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Replacing Standing Rigging  Bottom

  • We all know that shrouds should be replaced in a timely fashion, and more often when the boat is sailed in saltwater. What about the bridle wires and forestay? Should they be replaced with the same frequency? Are the stress levels the same as on the shrouds?
  • QuoteWhat about the bridle wires and forestay? Should they be replaced with the same frequency?

    yup
    same amount of exposure and dirt, salts and other corrosives get into all the fittings
    AND your diamond wires

    QuoteAre the stress levels the same as on the shrouds?

    same? I am not really sure of the physics of the stays vs bridals but i am sure the force on your diamonds is not the same as your stays
    but exact same amount of stress cycling going on with all your standing rigging

    Someone else (here) posted an article about fitting fatuque that was very interesting -
    http://www.dixielandmarin…om/yachts/DLrigprob.html
  • The stress is frequently greater on the bridles than the forestay, due to the angle of force.
    If it is braided steel cable on your boat, it will need replacing on some schedule especially, as MN3 pointed out, if you sail even infrequently in salt water.

    --
    Sheet In!
    Bob
    ___/)________/)_______/)__/)____/)_____/)/)__________/)__
    Prindle 18-2 #244 "Wakizashi"
    Prindle 16 #3690 "Pegasus" Sold (sigh)
    AZ Multihull Fleet 42 member
    (Way) Past Commodore of Prindle Fleet 14
    Arizona, USA
    --
  • For us less experienced, when do you replace the standing rigging? Especially if it doesn’t appear to have obvious wear.

    *MN3’s article says 10 years. My boat’s standing rigging is actually larger than stock, I.e. 3/8 vs 1/4, so hopefully I’ve got additional strength and life.



    Edited by dartsailors on Mar 06, 2018 - 06:14 PM.

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    ===
    Dana, Holly, Emma & Hannah

    LJ/Stu's Dart 18
    ===
    --
  • dartsailorsFor us less experienced, when do you replace the standing rigging? Especially if it doesn’t appear to have obvious wear.

    Many racers will change out all cables every 2 years
    many casual sailors will change out their stay's and diamond-wires just after the moment of failure

    I try to cycle through my rigging, (stays one year, bridals another, and then diamonds)

    indepth inspection should be done of all fittings prior to every sail
    (good time to check shackles and screws for tightness too)

    light rust around a fitting end or attachment point is often the first sign of "age" but doesn't mean it is "broken" - but an omen of things to come

    if you look at the article i posted it will point out other points of failure
  • dartsailorsMy boat’s standing rigging is actually larger than stock, I.e. 3/8 vs 1/4, so hopefully I’ve got additional strength


    3/8” diameter cable on a beach cat? I assume you’re including the nylon coating in your measurement because most 16-20 foot beach cats use 5/32” diameter rigging. 3/8” or even 1/4” diameter cable (I’m talking about the actual wire rope) would be way overkill.

    A while back I actually looked into having custom 3/16” diameter rigging made for my boat with the thinking that the added strength would mean that it would virtually never need to be replaced (it is roughly 50% stronger than 5/32” rigging), but unfortunately the terminal fittings would all have gone up to the next size larger and so they wouldn’t have been compatible with the existing adjusters, shackles, tangs, etc.

    sm
  • Dogboy, I think you mean 5/16. Same for Dartsailor, 5/16. Stiletto 27's first came with 5/16' and we soon convinced the company to change to 3/8 due to excessive stretching. Pete
  • Dogboy and Pete:

    I don’t remember the exact dimensions of my rigging, only that it is one size up from stock. I was using 1/4 and 3/8 as an example. I’ll check with the prior owner so I know what to buy in the future.

    Dana

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    ===
    Dana, Holly, Emma & Hannah

    LJ/Stu's Dart 18
    ===
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  • I think while you are having fun replacing rigging you do need to include the diamond wires. Failure of a diamond wire means a likely mast replacement. When a shroud fails the mast just falls on your head and that cushions the masts fall.

    That said my 40+ year old rigging held up through lots of salt and freshwater use, but in a much cooler climate and I think that is a critical difference as compared to the Florida and Texas sailors. The new stuff should last at least through a couple of new owners.

    --
    dg
    NACRA 5.2 #400
    This End Up
    Original owner since 1975
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  • Every post leaves out the most important aspect. All have discussed size but no one has mentioned quality. I have posted about this numerous times.
    I would advise against using factory made wires for many boats. Some manufactures have begun using cheap SS wire rope from lees than ideal Asian sources. Best to get them made locally using Mil/Aero spec wire made in the USA or EU, and genuine Mil/Aero spec thimbles, forks and etc. It won't cost any more than factory supplied parts and I have paid less every time. I would also demand that ovals, forks etc be packed with Lifecaulk or 3M 5200 before swaging so that water will not intrude into these anaerobic environments to eat away at the rigging.
    I would replace all wires at the same time, shroud, upper forestay, lower forestay and even bridal wire failure can bring the mast down. Don't forget the shackle can also fail.
  • Every post leaves out the most important aspect. All have discussed size but no one has mentioned quality. I have posted about this numerous times.
    I would advise against using factory made wires for many boats. Some manufactures have begun using cheap SS wire rope from lees than ideal Asian sources. Best to get them made locally using Mil/Aero spec wire made in the USA or EU, and genuine Mil/Aero spec thimbles, forks and etc. It won't cost any more than factory supplied parts and I have paid less every time. I would also demand that ovals, forks etc be packed with Lifecaulk or 3M 5200 before swaging so that water will not intrude into these anaerobic environments to eat away at the rigging.
    I would replace all wires at the same time, shroud, upper forestay, lower forestay and even bridal wire failure can bring the mast down. Don't forget the shackle can also fail.
  • pbegleDogboy, I think you mean 5/16. Same for Dartsailor, 5/16. Pete


    Nope, I meant 5/32”. The stock wire size on all Hobies 18 to 21 feet is 5/32” diameter. Hobie 14 to 17’s use 1/8” diameter standard but can be bumped up to 5/32” since both wire sizes use the same terminal fittings. Once you go up to 3/16” diameter, the terminals get larger and it won’t work easily with the existing adjusters and tangs. Again, I’m talking about the bare wire diameter here. If you use coated wires, then the coating probably adds another 1/16” to 1/8” on the overall diameter.

    sm
  • Quote*MN3’s article says 10 years.

