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Thread: Halyards and hand pain

  1. #1
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    Default Halyards and hand pain

    I am a Folkboat owner of a certain age and am finding the 3/8 braided polyester halyards difficult to grasp. Similarly with the sheets. Id rather not install winches but wonder whether a increase in size or construction of these lines might help. Any ideas?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    I get the same, I've now moved to wearing gloves all the time sailing, and I need insulated ones in the winter.
    Increasing thickness of sheets will help...
    Just an amateur bodging away..

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    I suffer arthritis in my hands. 1/2" might do better, sailing gloves might help grip. A careful diet lessens my pain, as well as keeping them warm and judicious use of tools.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Thanks for the replies. Braided or twisted better? Polyester or nylon any different? I think going up to 1/2 or even more might be in order.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Yes, 3-strand is easier to grasp, and polyester is much less slippery than nylon.

    I wish 7/16" was a more common size.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    I think there’s a rope store near Trenton. I might try them out.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    jeebus, a 3/8th line is okay for an 8 foot dink.
    not because of what a chart of strength sez, but because of exactly what yer sayin..small line hurts yer hands!
    If they hurt during a daysail, how they gonna do in a long cold wet night of tacking/reefing ?
    big n soft !!!

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    I use 1/2" for sheets and halyards. 3 strand dacron - nylon's not just slippery but also to stretchy for sheets and halyards. Much easier on the hands. You might have to change some sheet blocks.

    Gloves might be a good thing. I don't know as I don't use them. Blood all over when wire splicing.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Yes. I’m worried about that. The boat and running rigging is 1965 model and I’d rather keep it original. I’ll run some1/2” through and see how it goes.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Ah yes ;hand pain . I've been takeing fishoil lozenges every day for years now .It seems to help.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Trenton Ontario?

    I've been ordering from Kingston Marine for years. Good service, at least online. Reasonable prices. Marine Outfitters - boating electronics accessories supplies hardware sailboat power - Ontario Canada

    If you want a 3-strand polyester line of traditional appearance, try Gord Laco. https://www.gordonlaco.com/outfitting.html He's a sailor's sailor.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    I'm a little west of there , in Newcastle ON. The boat will be at the Newcastle Marina in a week . I hope. Thanks for the contacts.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    I’ve never, in fifty years, used anything smaller that half an inch three strand except in dinghies.
    Last edited by Andrew Craig-Bennett; 06-06-2022 at 05:22 AM.
    IMAGINES VEL NON FUERINT

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    My fathers hands started giving up the ghost. His a horseman, couldn’t do their feet anymore, couldn’t play guitar. His sister gave him some magnesium spray going on 4 years ago now and his doing all the things he wants. Went from not even being able to close his hands.

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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Quote Originally Posted by Geftb View Post
    My fathers hands started giving up the ghost. His a horseman, couldn’t do their feet anymore, couldn’t play guitar. His sister gave him some magnesium spray going on 4 years ago now….
    That would be Epsom Salts spray maybe? Magnesium Sulfate in water?
    When the people wanted the Constitution amended, it was amended. When the elites wanted the Constitution amended, but the people did not, that is called democracy."

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  16. #16
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    I put a cup of mag flakes in most baths ( i only shower when there is no bathtub)....if you get leg cramps at night it ends them.
    epsom salt is more about taking toxins OUT of the body.
    Tumeric is the bomb too, but now were gettin into hippie chit again .

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    After a season's use, I don't think you'd regret a couple of winches on the deck. Easier on the hands and better sail trim.
    -Dave

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Increasing your line size to spare your hands will not lessen the integrity of the design of the boat. Nobody's gonna care.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Don't want winches? How 'bout a block and tackle.

    1. Measure your halyard.
    2. Get your arthritic hands on a hank of suitable line that's 4 or 5 times the length of your halyard.
    3. If your hands are still operable, get a couple of triple or quadruple sheave blocks.
    4. Still with me? Get suitable hardware to hang one of those blocks at the truck, and one on your headboard.

    You're a sailor, I think you must see where I'm going here. When you get done hoisting, you'll be bored as hell cuz it took so long to "get it up". You're gonna have a s___tpile of halyard lying on your feet that you're gonna have to deal with...BUT YOUR HANDS WILL LOVE YOU!

    Test and modify as needed. Maybe a 4-fall is more than you need. Drop a sheave from each block. Shorten the halyard by the length of your hoist. You'll be a little less bored, you're s___pile will be a bit smaller, and you'll have a bit more wear and tear on your hands. Maybe a 3-fall is more than you need...

    A forty year old arthritic me was able to hoist the main on a 65' schooner, and still have enough geetus left in his hands to finish dressing his mistress with a 4-fall halyard.

    This will make it a bit more of a pain to drop the sail. You won't be able to let go the halyard and just watch the sail fall to the deck, it will probably take a bit of tugging on the luff.
    Schooner sailors love to get blown offshore!

