sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery
Sail-World.com : Checking your rigging
Checking your rigging


'The best insurance is the eye of the skipper'    .

Just as they say the best fertiliser on a farm is the footsteps of the Farmer, so the best insurance for your mast is the eye of the skipper. This means regular checks before any major voyage. However, when it comes to a thorough check, the only way of ensuring you have found every fault is to remove the rig.

An aluminium rig will last in good condition for many years, and it pays to find out what your insurance company considers reasonable before replacement. Having said that, corrosion and fatigue can creep up unexpectedly if there is not a regular checking routine. And it could be merely a cracked turnbuckle or a corroded clevis pin which brings your mast down when you least expect it.

Checking the rigging - Taking the mast out of some boats is easier than others -  .. .  

What to look out for:
Generally the most important thing is to be on the lookout for cracks and corrosion. If the rig is painted, watch for bubbles in the paint, a sure sign of corrosion. If it's anodized, watch for a white, powdery residue. Sometimes potential problems can stay hidden unless you remove the rig from the boat, so, between checks it will be the tiny clues that you are searching for.

Checking the rigging on land is the only way to be thorough -  .. .  
Mast cap:
Closely examine the cap for corrosion, cracks, and wear. Remove the backstay and forestay fittings and inspect where they attach to the cap. If the holes show excessive wear-such as a groove in the bottom of the hole-or have elongated, the cap needs to be repaired. Clevis pins should be straight and just wide enough to fit through the holes. If the pin is too thin or too long, it may bend or crack. It's best to replace all undersized pins and all cotter pins. Never replace a clevis pin with a bolt. A bolt's threads simply act like a file.

Check toggles for cracks and corrosion and for proper alignment. Remove all shackles and blocks. Inspect them for cracks, corrosion, and chafe.

Make sure that the antennas, lights, and wind instruments are functioning and that all wires are sufficiently protected against chafe. A chafed wire not only leads to a faulty masthead light; any stray current, even from something so small, can, when combined with water and salt, speed up rig corrosion dramatically.

Don't forget the halyard sheaves. Make sure they run free and check the axle pin for cracks and wear.

The Mast:
As you work your way down the mast, keep an eye out for corrosion, chafed areas, cracks, and dents in the mast extrusion itself. Even a small dent can weaken a mast enough to make it buckle. If your mast consists of two extrusions spliced together, make sure that the splice is tight, straight, and free of loose or corroded fasteners.

Shrouds:
Chances are that a shroud will fail where it attaches to something, so shroud tangs and T-ball sockets, which are crucial to the integrity of the whole system and subject to high loads and fatigue, deserve special attention. It's important to inspect the tangs and T-ball sockets for corrosion and cracking where they connect to the mast. Keep an eye out for corroded or distorted fasteners, and make sure that all stainless-steel fittings are sufficiently isolated from an aluminum mast. It's also critical to make sure that tangs and T-ball sockets are well reinforced and accept the shroud at the proper angle. A misaligned tang or weak T-ball socket can cause a shroud to fail.

Spreaders: Spreaders are designed to withstand compression loads, but for them to function properly, the angle that a spreader forms with the shroud must be 90 degrees, i.e., equal both above and below the spreader. A cracked, bent, or overly worn spreader is a good clue that it was probably misaligned and needs to be repaired or replaced.

Check for cracks, wear, and corrosion in the spreader bases and check for excessive play in the spreader. It's a good idea to remove the bases to verify the condition of the interior of the mast wall and of the compression tube running through the mast.

Spreader tips are another common trouble spot. They're subject to extreme load fluctuations and are usually covered with chafe guards that can trap water and starve the stainless steel of oxygen-a perfect recipe for corrosion. Make sure to remove the chafe guards and thoroughly inspect the spreader tips.

Mast step:
Because of its proximity to the bilge, a keel-stepped mast is highly susceptible to corrosion. Improper mast drainage and any loose current from a frayed wire can also contribute to corrosion of both the bottom of the mast and the step itself. Excessive corrosion could indicate one or all of these problems.
Keel-stepped masts are also susceptible to corrosion where the mast passes through the deck. Check for cracks and wear under the mast boot.

Deck-stepped masts aren't as prone to corrosion at the base as keel-stepped masts, but it's still important to check for cracks, corrosion, and proper drainage and to make sure that the deck isn't deformed.

