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Old 20-10-2014, 21:44   #1
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Helia Owners, pulling the stick on mine, any suggestions for add ons and goodies ??

Hello Friends,
I will be pulling the stick on mine, in the next week or so. I would be interested in any ideas / modifications, anyone had for additions to the mast. I am also thinking rigging mods while the opportunity is there to do it easy..

Right now I race her Single Handed, only three times so far. I am doing OK, but I got caught out when the wind picked up 5-8 knots more than forecast and I beat to weather in 25 knots and two meter seas.. I run the helm, standing in front of the helm, so I can work the winches... One hand throwing the wheel, one hand cranking the winches, and when I tire, switch.. Works well if you are fit.

If I run the Prodders big 160 Genoa / Gennaker, I extend the Port furling line with six metres of line, sheep shank and lead it up with a half wrap around the port winch up to the winch island. The Port Sheet is long enough to run the straight shot up to the winch island with a half wrap around the port winch. No drama. Working Jib is already led to winch island with port and starboard sheets.. Working jib furler is normally there on the starboard side so again no drama. Sometimes I could use another winch, when I am moving the traveler, but I juggle things.. I have a collection of jamb cleats on everything..

Now: Crazy, not stupid, I single handle with full offshore inflatable PFD and safety harness with waterproof VHF and personal mini-Epirb and two safety harness hook ups.. So no worries there. No need for that seamanship advice...

I am thinking of eliminating the topping lift internal halyard and moving it out on the main boom. I could add a reinforced eye at the top, and move the adjusting part to a turning block on the end of the main boom and jam-cleat and cleat.. Why? First of all I almost NEVER adjust the topping lift. I can then move the three other internal halyards aft, and use the front internal halyard slot and jamb cleat for an asymmetrical spinnaker halyard, without cutting into the mast at all... Like my idea, you can have that one..

The mast has to come down due to a freak internal wiring conduit failure, VHF antennae chafe, an F.P. Warranty issue, no big deal, but while it is down what more could I do??? I already have great Garmin Radar.. I could increase the fore deck light to a super LED flood? It would be neat to have the old fashioned double port and starboard lights on the mast, but don't know if I could bother. Any other cool ideas out there? What more goodies...? In the old days we used to have Firdell Blippers, but that is not really necessary these days is it??

Comments and ideas welcome... Kind regards, Helia 44
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Old 21-10-2014, 02:10   #2
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Re: Helia Owners, pulling the stick on mine, any suggestions for add ons and goodies

We replaced our anchor light with a combination led anchor/ nav light/ strobe light. No need for additional wiring if you don't use the strobe feature. So it gives us backup nav lights and the anchor light works on a photovoltaic cell so turns on and off automatically at anchorage which is really handy. Cost is about $250.
I'm not so sure about the topping lift, we need to adjust ours quite a bit to take the weight of the boom when furling or dropping the main. If it's left too tight it distorts the main when going downwind, too loose and the boom drops too low. Adjustment only needs to be 18" or so, but we do need it. It's best to raise, Lower and reef the main without the sail doing any work, but this will definitely leave the topping lift too tight.
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Old 21-10-2014, 04:15   #3
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Re: Helia Owners, pulling the stick on mine, any suggestions for add ons and goodies

I will look into Masthead lights to see what is available... I am not sure the strobe would be legal here in Australia or not, but it is a good idea in some conditions. Three glasses of wine and right now I cannot remember what the strobe was used for on American Registered boats. Was it anti collision at night???

On the main the topping lift is well below the main hoisted height, yet high enough to clear the sundeck seats and cushion area. Not sure I need the constant adjusting. I plan in putting it on a turning block and leading it maybe halfway down the boom to a cleat so adjusting it during reefing is possible if necessary...

Strobe??

Kind regards, Helia 44
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Old 21-10-2014, 06:33   #4
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Re: Helia Owners, pulling the stick on mine, any suggestions for add ons and goodies

Strobe lights are illegal on a boat everywhere on this planet.

Some Navigation buoys use strobe lights and that’s legal.
If you’re in the water and your vest has a strobe light, that’s legal.
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Old 21-10-2014, 07:38   #5
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Re: Helia Owners, pulling the stick on mine, any suggestions for add ons and goodies

Hiya Heli 44,

Not sure if this is meaningful for you but if you are going to be cruising the GBR or other destinations in South Pacific with coral, one of the hassles is steering around coral heads and through passageways in coral when the sun angle causes too much reflection to see properly. Sometimes you want to get out of an anchorage in the morning but the sun is too low, or arrive later in afternoon, same problem. Makes for some nail biting sometimes

So we are putting moderate wide angle colour CCTV camera up the mast facing forward to always be able to pick the clear water regardless of sun position. You may have a video port on your Garmin to display the view.
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Old 21-10-2014, 08:09   #6
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Re: Helia Owners, pulling the stick on mine, any suggestions for add ons and goodies

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cotemar View Post
Strobe lights are illegal on a boat everywhere on this planet.

Some Navigation buoys use strobe lights and that’s legal.
And ColRegs is fairly clear:

Rule 36: Signals to attract attention
...
Any light to attract the attention of another vessel shall be such that it cannot be mistaken for any aid to navigation. For the propose of this Rule, the use of high intensity intermittent or revolving lights, such as strobe lights, shall be avoided.
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Old 21-10-2014, 17:42   #7
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Re: Helia Owners, pulling the stick on mine, any suggestions for add ons and goodies

Yea,
Thank you StuM and Cotemar... Something inside told me they were illegal. However, with respect to Monte: I did have a masthead strobe on a couple of my larger yachts 30-40 years ago. They came that way, but I could not remember the use????? Anyway, something twigged that it was illegal..

