Standing Rigging - SailNet Community
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 4 Old 05-04-2004 Thread Starter
Senior Member
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 3,231
Thanks: 9
Thanked 56 Times in 54 Posts
Rep Power: 15
Standing Rigging

Can someone please educate me on the merits of stainless steel rod rigging vs. wire? e.g., Is it better? How and why is it better? Is it a little better, or a lot better? Are there any significant drawbacks?

Sailormon6 is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 4 Old 05-04-2004
Senior Member
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: New England USA
Posts: 261
Thanks: 0
Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Rep Power: 15
Standing Rigging

For a given cross section, the rod is far stronger than the same cross section of wire. Designers realize this and use a smaller section of rod to perform the duties of wire, with the reduction in weight aloft and also the reduction of wind resistance.

Early on, the caveats were: "Sure its lighter and smaller, but will it last?" In general, rod lasts longer than wire, but with some very important caveats.

First is cost, it is substanially more expensive than wire.

Second is maintenance, a wire can handle some abrasion and kinks and just keep on working. A kink or abrasion on rod calls for immediate replacement, particularly an abrasion or "dent" in the rod.

Third, you need to periodically inspect the rod ends or "heads" as they are called. This is the main area for fatigue and failure of rods. Periodic inspection and possibly "Re-Heading" the rod will extend it''s life.

Fourth, the yard has to take care that the rod is not damaged during stepping/unstepping the mast. I had my backstay run over by a forklift, seriously gouging the rod and forcing me to replace it. Because no one at the marina witnessed the incedent, the yard took no responsibility, ouch!

Finally, for extended world-wide cruising, you should probably concider wire only. If you have a failure or need repairs in some remote portion of the world, everybody handles wire, but rods require specialized tools that may not be available in a pinch.

For racing, rods are the only way to go. For cruising the civilized world, rods make some sense. For out in the fringes, go with wire.
Silmaril is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #3 of 4 Old 05-04-2004
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 62
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 14
Standing Rigging

Rod has a couple advantages not always mentioned. A slip neighbor about dropped his rig last summer when his roller furler top fitting grabbed the wire headstay and unlaid it, breaking all but 2 or 3 strands. Less likely with rod. Rod is slippery. We have a rod backstay and the mainsail roach overlap slides by in light air easier than wire, and you''ll see less chafe. Cruising take a length of wire that will work for the longest stay with Sta-lok fittings that fit your rig. No rule against wire mixed with rod, especially in emergencies, just watch the tension as they stretch differently.
jkumin is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #4 of 4 Old 05-05-2004 Thread Starter
Senior Member
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 3,231
Thanks: 9
Thanked 56 Times in 54 Posts
Rep Power: 15
Standing Rigging

You guys are good! That''s just the information I was looking for. Thanks.
Sailormon6 is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook

Quick Reply

By choosing to post the reply above you agree to the rules you agreed to when joining Sailnet.
Click Here to view those rules.

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the SailNet Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
Please note: After entering 3 characters a list of Usernames already in use will appear and the list will disappear once a valid Username is entered.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Nassau 34 Irwin32 Boat Review and Purchase Forum 18 03-18-2016 03:07 PM
looking for help up wind mcgreggor Learning to Sail 5 02-15-2004 11:58 PM
Standing rigging tension on a 21''7" Kingfisher Claus Gear & Maintenance 0 08-12-2002 04:15 PM
Standing Rigging docsabre Gear & Maintenance 2 05-18-2002 04:48 AM
Standing Rigging docsabre Gear & Maintenance 1 04-23-2002 07:09 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome