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Uppdated 2017-10-03

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Change of sliders on the main sail

As you are probably already aware hoisting the mainsail is not easy to do. Same for hauling it down.

Paying for a gym membership during sailing season has been a waste of money. The vocabulary also declined and at the lowest point the language was more like a pirate's and that was just my wife. My language was not much better but my wife and I seldom discuss that period!

After testing Teflon spray without much success, we tested dishcloths soaked with Teflon spray that we stuffed in the mast track (thanks to all of you on the Hanse forum who gave the good advice!). Wow, that was like a rebirth when the sail flew up in the top of the mast and coming down like an avalanche in the mountains!

But, Christmas lasts only a day and so does Teflon spray. The option to purchase a Strong Track was not an issue but Peter (also a 370 owner) gave a tip that was simple and would only cost "about" 100 SEK.

Peter and I have we have different definitions of "about" :) As it turned out, to re-sew the sail was cheap at SEK 1.600 including Cunningham ring. This is only 10% of what a Strong Track would cost which North Sails suggested as a solution.

 

1. This is what the sail looked like before anything was re-sewn.

 

2. As you can see the sliders were sewn very tightly to the edge of the main. This made them twist and cause friction in the mast track as there is no room for movement.
 

3. Detail picture of stictched sliders.

 

4. The old sliders will be replaced with new ones that are attached to shackles. As you can see there is now space for slider to freely move up and down and will not be twisting inside the mast track anymore.

 

5. Old slider is removed. An eyelet is punched into the sail.
 

 

6. The eyelet is off course stainless and very nicely fitted!

7. The sliders hangs relaxed from the sail after been replaced.

 

8. The sliders for the battens have been adjusted slightly so they are the same distance from the mast as the new sliders.

 

9. A Cunningham was missing from the sail so the sail maker fitted one. I did not have a clue what it was but it looked cool...and these days I of course know what it is used for.

 

 

10. Detailed picture of the eyelet called a Cunningham.

11. The first slider on the top clew was left as it was as the clew board kept it straight anyway. This has since worked quite well without any problems.

 

12. After re-stitching the sliders the sail comes down easily and stacks nicely on the boom. There is no friction or tension on the sliders which makes the down hauling of the sail quite effortless.

 

13. The sliders stack closer to each other as there is more room for them to move freely.

 

14. We can now hoist the sail without any problems. Both my wife and I are able to manually hoist the sail until there is only 20 cm left and then we use a winch. Strangely my wife's language improved immensely with the new sliders when she hoisted the sail manually to the top first time. I had just started to get used to her sounding like a drunken sailor.

 

15. The sail is little bit further away from the mast with the new sliders when having the wind from the bow but when the wind comes from the beam the gap between the mast and the sail is smaller. Better or worse, hard to say but we haven't noticed any performance difference.

 

 

16. Overview of the new sliders and the Cunningham eyelet.

Conclusion:
Changes to the sail proved to be the best changes we've made on the boat. This solution should be standard on our boats. The cost is minimal even if you pay it yourself. The sail can now be hoisted by one person and in difficult situations it is easy to just drop it! No more pulling and climbing on the mast or using boat-hook to get the sail down!


The downside? Well, I now have to buy a gym card for the wife.

  Solution provided by Bengt Lindholm from Hamel Sails. Bengt can these days been found at North Sails loft in Lidingö, Sweden.
     
 

2013-03-21

Since the last changes were documented on this page we are back to the situation where hoisting/lowering of the main sail is not as smooth as we were used to. Cleaning  the mast track and spraying everything with Teflon has not been the optimal solution. Our beliefe is that the problem lies in the batten sliders and therefore we have decided to change them to Battcars. If this doesen't help the next step will be to install a Strongtrack.

 

1. This is one of the sliders. We have four on the sail, one for each batten.

 

 

2. The slider when not fitted in the sail.

3. The new Battcar from Rutgerson. See product information below.

 

 

4. Bottom view.

5. Top view.

 

 

6. The new Battcar in place.

 

7. The three types of sliders that we use or have used on the main sail

 

   

Material used:

Rutgerson pressure absorbing slide & Battcar with stainless steel M10 adapter.

Product no. 1530-11-05 (for Sparcraft F460 masts)

Price SEK 355+VAT

Click here to read technichal details of the Battcar.

 

2013-05-03

The batcars have now been fitted to the main sail and the result was waht we expected. Hoisting and lowering the sail is now easy and safe and it has reduced the stress on the boat somehow as we don't have to be worried anymore if the sail will come down or not.

 

1. Detail how the batcars runs on the mast.

 

 

2. The batten rests now on the wheels and lowering the sail is just pure fun now!