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  #1  
Old 01-28-2008
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Mast Steps

Recently I managed to snag our genoa on one of our mast steps. Now I know that chafe and snagging has always been a problem with these things but I'd like to get some feedback on other people's solution. I've seen a couple of attempts to solve or at least mitigate the problem but would appreciate any other ideas.

The first and most obvious is the fitting of folding steps. Nice idea but ouch the cost. Our 34'er has eighteen of the things and could do with a couple more so I doubt I'm going to tear the existing off and replace with new.

I've seen on passing boats line attached to the steps and out to the shrouds but havn't worked out if those lines are rope or shock cord.

It's fair to say that only a couple of the steps are really any cause for concern so perhaps replacing those few with folding steps would be a solution also.

Any thoughts from anyone who has taken steps to solve this problem would be appreciated.
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Last edited by tdw; 01-28-2008 at 05:36 PM.
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Old 01-28-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tdw View Post

The first and most obvious is the fitting of folding steps. Nice idea but ouch the cost. Our 34'er has eighteen of the things and could do with a couple more so I doubt I'm going to tear the existing off and replace with new.

I've seen on passing boats line attached to the steps and out to the shrouds but havn't worked out if those lines are rope or shock cord.

Most of those lines are merely rope from what I have seen - if they are effective that is another matter, do you have a pic that we could look at?
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I suggest you check out removable mast steps by Cape Horn products, "new accessories" tab.

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TD, we used shock cord to prevent the genoa from getting inside the shrouds.
On my current boat the genoa is smaller and doesn't get quite that deep.

I do however use in the upper and inetrmediate shrouds, to prevent the spi in those "not so perfect" manouvers from being locked up there. Makes sense?

The shock cord has hooks on each end for easy removal, and kinda spirals down a few times.

I also have folding steps I bought one time at westmarine.
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Old 01-28-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tdw View Post
Any thoughts from anyone who has taken steps to solve this problem would be appreciated.
Ha! Good pun. "Taken steps..." about steps... Ahem. OK, sorry.

Anyway, I have solid mast steps (I wish they were the folding variety) and have twice now had a halyard wrap on one. And, of course, that only happens when out in an agitated sea state. Never happens during calm, flat conditions inside the bay... I've seen where people have painstakingly tied rope or twine from one step to the other all the way up each side of the mast just to create a deflecting line for wayward halyards. I think the permanent mast steps already make the mast look kinda cluttered, and the adding of line makes it look even "busier". But then after a few more instances battling a stuck halyard out in a seaway, I just might be tempted to try it...
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Most of those lines are merely rope from what I have seen - if they are effective that is another matter, do you have a pic that we could look at?
Afraid not but I'm googling away and if I find anything I'll post it.

Alex, mentions shock cord and Jody line so I guess either is going to work.

Yes it is going to make the rig look even more cluttered visually but to avoid the occasional hung up halyard and torn sail I'll put up with the visual pollution. Probably only need to do the first few steps below the spreaders. Doubt above the spreaders would be necessary.

Moonfish, I'd like to thank you for spotting my pun and to claim credit for it but alas it was unintentional. Punintentional ? Sorry.

I'll have a look see at the removeable steps. Interesting idea.
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TD here are mine they were very cheap in Westmarine.

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When I first got my boat the lower 4 steps had whipping on them from the PO. It does "soften" the edge a lot.
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Originally Posted by tdw View Post
Afraid not but I'm googling away and if I find anything I'll post it.

Alex, mentions shock cord and Jody line so I guess either is going to work.

Yes it is going to make the rig look even more cluttered visually but to avoid the occasional hung up halyard and torn sail I'll put up with the visual pollution.

Moonfish, I'd like to thank you for spotting my pun and to claim credit for it but alas it was unintentional. Punintentional ? Sorry.
In your situation - you'll find that rope is least costly - shock cords - well they give so depending...probaly one thing to have if you have one of those genoe tracvks like I do on mine - is moving up the [forget the technical term] chock with roller - so it is further forward...? that way when you are tacking the sail is forced forward of your mast and then it becomes a non-issue...
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The reason to use shock cord it that if you run into them you don't get hurt, and they are easy to remove when you don't need them...

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