Originally Posted by Pamlicotraveler
Does anyone know of an actual example of a catastrophic Rod Rigging failure? If there is it is probably the connectors because for rod rigging they used use ball fittings on the upper ends of the rods and I am sure those could fail.
I believe rod rigging to be better based on the fact that I am not aware of any failures. Since most boats have wire rigging a vote is likely to be biased towards wire rigging because we all tend to prefer what we have. I am not a metallurgist, although I do play one on the internet, but I would be interested in hearing from one.
The future might be in fiber rigging...and kevlar etc. and I am interested in learning more about that.
A recent Practical Sailor article answered that while fiber rigging was great, the savings in weight versus the price didn't make sense for cruisers.
As for failures, I can recall two of the bigger C&C racers in the local Toronto area that have had failures in the last eight or so years. I know cruisers who've retired otherwise sound rod rigging for wire just because it's much easier for the voyager to maintain or replace themselves. That's not so much a knock against rod rigging as it is a comment on the "self-service" systems (Hi-Mod, Sta-Lok) available for wire, that readily available, easily stowed and handled "form factor".
Of course, I suppose the absolute winning way to go would be to carry a few pre-cut fibre stays if a rod fails, but what if it fails during a bad blow?