I never gave him any history on the rigging).
Of course.....The other possibility is that he would like to sell more rope.
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