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Old 27-04-2014, 07:46   #1
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Replace Broken Forestay Wire Cat 27

Hello, I'm new to the forum and sailing. I just purchased a Cat 27, and upon stepping the mast discovered that one wire in the forestay is broken. It has a roller furling system. How do I go about measuring then replacing the forestay? Do I need to remove the mast again? Do I need a crane or bosun's chair? How can I do this single handedly, as its just me. Anyone know costs involved? Thanks in advance for any help.
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Old 27-04-2014, 08:30   #2
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Re: Replace broken forestay wire Cat 27

If your boat is out of the water you will certainly need a crane or bucket truck or something, not to pull the stick, but to lift you to the masthead.

If it is in the water perhaps some Catalina 27 owners can advise you on climbing the mast. That boat is getting a little small to send a lot of weight to the masthead.

I've rigged a halyard to act as a forestay while working on the boat but never climbed a mast like that.

If it were me I would find a cheaper alternative than a crane to lift me to the masthead.

Edit: If your marina/boat yard has the ability or you can get someone on site to make the forestay while your means of lifting waits it should be a quick repair. It will save a trip for your crane or whatever you've chosen, can probably all be done within their minimum hourly bill.

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Old 27-04-2014, 09:27   #3
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Re: Replace broken forestay wire Cat 27

Fiveslide, thank you for your reply. The boat is in the water, mast is up, and there is a crane provided by the boatyard that I could use at anytime. I don't believe there is any way for the forestay to be made onsite unless I am the one making it. Do you advise the crane vs. a bosun's chair then? How many people would I need to do this do you think? I'm thinking the only way is to motor it over to the crane, take the mast down, remove the forestay to send off for a replacement, leaving the mast down until I can get the new forestay, then reverse the process? Will I be able to replace the forestay while the mast is laying down on the boat?
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Old 27-04-2014, 09:36   #4
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Re: Replace broken forestay wire Cat 27

If they will lift you I would leave the stick up, unless the rest of your rig is questionable and in need of thorough inspection.

Rig a halyard to the bow to act as forestay. Remove the stay from the bow, slide off your furler. Get them to lift you to the masthead and remove the stay. Have one made then reverse the process.

Seems like the quickest way to me.

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Old 28-04-2014, 00:41   #5
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Re: Replace Broken Forestay Wire Cat 27

When you do it, (and it could be done from the bosun's chair), you will still need help, because you want to avoid kinking the furler. You'll tie the halyard to the top of the furler with a rolling hitch so that you can use the halyard to control lowering the foil, and your friends will take the foredeck part and carefully help the lot down onto the dock, with the least possible bit of bending it all. You'll find it's quite flexible. Good luck with getting it down safely.

I would think the Catalina forum would have the knowledge for the length of the stay, and you can make it up yourself using Sta-Loc or Norseman fittings. As long as you carry spare cones, you'll be able then to replace the stay whenever it needs it.

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Old 28-04-2014, 19:52   #6
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Re: Replace Broken Forestay Wire Cat 27

Ann and Fiveslide, thank you. I'm not sure if I'll use a bosun's chair or unstep the mast, but you've both given me great advice. I'm thinking I should order the parts and make up the forestay on the same day to save time. I can't seem to find any general measurements for a 1974 catalina 27, even on the c27 forum. I'm thinking I'd order a few extra feet over the standard length. Any suggestions? Also, have either if you made your own forestay?
Thanks!
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Old 28-04-2014, 20:03   #7
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Re: Replace Broken Forestay Wire Cat 27

Removing the mast with a crane is no big deal. Some of the travelifts even have them now.
I do it every year.
Don't forget to disconnect antenna and lighting wires before lifting the mast more than a foot or so.
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Old 28-04-2014, 20:16   #8
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Re: Replace Broken Forestay Wire Cat 27

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Originally Posted by caery View Post
Ann and Fiveslide, thank you. I'm not sure if I'll use a bosun's chair or unstep the mast, but you've both given me great advice. I'm thinking I should order the parts and make up the forestay on the same day to save time. I can't seem to find any general measurements for a 1974 catalina 27, even on the c27 forum. I'm thinking I'd order a few extra feet over the standard length. Any suggestions? Also, have either if you made your own forestay?
Thanks!
G'Day Caery,

To answer that last question, no, Ann hasn't made her own forestay, but her live-in rigger (me) has, several times, along with replacing all the other rigging at various times on various boats.

