Shroud tension - MacGregor 25 (1983)

Nov 19, 2011
1,489
MacGregor 26S Hampton, VA
I see mine as slack on the leeward side too, especially on a broad reach but really any time. I don't have a gauge but tight is tight. I mean you don't have to be able to play a song in them either. I actually had a leeward shroud come loose last year, I was able to maintain the tack and climb up and reconnect it. The turnbuckle unscrewed. Make sure they are pinned not to do this.

The shrouds are aft of the mast base so they will compete against the forestay. My rig is currently set up as masthead so I keep some tension on the rear stay but not like the forestay or shrouds.
 
Sep 25, 2008
923
Macgregor & Island Packet VENTURE 25 & IP-38 NORTH EAST, MD
Ken, going downwind shouldn't bend the mast like that. The lowers keep the mast straight. Maybe your uppers are way tighter than the lowers. Stand behind the mast and grab a lower in each hand and pull back. See if the mast goes straight. ( make sure the backsaty is slack first). The lowers get set first to make the mast straight, then the uppers set to pull against them. If you set one too tight, then you can wind up just going back and forth tightening indefinetly, all the while making your boat thinner...lol You really need a tension gauge to set it up correctly to start with. Set at 12 to 15 % of the working load of the wire. Turnbuckles are def a worthwhile investment too.
 

Kestle

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Jun 12, 2011
702
MacGregor 25 San Pedro
I like the cam cleat idea. I do the once around the cleat and pull and pump technique. Like pulling the string on a bow then cleating it. I get the no bulkhead thing. The boat squeezes together. I am going to loosen my back stay this weekend.
FYI, "pull and pump" is called "jacking" where I come from.

Jeff
 

Kestle

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Jun 12, 2011
702
MacGregor 25 San Pedro
There seems to be a few mentions of stays loosening. From bitter experience, I've learned that all turnbuckles should have cotter pins in them and the turnbuckle wrapped in sail tape or something to cover the pins (and save your sail). I check under the tape every 90 days for rust.

Pinned turnbuckles don't loosen, they just release. Suddenly. :)

Jeff
 

Erik V

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Mar 14, 2012
104
Macgregor 25 Stony Point NY
I use my boom vang (4:1) attached to the jib halyard to tension my M25. Tension is set to 20% of the shroud working loads ( around 600#). I have gone to a 5/32 head stay instead of 1/4. When not sailing I relax the tension by using the boom vang set up and insert a long shackle between the furler and chain plate. I have also placed blocks between between the chain plates and cabin side to keep them from bending inward. Mast rake is set at 1-2 deg. measured with the boat in the water. Corrected jib sheet location, added mid boom main sheeting with a traveler. Also changed out rudder with one that works. What a different boat now it sails. Lots of fun out sailing larger boats that are not setup to meet there potential.
 
May 16, 2011
537
Macgregor V-25 Charlton, MA- Trailer
I found a frayed outer shroud this weekend. I just had a new set of shrouds made up. A local rigging shop made them for me. 5/32 x 1-19. Looks like I am starting from scratch tonight. Not bad though the originals lasted 37 years.

Martha's Vineyard this weekend with NETS. Glad I spotted the weak spot!! I am still using the stock vernier set up. New for and aft stays are next. Johnson lever as well. Do you use the turn buckle with the Johnson lever? There is not too much adjustment on the JL from what I can see.
 

caguy

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Sep 22, 2006
4,004
Catalina, Luger C-27, Adventure 30 Marina del Rey
I found a frayed outer shroud this weekend. I just had a new set of shrouds made up. A local rigging shop made them for me. 5/32 x 1-19. Looks like I am starting from scratch tonight. Not bad though the originals lasted 37 years.

Martha's Vineyard this weekend with NETS. Glad I spotted the weak spot!! I am still using the stock vernier set up. New for and aft stays are next. Johnson lever as well. Do you use the turn buckle with the Johnson lever? There is not too much adjustment on the JL from what I can see.
The Johnson lever replaces the fore stay turnbuckle. Even with the Johnson lever you will have to lean on the halyard to pin the fore stay.
 
May 16, 2011
537
Macgregor V-25 Charlton, MA- Trailer
Great info all. I replaced the shrouds last night. Back stay was definitely too tight. In fact I set it to keep the mast where I wanted it when tightening the shrouds per manual. I then unpinned it and pulled on the forestay. Holy cow. I though the rig was tight, not!! I could pull way more than I thought. The rear was definitely too tight. Now I am afraid the mast angle will be off if I tighten the forestay more. With the rear unhitched how much tension should there be on the forestay? It seems that with what I thought was tight shrouds I could still pull a lot. I know now that I will release the rear stay in setting up. Way easier to pin the front the set the rear. Any advise besides the already posted good stuff? I want to give the rig one last kiss before knocking it down. Sailing tomorrow night and I wont have time to mess with it o the ramp.
 
Sep 25, 2008
923
Macgregor & Island Packet VENTURE 25 & IP-38 NORTH EAST, MD
A tension gauge is your friend :) Using one is the only way to get tensions equal and correct. Not that expensive in the scheme of things.
 

Erik V

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Mar 14, 2012
104
Macgregor 25 Stony Point NY
With a fractional rig use the back stay is to bend the mast to de-power the main and help support the mast when running.
 
May 16, 2011
537
Macgregor V-25 Charlton, MA- Trailer
The new shrouds worked great. I now leave the back stay unhitched when setting the mast. I do have to lean on the jib halyard to pin the forestay. I then attach the rear. Seems to make the task much easier and boy what a difference! Tight!! We had the wind howling through them on Friday night and they were singing back!! It is nice knowing that the rig is solid. I may need to tighten them more however. I still got some mast bend when traveling downhill. The rear stay was taught but not tight when set up.