Stainless vs. Galvenized Cable Strengths - SailNet Community

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Old 08-01-2007
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Stainless vs. Galvenized Cable Strengths

I'm tuning my rigging, but I couldn't find a gauge for galvanized steel, only one for stainless. Can anyone tell me what the ratio of tension, breaking strength, etc difference is between stainless and galvanized. I'm guessing that galvanized is a little more flexible than stainless, giving it lower tension in lbs but a higher breaking strength. But the again, I have no idea.

My I have both 3/8" and 5/16" cable on my rig.
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Old 08-01-2007
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If the standing rigging is galvanised is the hull timber steel or glass ? I'm presuming an oldish vessel ? You need to be a bit careful with rig tension in older boats particularly timber and glass. It's not usually advisable to try and tension an older boats rig to the same degree as a more modern boat so be a bit careful.
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Old 08-01-2007
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Does this help?
http://www.m-gind.com/MGSitePage.cfm?pg=20&nm=1
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Old 08-02-2007
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Thanks Camaraderie....Wow that site says the galvanized cable is stronger.

Anyway to answer the questions my rig is 1970, glass hull. She seems to have a timber substructure. 1970 is "older". I'm not bringing the rigging to modern specs by any means. Where the rules of thumb seem to say 10% to 12% of breaking strength, I'm going for 5% to 8%. For my forestays, I'm not even at a measurable percentage of breaking strength yet, and the same is true all over my boat.

There was nearly no tension in my entire rig before I started the tuning. With the exception of a select few stays, which were tensioned seemingly at random, I most of my stays were less than a few hundred pounds of tension. Not even enough tension to show up on my tensioning gauge.
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Originally Posted by tagster View Post
Thanks Camaraderie....Wow that site says the galvanized cable is stronger.

Anyway to answer the questions my rig is 1970, glass hull. She seems to have a timber substructure. 1970 is "older". I'm not bringing the rigging to modern specs by any means. Where the rules of thumb seem to say 10% to 12% of breaking strength, I'm going for 5% to 8%. For my forestays, I'm not even at a measurable percentage of breaking strength yet, and the same is true all over my boat.

There was nearly no tension in my entire rig before I started the tuning. With the exception of a select few stays, which were tensioned seemingly at random, I most of my stays were less than a few hundred pounds of tension. Not even enough tension to show up on my tensioning gauge.
Galvanised rigging certainly still has many proponents. It's biggest negative seems to be visual.

This might be of interest to you..

http://www.classicmarine.co.uk/Artic...ng_rigging.htm
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I actually like the look of the galvanized cable. The black stays have a rustic, more traditional look which is fitting for my schooner rig. The one thing that bothered me when I was looking at replacing the rigging was all of the guys in town wanted to replace it with stainless.
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All of that being said, putting 6 hundred pounds of tension on my main fore stay (the one that runs from the main mast, to the fore mast) causes my mast to bow...I have read that I should tension back stays to off set this, but my back stays are tensioned with a block and tackle (pull!! pull!!!) and I can't really rely on hauling it in too tight between tacks. I have aft diags, which I intend to tension more than they are (currently at about 400lbs of tension, I was understanding I should probably put them at about 600lbs of tension at least) but I don't foresee that offsetting it too much. The bowing is at the point - in the top third of the mast - where the main forestay comes forward.

Now there is another thing, I have a "cross shroud" I think it's called, a piece of standing rigging running between the masts....it's slack. Like, really slack, basically drooping between the two. I wanted to haul my jib forward stay in to bring the forward mast forward a bit (it's leaning back a bit now anyway, from the back stay tension on my strong backs) which would take up some of the slack, but I can't seem to get more than maybe 150 or 200lbs worth of tension in it. I climbed up there (by myself, kind of a scary thing to do, next time I'm going to borrow a neighbor) and I found the turnbuckle is burried into the shroud there as well...

I pet my boat on the head top the foremast, and whole heartedly promised her that if she gets me through this trip in a timely fashion I'll buy her new rigging next year. Just then, a wake came over her bow. I don't know if she was accepting the offer or not, I guess I'll have to wait and see...
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That's probably a triatic stay... which runs between the tops of the two masts.
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yeah that one, it's slack. Any idea how much tension if any it should have, generally?
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If it's running from the top of the main to the top of the fore, it's known as the saltwater stay. If it runs from the top of the main topmast to the top of the fore, it's known as the king stay. If it runs from the top of the main topmast to the top of the fore topmast, it's known as the fresh water stay.
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