An inexpensive fix would be to convert the fixed lazy jacks to retractable Ez jacks by replacing the top falls with longer lines that pass over a little cheek-block on either side of the mast
, just below the lower spreaders, and then down to the boom on either side of the mast. With this, one can ease the upper falls and pull the lazy jacks down to run horizontally along the top of the boom at the foot of the sail, secured with a short length of shock cord around the front of the mast. One really only needs the lazy jacks when one is furling
the sail anyway so why have them in the way all the time?
As for reefing, pre-mark your halyards for the first, second etc, reef points so that you can release as much slack as necessary--once you've freed the vang if it supports the boom or taken up on the topping lift
if not--and then haul in on the reefing line, which if you use single
line reefing should be passing through a block affixed to the luff of the sail and not simply a cringle. While I don't care for single
line reefing, it does have the merit of acting like a down-haul on the luff of the sail when wind
pressure may prevent the sail lowering of its own accord.
As for the slides, unless I am wrong, they are made of UHMW polyethylene and will respond well to a good rinse and once dried, a thorough spray of SailKote.