WOW! Thanks for the info! And you even found a place close!
The system that's on it now has a nice locking feature which uses those ball fittings. I had to replace it last season with a cable halyard a little shorter. Honestly, I love the rope idea. I have a passion for old nautical arts. My grandfather introduced me to Hervey Garrett Smith's book while he was still alive. Sadly my grandfather passed in 2009 from cancer.
I can use the shorter cable this year. I have a long enough piece of nylon line on it so it works just fine. I just like things done properly.
Where can I find more info on these all rope halyards?
I am sailing a 14' dinghy. Not a big cruiser. Not sure if the setup is different on larger boats. I have a length of steel rope with a captive pin shackle that attaches to the sail head. At the opposite end there is an eye. I use a length of yacht rope shackled to the eye of the steel wire rope for a downhaul to hoist the sail.
I'll make a little presentation here with pictures!
Okay, so I have a I have a length of steel rope with a captive pin shackle that attaches to the sail head. The sail attaches by feeding into an internal slotted track at the back of the mast.
The steel rope section of halyard passes over the top of the mast through a pair of sheaves.
So many inches from the captive pin shackle, there is a stop fitting swaged to the steel line. I can't remember the measurement, but it is a pretty exact science. This fitting slips into a special bracket on the front of the mast, near the top and locks the halyard in place, keeping the sail up.
At the opposite end of the steel line there is an eye. I use a length of yacht rope shackled to the eye of the steel wire rope for a downhaul to hoist the sail.