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post #3 of Old 08-04-2011
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A couple of thoughts, not from a racer, but from a cruising sailor who usually uses poles shorthanded…

I presume you’re just using this as a whisker pole, correct? You do NOT want to use a telescoping pole as a spinnaker pole, they are not engineered for those kind of loads, bad things can happen…

I’d suggest rigging another pole/topping lift attachment point at the outboard end of the pole, I’m really surprised Forespar locates that lift bridle where they do… When the pole is extended, any significant shock loading at the end of the pole will bend or break the inner tube at the end of the outer tube in a jiffy… No need to ask me how I know this, of course… (grin)

I’m a big believer in using both a foreguy and afterguy, even with a whisker pole… Partly because I do a lot of singlehanding, but it just makes the pole so much more stable, and easy to position more precisely… Granted, such stability is probably more important offshore or in larger seas, you can easily get away without it in lighter air and flat water… However, it’s really not much more work, with a racing crew aboard it’s easy to do… I have a pair of lines rigged outboard of the stanchions on each side, joined at a snap shackle, and run through a turning block clipped to the rail near the bow, and running back to the cockpit. Just affix the shackle to the pole end, and adjust the lines to suit… This setup also doubles nicely as a boom preventer, at least it works very nicely for me…

Finally, if you ever have some spare change burning a hole in your pocket, consider splurging for a carbon fiber pole, or even an aluminum/carbon combination pole... It can make a huge difference in ease of handling, especially with a pole of your size... When I broke mine years ago, I fashioned a new inner tube using a carbon blank tube... I liked it so much, I eventually replaced the outer tube, as well - it's the only way to go... (grin)

Good luck, and have fun… BTW, I’m a big fan of Craig Walters’ boats, your Clearwater is a beauty…
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