I''m buying a Tayana-37 but need to modify the bowsprit to fold so I can use my existing slip, limited to 38''. Has anybody done this with any boat? Would like to hear of your experience/thoughts/ on this.
I own a Tayana 37, have been a structural engineer, and strongly advise that you do NOT make modifications to the bowsprit. Consider that with a movable bowsprit that you will have to completely retune and readjust the rigging (1 to 1-1/2 hrs.) EVERY time you leave your slip. Consider also that the besides the forestay, whisker stays and dolphin striker, - the staysail stay is also attached to the sprit. ..... how are you going to keep the mast up??? The bowsprit is such an integral part of the rigging system; any modifications that you''d make to it would weaken it and the whole system that it supports. I keep my T37 in a 40 ft. slip, have flip-up dinghy davits, and only hang out the end by 4-5 ft. at most (my neighbors don''t object).
While I basically agree with Rich that it would be imposible to build a structurally sound folding bowsprit, especially on a beefy boat like the Tayana 37 you might take a clue from our British brethern (and sistern) and look at how they build their "reefing bowsprits". These are essentially bowsprits that can retracted back into the boat.
I still have to say that it would make a lot more sense, and I mean wildly a lot more sense to either get another slip or sell the Tayana and buy a boat that fits your slip.
The folding bowsprit if it could be engineered would be a lot more expensive that the brokers commission and certainly a lot less of a risk to life, limb and the resale of the boat.