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Advice needed. My rigging is maxed on the turnbuckles and not tight.

Sep 22, 2018
1,084
Hunter 216 Kingston
I’m not familiar with your boat but found these on the internet



The compression post idea has a lot of merit as it seems strange that ALL of the rigging would be stretched.

If you decide to change the rigging you could also consider using these as a DIY project

 
Oct 19, 2017
5,981
O'Day 19 Littleton, NH
Compression post was where I first went when I read the OP's original post, but it sounds like the stays need replacing too. I strongly urge you to do as lillia28 suggests and evaluate the mast step, compression post, keel step and cabin top conditions. While you're at it, make sure the chainplates are bedded and secured and the masthead looks solid.

It's been a while since the original post, how has the upgrades and repairs been going?

-Will (Dragonfly)
 
Sep 22, 2018
1,084
Hunter 216 Kingston
Twin keels, bet she just flys!!! Pun intended.

It never ceases to amaze me that humans create these artful solutions to technical problems. Tired of picking up all your stuff each time the tide out - flops your boat, just build one that doesn’t flop.
 
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PaulK

.
Dec 1, 2009
401
Tillotson Pearson J/36 Southport, CT
Wire stays and shrouds on a 21’ boat are not likely to stretch appreciable or noticeable amounts - certainly not enough to make all of them seem “loose”. If the mast is deck stepped, with, according to the OP, a hinge pin in the tabernacle/step, putting a “lifter plate” there isn’t going to work to tighten the rigging; the hinge would jam. Lillia's idea about compression of the deck area is a good possibility, especially in an older, lightly built boat. Look to make sure that the cabin top is not depressed. Look below to see what is holding up the cabin top in the way of the mast step too. A compression post may have been removed by the previous owner because it interfered with the space down below, or it may not have been built with one, in the hope that the convex cabin top would be strong enough. Maybe it was for the first 30 years, but since then it could have gotten ‘tired”. Maybe there is a post, but it has shifted, worn out, crushed its support in the keel, or rotted. Installing shorter rigging would only make any depression worse, so it would be good to check the structure before proceeding with new rigging. Noting that the thread is from August, hope the OP took Lillia’s advice or that this isn’t too late to help.
 
Jun 25, 2004
821
Corsair F24 Mk1 003 San Francisco Bay, CA
@StarRover21

Any update?

I’ve been following this thread. There have been good suggestions and few not so good. I agree with the suggestion to rule out the existence of a depression in the deck or compression post problem. followed by replacing the wire rigging with professional guidance from a rigger or sailmaker.
 
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Jun 8, 2004
7,819
-na -NA Anywhere USA
I will comment as a former dealer, American Marine & Sail Supply which started in 1981. Sailboat data states this boat was built by Russell Marine commencing in 1970 but the title work in question lists the boat as a 1982 model although production had ceased before then according to my sources plus the twin keel gave it away as to a UK built boat.. I suspect the boat came over to the U.S. with no documentation other than a bill of sale and treated as a home built boat like undocumented trailers with a home built title which I have seen in the past. We do not know the mast mfg. and would have been helpful if there was a photo of the mast base to include mast step and mast foot and also to detect if there was any issue with the deck. However, back then the style of hinged mast step never contained a spacer. Then I saw where the turnbuckle body in one photo showed the turnbuckle stud within the turnbuckle body itself with no further room to adjust so shortening the stud is not a viable solution. As for adding a spacer under the mast step, the deck underneath it needs to be inspected for any leaks that would allow the deck to sag. It appears the boat was purchased by the poster. I doubt insurance will be afforded as no survey was done.

With all said, I would advise a professional to look at the standing rigging to see if there are any rusted parts particuraly in the studs where compressed. Then the rigging needs to be inspected for breaks. If any the wires will need to be replaced. What has happened as with many standing rigging on smaller boats, the wire has stretched to the point that the standing rigging in my opinion should be replaced as we are dealing with 40 plus years old assuming this is the original rigging as we have no way to determine that plus tensil strength is in question too. Yes you can cut the rigging and add studs nicro pressing them in place by hand but would not recommend that either due to the above comments Also loose standing rigging is not good either.

To the poster, let a professional evaluate. It would be wise to know what is going on for your own safety.
 
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Jun 25, 2004
821
Corsair F24 Mk1 003 San Francisco Bay, CA
Just to be clear, SS wire doesn’t stretch out over time, unless it’s woefully inadequate to the task. On a boat of this size, 20-21 feet, 1/8 diameter is more than adequate, with at least a 4:1 safety factor.

