Rather than start a new thread, I'm posting
this bit of closely related information about batten car ball bearings to draw attention to an issue I had. Following the bottom line advice could save you some $$$ and possibly some potentially dangerous sail handling problems.
Last cruising season our fully battened main stuck up several times but eventually came down with some tugging and jiggling. In April the top batten car popped off its track and broke the ears off one side. A rigging inspection
in May just before laying up for hurricane
season revealed that the track was deeply scored along one side. The rigging
inspector informed me that ball bearings in the cars need to be replaced every 4 years. Given that the boat is now 9 years old with the original ball bearings, this damage comes as no surprise.
This repair, including removing and restepping the mast
, will cost me the better part of a boat buck so a word to the wise: Replace ball bearings in mainsail batten cars every 4 years.