Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

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MartinDreaming
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Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by MartinDreaming » Sep 25th, '17, 22:13

My stainless steel wire standing rigging is looking tired. Its got a couple of minor kinks, but the turnbuckles and pelican hooks are getting worn, bent and difficult to adjust. If I were to replace the standing rigging (bottle screws, pelican hooks and possibly chain plates) is it worth replacing it with polymer rope, such as Spectra? It will be nicer on the hands, easier to stow in the mast-down position, and easier to splice, meaning that I could try doing it myself.

My boat is an Austral 20 (6.10m), with a mast length of 7.71m and a boom length of a little more than 2.4m. The standing rigging comprises
* 1 forestay with a turnbuckle and clevis pin
* (1 wire luff connected to a furler that I'm tempted to keep, which takes the tension on the front under sail)
* 1 baby stay with a pelican
* 2 shrouds each side, 1 with turnbuckle and clevis pin and 1 with pelican
* 1 backstay
... making a total of 7 stays and shrouds for the standing rigging (not including the wire luff).

The standing rigging will not be stored under cover, so UV degradation could be an issue.
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Ukuri
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Re: Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by Ukuri » Sep 25th, '17, 23:19

I had all my standing rigging replaced 4 or 5 years ago by S K Rigging. From memory it cost about $600 or $700. Forestay, Backstay, Pair of Shrouds and fore and aft Lowers.
S K operates out of RQYC so doing work at WMYC is reasonably convenient for him. The job included all new open body turnbuckles but I reused the existing Pelican Hooks on the aft lowers.
I dropped the mast, removed all the wires and tagged them and he took them away and made new ones and put the tags on them. All worked out pretty well.

I replaced the lifelines with 5mm Dyneema about 3 years ago. Been in the Manly sun ever since and still look OK. The one that is usually opened when docked is beginning to show some minor fraying where it goes through the stanchion but nothing dramatic.

The Couta boats that are made by Euan (one on the hardstand next to Ethel) have Dyneema standing rigging and they appear to be holding up OK. My thoughts are that if you are towing more than just occassionally then UHMWPE is definitely the way to go. What you may lose in longevity would be more than offset by ease of rigging and less chance of damage when standing the mast.

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mees
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Re: Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by mees » Sep 26th, '17, 18:08

I had my standing rigging replaced about 5 years ago. Chose conventional stainless wire etc. and paid just over $ 600. It is all good no issues but I probably will go for dyneema / spectra next time for reasons Ukuri mentioned.
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Mojo
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Re: Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by Mojo » Sep 26th, '17, 20:32

I've used dyneema on the past few boats for standing rigging. There is heat treated dyneema called dynex dux that has less stretch than standard dyneema. I used dynex dux on the Colson 8 and just standard dyneema on the Hartley 16. There are various other companies that offer similar line under different names.
From my experience I have no reason to go back to steel wire.
There is an initial creep as the rope beds in, but after this I've had no issues.
It's easy to splice, saves a lot of weight and doesn't get kinked. The cost doing it myself was cheaper then getting someone to make of stainless wire.
It has good life in UV and is reasonably chaff resistant.

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AZAmagnum
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Re: Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by AZAmagnum » Sep 26th, '17, 20:41

Mojo,

are there any insurance issues doing a DIY dyneema rigging ?

cheers,
Az
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Mojo
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Re: Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by Mojo » Sep 26th, '17, 21:08

I don't think so, I'm sure I checked in to it when I had the Colson 8.
Best to check with the your insurance company, but from memory at the time they didn't care


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gazwald
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Re: Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by gazwald » Sep 27th, '17, 11:27

The thing that has always tripped me up when I look at this is the terminations, the components are dearer than turnbuckles and I never liked the lashing idea as a tensioner, just doesn't seem as secure as a turnbuckle with a locknut. Especially for a boat that is rigged and de rigged for each sail.

Mojo what termination methods have you used?

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Re: Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by Furstin » Sep 27th, '17, 16:34

Use turnbuckles?

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Mojo
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Re: Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by Mojo » Sep 27th, '17, 21:21

I used clevis pin turnbuckles. I did try lashing but found turnbuckles gave a much more accurate adjustment.


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gazwald
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Re: Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by gazwald » Sep 28th, '17, 02:01

So did you just use normal stainless steel thimbles? Or just put the pin straight trough a soft spliced eye?

I recently broke a 3mm spectra back stay which I reckon was an original 2001 installation, the end of it sticks out of the boat cover so it's been in the weather all that time too. 16 years for only 3mm that sees some good loads is pretty good value I reckon. It's only a tuning stay hence why I left it until failure.

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Mojo
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Re: Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by Mojo » Sep 28th, '17, 08:47

I used a stainless thimble.


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madmission
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Re: Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by madmission » Sep 28th, '17, 09:05

Timely discussion .. on the Rl28 I removed the mast and picked up the trailer so bought them home to work on , when i removed the starboard shroud i felt vindicated as under the rubber grommet the wire was broken through 1/3 of the wires :shock:

Now i have to decide what to replace them with , i recall tumbleweed Rl28 replaced his with synthetic and reported good results so will search his past posts and make a decision .
Last edited by madmission on Oct 12th, '17, 21:57, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by Ukuri » Sep 28th, '17, 09:11

On my lifelines I used standard stainless thimbles. They're not exactly the correct cross sectional shape. Thimbles for UHMWPE should be a wider, flatter cross section than the equivalent size wire thimbles. The UHMWPE flattens out into a squashed circle profile under load. Wasn't really an issue for me as the loads are comparatively low. For standing rigging, with much higher loads, particularly shock loads, it's probably wise to go for the correct thimbles. Riley make a range of specific thimbles for UHMWPE but it's hard to get Riley stuff in Qld.
The biggest difficulty I had was "guesstimating" the correct length to start the second splice so that it was close to correct after it bedded in. Too short and I couldn't get it to fit and too long and there wasn't enough travel in the adjustable Pelican Hooks. Also difficult to eliminate the initial creep before they're fitted. The Dynex Dux creeps less, initially, than the untreated stuff I used but I think it is more difficult to splice. Next time I think I'll try bedding in the splices using the boat winch.

Cheers etc.

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Re: Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by Mojo » Sep 28th, '17, 11:35

Dynex dux is significantly stronger than the equivalent diameter wire. I used thimbles from Strongrope at $5 each. As Ukuri says you need the right thimble. The open ended ones for wire won't do.


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Re: Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by Slammin » Sep 28th, '17, 17:45

As Ukuri and Mojo pointed out bedding in the splices is the hard bit. i did my lifelines ok but they were hardly exact, even using an Estar knot. From what I have read it's difficult getting a. exact length. In the end I just replaced SS with SS I figure by the time I need to replace it the process will be easier. That being said I would definitely prefer synthetic.
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Re: Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by Ticketec » Jan 12th, '18, 14:07

My Lifelines need replacing, what have you guys done where the rope travels through a Stainless Steel uprights to stop fraying there?

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Re: Standing rigging - stainless steel wire v polymer rope

Post by MartinDreaming » Jan 12th, '18, 14:16

Decided to replace my rigging with SS. The rigger should be finished on Monday.
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