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Quote Originally Posted by SchoonerRat View Post
    This will make it a bit more of a pain to drop the sail. You won't be able to let go the halyard and just watch the sail fall to the deck, it will probably take a bit of tugging on the luff.
    scandalous!
    Simpler is better, except when complicated looks really cool.

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Taking Schooner Rat’s point, and considering that we are dealing with a Folkboat here, may I suggest a refinement which has worked well for me on similar sized boats in the past.

    We used to use a flexible wire single part external halyard passing over the mast head sheave with a 2:1, 3:1 or 4:1 purchase on the fall. These days, use smallish Dyneema in place of the wire.

    The beauty of this system is that the rope you haul on ends up close to the deck and doesn’t add windage. I think that for a Folkboat 2:1 would be ample, and with decent blocks the sail will still run down.
    IMAGINES VEL NON FUERINT

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Perhaps a single part Dyneema halyard with a 7/16" rope tail and a Herreshoff style block for tensioning like Jay has on Bright Star (photo from Jay's thread on the boat).
    Halyard fall.jpg

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Quote Originally Posted by Hugh MacD View Post
    Perhaps a single part Dyneema halyard with a 7/16" rope tail and a Herreshoff style block for tensioning like Jay has on Bright Star (photo from Jay's thread on the boat).
    Halyard fall.jpg
    I can't grock how this works.
    Does the bronze fitting move? does it go UP the mast when the sail is dropped? Is it like a truckers hitch but with a fitting?

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Quote Originally Posted by wizbang 13 View Post
    I can't grock how this works.
    Does the bronze fitting move? does it go UP the mast when the sail is dropped? Is it like a truckers hitch but with a fitting?
    Yes.
    IMAGINES VEL NON FUERINT

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    how does it not get all twisted up under tension and bang up the spruce ?

  26. #26
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    It doesn’t. Notice that whilst the sail is being hoisted the Herreshoff block is under pure tension and is clear of the mast.
    IMAGINES VEL NON FUERINT

  27. #27
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    thank you acb
    ya think our op could just put a bowlin on a bight and truck hitch his way outta his prob?

  28. #28
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    That cleat on the mast wouldn't happen to have a sheave tucked away in its innards, would it?

  29. #29
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Quote Originally Posted by Rob Hazard View Post
    That cleat on the mast wouldn't happen to have a sheave tucked away in its innards, would it?
    It would.
    IMAGINES VEL NON FUERINT

  30. #30
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    I just love details that are that simple, yet that effective!

  31. #31
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    My old Narrasketuck had this rig for the small jib and a 3"1 downhaul for the enormous main. A very quirky boat.

  32. #32
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Many great ideas here. Both halyards are wire at the top and 3/8 braid straight to cleats. I think I’ll change up size to 1/2 or 5/8 first. If this plus gloves doesn’t help then new tackle is next. Thanks all for the photos and ideas.

  33. #33
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Hold on. Rethink this. Get the winch(es) you need. It is only a boat and they make having the boat better and safer handling. If you are having hand strength and grip issues then there is no question. Get the best ones that fit and look good. a safety issue may happen if you go with cluttered blocks and extra length of line to pull. Make all the lines lead into the cockpit, move on to sail the boat more fun and comfortably. Solo older sailors with grip issues should not need to go to the mast to raise and lower sails on a 26 foot simple sail boat.

    this makes a world of difference. you should try one. this can grip a line easily on and off and you use your weight to sheet in.


    KARVER BLOCKS

    KJH Jaws Handle - Line Gripper

    Also consider going with all dynema halyards and soft shackle fairleads and blocks leading aft - they are game changers, stronger and safer beside being some of the smarter things a modern sailor can do.

    Editorial note -

    I see lots of folkboats and know lots older folkboat sailors here in Alameda. Was a friend and neighbor with Sven Svenson who imported most of them into the United States. They do not hesitate to change their boat to best suit them including reworking line leads and placing small winches. you should not either. Moreover a few of them have powered winches giving them the ability to sail into their 90s.
    Last edited by Ted Hoppe; 06-09-2022 at 05:24 PM.
    Without friends none of this is possible.

  34. #34
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    Ted, Thanks for your ideas. Another fellow in Toronto has done what you've suggested including under deck jib furling. It really works and looks great. I've sailed with him as it was pretty easy. I can see me doing these things gradually as dollars allow. The soft shackle fairleads would be a good start though.
    Your editorial note at the end implies, correctly , that I am reluctant to change things due to trying to keep the boat "pure" by leaving it original. My attitude is quickly changing as I think of my future in sailing. Kim

  35. #35
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    Default Re: Halyards and hand pain

    When I had a boat not dissimilar to a Folkboat, I used Gottifredi Maffioli Swiftchord for the sheets. It's supersoft on the hands. In the silver fleck colour it's pretty mute for a classic boat. It's lovely to handle.



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