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Old 21-01-2016, 20:54   #1
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When is rigging too big?

Hello all, I just registered with this website finally but I've been getting help from everyone else's answers the past 2 years. I'm ready to replace all of my standing rigging as I have a few busted strands. The boat is an Ericson 25 fin keel. 3'8" draft 2500lbs of lead in her belly and 33' tall from waterline. She has the original size rigging of 5/32 which has been ready to go for a long time but I've still managed to abuse it and had several knockdown. I'm wanting to beef it up a lot because it scares me with the way I sail it. a lot of coastal cruising in the gulf of Mexico and tend to go out in bigger seas than I should. My question is this, is 1/4" standing rigging too big for a 25 foot boat? I don't race but maybe windage would be an issue? Anyways I unstepped my mast today to get all my measurements and will be ordering all that I need sometime before February. 3/16 seems like a more reasonable size but 1/4 feels better on the hands. Would this be too big? Also I'm still debating between 316 ss and dyneema. But either way I like 1/4. Most likely dyneema to save the weight of upsizing what do you guys think? I'll go down to 3/16 if need be but want some opinions first.
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Old 21-01-2016, 21:02   #2
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Re: When is rigging too big?

where's the beef man
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Old 21-01-2016, 21:06   #3
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Re: When is rigging too big?

Well I know it's not beefy for bigger boats but it came with 5/32. Just a little concerned about what may be too big.
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Old 21-01-2016, 21:23   #4
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Re: When is rigging too big?

I wouldn't be keen to oversize by that much. Real oversize wire means it's hard to crank enough pretension into the rig to get all the constructional stretch out of the wire without overstressing other parts of the rig and hull. Also stability takes a big dive. You could get smart about it and go up say one size for most of the rig and two for the forestay. Assuming at the moment everything is 5/32. For a better feel and less chafe put plastic antichafe tube on the lower section.

Check the new end fittings will fit your tangs and bottlescrews and that the rest of the rig is solid enough to warrant upsizing the rigging ie chainplates Turnbuckles, pins etc

If you go dynex that's a whole new ball game so all bets are off sizing wise...

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Old 21-01-2016, 22:04   #5
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Re: When is rigging too big?

Just in case you didn't get Snowy's point, UncleI, increasing the wire size because you feel that the current rig isn't strong enough is not all that you would have to do. All the little bits that build up your standing rigging are matched (roughly) in strength in the original design. So, in order to actually make the whole assembly stronger, all those bits, which include rigging screws, chain plates, toggles, tangs, tang bolts, spreaders, spreader bases... all of those must also be strengthened. If not, you have gained very little by increasing the wire size. And his point about pin sizes is also valid: you will find that the larger wire will have larger terminal fittings, and they will have larger pin sizes, and those bigger pins will not fit in your chain plates. And so on...

If you limit yourself to a small increment in size, say from 5/32 to 3/16, judicious selection of bits might allow the mismatch to be worked around, but for sure, going to 1/4 isn't going to be easy.

I hope that you can find a compromise that gives you a secure rig without having to replace bloody near everything attached to the mast!

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Old 21-01-2016, 23:41   #6
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Re: When is rigging too big?

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Just in case you didn't get Snowy's point, UncleI, increasing the wire size because you feel that the current rig isn't strong enough is not all that you would have to do. All the little bits that build up your standing rigging are matched (roughly) in strength in the original design. So, in order to actually make the whole assembly stronger, all those bits, which include rigging screws, chain plates, toggles, tangs, tang bolts, spreaders, spreader bases... all of those must also be strengthened. If not, you have gained very little by increasing the wire size. And his point about pin sizes is also valid: you will find that the larger wire will have larger terminal fittings, and they will have larger pin sizes, and those bigger pins will not fit in your chain plates. And so on...

If you limit yourself to a small increment in size, say from 5/32 to 3/16, judicious selection of bits might allow the mismatch to be worked around, but for sure, going to 1/4 isn't going to be easy.

I hope that you can find a compromise that gives you a secure rig without having to replace bloody near everything attached to the mast!

Jim
Yes I understood the points made and I appreciate yalls input. Perhaps I should have mentions my chanplates and gangs all show signs of stress as it is and I will be replacing them all anyways. Also the spreaders are quite oversized as it is, a little over 3 inch wide wing shaped spreaders. Considering replacing the masthead as well depending on what it takes. So if I do replace gangs and xhainplates and all rigging involved, would you trust 3/16 to hold up in heavy conditions. Am a bit of an adrenaline junky and that usually involves me abusing my rig where it doesn't belong. Well right now anyways. Trying to make it so it does belong a little better. I've had this little boat up to 11 knots surfing
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Old 22-01-2016, 00:12   #7
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Re: When is rigging too big?

Actually one of the chainplates has a small crack. And I already have the new chainplates made up from 3/8" 316 stainless polished pretty. Tangs too. I know oversized but I'm hoping not to have to replace them again. It's nice having a machine shop handy. Just hope the balsa core isn't too bad. A leak through the starboard shroud plates has worn out the varnish on the teak.
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Old 22-01-2016, 00:49   #8
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Re: When is rigging too big?

+1 on what Jim Cate, & Snowpetrel said. And to add to their wisdoms, consider this.

When you tune your newer, bigger wires, to the same percentage of their breaking strength as you did your old ones, you're now adding a Lot more compression loading, downward, onto the mast tube, as well as all of the supporting structures underneath of it.
And while odds are you're not going to compress it so much that the mast fails, you'll be contributing to the early demise of the other structural components which make up your boat.

