Reef padeyes on boom - keep 'em or dump 'em? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 14 Old 12-09-2009 Thread Starter
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Question Reef padeyes on boom - keep 'em or dump 'em?

Greetings all:

Recently scanned a bunch of old "Cruising World" mags prior to putting them out in the recyclables for pick up. In the October 2008 issue (page 107) Associate Editor Andrew Burton advises the following regarding using a timber hitch around the boom:

"When you reef, the load on the line prevents the timber hitch from coming undone, and it can never bind on itself. It should be noted that using a timber hitch for your reef lines won't work on a flat-sided boom - you're stuck using a bowline. If your boom has padeyes onto which to tie the dead end of the reef line, get rid of them."

OK - since my reef lines (first and second) tend to be in place all the time, (how do you reeve a line up through the 2nd reef clew while underway?) this means two reef lines tied around the boom with timber hitches all the time??? Doesn't sound practical - without tension on them, they would fall off!

How do the old salts out there deal with the bitter ends of the reef lines at the leach of the sail (assuming two-line reefing, of course)??
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post #2 of 14 Old 12-09-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BELLATRIX1965 View Post
Greetings all:

Recently scanned a bunch of old "Cruising World" mags prior to putting them out in the recyclables for pick up. In the October 2008 issue (page 107) Associate Editor Andrew Burton advises the following regarding using a timber hitch around the boom:

"When you reef, the load on the line prevents the timber hitch from coming undone, and it can never bind on itself. It should be noted that using a timber hitch for your reef lines won't work on a flat-sided boom - you're stuck using a bowline. If your boom has padeyes onto which to tie the dead end of the reef line, get rid of them."

OK - since my reef lines (first and second) tend to be in place all the time, (how do you reeve a line up through the 2nd reef clew while underway?) this means two reef lines tied around the boom with timber hitches all the time??? Doesn't sound practical - without tension on them, they would fall off!

How do the old salts out there deal with the bitter ends of the reef lines at the leach of the sail (assuming two-line reefing, of course)??
I would concur on removing any padeyes from the boom...being hit by the boom is never pleasant, but if a padeye hits a head, it can have the same effect as a ball-peen hammer.

I don't follow the benefit of the timber hitch...there was a thread awhile ago that worked over securing the bitter end of reefing lines quite well...run the line around the boom, then end with a bowline around itself. See
Reefing, Spiral Lacing vs single line and how to tell what you've got?

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post #3 of 14 Old 12-09-2009
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I like to run the reefing lines around the boom AND through the pad eyes, which will keep the reefing line from sliding forward. I like the reefing line to down and back. I use a bowline.

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post #4 of 14 Old 12-09-2009
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I use a bowline that will slide to the best location. If you do not want the normal heavy second reef line in place just feed a light line up and through the cringle then if you put in the first reef you just pull the second reef line into place with it.
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post #5 of 14 Old 12-10-2009 Thread Starter
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Had'nt thought of that. . .

Thanks to all who gave your advice - especially sailingfool - I had not considered the "ball pein hammer" effect - that could go from ouch to deadly!

I think that the Cruising World article was assuming the bowline around the boom itself, thus causing over-tightening??

The other thing that comes to mind re: the line around the boom and then the bowline around the line itself idea - this will allow the reef clew to come down directly onto the center top of the boom, not be pulled slightly off to one side as would happen with a pad eye. . . . .

My pad eyes are history! - A bit less hardware on the boom - I was planning to fill some holes and re-finish the boom this winter anyway!
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post #6 of 14 Old 12-10-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BELLATRIX1965 View Post

My pad eyes are history! - A bit less hardware on the boom - I was planning to fill some holes and re-finish the boom this winter anyway!
I misunderstood where you pad eyes were. I though they were in the track at the bottom of the boom. That is where I see many of them.

Good decision to get rid of the ones on the side of the boom.

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post #7 of 14 Old 12-10-2009
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We have them on the side. The "correct" procedure is to use them to fix the location on the boom -not to take any weight. If you're line is correctly positioned the reef should flatten the sail as well as take up area. If you lose the padeyes you'll wind up with a baggy sail with reduced area as the bowline moves up the boom to be right below the cringle.

That article gave bad advice.
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post #8 of 14 Old 12-10-2009
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i think cormeum is right. i have what jackdale describes and have been thinking about this because I am putting a third reef in (or at least the necessary hardware so I can rig the line if I go offshore). The reefing line has to pull both down and out. That is, it is both a downhaul and an outhaul. The padeye keeps the bowline far enough aft that you dont loose the outhaul part and end up with the line pulling the clew straight down. If I am reefing I am likely also wanting the sail pretty flat - i.e. I want that clew pulled tight toward the end of the boom as well as directly down.

As for getting hit on the head with the boom, I think I am f***d if that happens whether or not there is a padeye on the side of it.
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post #9 of 14 Old 12-11-2009 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sck5 View Post
i think cormeum is right. i have what jackdale describes and have been thinking about this because I am putting a third reef in (or at least the necessary hardware so I can rig the line if I go offshore). The reefing line has to pull both down and out. That is, it is both a downhaul and an outhaul. The padeye keeps the bowline far enough aft that you dont loose the outhaul part and end up with the line pulling the clew straight down. If I am reefing I am likely also wanting the sail pretty flat - i.e. I want that clew pulled tight toward the end of the boom as well as directly down.
OK - but won't the cheek block (the reefing line runs FWD to AFT on the side of the boom, through the cheek block, up through the reef clew (cringle), and then back down to the boom) keep the reef line lead AFT, regardless of the bowline-secured bitter end????? If you do what sailingfool prescribes, the bitter end will form a "choker" too, which will help??
The cheek block is obviously AFT of the reef clew position. Thanks again for all the input, by the way!!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BELLATRIX1965 View Post
OK - but won't the cheek block (the reefing line runs FWD to AFT on the side of the boom, through the cheek block, up through the reef clew (cringle), and then back down to the boom) keep the reef line lead AFT, regardless of the bowline-secured bitter end????? If you do what sailingfool prescribes, the bitter end will form a "choker" too, which will help??
The cheek block is obviously AFT of the reef clew position. Thanks again for all the input, by the way!!
The padeye should be somewhat aft of the cringle and the cheek block further aft. Neither shoud be right below the cringle. In high winds, things move and I wouldn't rely on rope-to-boom friction to keep the bowline in place.

I'm with sck5- with a 22' boom that weighs a couple hundred pounds, it doesn't really matter if I got hit with the padeye or not.
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