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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related)
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  #1  
Old 06-04-2007
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Main Halyard

On the 30" boat where the main is raised at the mast vs. the cockpit, what is the proper way to stow the halyard after raising the main sail? Coiled and hung from a cleat on the mast? Some other way? Thanks!
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Old 06-04-2007
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I coil the halyard in a figure 8 leaving about 2' at the end. I take the coil and roll it around the left over line near the top of the coil, toward the mast. When there's about 8" left I pull it up through the top coil, forming a loop, and hang the halyard from a cleat. The nice thing about coiling a line like this is that you can grab the coil, lift it off the cleat, yank it downward and it will instantly uncoil.
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Old 06-04-2007
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Yes, Sabre66's description is pretty good. You want to leave the halyards stored in a way that they can be easily and quickly freed. In an emergency, you may need to lower the mainsail quickly, and if you're trying to undo some fancy knots... you might run out of time and options.
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Old 06-04-2007
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On a nice day, near shore, where we're not using the cabin much, I'd just toss it down the main hatch, keeps the deck clear if you're racing. If offshore or more challenging conditions, I'd do it the way Sabre66 says.
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Old 06-04-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nolatom
On a nice day, near shore, where we're not using the cabin much, I'd just toss it down the main hatch, keeps the deck clear if you're racing. If offshore or more challenging conditions, I'd do it the way Sabre66 says.
Bad idea! Why would anyone store a halyard like this?
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Old 06-04-2007
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I'm guessing that nolatom has the halyards led aft to the cockpit, and he's trying to limit the number of lines in the cockpit... not the way I would do it...but it's not my boat, and I don't race.
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Old 06-04-2007
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That seems to be a fairly common practice on smaller boats, like a J-22 or 24, at least the one's I've crewed on, at least for the short weeknight races. Nobody goes below until accept to pass out the beer anyway until the sails are down anyway.
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Old 06-04-2007
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He's tossing them down the main hatch...not into the cockpit. A very bad idea. I've seen so many accidents occurring from this kind of sloppiness.
Basic seamanship begins with tidiness If you're racing and you and your crew knows the boat then fine...otherwise stow it neatly.
All I do is race and I would never stow a halyard that way

Last edited by Sabre66; 06-04-2007 at 10:58 PM.
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Old 06-11-2007
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I had one boat where the main halyard came out of the mast about 6 ft off the deck and went to a dedicated winch and cleat. I would coil it and jam it between the tightened halyard and the mast. It never came out and was always out of the way.
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Old 06-11-2007
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My lines run aft and, whether racing or cruising, all of the cabin top control lines that come aft are dropped down the companionway hatch. I don't see how that is sloppy - it's far better than stowing them on deck and it's easier for the pit to keep everything organized.

If the halyard stayed at the mast, I would do as suggested above: neatly coiled and hung from a cleat.
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