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Rigid Vang Selection

4469 Views 11 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  jarcher
Hi All, I am thinking of getting a rigid vang to eliminate the topping lift, and would appreciate suggestions. Its a 30 foot racer/cruiser (my Scampi 30) that is mostly raced. I see Garhauer is having a 20% off sale and I like their stuff, but I don't know what options to be looking for.

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Jarcher, options are traditional Spinlok and Forespar. I have the first one and very happy. But looks like this is a ofshelf solution with traditional technoly, easy to deploy, so any respectable brand should work fine. Another point, I would not eliminate the lift, as this could be a second point of safety for the boom, or to replace main halyard in the need ....
Another point, I would not eliminate the lift, as this could be a second point of safety for the boom, or to replace main halyard in the need ....
My topping lift is just a cable that attached at the mast head and comes down to the end of the boom with a small block / tackle assembly.
Well the thing is that my topping lift keeps getting caught in the leech of the main sail.
Understand. Give it a try, and replace lifting for a total line all the way up to your deck/cabin top. This way you'll not only do for safety and spare main halyard, but also a way to set it to not interfere to your main. Cheaper than rigid vang ...
I installed a Garhauer rigid vang and like it. Their gear is known as being overbuilt, i.e. heavy, so for a racer, it might be overkill. The folks at Garhauer were very helpful. They used a heavier duty spring than they would normally use for a boom of our length since it's a heavy one.

I also removed my topping lift. The first time I went forward to drop the main after the install, I leaned on the boom to wrap my arms around to rig a sail tie and almost fell over. I didn't realize how accustomed I'd become to the support the lift used to give the boom.
My concerns are more about how to use it. Normally I just release the topping lift and the sail holds the boom up. I then use the main sheet to control twist and the traveler to trim. With the vang, is it true that I'll have to coordinate the main sheet and the vang? Sounds like a pain.

Faster commented that his rigid vang locks and unlocks, so he can disable it upwind. That sound slike a good option. Garhauer has precious little information on their web site, I guess I'll give them a call.
Ours is a Spinlock.. out of Britain. It's a multipart cascade tackle inside the housing with a ratcheting latch mechanism for support. The transition from support to free vang is supposed to be automatic, but it's never worked that way. We have to unlatch the support mode, and relatch it manually. Not the end of the world because on the hoist I usually jump the halyard so I'm nearby to do that, and on the douse I'm at the mast so same thing.

However, I can't find a link for you - it's listed at MauiProSailing but the page is blank. "Spinlock powervang"... I suspect it's discontinued.
A rigid vang is nice because you do not have to play with a topping lift and it reduces that windage and a little weight aloft. It also will provide support for the boom in light air so that you can get better shape in your main.

I bought an Boomkicker because it was light a cheap. It works well however it will only support the boom and sail. If you forget when you are furling your main and lean on the boom it will drop down. It will support the main and boom nicley however and is very easy to install.

I have a Selden Rodkicker. Works nicely, no need to latch or unlatch anything. Have never had anything else (and only owned this for one season) so nothing to compare it to, but so far I like it. I still have a topping lift, which is really a second main halyard.
Hall Spars Quik Vang is a widely used and respected product. I would eliminate the topping lift if you add a rigid vang.
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