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Old 25-03-2015, 10:00   #1
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Fairlead/chock needed?

I've done away with my rotted mahogany bulwark and decided to simplify things by adding a fiberglass toerail to my 34' Falmouth Cutter instead. Sick of leaks, brightwork and rot in this Florida sun.

The toerail (when finished) with be 1/2" wide by 1-1/2" tall. The interior of the toerail is Air-Cell foam with 3 layers of 17oz biaxial glass and epoxy. Unbelievably strong.

I was looking at possibly embedding fairleads/chocks in the glass rail (starboard & port) for my forward and aft cleats, though I'm undecided. I have samson posts forward and my aft cleats will be sitting on a 2-1/4" high boomkin...both higher than my 1-1/2" high toerail. (Position of tape measure in the pic of the starboard rail is the approximate placement of aft starboard cleat on boomkin).

My midship cleats are set approx. 2" from the edge of the hull and I'm leaving open a 2' 6" gap in the toerail (also to help in drainage)...should be enough of a gap for spring lines.

I know it can't hurt to have them, but does anyone believe fairleads are even necessary (forward and aft) in this situation? There are also no stanchions to get in the way of lines either. Putting fairleads in the glass, will be a bit of a pain, but better to know now. I don't believe putting them on top the rail is an option as the rail is only 1/2" wide and is rounded on top (not flat)...plus putting them in the glass looks nicer. Albeit, I'd rather just do away with the fairlead idea completely.

Ideas?



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Old 25-03-2015, 13:38   #2
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Re: Fairlead/chock needed?

I don't like fair leads and much prefer the cleats shifted to the rail instead. Without seeing it all put together I wouldn't hazard a guess if you need them in a particular arrangement, but I never want them, sometimes you just have to have them.

I much prefer the arrangement below.
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Old 25-03-2015, 16:19   #3
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Re: Fairlead/chock needed?

Yes, I would prefer cleats on or by the rail, forward and aft rather than a fairlead (where a line can slip out).

Just trying to avoid extra cleats forward when I already have two perfectly good samson posts up there already (attached pic). And prefer to have my aft cleats mounted on my boomkin to save deck space.

The aft pic shows the cleats position before. Taffrail has also been removed.



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Old 25-03-2015, 17:40   #4
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Re: Fairlead/chock needed?

Nice looking glasswork...on my Atkins cutter (pretty similar design, little smaller), I bolted stern cleats to the outside of the bulwark on either side. I was initially afraid they would snag on stuff, but it turns out there's less lines dangling around out at sea than you might think. They have worked wonderfully, and lines always lead fair off of them. Midships I have only a hawsehole in the bulwark, no cleat--I put spring lines though that hole and tie them around a big dowel, thus eliminating a toe-stubbing cleat midships. Up forrard I have a mooring bitt and hawseholes, but often use a couple of posts I have sticking up past the bulwark on either side for that purpose. Again, perfect lead and no chafe. Pics on my website:
zartmancruising dot com
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Old 27-03-2015, 18:05   #5
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Re: Fairlead/chock needed?

Thanks for the replies. I'm also thinking of possibly laying pre-bent thin bronze sheeting over parts of the toerail where the aft cleats/samson posts will be located.

If anything it'll just protect the paint on the toerail, there should be no wear on lines with the curve of the glass rail and bronze sheeting.
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Old 28-03-2015, 17:03   #6
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Re: Fairlead/chock needed?

Quote:
Originally Posted by whiteapeman View Post

If anything it'll just protect the paint on the toerail, there should be no wear on lines with the curve of the glass rail and bronze sheeting.
I get the impression that your premise is that all docklines will be leading down to your cleats/bits and never leading upwards. When your docklines are touching your toerail they will chafe dramatically because your toerail is a thin section. A chock provides a larger bearing surface and accords a smooth transition. (You'll still need chafe protection) Your idea to delete a section of rail amidships is fine but I would mount the midship cleat on deck at the widest point amidships.
Here's a picture of my midship cleat arrangement.
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Old 28-03-2015, 18:02   #7
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Re: Fairlead/chock needed?

Thanks. My midships cleats are much like yours, setting on the widest section of the vessel, just without the chock.

I was mostly inquiring about having a line lying over a rail that is cleated to samson posts or cleats mounted on a boomkin (both of which are higher than the toerail). I understand the confusion, though because of the curve of my deck, forward & aft lines cannot ride up a rail, only down. Just my midship lines can ride higher.

The top of the toerail will be wider in width and roundness than the interior of most of the typical chock/faileads that are generally used for this size vessel/lines, making the bearing surface on the rail at least equal to or more than your typical fairlead. In my opinion, I believe this is slightly better as many fairleads are flat on their interior where the line passes through. This creates two blunt edges that do not allow a line to curve as smoothly as if it were to bend around a column. Chafing gear would still be used as normal.

The downside is that fiberglass will wear down in time. Was thinking a curved bronze sheet on the rail would assist with that...
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