Ask SAIL: Replacing Running Rigging

 I’m planning on replacing all the running rigging on my 1978 Tartan 37 this spring for the first time since I bought the boat over 10 years ago. 
Author:
Updated:
Original:

Jack Frantz, Norwalk, CT asks:

I’m planning on replacing all the running rigging on my 1978 Tartan 37 this spring for the first time since I bought the boat over 10 years ago. All my lines are now polyester, and I’m wondering if it makes sense to buy more modern high-modulus line. There are now so many different types of rope, however, that I’m getting confused. What types are best for a cruising boat like mine that rarely races? Can I get just one type of rope, or do I need different types for all the different lines on board? 

Win Fowler REPLIES

For a Tartan 37 used mostly for cruising, I recommend you use high-modulus rope for the main and headsail halyards and spinnaker guys. A rope with a Dyneema core (SK 78 or better) with a polyester cover that can be removed from the working ends would be best. To avoid excessive wear, make sure your halyard sheaves are the proper type for whatever line you select. For all remaining running rigging, you can use polyester double-braid rope.

Cordage stretch for a given load is proportional to a line’s length. The combination of high loads and long working length make it important to use low-stretch Dyneema for the halyards and guys. Sheets are also highly loaded, but the shorter working lengths and/or multi-part purchases make stretching less of a problem. You could go with all Dyneema line, but this would be much more expensive, and I think you would see little benefit. 

Related

09-Map-Route-VG2020

Vendee Globe Village Closing, Race Still On

Following the latest national lockdown measures announced by French President Emmanuel Macron as part of the fight against Covid-19, the 2020-21 Vendée Globe Race Village will be closed to the public beginning Friday, October 30th. The Vendée Globe will still take place as ...read more

Register-2048

Register of Circumnavigators Launched

Just in time for a fresh class of Vendée Globe sailors to attempt their circumnavigations, The International Association of Cape Horners (IACH) has taken on the responsibility of maintaining an official register of sailors who have completed solo circumnavigations by the Three ...read more

FPO skys0tlm8jlrpynehcpe_NEW

A Half-century of Cruising with SAIL

I cannot say I have been reading SAIL magazine since the very beginning, but I come pretty darned close. Sometime around 1974, when I was in high school, I began buying it every month at our local newsstand and saving every issue until I had great stacks of them, as carefully ...read more

B&G-Halo20+-side-facing

Gear: B&G HALO radar

B&G’s HALO series of radars now includes the HALO20+ and the HALO20, a pair of compact radomes expressly designed for use aboard smaller sailboats. The units measure 20in in diameter and weigh a mere 11lb. The HALO20+, in particular, delivers a full 360-degree sweep every ...read more

PICTON CASTLE under sail with stunsls WV7 compressed

Picton Castle Seeks Crew

The Picton Castle is set to begin its eighth circumnavigation this spring under the command of Captain Daniel Moreland. A professional crew of 12 will guide up to 40 trainees at a time as they learn about all aspects of sailing the bark, from steering to lookout, ...read more

DSC_0013

Ask Sail: Keel Attachments

Q: I have an early ‘70s Catalina 27. The keel bolts look pretty good. My question is, why not glass over the keel to bond to the hull rather than changing the bolts if, or when the bolts are too far gone? I haven’t seen anything on this, so could you discuss? Full-keels are ...read more

04-GOPR0511

Book Review: Sailing Into Oblivion

Sailing Into Oblivion by Jerome Rand $15.99, available through Amazon As refreshing and inspiring as Jerome Rand’s 2017-18 solo-circumnavigation may have been, his account of the voyage in the book Sailing Into Oblivion: The Solo Non-Stop Voyage of the Mighty Sparrow may be even ...read more

01-1970-Dec

50 Years of SAIL

Back in early 1970, Bernie Goldhirsh and the recently founded “Institute for the Advancement of Sailing,” publisher of an annual sailboat and gear guide, launched something called SAIL. A half-century later, a look back at the magazine’s first few years provides a glimpse into a ...read more