Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: New England
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Hmm...Yes, I believe that there is a significantly higher percentage of booms breaking due to mid-boom sheeting. However, there are many other factors that could have affected the boom and caused it to break as well.
Galvanic corrosion is a strong possibility, especially if the bail and bolts are stainless steel and no galvanic isolation washers or compound was used during their installation.
The change from a bolt-rope main to a loose-footed main could have certainly contriibuted. A bolt rope main spreads a lot of the load across the boom more evenly, rather than just point loading the clew and tack.
Fatigue of the boom is also another possible contributor. Aluminum doesn't have to actually bend to fatigue, and flexing around the point where the mid-boom sheeting attaches seems more than likely.
Finally, if you were gybing, instead of tacking, the loads could be high enough to snap a boom, even if it weren't previously compromised. Tacking, I think it is far less likely to have been the cause, since the boom will generally move across the boat with significantly less force, since the wind is essentially pushing the boom into luffing, rather than loading it and then switching the loading forces almost instantly.
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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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