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  • 1 Post By dvuyxx
  • 1 Post By Jeff_H
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Old 08-04-2013
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Cabin-top mainsheet traveler upgrade

I'd like to update my existing pin-track traveler to something a little easier to adjust. I find it very difficult to adjust under any real sailing conditions, as the car pretty much doesn't move under any amount of load, and the spring-loaded pins are a huge pain to slide. See attached. It's basically a regular rail on this "bridge" thing on some stand-offs over the companionway. If at all possible, I really really don't want to have to rebed anything into the cabin-top.

I've been trying to study Harken's site to see what I need to do to get something more modern, and basically, I am not nearly smart enough to figure this out. They have all sorts of stuff about traveler sizing etc, and what is compatible with what, and that sort of thing, but they don't ever really explain specifically what it is that I need to get to replace my existing installation. I mean, I need some sort of a rail, but how do I attach that to my boat? etc

I also don't have a clear idea of how much mechanical advantage I need, or which configuration. I just want something that works well. I primarily daysail, if that matters, but I'd really prefer something that was general-use and would work in any reasonable role I pressed it into. The area I sail in routinely has winds over 30 knots.

Can someone point me in the right direction? I'm not married to Harken; I just started there because they have some information on their website (and I really like to avoid merchants where the only way to learn about their product is to go to some shady local "dealer" or call them).
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Cabin-top mainsheet traveler upgrade-oldtraveler.jpg  

Last edited by aaronwindward; 08-04-2013 at 03:26 AM. Reason: windspeed
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Old 08-04-2013
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Re: Cabin-top mainsheet traveler upgrade

A good working traveler is especially important when sailing in a windy venue. Looking at your photo of your current set up, my sense is that you should be able to unbolt the existing track from your existing companionway bridge and simply bolt on a new track and car.

I would probably try to use a Garhauer track and hardware since they tend to be robust and reasonably priced. Something like their MT1 would probably be what you are looking for.

Garhauer also has an on staff designer/engineer who can advise you on the best system for your particular situation. The last time I looked Harken also had a hardware calculator and at least in the past used to have a help line or chat function which may be helpful as well.

Of course if I lived where you lived and I was replacing my traveller, I'd probably move the traveller back to the cockpit and have end boom sheeting for better sail shaping.
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Last edited by Jeff_H; 08-04-2013 at 12:00 PM.
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Old 08-04-2013
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Re: Cabin-top mainsheet traveler upgrade

I know that Jeff will groan here, but I moved my end of boom sheeting to a mid-boom traveler to get it out of the cockpit (family boat decision vs performance). If you replace that bridge, you'll cut the span to fit the exact width of you companionway, so the backing plates should be in the same spot ... Maybe not an exact match for the holes. I have Harken, but Garhauer is good.
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Old 08-04-2013
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Re: Cabin-top mainsheet traveler upgrade

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Originally Posted by dvuyxx View Post
I know that Jeff will groan here, but I moved my end of boom sheeting to a mid-boom traveler to get it out of the cockpit (family boat decision vs performance). If you replace that bridge, you'll cut the span to fit the exact width of you companionway, so the backing plates should be in the same spot ... Maybe not an exact match for the holes. I have Harken, but Garhauer is good.
No groan here, but maybe only a small sigh

Seriously, I do understand that this is another issue in which there is no one universal one-size-fits-all answer. The right answer needs to reflect the sailing style and sailing venue of the individual sailor.

My thinking in this case is that AaronW is sailing a moderately small boat in a venue known for gusty windy conditions. Having the traveler in the cockpit would make mainsail trim more immediate and convenient. It would really allow safer sailing when coupled with a tiller steered boat like his.

But as Dvuyxx notes, and I agree, a cockpit mounted traveler adds clutter and risk which may not be acceptable if sailing with children or non-sailors.

Jeff
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Re: Cabin-top mainsheet traveler upgrade

The end of boom sheeting with the traveler behind you is definitely easier to reach ( provided no one is in the way).
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Old 08-05-2013
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Re: Cabin-top mainsheet traveler upgrade

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Originally Posted by dvuyxx View Post
The end of boom sheeting with the traveler behind you is definitely easier to reach ( provided no one is in the way).
To me one under-appreciated benefit of the cabintop traveller location, is you dont have the mainsheet sweeping the cockpit on every gybe.
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Old 08-05-2013
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Re: Cabin-top mainsheet traveler upgrade

Back to the OP. If you have a Scheafer car they have a deal where they will upgrade you for much less than a total replacement.

Check that out even if that is not what you have as competition breeds better deals.
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