On a lot of smaller boats, the mainsheet uses blocks on both transom corners to attach, and one of the corners will have the cam cleat for locking the mainsheet.
The backstay should really have two chain plates, one on each side of the tiller, so that the tiller can swing freely. I'm really surprised the boat was designed that way originally and would have guessed that some PO made the CF of a mainsheet/backstay you have now.
Gui's point about a strong gust taking down the mast is a good one...and I think it is only by luck have you not had that problem.
A picture of the way the mainsheet might have been setup originally is found in this PDF for the O'Day Javelin
, on page 3. See how the mainsheet forms a triangle, through which the tiller passes, and allows the tiller to be used without any real interference from the mainsheet. A similar setup could be used for the backstay.
Even if the boat wasn't designed with a split backstay originally, adding two small chainplates for the relatively light loads that this boat generates would be pretty simple to do.
BTW, the reason the chainplate for the backstay on this boat appears to be overdesigned is that it is handling the loads for the mainsheet and the backstay together... if the two were separated, the chainplates could likely be a good deal smaller.
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.
—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)
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