Hello Big Beakie, I appreciate the CCTV idea, but my experience with the cameras near the ocean was the accumulation of salt spray made them go all cloudy??? I mean it is a nice idea... I have travelled through big coral bommies in various places of the world where they are a hazard to navigating through, like in the Grand Banks of the Bahama where you have shallow water for about 500 miles it seems like.. Anyway, what we did was put someone on the bow with Polarized sun glasses, looking out and hand signally the way through.. With polarized glasses that seemed to work well. Look Big Beakie, Thank you for the idea, but... Not at this time... I will admit, I have been thinking about forward looking sonar on the bow just for that.. I may do that one, but I have not been on a boat to see how well it worked yet..

Kind regards, Helia 44
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Old 21-10-2014, 18:17   #8
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Re: Helia Owners, pulling the stick on mine, any suggestions for add ons and goodies

I was thinking that any salt spray on the lens could be handled by a squirt from the anchor wash.

We found the polaroids at the bow didn't work as well as I thought they would as when it is glassed out & the sun angle is low directly ahead, then we couldn't see ahead. If there was some wind chop, it was fine.

Someone went up the mast half way and that worked, but I wanted an alternative to that now since we will be just the 2 of us aboard and not gettin' any younger.

Since Interphase was gobbled up by Garmin I haven't followed what if anything, Garmin are offering. I heard they would release a solution but at BIG bucks, as in boat bucks

Anyway, always good to exchange ideas, that's what the forum is good at.
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Old 21-10-2014, 18:40   #9
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Re: Helia Owners, pulling the stick on mine, any suggestions for add ons and goodies

Speaking of ideas, and this is thread drift for sure, but since we are onto forward sonar, I wonder if anyone has just used a regular fish finder sonar, taped the transducer onto a pole facing 45 degrees forward & down and stuck it down from the front beam?

Only used temporarily when in murky water with potential underwater reef/rocks etc? I heard cruising the Kimberley that the water is not always clear &it seemed like a workable idea.
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Old 21-10-2014, 20:57   #10
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Re: Helia Owners, pulling the stick on mine, any suggestions for add ons and goodies

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Originally Posted by BigBeakie View Post
I was thinking that any salt spray on the lens could be handled by a squirt from the anchor wash.

Anyway, always good to exchange ideas, that's what the forum is good at.
Hey Big Beakie, you are right on the mark... That is why I put this post up, I mean I may not dismast again for 8 years until I re-rig or trade the Helia in on something 5 Star that I do not know what is yet... Heh he...

On the squirt: That is a long way up there first of all... Secondly my anchor wash is high pressure SALT water pump just used to blow off the muck when anchoring in a muddy bottom...

Forward looking sonar is probably more manageable, but I have not seen one in action yet. It would be stable in front of the 3 Meter mini keels, with a locator on the hull, and cleaned by a snorkel dive.....

Always a pleasure sharing ideas, I strained my back and have not been sailing much for two weeks, so the Forum is great fun. Coming good now..
Kind regards, Helia 44
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Old 21-10-2014, 21:30   #11
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Re: Helia Owners, pulling the stick on mine, any suggestions for add ons and goodies

Helia 44,

Re the lens squirt, I don't think giving it a shot of salt water will matter, it will still dissolve a crust of salt crystals if they've built up and clear it for the time required to look for bommies or judge depth. And it doesn't need to be at the top of the mast I reckon, I think half way up would do. It's just to change the angle of viewing to penetrate a glassy surface with reflected light blazing in your eyes at deck level.

Anyway I'm going to give it a go on my cat, so I'll report how it works. Trying to find the most bullet proof CCTV for the conditions.

Hope you get the spasms sorted out. That Voltarin is great stuff for crook backs Actually Viclofen is better, much easier on the stomach lining.
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Old 22-10-2014, 02:24   #12
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Re: Helia Owners, pulling the stick on mine, any suggestions for add ons and goodies

Yes we don't have the strobe connected, it's for backup nav lights and automated anchor light as suggested. Strobe lights are pretty much rediculous. There's a yacht anchored nxt to us with an occ anchor light ..
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Old 23-10-2014, 00:42   #13
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Re: Helia Owners, pulling the stick on mine, any suggestions for add ons and goodies

I dont think the need for a radar reflector has gone away. There was a notorious case of ayacht in UK that was lost presumed run down by a ferry a few years back in clear conditions. Nearly all UK yachts use reflectors or active radar responders. i would not sail without one or other.
AIS also gives an appreciation of whats nearby and CPA for larger and passenger vessels. I had both on our boat in uk.
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Old 23-10-2014, 17:46   #14
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Re: Helia Owners, pulling the stick on mine, any suggestions for add ons and goodies

Right O,
Thanks for that...

It was a thought because I usually have had a Firdel Blipper on stainless mounts on the mast.. Maybe while the stick is down I will add this on the Helia. The massive triangulation spreaders will shield it from sails, and what the heck, it can't hurt...

With me having AIS I was just wondering if it was really necessary anymore..?
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Old 24-10-2014, 03:35   #15
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Helia Owners, pulling the stick on mine, any suggestions for add ons and good...

We have a tri lens reflector. Smaller and a better radar image than most, mounted just below the radar. Yes it's necessary if going offshore..be seen, be safe! Remember a lot of Aussie fishing boats don't have AIS, but most will have radar..
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