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Sail Track Lubricant

Jan 1, 2006
5,956
Slickcraft 26 Greenport, NY
I'm looking for something to spray in the sail track and lugs of the Flying Scot I've been sailing. I have so far not gotten the main up to my satisfaction. I don't mind springing for a 12oz bottle of McLube's Sailcoat. But I'd like to know it will work first. The application instructions specify a clean try track with prior Tx's removed. I'm not going to be able to do that as the mast is up. I'm pretty sure the sailing center hasn't done much or anything to lubricate the track. But clean? These things are out in the weather on salt water. Prolly not clean.
I used the product on my 356, without cleaning the track, and I'd say the improvement was marginal. I'd spray the track and the bolt rope on the jib. I'm not sure I effectively applied enough. On the FS the main has slugs. So I'd spray them and as much of the track as I can reach (8').
Any insight on the cleaning? Alternative products?
 
Nov 26, 2012
1,511
Hunter 34 Berkeley
Dry spray silicone lube works great. You do not have to buy the expensive kind from West Marine that is supposed to be for sailboats. There are plenty of non-sailboat brands available at the hardware store that work great.
 
May 25, 2012
3,785
john alden caravelle 42 sturgeon bay, wis
some of us do not want silicone of any kind on our sailboats. i will never use silicone spray.

i get great results with McLube.
 
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Tom J

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Sep 30, 2008
1,956
Catalina 310 Quincy, MA
I'd spray the track and the bolt rope on the jib. I'm not sure I effectively applied enough. On the FS the main has slugs. So I'd spray them and as much of the track as I can reach (8').
Exactly what I do with McLube. Seems to work well. But then, I don't know what it is like without the McLube.
 
Feb 20, 2011
7,760
Island Packet 35 Tucson, AZ/San Carlos, MX
@Maine Sail rigged a small plywood construct with sail slugs. Put on a can of lube and a downhaul.
Wish I could find the pic...
 
Jan 11, 2014
7,654
Sabre 362 113 Fair Haven, NY
@Maine Sail rigged a small plywood construct with sail slugs. Put on a can of lube and a downhaul.
Wish I could find the pic...
In the P-S articles I referenced earlier there were a couple of similar ideas. Run a cleaning rag up the slot with a downhaul and work it up and down the mast with the halyard. I have a couple of short sections of luff tape that I can clean my jib and main tracks with.

For a small boat like the FS, just take the mast down and clean it. One person can drop and raise the mast although it is easier with 2 people. The mast is really light, maybe 20-30 lbs. I've done it several times with my Scot.
 
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Mar 26, 2011
2,910
Corsair F-24 MK I Deale, MD
In the P-S articles I referenced earlier there were a couple of similar ideas. Run a cleaning rag up the slot with a downhaul and work it up and down the mast with the halyard. I have a couple of short sections of luff tape that I can clean my jib and main tracks with.

For a small boat like the FS, just take the mast down and clean it. One person can drop and raise the mast although it is easier with 2 people. The mast is really light, maybe 20-30 lbs. I've done it several times with my Scot.
Yup, like this: Either home made or purchased. You can make your own with some luff tape and some grommets. Shooting the hose at the track also helps. You can soak the cleaner with anything from soap and water to mineral spirits, depending on the problem.

The makers of the cleaners I show in #5 is OOB.
 
Jan 11, 2014
7,654
Sabre 362 113 Fair Haven, NY
I'm interested why that would be.
Silicone can embed itself into the gelcoat. It can not be removed with solvents or by scrubbing. It can only be removed by removing the contaminated gelcoat.

Once the gelcoat has been contaminated, nothing sticks very well.

For exposed surfaces like sail tracks and ball bearing blocks a dry lubricant is best because wet lubricants can attract and capture dust and debris which cause friction.
 
Jun 21, 2004
1,825
Beneteau 343 Slidell, LA
mclube is ptfe, or teflon
Actually, the main ingredient is a dupont high performance lubricant called krytox. It leaves little to no residue as compared to others I have tried. spray it on a clear piece of glass and compare it to others to see the difference. Problem is that that Sailkote spray is getting harder to find in the local and online chandleries and it's expensive stuff.
 

DArcy

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Feb 11, 2017
1,178
Islander Freeport 36 Ottawa
I have used McLube with great success without cleaning the T-slot track, just spraying what I can reach and each car. It does make a very noticeable difference.
 
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May 25, 2012
3,785
john alden caravelle 42 sturgeon bay, wis
i stand corrected as to what dupont chemical it is. still a trade name. they are sneaky.

mclube stays where you put it. silicon spray does not stay on where you put it well at all. first rain and it is rinsing down onto the deck or cabin top.
fiberglass decks- very slippery- danger will smith
open pore teak decks- all messed up
paint and varnish-can destroy the resurfacing possibilities.
1622298381312.png


i don't want silicon on halyards, winches,paint,teak,varnish, and then walked and sat on and transferred/tracked through out the vessel.

it does not stay put on surfaces on sailboats.
slippery

my $0.02

can make fiberglass decks into a slip-and-slide as it rinses off the mast
 

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Jan 1, 2006
5,956
Slickcraft 26 Greenport, NY
I found a can of dry lubricant made by Blaster which has Teflon in it. $5.99. There was also a product by WD 40 which was labeled as a dry lubricant and contains PTFE - but not Teflon by name. $6.30. I bought the former based on their company spiel. Sorta the bad a**es of lubricants.
 
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