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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Learning to Sail
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Old 05-28-2013
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stays and shrouds too loose?

Is there a general rule as to how tight a shroud or stay should be? Or is it the usual Icarus tightness measure; "not too tight, not too loose" ~LL
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Re: stays and shrouds too loose?

My rule of thumb is that if your looward shrouds are floppy, ie no tension, in a moderate breeze on a beam reach. Then they are too loose.
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Old 05-28-2013
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Re: stays and shrouds too loose?

It requires some experience on a particular rig to decide if the shrouds are too loose to trek.
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Old 05-28-2013
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Re: stays and shrouds too loose?

I'm curious as well. I had an old salt tell me a 1/4" deflection when pulled with one finger. Anyone agree or disagree?
Jeff
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Old 05-28-2013
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Re: stays and shrouds too loose?

Quote:
I had an old salt tell me a 1/4" deflection when pulled with one finger.
How hard did you have to pull his finger to get him to deflect ?
Seriously, you can tune to a point while static at the dock then as Knothead said you have to dynamic fine tune according to what happens under sail.
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Old 05-28-2013
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Re: stays and shrouds too loose?

Doesn't it depend on your boat specs? For example, some boats require more mast rake than others to sail efficiently. I don't think the tension of the stays and shrouds on my boat would be the same as a J boat. I could be wrong but I don't think there's one overall rule of thumb that covers every sailboat.
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Old 05-28-2013
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Re: stays and shrouds too loose?

I've heard all kinds of things.
the 'X amount' of deflection is common.
I've been told that newbies are afraid to overtighten, but shouldn't be (in other words, tighten the heck out of it...)
I've also been told that bar-tight is no good.

All of these things are subjective.

My advice? Google search 'rig tuning' for your boat, and spend some money on a Loos gauge.
I have one - it takes all the guess work out of it. I may not have the rig tuned quite right, but I know for a fact it's consistent year to year, and shroud to shroud.

(on my C&C 35, I use 1000lbs for the lowers, and 1800lbs for uppers)
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Old 05-28-2013
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Re: stays and shrouds too loose?

Beyond getting a Loos gauge I would recommend getting this book:
Sail and Rig Tuning: Ivar Dedekam: 9781898660675: Amazon.com: Books Sail and Rig Tuning: Ivar Dedekam: 9781898660675: Amazon.com: Books



It is both a very good book on sail trim and on tuning your shrouds for the best performance. It talks about both how and why, which I found useful.
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Re: stays and shrouds too loose?

Boatowner's Mechanical And Electrical Manual by Nigel Calder Has an excellent section on rig setup. He describes an effective way to measure the amount of stretch on the stay or shroud using simpley a tape measure and a marker of some sort. Measureing the amount of deformation under tension is a very acurate way to preload correctly.

(You will find the book helpful for other things too - I consider it a must have refference.)
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Re: stays and shrouds too loose?

Quote:
Originally Posted by DRFerron View Post
Doesn't it depend on your boat specs? For example, some boats require more mast rake than others to sail efficiently. I don't think the tension of the stays and shrouds on my boat would be the same as a J boat. I could be wrong but I don't think there's one overall rule of thumb that covers every sailboat.
Mast Rake is determined by forestay length, this fella is asking about rig tension.

I've been taught to crank the turnbuckle tight as you can with an open end box wrench (a small one, just 6 or 7" long) while the other hand holds the toggle. When the toggle begins to twist in your hand, that's far enough. No one should have droopy leeward stays in any wind or on any point of sail.

Having said this, rig tuning is an art, not a science.
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