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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 05-03-2007
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Topping Lift

Ok, a newbie here, but I do have a question; I have a Venture 21 and was wondering if there is a way to connect a topping lift cable to the backstay and then be able to have a shackle or S clip that would connect to the boom? I believe I have seen something like this, maybe on a Catalina, but did not know if it was already on the backstay to begin with or not. Any help appreciated!

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Old 05-03-2007
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To tell you the truth: When I owned my Catalina 30, it had the topping lift attached to the back stay. It didn't take me long to figure out that it is dangerous to have it there. So I rigged a topping lift from spreader root itself. I was much more satisfied with that arrangement.
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Old 05-03-2007
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I've seen it done with wire and a simple siezing wire (like you use on your anchor shackle) attachment to the backstay. you can then make a loop in the wire with a swage tool and put a shackle on the hook. Less complicated is to simply tie a piece of line on the backstay and use rigging tape to keep in place. Won't last as long but it works.
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Old 05-03-2007
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A few caveats to having the backstay attached topping lift. It isn't usually adjustable, and it can cause the backstay to corrode where it is attached. Also, the shackle or hook can be a danger if you don't secure it when the topping lift isn't in use.
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Old 05-03-2007
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I’d recommend a piece of like ¼ inch Dacron, with a snap-hook tied in one end and cut to length. Secure it to the backstay, where needed, by clapping on a seizing with some tarred marline. SailingDog’s right so make sure you use a snap-hook and hook it to the backstay when you’re sailing so it won’t fowl on anything. One more note: Standing headroom in the cockpit is good!
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Old 05-04-2007
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Mine is just a snap hook on about a foot of cable (pigtail), clamped to the backstay.

Have read of a masthead topping lift, but it's an illegal modification if you're interested in class racing (or later selling the boat to someone who is). The details are simple though:

"A line from the masthead crane down to a block on the back of the boom then to a v-cleat on the bottom of the boom. This allows to the boom to be raised by just by pulling the line. You can drop the sail simply by tensioning the topping lift line. No need to hook the boom to the pigtail. It also allows you to raise the boom a little in light winds so the weight of the boom won’t pull the leach too tight."
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Old 05-04-2007
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Get a boomkicker, and let your backstay do it's job.
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Old 05-04-2007
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Its a pain in the butt when attached to the back stay.
When you go to drop your sail, somebody has to grab the end of the boom as it falls and than attach it using the snap hook. Or you have to be dead nose to the wind and attach the boom to the snap before you lower the sail. We had this arrangement many many years ago. I remember more than once, we would attached the boom to the back stay, the person at the helm would loose concentration, fall off the wind just a hair, and the sail would fill. Than your stuck because you have no way to release the boom; its attached to the back stay. The helmsman must than try and get her pointed into the wind again to get everything back under control.
Much simpilier to have it attached to the top of the mast as normal.
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Old 05-04-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailortjk1
Much simpilier to have it attached to the top of the mast as normal.
I wasn't aware this was considered normal, so will elaborate my class violation statement. The pigtail/backstay clip is standard on an SJ21.

I've been considering the masthead lift for a while, mostly for the ability to lift the boom higher for additional headroom when not under sail. It's easy enough to undo if selling to a racer later.
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Old 05-04-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neises
I wasn't aware this was considered normal, so will elaborate my class violation statement. The pigtail/backstay clip is standard on an SJ21.

I've been considering the masthead lift for a while, mostly for the ability to lift the boom higher for additional headroom when not under sail. It's easy enough to undo if selling to a racer later.
I didn't aware it was violation.! LOL

Cruisers like me don't have to worry about such regulations.
I am stating my experinces from a cruising boat perspective.
Sorry for the confusion.
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