Standing rigging:
With wire rigging, cracked swages (fittings compressed onto the wire under high pressure) are a common cause of rig failure, so make sure to check that each swaged fitting is straight and free of cracks and corrosion. Water and salt running down the wire and seeping into the fitting can speed up swage corrosion, so even if the fitting is free of cracks, be on high alert for corrosion near the top of the fitting. It could be an indication that the interior of the fitting has started to corrode and may be untrustworthy. Mechanical or swageless compression fittings like those made by Norseman and Staylock are generally more durable than swaged fittings, but these still should be checked periodically.

Then check the turnbuckles. Make sure each is straight and free of corrosion and cracks. All turnbuckles should be clean and lubricated, and should be secured with brand-new split rings or cotter pins.

Then check the wire for corrosion and broken strands. Just one broken strand can make the wire untrustworthy.

Chainplates:
Water and salt often get trapped between the chainplates and the deck, where corrosion is difficult to detect. If the chainplate seal is broken or you see evidence on the inside of the boat that water is seeping down the chainplates, chances are that the chainplates could be corroded and will need some special attention.

It's not worth going to the trouble of doing the checks unless you replace anything that is even slightly suspect. You'll sleep better at night in a storm when you know that your mast is in the best possible condition and your on-deck crew are safe from falling masts.


by Des Ryan

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=106823

10:28 PM Thu 21 Feb 2013GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on
Practical

Related News Stories:

24 Feb 2013  Product of the Week: Removable sailing pouches
24 Feb 2013  Product of the Week: Removable sailing pouches
19 Feb 2013  Cruising Association's mobile App, going gangbusters
18 Feb 2013  West Marine's 'Green Products of 2013' announced - both practical
15 Feb 2013  Autopilots - about to get more 'intelligent'
15 Feb 2013  Autopilots - about to get more 'intelligent'
11 Feb 2013  Fire onboard!
10 Feb 2013  Green antifouling technology - getting better every year
10 Feb 2013  Cruising sailors and iPads - One tech-savvy cruising sailor tells
10 Feb 2013  Cruising sailors and iPads - One tech-savvy cruising sailor tells
MORE STORIES ...






News - USA and the World

Touch2Play had the great fortune of participating in what would be the largest yet gathering of J88’s to date. Quantum Key West Race Week would serve as a chance to see how boats lined up against one another in conditions that covered the full range. For this event we had Rob and Sandy Butler, Steve Leibel, Keven Piper, Coleen Walsh and myself, Larry Huibers. ... [more]  

As the Barcelona World Race leaders race to the Crozet Islands, once again their paths have diverged – Neutrogena around 200 miles to the south-west of first-placed Cheminées Poujoulat on the water, and gaining around 40 miles in the past 24 hours. ... [more]  

For the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) will announce on Saturday (31 January) at 10:00 CET the final line-up of sports. ... [more]  

On a high octane first day of the ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami on Monday (26 January) Giles Scott, Alison Young and the Paralympian Sonar trio of John Robertson, Hannah Stodel and Steve Thomas saw the best possible start to their 2015 sailing seasons with double race victories. ... [more]  

On the opening day of racing at ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami, presented by Sunbrella, it was sunny and bright. It was storming and raining sideways. It was sunny and bright. ... [more]  

On the opening day of racing at ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami, presented by Sunbrella, it was sunny and bright. It was storming and raining sideways. It was sunny and bright. ... [more]  

RC44 World Championship Leg 1 gets underway on 24th March until 29th March 2015. The RC 44 Class is unlike any 40 foot sailing yacht ever designed, and the reason for that is simple. She is a high performance one design yacht created for top level racing in international regattas. If one was to compare this concept to racing cars, then we would be talking about the F1, NASCAR or similar. ... [more]  

On Day 1 of the ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami, Presented by Sunbrella, America's premier Olympic and Paralympic classes regatta, featured the full range of what sailing in Miami has to offer. Over 850 sailors enjoyed strong breeze for the duration of the day, in addition to a brief but powerful rainstorm. ... [more]  

ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami - Giles Scott (GBR) said last week that he hoped his unbeaten run would continue, and based on Monday’s form at the Sailing World Cup Miami, the 2014 World and European Finn Champion is giving it a pretty good shot ... [more]  

ISAF Olympic classes regatta Miami 2015 images provided by photographer Ingrid Abery. ... [more]  

