Running backstay on my PSC 34 - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 09-20-2012
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Running backstay on my PSC 34

For those of you who sail psc 34 & 37 cutter rigged, do you use your running backstay A) always, B) for long reaches, C) only when rigging is strained, D) rarely or E) never.

Sorry for the multiple choice but I'm not sure what's best for our boats. It seems pretty impractical for my sailing around Maine's islands. Should I be using at at every opportunity?

I welcome any thoughts, observations or advice.

Bob Steneck
PSC 34 Alaria
Christmas Cove, Maine
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Old 09-20-2012
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Re: Running backstay on my PSC 34

I'm glad you asked. Just purchased a 37 that the stays'l stay has been removed from as well as the running backs. Wondering what is needed/required/desired when it comes to running backs.
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Old 09-21-2012
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Re: Running backstay on my PSC 34

I have a yawl rigged 37 cutter. I will use them when sailing headsail alone or jib and jigger to stabalize the mast in the aft direction. Only in strong winds.
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Old 09-21-2012
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Re: Running backstay on my PSC 34

Bob:

We sail a 40, not the 34 or 37, but I imagine the "rules" would be similar. The running backs are meant to keep the mast from "pumping" when the staysail is used. My belief is that in very light air, the stresses a staysail puts on the mast are minimal and the running backs wouldn't be necessary, but then again, we don't use the staysail in light air...so, whenever we roll out the staysail, we rig the windward runner. Is it possible that this is the equivalent of "wearing a belt and suspenders?" I suppose so, but then again, I prefer to see neither my pants nor my mast fall down in public.

Fair winds,

Roger Lopata
JUNO
PSC 40 -- #46
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Old 09-21-2012
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Re: Running backstay on my PSC 34

What Roger said.

Dave Mancini
PSC 34 #305 SWAN
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Old 09-21-2012
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Re: Running backstay on my PSC 34

Thank you Roger and everyone for your thoughts.

Actually, I'd rather have my pants fall down in public than my mast fall down half way to Bermuda.

As I understand it "pumping" relates to harmonics that can fatigue shrouds. In a blow or long passage I'll be setting my running back stay! It certainly is easy enough.

Cheers,

Bob Steneck
PSC 34 Alaria
Christmas Cove, Maine
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Old 09-22-2012
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Re: Running backstay on my PSC 34

I asked Bill Crealock about this a few years ago.He said that the only time the running backs are needed is in heavy winds with the staysail loaded to prevent mast pumping.He then added that he designed the boat for a thinner,lighter mast and the backs were a necessity but that PSC used a much stronger heavier mast so the backs are somewhat redundant.I find with the backs rigged it is difficult to maneuver around them so I only use them when going offshore.

Hope this helps,
Dianne and Chuck Burke S/V NiftyNickers C37 #139
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Old 09-23-2012
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Re: Running backstay on my PSC 34

Most helpful to have the backstory from Bill Crealock himself. I put the same question to Thumper at the factory earlier this year. His advice was the same (mostly, don't bother with the running backs except maybe for peace of mind offshore when it's blowing hard). But it makes all the difference to know that it's about Pacific Seacraft's choice of a more robust mast. Thanks for that.
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Old 09-24-2012
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Re: Running backstay on my PSC 34

Quote:
Originally Posted by niftynickers View Post
I asked Bill Crealock about this a few years ago.He said that the only time the running backs are needed is in heavy winds with the staysail loaded to prevent mast pumping.He then added that he designed the boat for a thinner,lighter mast and the backs were a necessity but that PSC used a much stronger heavier mast so the backs are somewhat redundant.I find with the backs rigged it is difficult to maneuver around them so I only use them when going offshore.

Hope this helps,
Dianne and Chuck Burke S/V NiftyNickers C37 #139
A few of us noticed the last time Pacific Seacraft exhibited boats at the Annapolis show a couple years back that the new Charleston Spars being used after the plant was moved to the East coast were of the more bendy variety than the previously used LeFiell spars.
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Old 09-24-2012
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Re: Running backstay on my PSC 34

My conversation with Bill Crealock about the heavier mast referred to the LaFiell spar that was used at that time.I'm not familiar with the new mast that PSC is using.
Dianne and Chuck Burke S/V NiftyNickers C37 #139
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