There's even been the occasional boat where the compression loads from the mast caused the two halves of the hull to seperate, along the boat's centerline, where they were joined.
And I, personally, have seen; bulkheads pulled part way though decks, chainplates pulled out, the backbone & keel structures of hulls broken, etc., etc. All due to excessive rig loadings. That's what the guys are trying to tell you.

Honestly, if you're pushing the boat as hard as you say you are, it'd be wise to have her fully surveyed, prior to dumping a ton of coin into her, on all of this rigging. That, & consulting with a good rigger regarding your plans. So that your $ is well spent.

You might be better served to simply purchase a sport boat. Or, the "poor man's version", an E-Scow. When it's blowing, going downwind, they pass Melges 24's like they're standing still. Though they ain't self righting by any means.
Or, have both a pocket cruiser, & a dinghy sporting hiking racks & trapeezes. Now THEY'RE FUN!

PS: Read this/any or most of these -
http://www.briontoss.com/catalog/inf...pprentice.html
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_no...27s+apprentice
http://www.amazon.com/Complete-Rigge...27s+apprentice
You'll gain a Much better understanding of how all of the bits which make up, & support your rig, work together. Plus, they're chock full of useful stuff, & good reads to boot.
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Old 22-01-2016, 02:58   #9
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Re: When is rigging too big?

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Originally Posted by UNCIVILIZED View Post
+1 on what Jim Cate, & Snowpetrel said. And to add to their wisdoms, consider this.

When you tune your newer, bigger wires, to the same percentage of their breaking strength as you did your old ones, you're now adding a Lot more compression loading, downward, onto the mast tube, as well as all of the supporting structures underneath of it.
And while odds are you're not going to compress it so much that the mast fails, you'll be contributing to the early demise of the other structural components which make up your boat.

There's even been the occasional boat where the compression loads from the mast caused the two halves of the hull to seperate, along the boat's centerline, where they were joined.
And I, personally, have seen; bulkheads pulled part way though decks, chainplates pulled out, the backbone & keel structures of hulls broken, etc., etc. All due to excessive rig loadings. That's what the guys are trying to tell you.

Honestly, if you're pushing the boat as hard as you say you are, it'd be wise to have her fully surveyed, prior to dumping a ton of coin into her, on all of this rigging. That, & consulting with a good rigger regarding your plans. So that your $ is well spent.

You might be better served to simply purchase a sport boat. Or, the "poor man's version", an E-Scow. When it's blowing, going downwind, they pass Melges 24's like they're standing still. Though they ain't self righting by any means.
Or, have both a pocket cruiser, & a dinghy sporting hiking racks & trapeezes. Now THEY'RE FUN!

PS: Read this/any or most of these -
Brion Toss Yacht Riggers, Sailboat Rigging::Search Results
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_no...27s+apprentice
http://www.amazon.com/Complete-Rigge...27s+apprentice
You'll gain a Much better understanding of how all of the bits which make up, & support your rig, work together. Plus, they're chock full of useful stuff, & good reads to boot.
Ok so you're saying I have to load the new wires to the same percentage of capacity as the old wires? Not just to the same tension? Well I did not know that and that puts a bit of a kink in my plan. And while it may not be the most popular way to do it, I use my ericson for offshore fishing 2 or 3 nights at a time. I like the comforts it has and the fact that it's self righting. I don't want to be 60 miles offshore on a boat that won't flip back over if or when I screw up. I've been looking for a double ended cutter or even a ketch of some sort 30-40'. Full keeled I know they're slow and I said I like fast but I'm prepping to go cruising and I fancy the old school cruisers. My next boat certainly won't be a sport boat. Also with access to a machine shop and all the stainless I need all I'm actually ending up buying is the cable and turnbuckles. Not dumping much coin at all and doing all labor myself. It's really a pretty cheap fix for me
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Old 22-01-2016, 04:20   #10
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Re: When is rigging too big?

your broke 5/32 has held up, going to unbroken 3/16 is a big jump.

And to reiterate - CLEVIS PINS - hole size may be determining factor.
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Old 22-01-2016, 06:29   #11
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Re: When is rigging too big?

Weight in the rig does nothing good for the stability of a sail boat. Why do you think the original spec's rigging was under designed?
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Old 22-01-2016, 06:52   #12
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Re: When is rigging too big?

I echo everybody's response on over-stressing the boat with tensioning oversized rigging... 3/16" might be OK... But 1/4 seems way too much...
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Old 22-01-2016, 08:17   #13
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Re: When is rigging too big?

Tune the rig. Tune the sails. Reef down.
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Old 22-01-2016, 08:53   #14
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Re: When is rigging too big?

This question is a clasic in our rigging shop, can we upsize the gear? wire, furler, rod or whatever ... and the answer is the always the same... stick with the OEM specifications unless the change is not to big, saying that , jumping from 1/8 to 5/32 or from 5/16 to 3/8 is not a big deal on chainplates and other gear , but to much and you can overstress chainplates, tangs, etc... the turns in the screw to keep proper tension change with wire size ... Cheers.
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Old 22-01-2016, 09:23   #15
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Re: When is rigging too big?

5/32 which has been ready to go for a long time but I've still managed to abuse it and had several knockdown
I don't understand why you think 30 YO rigging that has withstood several knockdowns isn't big enough.
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