    I missed this point in your post

    Keep in mind this article was written by surveyors and about mono-hulls

    Here is the data from the article
    "This is another example of the situations which lead us (and many other surveyors) to recommend that a mast should be taken down and fittings disassembled for inspection every five years.

    Time to Replace?
    What is the expected "life span" of a rig before it should be replaced? Some authorities suggest 10 years for replacement. All of the problems above were with rigs that were more than 10 years old. But, we see some rigs at 15 years or more with no apparent problems."

    NOTE: rigging used on mono-hulls are different
    monohulls (excluding real raceboats) are extreeeeeeeemly overbuilt to handle the huge weightloads (and keel) and last years of mast up use and on water storage


    conversely - the beauty of beachcats is the weight to sail ratio - this is why we are so fast ... no keel and non-overbuilt rigging (and also so delicate when compaired to your typical Hunter or Morgan monohull)

    Takeaway: that article has great info but the maint schedules will not translate to beachcats


    https://www.thebeachcats.com/gallery2/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=128039&g2_serialNumber=4&g2_GALLERYSID=f4ca359e8c79da2fd2329f4f052691d4

    http://www.thebeachcats.com/gallery2/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=123657&g2_serialNumber=3



    Edited by MN3 on Mar 07, 2018 - 10:28 AM.
  • QuoteThe new stuff should last at least through a couple of new owners.

    I suggest everybody replace standing rigging when you purchase a used cat / boat - never know it's history
  • Prindle and NACRA maintenance guides suggested a five year replacement cycle.

    https://www.thebeachcats.com/gallery2/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=126403&g2_serialNumber=3

    https://www.thebeachcats.…396&g2_imageViewsIndex=1

    --
    Sheet In!
    Bob
    ___/)________/)_______/)__/)____/)_____/)/)__________/)__
    Prindle 18-2 #244 "Wakizashi"
    Prindle 16 #3690 "Pegasus" Sold (sigh)
    AZ Multihull Fleet 42 member
    (Way) Past Commodore of Prindle Fleet 14
    Arizona, USA
    --
  • Definitely need a sliding scale for replacement intervals. I sail year round in saltwater with one of my boats full time mast up. 2 years is about as long as I’d go, and that includes mast tang shackle and shroud anchor bolts. Growing up we had a lake cottage on a 2 milex1 mile lake. I doubt we ever replaced the rigging on the Hobie 14 that was garaged there and never had a failure.
  • QuotePrindle and NACRA maintenance guides suggested a five year replacement cycle.

    "A Standard Rule on sailboats is to replace all wires every five years"

    no disrespect intended, esp to the poster of this link but this seems like old and generic data

    we are beach cats, not "standard sailboats" so that statement is too generic for me

    This interval may work fine on a P16 (or similar style cat) with light loads in California, but seems like a long interval for a modern rig to me, esp one that lives in hot air, hot salt water and crazy UV exposure.

    IMHO

    I am going to do everything i can to avoid my mast from falling on me, my car, my boat or worse another person
    boat ownership comes with costs and responsabilities

    I've had tangs, stays and shackles fail on me - some underway, some on anchor
    I leave my boat on a public beach about 100 nights a year.
    I could' t live with-myself if my mast unexpectedly fell on someone or i had been cheap/lazy and didn't replace rigging

    ymmv
  • I have a Supercat 20 and replace the standing rigging every two years and replace the forestay pigtail every year. My boat lives on Singer Island, Florida where the prevailing winds blow saltwater on the boat continuously and my boat is also over 12 feet wide. By no means typical.

    I have kept track of failures in the past and divided the average by 50%. I also make my own rigging because I have had brand new rigging fail after less than ten racing miles. The forestay pigtail needs to be replaced more often than the rest of the rigging because it is shorter and also twists more than the rest of the rigging. I have had it fail after two years of beach and hard sailing.

    If you build your own rigging, you can take the wire from the shrouds and cut the terminals off and use them for the bridles and forstay. The corosion is mainly located at the terminals. Especially if you replace as often as I do. I also save a complete set for spares in case of any issues.

    Because of the extreme environment and extra wide boat this is probably overkill for most but a good indication that you should inspect regularly. When the mast comes down, it does a lot more damage than the rigging costs.



    Edited by cyberspeed on Mar 13, 2018 - 04:59 AM.

    --
    Craig Van Eaton
    West Palm Beach
    Supercat 20
    www.teamcyberspeed.com
    www.sailseries.com
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  • My 2 Cents worth: When it all comes down while sailing, the costs goes up significantly and well as the chances of bodily injury. Don't be a cheapskate. I and my safety are worth more than a few hundred dollars of new rigging.
  • Another good practice is to lock mast rotation when trailering with the mast up or when leaving the boat on the water.

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