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Old 18-07-2010, 18:50   #1
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Scary Rigging Moment Today - Please Advise

Hello all,

Well I'm about three weeks into the biggest sailing adventure of my life thus far and things are going great. We made it from NYC up to the Bay of Fundy and now we're working our way back down the coast. Big thanks again to all of you who gave input and helped make this happen.

We had a scary moment today that I'm still a little concerned about. The boat is a 1978 Pearson 26. After a long period of upwind sailing in 15 knots and choppy seas, I watched as my inside (shorter) leeward shroud disconnected from the chainplate and started flopping around. I had broken the ring on the clevis pin and the steel u-shaped bracket at the bottom of the turnbuckle deformed a bit, probably when it was under tension on the previous tack, then popped off when it loosened up again.*
*
Obviously I was lucky this episode did not happen on the windward side. Perhaps my inside shrouds were a little loose, although I checked them a few days ago. I put everything back together and the rig looks fine. Everything is aligned well and I have been sailing on it since it happened a few hours ago. I will replace the deformed turnbuckle part of course.

But while inspecting everything I noticed a slight irregularity in the cable. It's not a kink and there are no broken strands nor corrosion of any kind. What I see, about 2 feet off the deck, is an extremely slight curve in the shroud, first one way and then back. It is only perceptible if you put your eye right up to the cable and look down it. This may have been there for years without me noticing or it, for all I know.

Is this slight 'wibble' in the shroud any cause for concern? All the research on inspecting standing rigging I've seen talks about corrosion, cracks, and broken strands. The stay looks as strong as ever to me. Is this something I should replace immediately, this winter, or just keep an eye on it? Any insight as to why the shroud disconnected other than being slightly too loose and the pin popping out?
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Old 18-07-2010, 19:24   #2
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Cotter pins are better than the ring things for standing rigging, for reasons you just experienced.

As long as the wire is not kinked, it should be OK.

If your rigging is over 10 years old, its time to think about replacing it. If its over 15 years old, you are sailing on borrowed time.
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Old 18-07-2010, 19:43   #3
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Wiggles in the wire can be ignored.

Never use ring-dings on anything important. Use a regular split pin. Tape it up.

The rig needs to be tight enough that leeward shrouds don't flop around.
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Old 22-07-2010, 16:03   #4
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I agree with daddle on the split pins being preferrable to rings. I'm not sure I would agree that one can ignore wiggles in wire rigging. I guess it will depend on (a) the age of the rigging, and (b) whether the mast is insured.
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Old 22-07-2010, 16:22   #5
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I agree with daddle on the split pins being preferrable to rings. I'm not sure I would agree that one can ignore wiggles in wire rigging. I guess it will depend on (a) the age of the rigging, and (b) whether the mast is insured.
Soft bends and wiggles in an unloaded wire are nothing. The OP had a "very slight curve", presumably in the unloaded wire he was inspecting. Not near a fitting.
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Old 23-07-2010, 06:38   #6
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What I see, about 2 feet off the deck, is an extremely slight curve in the shroud, first one way and then back. It is only perceptible if you put your eye right up to the cable and look down it. This may have been there for years without me noticing or it, for all I know.
You may have a bend in the turn buckle that causes the shroud to angle off the chainplate and create the appearance of a bend. Or, while 1x19 is "flexible" it is so only over some length. Short sections are relatively stiff and so can, in fact, have a bend that will not disappear unless the wire is very heavily loaded.

As for tuning your rig, you lee shrouds should be quite snug and not able to move around. Take a look at http://www.rocketboats.com/pdf/HallRigTuneManual.pdf .

FWIW...
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Old 23-07-2010, 11:41   #7
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And, here I just bought 20+ rings to secure my turnbuckles. But, not installed yet.

I'll take the advice here and get cotter pins tomorrow .
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Old 23-07-2010, 11:54   #8
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And, here I just bought 20+ rings to secure my turnbuckles. But, not installed yet.

I'll take the advice here and get cotter pins tomorrow .
rings are ok as a way to prevent the turnbuckle from rotating, but have no business on the pins unless you trailer sail and de-rig often.
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Old 23-07-2010, 14:30   #9
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I used rings, and changed them prior to every cruise (6 months in service).
Certainly, split cotter pins are more robust; but neither are “set it and forget it”.
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Old 23-07-2010, 14:40   #10
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I'm in the split cotter pin camp, split by 15 degrees or so. I keep a set of crummy pliers in the cockpit and can take one of those cotter pins out in a jiffy. Also keep them inboard (accessible). I don't take them unless there's a habitual snag spot that keeps happening.
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Old 23-07-2010, 17:17   #11
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We used rings and pins here, no problems either.

But I agree that a proper method - rings or pins - should be chosen for each application, use and location.

The rings we used were of the Hasselfors type.

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