Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: New England
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To clarify—I use pin-retaining shackles on mainsail halyard and topping lift, but use snap shackles on the spinnaker and genoa halyards. These are attached to the halyard via a buntline hitch.
I do not use shackles on the clew of any headsail, since that means instead of getting a bruise for your trouble, when trying to tame a flogging sail, you get a concussion or worse. I use bowlines for the genoa and spinnaker sheets, but will probably go to a lark's head and a single longer sheet at some point in the future.
One thing on the bowlines—leave the tails a bit on the long side and tie the loops as small as possible. This makes it much less likely that the bowlines will shake out, which can happen on stiffer, older lines.
One neat trick I've seen for genoa sheets is an eyesplice with a stiffened tail that is used to lock the eyesplice into the clew of the sail. I wouldn't recommend this for a larger boat though.
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.
—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)
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