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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance > Topping lift loads?
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Thread: Topping lift loads? Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
05-09-2014 05:43 PM
Alex W
Re: Topping lift loads?

Quote:
Originally Posted by capta View Post
But the load on even a small boat topping lift is a lot more than some would expect. If dropping the main in a lousy sea, you'd want to tighten up the boom with the sheet to keep the boom from swinging around when you are on the cabin top furling the sail, right? That's a single line topping lift versus a multi-purchase main sheet (usually of a greater size, too), which was my point. Later the halyard may be moved to the boom end, but I for one am not going to do that until secure at anchor or in the slip, just in case.
The main sheet on such a boat has a 3:1 or 4:1 tackle and an average person who isn't struggling will be able to get about 200lbs of downward pressure on the boom (using the standard rule of thumb of pulling 50lbs on an average sailboat line).

The lightest setup mentioned in this thread was using a block that was rated to about 500lbs and line rated to 2000lbs. That is not too light for these conditions.
05-09-2014 10:51 AM
christian.hess
Re: Topping lift loads?

yeah thats why Im a fan of those pig tail thingies...I wouldnt change anything on said boat but if the op wants a topping lift thats cool too

like I said one size down or 2 for the topping lift compared to the MAIN sheet is a good conservative solution

or one size down from halyard...

or dyneema
or wire

or you can make one of those classic boom stands like on old boats

or add a boom kicker

or make a hard dodger and tie the boom to that

the list is endless!
05-09-2014 10:48 AM
capta
Re: Topping lift loads?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex W View Post
The OP has a MacGregor 25. It never occured to me that a boat that small would have a furling main (and I don't believe that it does). I'm offering him advice.

There are very different ways of rigging a small boat vs a larger one. The loads are extremely different too. A topping lift on a small boat does not need to be complex or extremely beefy. A bit of 2000lb breaking load 1/8" dyneema does the job better than just about anything else.
But the load on even a small boat topping lift is a lot more than some would expect. If dropping the main in a lousy sea, you'd want to tighten up the boom with the sheet to keep the boom from swinging around when you are on the cabin top furling the sail, right? That's a single line topping lift versus a multi-purchase main sheet (usually of a greater size, too), which was my point. Later the halyard may be moved to the boom end, but I for one am not going to do that until secure at anchor or in the slip, just in case.
05-09-2014 06:40 AM
Alex W
Re: Topping lift loads?

Quote:
Originally Posted by capta View Post
OK then Alex, I'll just drop my roller furling main every day and do that from now on. Now why didn't I think of that? Such a simple solution, too.
The OP has a MacGregor 25. It never occured to me that a boat that small would have a furling main (and I don't believe that it does). I'm offering him advice.

There are very different ways of rigging a small boat vs a larger one. The loads are extremely different too. A topping lift on a small boat does not need to be complex or extremely beefy. A bit of 2000lb breaking load 1/8" dyneema does the job better than just about anything else.
05-08-2014 10:43 PM
davidpm
Re: Topping lift loads?

The following is a sceniaro where a strong topping lift might be a good idea.

Your sail is down, the mail halyard is at the mast and you are motoring and run aground.

You let three or four of your heaviest crew hang on the boom as you swing it outboard as you try to heel the boat enough for the keel to clear the mud to get free.

A 1,000 pounds maybe.

I always think of the topping lift as an emergency halyard anyway.
But in truth on most smaller boat most lines are sized for hand comfort rather than for strength.
05-08-2014 10:08 PM
capta
Re: Topping lift loads?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex W View Post
Or unless you tie off the main halyard to the end of the boom when the mainsail is put away. That keeps it away from the boom and supports the end of the boom.
OK then Alex, I'll just drop my roller furling main every day and do that from now on. Now why didn't I think of that? Such a simple solution, too.
05-08-2014 10:00 PM
Alex W
Re: Topping lift loads?

Quote:
Originally Posted by capta View Post
Unless you have a boom crutch or a hard vang, you are going to put some tremendous loads on your topping lift, to keep the boom from swinging around, when NOT sailing.
Or unless you tie off the main halyard to the end of the boom when the mainsail is put away. That keeps it away from the boom and supports the end of the boom.
05-08-2014 10:55 AM
christian.hess
Re: Topping lift loads?

it has worked for me quote well

in bigger boats you just tie up some preventers to each side

simple enough

my topping lift is one size smaller than my main sheet
05-08-2014 10:50 AM
capta
Re: Topping lift loads?

Unless you have a boom crutch or a hard vang, you are going to put some tremendous loads on your topping lift, to keep the boom from swinging around, when NOT sailing. Your main sheet is a larger diameter line and on a multi-purchase block and tackle system which you are tightening against the lowly topping lift. Nuff said?
05-08-2014 09:13 AM
jimgo
Re: Topping lift loads?

H and E, thanks for that story. I think it may be time for me to buy some dyneema for my topping lift.
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