So, whadya wanna know?

Jim
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Old 30-04-2014, 05:14   #9
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Re: Replace Broken Forestay Wire Cat 27

What hardware will I need besides the 1 x 19 wire? Do you recommend 316 wire or 304?
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Old 02-05-2014, 22:09   #10
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Re: Replace Broken Forestay Wire Cat 27

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What hardware will I need besides the 1 x 19 wire? Do you recommend 316 wire or 304?
G'Day Caery,

All you will need is wire, terminals of some sort, a vise, a wire cutter of some sort, and a Crescent wrench and pliers. If you use Norseman or Sta-Lok terminals, some sort of sealant to put into the terminals is good.

From your info, I see that you are located in KA. If so, I'd assume that your sailing is in fresh water, and in that case, I'd go for 304 wire. It is slightly stronger, slightly cheaper, and without the salt issues, corrosion is not a big issue. If you intend to sail in the salt, I'd go for 316 myself,but lots of folks use 304 everywhere in teh world.

If you are not too big a guy, or have access to someone who is smallish, you could go aloft on a halyard to remove the stay as Ann described. 27 feet is sort of small for this approach, and you would want to check the condition of the halyard carefully!

One approach would be to order the wire a foot longer than your stay's measured length, and have the vendor swage one terminal on... that would be for the upper end. Swaged ends are somewhat less expensive than mechanical ends. Order one mechanical terminal, and when you have actually got the old stay naked on the dock, simply put on the terminal, matching the original eye-to-eye measurement. It only takes about five minutes to put them on, BTW, so a one day turn around is quite feasible, even for a novice rigger!

One thing to check out in advance: do some research on your particular furler. Some will just slide off, others require some disassembly. But, there is a way to avoid that issue completely:

We had to replace our forestay in northern Vanuatu a few years ago. It had Sta-Loks, and we simply removed one end of the old stay and, using an end-to -end splice invented on teh spot, used the old wire to pull the new one through the foils and their discontinuous internal bushings. Then we put the Sta-Loks on and we were done. This saved a LOT of work and time, which was good, seeing that we were doing it on the lawn at a friendly resort with a bunch of sunburned tourists looking over our shoulders!

Good luck with the project, Caery, and let us know how it turns out.

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 05-05-2014, 05:41   #11
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Re: Replace Broken Forestay Wire Cat 27

Wow Jim, thank you for all of the great information! You were very detailed and now I feel I can tackle this! I'm not sure if I'll go up or take the stick down, it depends now on the condition of the halyards and of course the amount of help I can round up. I realized this weekend that parts of the roller furling were falling off...not sure what I've lost, or why its coming apart. If I remove it completely, do you know if it's expensive to have the jib hanked for use only on a forestay?

Thanks again, you and Cate have been very helpful!
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Old 06-05-2014, 01:59   #12
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Re: Replace Broken Forestay Wire Cat 27

Carey, the job of putting hanks on should not be very expensive at all. Materials consist of some grommets and some hanks, and the labour shouldn't be more than a hour or so for a competent sailmaker.

Or you could do it yourself for less. I suspect that Sailrite has a video available that will talk you through the process, and they are a good source for the necessary bits of hardware. I haven't dealt with them for many years, but they were good folks back then and I've heard that they still are.

You know, most of the things that need to be done on smaller yachts are not too hard to learn, and the tools are not too dear. As size goes up things get physically more difficult, and often professional help is required. Yet another reason for starting on smaller boats IMO!

good luck once more!

Jim
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