Cam cleat placement for jib sheets? - SailNet Community

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Old 03-06-2013
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Cam cleat placement for jib sheets?

My boat has horn cleats for the jib sheets but I am going to install cam cleats for ease and speed of tacking and trimming. I purchased a couple of Harken Cam-Matic 150s to install, but am not sure exactly where I want to put them. I don't want to remove the horn cleats, since that is how we attach the aft dock lines and might need them for many other reasons. However, that makes space to install the cam cleats a little tight. My main options seem to be 1) installing them between the winches and the horn cleats, creating a potentially tight situation or 2) or vertically on the coaming at a location that will not interfere with cockpit seating.

I attached a couple of photos to illustrate the situation. Any suggestions?
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Cam cleat placement for jib sheets?-img_1971.jpg   Cam cleat placement for jib sheets?-rodp27004.jpg  
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Old 03-06-2013
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Re: Cam cleat placement for jib sheets?

The lead from the top of the winch coils to a coaming-top mounted cam cleat would not be good.. you'd need a fairlead to keep the line in the cleat and you DON'T want that...

Inside the coaming/on the seatbacks would work best for you, but I'd orient each one in a position that provides a natural lead from the winch drum to the cleat.. I'm thinking that that might be at a bit of an angle rather than dead vertical.. it will also mean that the starboard one is mounted forward of the winch centerline and the port one aft (think about the turn coming off the drum from a clockwise wrap and run down the inside of the coaming.. Straight vertical will work but won't be the most 'natural' lead...)

Couldn't find an image so I drew one up; this would be stbd side:

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Old 03-06-2013
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Re: Cam cleat placement for jib sheets?

Perhaps another alternative is to place the cam cleats aft of the horn cleats. You would do a single wrap of the tail and then through the cam cleat. This would keep your horn cleats available for dock lines and also avoid a cam cleat in the back for someone seated in the cockpit.

Running the tail around the horn cleat would also assure the sheet is better lined up with the cam cleat and less likely to pop out.
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Old 03-06-2013
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Re: Cam cleat placement for jib sheets?

What about a clam cleat rather than a cam cleat, on a wedge to give it the proper angle, back near the horn cleat? They are faster and even easier than cam cleats.
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Re: Cam cleat placement for jib sheets?

Quote:
Originally Posted by fallard View Post
Perhaps another alternative is to place the cam cleats aft of the horn cleats. You would do a single wrap of the tail and then through the cam cleat. This would keep your horn cleats available for dock lines and also avoid a cam cleat in the back for someone seated in the cockpit.

Running the tail around the horn cleat would also assure the sheet is better lined up with the cam cleat and less likely to pop out.
That would work too, but I think the winches are aft enough wrt to seating area than the interference won't be severe.. esp on the one side. Using cleats under the winch keeps them closer to hand, esp for someone on the end of the tiller...

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What about a clam cleat rather than a cam cleat, on a wedge to give it the proper angle, back near the horn cleat? They are faster and even easier than cam cleats.
YMMV, but I hate those things.. if the line's not the right size they slip, if they're plastic they can 'burn' out if they do slip and won't grab again. They are more obtrusive than cams esp since they need the wedge for a good lead...
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Old 03-06-2013
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Re: Cam cleat placement for jib sheets?

I love mine. I bought them the right size for the sheets, which didn't seem all that tricky to me. They are very fast and very "positive" to use; by that I mean you know when they're correctly seated. They grab - when there's a load on them, they are not releasing the line. The ones I bought were aluminum, so should last the rest of the life of the boat. As for being in the way, they are a heck of a lot less in the way than the teak horn cleat that was there before. I think in this scenario a clam cleat on a wedge is going to be cleaner and more functional than any placement you can think of with a cam cleat.
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Re: Cam cleat placement for jib sheets?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Faster View Post
Inside the coaming/on the seatbacks would work best for you, but I'd orient each one in a position that provides a natural lead from the winch drum to the cleat.. ]
Yeah, that's along the lines that I was thinking. Thanks for the illustration. The only problem with that is the cams will be in the back of whoever is sitting in the cockpit. I can see someone inexperienced sitting down hard after a tack shift and getting a cam in the back. Do you think I could angle them aft enough to avoid this?


Quote:
Originally Posted by fallard View Post
Perhaps another alternative is to place the cam cleats aft of the horn cleats. You would do a single wrap of the tail and then through the cam cleat. This would keep your horn cleats available for dock lines and also avoid a cam cleat in the back for someone seated in the cockpit.
This would be great, and serve to align the sheets into the cams. It would be the optimal arrangement for single handing, but sailing with a crew would be different. The trimmer would have a hard time reaching the tail of the sheets behind the wheel.
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Re: Cam cleat placement for jib sheets?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ritchard View Post
I love mine. I bought them the right size for the sheets, which didn't seem all that tricky to me. They are very fast and very "positive" to use; by that I mean you know when they're correctly seated. They grab - when there's a load on them, they are not releasing the line.
I thought about clam cleats. The boat that I crew on racing Sundays has them. They work well, but the heel of my hand is always sore on Mondays from giving them a thump to make sure the line is seated. Probably unnecessary, but I can't help myself.
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Re: Cam cleat placement for jib sheets?

Quote:
Originally Posted by itsaboat View Post
Yeah, that's along the lines that I was thinking. Thanks for the illustration. The only problem with that is the cams will be in the back of whoever is sitting in the cockpit. I can see someone inexperienced sitting down hard after a tack shift and getting a cam in the back. Do you think I could angle them aft enough to avoid this?
The port side would likely end up 'out of the way'.. the starboard one not so much, but even so do you get people sitting directly in line with the binnacle? that's about where the cleat may end up on the stbd side..

In any event, I don't think leaning against the cleat would be horrible, with any clothing on it may be hardly noticeable, in summer perhaps more of an issue. Your crew should be on the coaming or the rail anyway!

Another alternative would be to mount your cleats on the outboard side of the coaming, the 'ramp' lead would probably be OK and the seating would be unobstructed, but it's a lousy reach to cleat and uncleat, esp when seriously powered up.

If you think the 'cleat in the back' is a big deal, then fallard's suggestion probably makes most sense.. As the helmsman you may have an easier reach for the release, and could assist the grinder in cleating once sheeted in... Not so great for steady trimming, but even then the trimmer probably has the sheet in hand....
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Old 03-06-2013
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Re: Cam cleat placement for jib sheets?

I like the idea of using the horn cleat as a fairlead. Simple, easy, and lets you use your existing equipment.
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