How to attach single piece genoa sheets - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 36 Old 03-24-2010 Thread Starter
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How to attach single piece genoa sheets

I know this question has been asked and amply answered, but I can't seem to find the topic (fairly new to the site).

Anyway, I removed my furling genoa to have the UV strip replaced and decided it would be a good time to replace my badly frayed sheets at the same time. Each side requires about 40 feet, and I had been attaching the two sheets by running both through the clew and making a bowline knot. Works great, but looks a bit messy with two knots. I recalled reading here (or somewhere) that sheets could be attached as one piece running back to the winches in equal distance, so I bought an 80-foot piece of 1/2" Sta-Set in the hopes that someone could advise me on how to do this. I recall in what I read that a simple overhand knot at the clew would not work since, over time, there would be some slippage resulting in one sheet becoming shorter (or longer) than the other. I don't mind tying the sheets on as separate pieces, but thought I'd explore the possibility of a single-piece setup before cutting the line. Any advice?
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post #2 of 36 Old 03-24-2010
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Search for "locks head" or "locks head knot." Basically you bend the single sheet at the middle, stick the loop through the clue gromet, then put the rest of the line through the loop. No slipping, and it makes for a nice small knot. Its simple, but hard to describe...

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post #3 of 36 Old 03-24-2010
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Close Jarcher...but not quite there...

It's called a Lark's head knot:


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post #4 of 36 Old 03-24-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
Close Jarcher...but not quite there...

It's called a Lark's head knot:

Hm, I must have been on crack when I posted that a few minutes ago, thanks for the correction SD...

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post #5 of 36 Old 03-24-2010
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Gosh, Dog, you draw really FAST.

This is a great post, since I need to do the same thing.
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post #6 of 36 Old 03-24-2010
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It's also commonly known as a cows hitch... Works very well..

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post #7 of 36 Old 03-24-2010
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Seems to me that you would have less chafing with a clove hitch. Those two sheets are making some pretty sharp bends there exiting from under that single loop. The pull on the two bitter ends of a clove hitch would be in straight vectors along the strongest tensile axis of the line, and also produce the least amount of deflection, friction, and chafing as the two sheets would exit from their respective sides of the knot.

But that's just my opinion. I like clove hitches.

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post #8 of 36 Old 03-24-2010
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Quote:
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Seems to me that you would have less chafing with a clove hitch. Those two sheets are making some pretty sharp bends there exiting from under that single loop. The pull on the two bitter ends of a clove hitch would be in straight vectors along the strongest tensile axis of the line, and also produce the least amount of deflection, friction, and chafing as the two sheets would exit from their respective sides of the knot.

But that's just my opinion. I like clove hitches.
I just replaced my two sheets with a single one this past week and debated about using the cow hitch or the clove. I then decided on the constrictor knot which is basically a clove hitch with a slight modification to prevent any slippage. Look it up on line. When it comes time to take the sheet off in the winter, I may regret having used that knot since it's difficult to untie.
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post #9 of 36 Old 03-25-2010
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Hm... I surprised the clove hitch worked out for you. It's notorious for slipping. The tails go to the "far side" of the object being hitched onto. When the sail is sheeted in I would expect the knot to rotate, pulling the lazy sheet partly through/into the grommet and possibly loosening the knot. Do you have a picture of the attachment?

Clove hitches are not designed for permanent attachment.

I would expect the same from the constrictor hitch, but with much less chance of coming undone.

Most of my sheets are attached by a lark's head in the middle. If I started to experience chafe, which I haven't, I could cut the bad part of the line out and then switch to bowlines for a while.

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post #10 of 36 Old 03-25-2010
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I asked a similar question here a couple of years ago (my, how time flies), since putting two bowline knots for my two sheets made for a bulky package that would often tangle at the mast when tacking; I can't remember which knot I used but it ended up being like a fisherman's anchor bend and, even with tools, was almost impossible to remove. Thus the constrictor knot, while solid, probably isn't the best to use here.
I have found that 2-strand crown knots are easy to tie, even in heavy double braided lines and work very well if the knot is bigger than the grommet in the headsail. The crown knot is what is used in today's soft shackles. This knot could be tied at the middle of the sheet and threaded through the grommet for a secure and simple arrangement.


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Last edited by Zanshin; 03-25-2010 at 02:40 AM.
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