Team Alvimedica won a Leg 3 podium place in China after some of the closest racing ever seen in the history of the Volvo Ocean Race. The Turkish-American team protected their position in the final stretch to Sanya, carefully navigating a course peppered with fishing boats along the Vietnamese coast and across the South China Sea to cap off a well-sailed leg to clinch third. ... [more]  

The finish of Leg 3 of the Volvo Ocean Race in Sanya, China just before noon on January 27, 2015 marked an unbelievable end to a magnificent leg for Dongfeng Race Team. After leading the fleet virtually all the way from Abu Dhabi to Sanya in China, over more than 5,000 miles of intense ocean racing, Dongfeng finally crossed the finish line in first place ... [more]  

Winner of Leg 3 of the Volvo Ocean Race, Dongfeng, have released footage taken from a drone launched from the Volvo Ocean Race yacht, as she sails in light airs on the last days of Leg 3 of the race. It is believed to be the first time a drone, launched from a competitor, has been used in a major ocean race. ... [more]  

World sailing history was created earlier today when Dongfeng Race Team became the first Chinese yacht to have a win in a premier trans-ocean racing event. Her win was also a first in the 41-year history of the Volvo Ocean Race. At 1131hrs UTC the Chinese flagged entry emphatically won Leg 3 in their home port of Sanya to take the overall leadin the 40,000nm event with six stages to go. ... [more]  

On the morning of the 26th of January, the Maersk Line ship MV Stockholm delivered the Team Vestas Wind's damaged VO65 to the port in Genoa, Italy. From here she will be taken to the Persico building facilty where the rebuild of the wrecked boat will be undertaken. The team's goal is to rejoin the race in Lisbon, Portugal in June, 2015. ... [more]  

Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Group is considering backing Sir Ben Ainslie’s America’s Cup bid, in a move that would propel the fortunes of the Olympic gold medallist yet further. Sir Ben is believed to have asked the Virgin billionaire to consider backing the venture when he and his new wife, Georgie Thompson, spent time on Sir Richard’s Necker Island in January. ... [more]  

To the 91st 2015 Bell's Beer Bayview Mackinac Race significant changes have been made in order to enhance the race experience, and by the looks of it, sailors are embracing them wholeheartedly. ... [more]  

Alpari World Match Racing Tour - Monsoon Cup preview by Alpari World Match Racing Tour
The final event of the 2014 Alpari World Match Racing Tour, Monsoon Cup Malaysia, is to take place in its new home of Johor, the southernmost state of Malaysia, over 10th-14th February. In addition to being the grand finale of the Tour, the event will also see the 2014 ISAF Match Racing World Champion crowned. ... [more]  

In the Barcelona World Race the two lead boats are preparing for a gruelling 3,500-mile game of chase across the Southern Ocean, until the next natural gateway of the course, Cape Leeuwin in south-west Australia. ... [more]  

Quantum Key West Race Week provided the opportunity for the GC32s to make a spectacular debut in the USA. During the five days of racing held in balmy temperatures off the southernmost tip of Florida, crews experienced a range of conditions. ... [more]  

40 year old Charles Caudrelier the skipper of race leader Dongfeng was a major figure of the winning French team Groupama in 2011-12 . With the Dongfeng team now approaching Sanya, almost unstoppable, its worthwhile hearing from Volvo Ocean Race CEO Knut Frostad who is hugely pleased with the current on water situation. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race. The northerly drag race continues, with the stable light wind forecast to drop slightly. The boats have all remained in position, if anything cementing their places with gaps between them increasing slightly through the night. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race Leg 3 - Sailing in a straight line was never supposed to be as tense as this. We’ve been pointing at Sanya for almost a day now and fortunately, Alvimedica, MAPFRE, and Brunel far enough back to not be in AIS range anymore. The problem is they’re not in AIS range anymore. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race Leg 3 - After what can only be described as a frustrating few days of wind and current conditions in the Malacca Strait, the shipping lanes we had to pass were a bit more entertaining as it was upwind which meant some tacking. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Leg 3 Finish - Video - Delayed feed by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World.com/nz
Tune in here to see the finish of Leg 3 of the Volvo Ocean race in Sanya. Will sailing history be made? Can Dongfeng become the first Chinese flagged yacht to win a Leg in a Round the World Race? ... [more]  

2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami - Bigger than ever in 2015, with an atmosphere crackling with adrenaline, the ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami, Presented by Sunbrella, was ground zero on Sunday as competitors from 63 countries made their final preparations. ... [more]  

