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Old 07-11-2012, 06:02   #16
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Re: Strong Sail Track and Slide System

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Originally Posted by DeepFrz View Post
Okay, my bad. Sorry for the misinformation, must be my faulty memory. Thanks for correcting me.
A faulty memory. How shocking. I can hardly conceive of such a thing since my memory is completely perfect and, and......

Uh what was it we were talking about?
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Old 07-11-2012, 06:41   #17
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Re: Strong Sail Track and Slide System

My boat came with a Strong Track on a full batten main. The only problem I had was I had the threads strip out of a batten receptacle where the slide screws in. The track was 5 years old at the time, so I called Tides Marine fully prepared to buy a new receptacle, but they would not sell me one. What they did was send me one free along with two spare slides. I did not even have to pay shipping. Now that's quality customer service. How I wish other marine suppliers would stand by their products like that. I've been completely satisfied with the product. About once a year I spray the track down with a silicone dry lube and it keeps things operating free and easy. By the way, the receptacle stripped out because I had not reefed as early as I should have and it was not the fault of the system.
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Old 21-06-2013, 00:28   #18
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Re: Strong Sail Track and Slide System

Just recently I unstep the mast to do some upgrades for an inner jib stay and electronics. In the process I needed to roll the mast over. So as not to damage the Strong Track I pulled it out and rolled it up to keep it safe, NOT!

I installed this track 8 years ago almost to the day but hadn't thought about UV damage, forgetting when I had installed it. As I unrolled it to put it back in I hear this crackling sound and noticed all these little cracks on the slide side of the track. And the more I straightened it out the worse it got.

As Gomer Pyle use to say; Surprise, surprise, surprise" but my words were more like holichet!!! But it's a good thing I guess, to have it go bad on me now rather then when I'm crossing the Pacific.

So, use guys out there with a strong track keep an eye on the UV damage. Mine lasted 8 years here in the PNW and probably could have went a couple more years if I hadn't pulled it out and stressed it. One sign of damage is that you can scratch off the surface with your fingernail. But as long as there are no cracks it's probably just fine.
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Old 01-07-2013, 14:30   #19
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Re: Strong Sail Track and Slide System

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Originally Posted by delmarrey View Post
Just recently I unstep the mast to do some upgrades for an inner jib stay and electronics. In the process I needed to roll the mast over. So as not to damage the Strong Track I pulled it out and rolled it up to keep it safe, NOT!

I installed this track 8 years ago almost to the day but hadn't thought about UV damage, forgetting when I had installed it. As I unrolled it to put it back in I hear this crackling sound and noticed all these little cracks on the slide side of the track. And the more I straightened it out the worse it got.

As Gomer Pyle use to say; Surprise, surprise, surprise" but my words were more like holichet!!! But it's a good thing I guess, to have it go bad on me now rather then when I'm crossing the Pacific.

So, use guys out there with a strong track keep an eye on the UV damage. Mine lasted 8 years here in the PNW and probably could have went a couple more years if I hadn't pulled it out and stressed it. One sign of damage is that you can scratch off the surface with your fingernail. But as long as there are no cracks it's probably just fine.
What do you plan to replace it with? I'm trying to decide between the strong track and a Harken battcar setup.
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Old 01-07-2013, 20:02   #20
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Re: Strong Sail Track and Slide System

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What do you plan to replace it with? I'm trying to decide between the strong track and a Harken battcar setup.
I just ordered a new track. And it only took a week to arrive. The old one lasted 8 years and could have went 10 if I hadn't pulled it.

The Harken stuff is more complicated, expensive and harder to install. The strong track once you have the size you can just pull one track and install another within minutes. With the battcars I'd be afraid it would loose its balls.
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Old 11-07-2013, 17:47   #21
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Re: Strong Sail Track and Slide System

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What do you plan to replace it with? I'm trying to decide between the strong track and a Harken battcar setup.
On a boat your size, Strong Track is the way to go. Simpler to install, half the price, and it reduces friction as well as Harken.

You might want to wait until you replace the mainsail to do the track. We've seen a lot of problems crop up when people use their existing mainsail. When we bought our boat, the previous owner had installed a Harken track and had a local loft retrofit the main with the Harken hardware. The wankers at the loft didn't bother to look at the rig and the headboard no longer cleared the backstay. In fact it overlapped by so much that we had to drop the main a bit to tack during the sea trial. We didn't care since the sails were crap anyway.

Another issue you have re-using an existing main is that the clew will be further back so you may not be able to get adequate outhaul tension.

And then there's the tack cutback which will be too much, and the reef alignment changes....
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Old 11-07-2013, 18:06   #22
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Re: Strong Sail Track and Slide System

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Originally Posted by islandplanet View Post
On a boat your size, Strong Track is the way to go. Simpler to install, half the price, and it reduces friction as well as Harken.

You might want to wait until you replace the mainsail to do the track. We've seen a lot of problems crop up when people use their existing mainsail. When we bought our boat, the previous owner had installed a Harken track and had a local loft retrofit the main with the Harken hardware. The wankers at the loft didn't bother to look at the rig and the headboard no longer cleared the backstay. In fact it overlapped by so much that we had to drop the main a bit to tack during the sea trial. We didn't care since the sails were crap anyway.

Another issue you have re-using an existing main is that the clew will be further back so you may not be able to get adequate outhaul tension.

And then there's the tack cutback which will be too much, and the reef alignment changes....
Maybe I'm not fully understanding what you are saying. The Strongtrack slides into the existing track in the mast and the sail slugs are replaced with Strongtrack slides. So the only dimensional changes are setting the entire sail aft about 3/16-1/4".

Does this really effect the sail and rigging like you describe? I can understand how the Harken gear would do that because the dimensional changes are so much larger.

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Old 11-07-2013, 18:44   #23
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Re: Strong Sail Track and Slide System

We installed the Strong Track and a new main at the same time and they used probably 1/2 or 2/3 the number of slides in the new sail as the old sail needed. One reason for the shift aft in the sail is you use a bit of 5/8"webbing to attach the slide to the sail so it ends up moving the sail back maybe an inch just for that reason alone.
I am disturbed about the UV damage problem.
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Old 11-07-2013, 18:52   #24
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Re: Strong Sail Track and Slide System

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Originally Posted by Guy View Post
We installed the Strong Track and a new main at the same time and they used probably 1/2 or 2/3 the number of slides in the new sail as the old sail needed. One reason for the shift aft in the sail is you use a bit of 5/8"webbing to attach the slide to the sail so it ends up moving the sail back maybe an inch just for that reason alone.
I am disturbed about the UV damage problem.
Didn't the old sail also have slides attached by webbing?

Ours is 15yr old without damage (so far). Delmarry had his crack when he rolled up his old track, not from just sitting installed on his mast. I can understand plastic getting too stiff to roll up again after several years in the sun.

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Old 11-07-2013, 19:10   #25
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Re: Strong Sail Track and Slide System

The Strong track slides are quite different than the old slides were and the webbing ended up longer.
One issue I am having is the little round rings that hold the clevis pin in the Strong slides, it snags and pulls out or deforms then you loose the clevis pin and the sail comes loose. This happens when the sail is down, then when you hoist the sail the little ring snags on something. I have ended up taping all the pins
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Old 11-07-2013, 19:21   #26
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Re: Strong Sail Track and Slide System

Any of the track systems put the luff a fair amount further back from the aft face of mast than conventional slides. Remember that whatever piece of hardware that requires the most clearance will set the distance for the entire sail. It's very common to have long webbing for luff sliders due to headboards or luff boxes.

As for the cracked track, that's a first. I've seen some of the first systems manufactured and they are still going strong.

Slide spacing is another issue. The stack height will be much higher due to the length of the Tides slides. When we build a new main, we use fewer slides with a track system because we can increase the spacing. If there's increased stack height the sail cover may no longer fit or will require modification.
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Old 11-07-2013, 20:01   #27
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Re: Strong Sail Track and Slide System

I bought my boat 6 years ago with the Strong track and bat cars already installed by previous owner. I have a large mainsail and have not had a single problem. Sail goes up fine and comes down in 2 seconds.
I would recommend the system.

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Old 11-07-2013, 23:07   #28
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Re: Strong Sail Track and Slide System

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Originally Posted by Guy View Post
The Strong track slides are quite different than the old slides were and the webbing ended up longer.
One issue I am having is the little round rings that hold the clevis pin in the Strong slides, it snags and pulls out or deforms then you loose the clevis pin and the sail comes loose. This happens when the sail is down, then when you hoist the sail the little ring snags on something. I have ended up taping all the pins
I pulled the rings out of mine and put in cotter pins. The ring at the very top that holds the stop pin in was actually missing when I pulled the track. I believe it got snagged on the main halyard.

As for the sail offset, here's a picture of my track going into the mast. Then there is the slides and webbing. I had my sail made and ordered the Strongtrack at the same time, so it all fits together right.

.
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Old 12-07-2013, 08:53   #29
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Re: Strong Sail Track and Slide System

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Originally Posted by Guy View Post
The Strong track slides are quite different than the old slides were and the webbing ended up longer.
One issue I am having is the little round rings that hold the clevis pin in the Strong slides, it snags and pulls out or deforms then you loose the clevis pin and the sail comes loose. This happens when the sail is down, then when you hoist the sail the little ring snags on something. I have ended up taping all the pins
I bought SS shoulder bolts and nylock nuts from McMaster-Carr. Problem solved (although I never really had your issue - just didn't like the setup).

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Old 12-07-2013, 09:02   #30
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Re: Strong Sail Track and Slide System

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Originally Posted by islandplanet View Post
Any of the track systems put the luff a fair amount further back from the aft face of mast than conventional slides. Remember that whatever piece of hardware that requires the most clearance will set the distance for the entire sail. It's very common to have long webbing for luff sliders due to headboards or luff boxes.
I just measured ours and the distance from the slides requiring the most clearance is 1". I can't see that a normal sail would be less, unless it is a rope luff fed into the mast.

But I understand that other setups could be different.

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