Brand new, high quality wire gets less than 1% longer the first few times it’s loaded up, as the individual, twisted wires tighten up closer to each other under any load application That’s called “construction stretch”. After the initial first few uses, there is no further stretch due to construction.

If SS wire is going to stretch out permanently because it’s inferior or inadequate, you’d see it In the early life of the wire, not as it get older. Time and even hours of use don’t cause the wires to stretch. Otherwise full time cruising boats and racing Would need new rigging every year or two!

To repeat, stainless wire simply does NOT stretch continuously over the decades. Otherwise all old boats would have loose rigging.

The rigging on that boat simply looks, to my professional eye, too long for the mast. I wouldn’t be surprised if it was somebody’s first attempt to replace some missing shrouds and stays.

Also to my professional eye, it looks home made, with Single nicopressed thimbles and galvanized turnbuckles. It looks somebody did it themselves and used non standard parts from the hardware store

To summarize, I’d rule out a depressed deck, then get a knowledgeable rigger to give the boat a “ neutral” dock tune, if possible with those stays and shrouds. It they are in fact, too long, the rigger will be able to calculate the correct length needed to get a proper neutral dock tune, with enough adjustment for fine tuning on the water.
 

TomY

Alden Forum Moderator
Jun 22, 2004
2,171
Alden 38' Challenger yawl Rockport Harbor
The only two times I saw standing go limp at a spring launch was a deck stepped mast where the support beneath rotted over winter due to water damage.

The other one was a 2 masted schooner with wooden spars, that were painted(**). The owner would loosen his standing rigging for winter storage once the boat was shrink wrapped, like he had for 25 years.

In the spring, a last detail was to tighten the standing rigging. He tightened, and tightened,...and tightened until the turn buckles bottomed.

The yard sent a rigger up in a crane. He saw the reason immediately and took a pic with his phone. Once on the ground he showed the owner the bad news: The mast head had rotted and the tangs, through bolts and all, were just sinking into the rot.

He was a sloop for that season while a yard cut 10 or feet off and scarfed in a new mast top. Paint on wooden spars hides rot unlike spar varnish.
 
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Jun 8, 2004
7,819
-na -NA Anywhere USA
@DrJudyB
Good morning. I read your comment about stainless steel flexible does not stretch. How do you explain why I had to replace standing rigging on boats originally sold new by me years later after much use? I believe it does stretch without any deck sagging when you no longer can tune since the turnbuckles are turned all the way down inside the turnbuckle body itself?
Dave
 
Jun 25, 2004
821
Corsair F24 Mk1 003 San Francisco Bay, CA
@DrJudyB
Good morning. I read your comment about stainless steel flexible does not stretch. How do you explain why I had to replace standing rigging on boats originally sold new by me years later after much use? I believe it does stretch without any deck sagging when you no longer can tune since the turnbuckles are turned all the way down inside the turnbuckle body itself?
Dave
I don’t know the answer to your question, Dave, but it wasn’t stretch (other than the initial construction stretch.) If you don’t believe me, ask any rigger, or call a wire rope manufacturer.
Or look at the thousands of boats that have circumnavigated. I’ve been on boats that have gone 40,000 m of hard use over a decade, on the original rigging. If wire keeps stretching year after year, Why weren’t those rigs loose?

If you want to read up on the topic, google tensile yield strength of Stainless steel. Also look up work hardening. In brief, SS starts to permanently stretch at about 50% of breaking strength when brand new. After a few cycles of loading, it “work hardens” so that it takes about 75% of breaking strength to cause any further stretch. look up the stress/strain curve for stainless steel.

There are plenty of textbooks that can explain it far more concisely than I. It’s been decades since I studied the mechanical,properties of materials as an undergrad or grad student.

Judy
 
Last edited:
Oct 19, 2017
5,981
O'Day 19 Littleton, NH
If stretch is the only issue, why replace? Cut to new length and re-tighten. Rigging is replaced as it ages, as a matter of course. Strands break or become fatigued and may allow a cable to lengthen just before failure. Attachment points may also be suspect. Bolt holes wear and lengthen (not a significant amount to cause unrepairable loosening), flanges bend, chainplates shift in their beddings. None of these things usually are significant factors, but in an older boat where all these factors might come together along with small movements in deck, compression post, sheerline bend, could add up to real problems.

-Will (Dragonfly)
 
Jun 8, 2004
7,819
-na -NA Anywhere USA
@DrJudyB

It does happen but what about this. The cable is twisted SS STRANDS. could it be the spiraling is becoming unspiraled causing the cable to stretch over the years. I have seen the stretch but try to have figured out