The Chinese entry Dong looks set to create sailing sailing history when she finishes first on Leg 3 of the Volvo Ocean Race, Sanya in two days time. Includes video Currently Dongfeng is 250 nm to the finish line in Sanya and the chasing pack with ADOR ahead in second place 55+ nm behind the Chinese team. ... [more]  

The first of the iconic Great Capes has been passed in the Barcelona World Race with Cheminées Poujoulat rounding the Cape of Good Hope earlier this morning. Bernard Stamm and Jean Le Cam passed 20°E around 400 miles south of Cape Agulhas – the southernmost tip of Africa – at 0935am (UTC) today and have begun the Indian Ocean leg of their race around Antarctica. ... [more]  

The Classic 18fters were racing again on Saturday on Sydney harbour. Michael Chittenden caught the action from a shore vantage point. ... [more]  

When race leader Dongfeng rounded Singapore 60+ nautical miles ahead of the chasing pack, it looked like the final 1200 miles of Leg three would be a procession but over the last day, the Volvo Ocean race leg from Abu Dhabi to Sanya China appears to have tightened incredibly. ... [more]  

US Sailing and Rolex USA announced last week that the 2014 Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year is Stephanie Roble. Her accomplishments on the water last year were recognized by the selection panel for her versatility; her accomplishments as a skipper and as a crew; and her competitive successes on a variety of platforms, sailing against both men and women. ... [more]  

Barcelona World Race - The first of the Great Capes is fast-approaching, with the leading boats in the Barcelona World Race expected to pass the longitude of the Cape of Good Hope at the tip of South Africa tomorrow. As they pass 20°E, the Atlantic Ocean will deliver its verdict – did Cheminées Poujoulat’s east-bound track or Neutrogena’s southerly gamble pay off? ... [more]  

Mardi Gras may not be for another month but US Sailing’s National Sailing Programs Symposium (NSPS) kicked it off early for Oakcliff Sailing this year. This evening, Oakcliff received The Captain Joe Prosser Award, given to an organization that has made an exemplary contribution toward improving the quality and safety in the training or instruction of sailors. ... [more]  

20 Nations head for 2015 St.Maarten Heineken Regatta
Volvo Ocean Race - Less than 500 miles to go
2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - Fantastic finish
Barcelona World Race: Weather beacons launched midrace
2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - Day 5
Mount Gay Round Barbados Race – Gala prizegiving marks end of event
2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - Day 5 images by Ingrid Abery
Volvo Ocean Race Leader - Dongfeng - the right place at the right time
ISAF Youth Match Racing World Championship - Notice Of Race online
Currently doing scheduled maintenance.
Volvo Ocean Race: Changes to Team Vestas Wind crew
McDougall+McConaghy Moth Worlds: Highlight video released
America's Cup: Oracle crew mate lodges complaint against Tienpont
2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - Day 4 images by Ingrid Abery
2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami - US Sailing Team preview
Quantum Key West Race Week 2015 - A great day
Volvo Ocean Race: Jump seat and Pro-Am race spots up for auction
Lauderdale Olympic Classes Regatta overall
Volvo Ocean Race - Dongfeng? Race Team suffer? damage
America's Cup: Italy to host first America's Cup World Series regatta
Breeze and Sunshine at Quantum Key West Race Week   
Images of the Millennium Cup and Bay of Islands Sailing Week - Day 1:   
2015 Mount Gay Rum Round Barbados Race – Three records broken   
St.Maarten Heineken Regatta - Simplified logistics and fun themes   
2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - Day 3 images by Ingrid Abery   
Millennium Cup: Racing in the picturesque Bay of Islands   
Volvo Ocean Race - Up up and away   
Barcelona World Race - 'Haves' and 'Have Nots'   
Volvo Ocean Race Leg 3 update from Jack Bouttell onboard Dongfeng   
ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami - Game time!   
Extreme Sailing Series™ 2015 – Ninth year ready to rock!   
Foiling GC32s Key West Race Week images by Ingrid Abery   
Mount Gay Rum Round Barbados Race - Crews prepare for big race   
2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - Day 2   
2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - A challenging day   
America's Cup: Spithill leads Oracle reconnaissance team in Bermuda   
Extreme Sailing Series announces new teams and venues for 2015   
Barcelona World Race - Leaders enter the fastest section of the course   
Martinique Surf Pro - Must attend event in the world surfing circuit   
New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup preview   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT