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Old 10-08-2015, 11:21   #1
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Lubricating mainsail track

We have a Yamaha 30 we purchased in November 2014. The mainsail track seems sticky. How would it be lubricated after a good cleaning, at least as far up as I can reach with my 6' cleaning brush.
No bosun's chair for me at age 63 and 250 pounds!
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Old 10-08-2015, 11:45   #2
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Re: Lubricating mainsail track

Someone's going to need to go up the mast. Lubed mine with spray on dry lubricant. Made a difference but needs to be redone regularly. Might try spraying each of the slides with lube if you don't want to/can't go up the mast though don't think it would be very effective.

Maybe you could get some enthusiasm from the Admiral to be hoisted up if you regaled her with tales of climbing the rigging and what a grand view it is from the masthead.
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Old 10-08-2015, 15:14   #3
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Re: Lubricating mainsail track

Spray it with McLube, but clean it first. Maybe just detergent and water.

You might be able to fabricate a rig out of some sail slides, a block of wood and some brushes or scrub pads, and pull it up and down with the halyard and a downhaul. And a separate rig with a wick that could be saturated with liquid Mc Lube. Actually, I think such a product was available some years back.
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Old 10-08-2015, 15:31   #4
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Re: Lubricating mainsail track

Dish soap is the cure and it is cheap. I always liberty coat sail or slides with dish soap cleans, lubricates and self cleaning.


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Old 30-08-2015, 09:00   #5
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Re: Lubricating mainsail track

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sailor Doug View Post
I always liberty coat sail or slides with dish soap cleans, lubricates and self cleaning.
I have been told several times that dish soap can be very caustic. Car people tell you NEVER to use dish soap to wash your car since it is very bad for the pain. I can't imagine it would be any better for the aluminum and fabric, but then again, maybe it's only bad for paint....
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Old 30-08-2015, 12:13   #6
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Re: Lubricating mainsail track

Dish soap is a fairly mild soap but believe it strips any wax on a car. Doubt that it's overly corrosive. One thing I did find is that causes water spots when used to wash a car. In any case, using soap to lube a track will probably work, if it works at all, only till the first rain.

FWIW, for grease/petroleum lubricant cleaning, do not buy the purple cleaners. The purple stuff corrodes aluminum right now. Stick with the green colored cleaners for aluminum.
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Old 30-08-2015, 13:35   #7
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Re: Lubricating mainsail track

FWIW, I suspect that you are all referring to dishwasher soap, not Joy or Palmolive dish washing soap... quite different things. The latter t ypes are not corrosive and won't hurt mast or paint. However, they also won't be very effective in cleaning the track.

If you simply can't get someone up the mast, then some sort of cleaning device would be required, one that can be hauled up and down the track as suggested above. A pair of sail slides linked with a short bit of light line and with a scotchbrite pad, carefully trimmed to be a good fit iin the track, in between the slides might do the job. Repeated soaking in some sort of cleaner as you hoist and retrieve the rig will also help. Once clean, replace the scotchbrite with a bit of sponge soaked in Maclube or other dry lubricant and run that up and down a few times. Finally, spray all the sail sldes withthe lube. You will be amazed at the difference!

This all assumes that you have some sort of internal track on the mast, not the older external T shaped stainless track... not used much these days.

Good luck with the job. BTW, I'm 77 but only about 170 lbs, and I go up the mast frequently...

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Old 30-08-2015, 13:59   #8
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Re: Lubricating mainsail track

Another potential and more expensive solution would be to replace your present set-up with "strong track", a low friction track system. Depends, of course, if you want to spend that.

Sorry to suggest an expensive possibility, it's just a notion.

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Old 31-08-2015, 17:44   #9
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Re: Lubricating mainsail track

mac lube
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