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Thread: Robands? Which do people prefer?

  1. #1
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    Default Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Being an inveterate tinkerer, I'm going to switch from lacing to Robands on my boat as it seems a better method to get even tension on the sail.
    However there sure seems to be alot of ways to do it. Any preferences?
    21712726_Robands(2).jpg.bc34a0ef5515d5448db015ac6dabefe6.jpg

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    A hunk of line with a loop spliced into one end and a wooden toggle attached to the other end, which is then passed through the luff grommet, around the spar and back through the loop also works well and is likely easier to attach and/or detach than any of those above, yet it tends to be plenty secure in use.

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Todd Bradshaw View Post
    A hunk of line with a loop spliced into one end and a wooden toggle attached to the other end, which is then passed through the luff grommet, around the spar and back through the loop also works well and is likely easier to attach and/or detach than any of those above, yet it tends to be plenty secure in use.

    That’s what I have used, works great.
    "Yeah, well, that's just, like your opinion man"
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Thanks. I like it! Time to start making toggles. Do people ever use stopper knots instead of toggles? At this time I only know how to splice 3 strand and I only have 6mm/1/4" 3 strand. I'll see if the local chandlery has 1/8" . My sail is laced on with..ulp..starter cord Could I use a buntline hitch and a stopper knot? Certainly a splice and a toggle would look more salty.
    Last edited by Toxophilite; 10-31-2022 at 10:42 PM.

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    I use the "Falconer 1750" from your diagram (2 turns, reef knotted). This is a lugsail where I never have to remove the sail from the yard. Works well once you get the initial tension sorted out.

    With a lugsail, I don't see much advantage to using a toggle. Are you planning to take the sail off the spars? If not, why not simple ties?

    Tom
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    reef knot, tied wrong half the time
    rocket science i say !!
    i use the same special knot to tie my staysls' to the stays.
    jus cut a bunch off last week
    Last edited by wizbang 13; 11-01-2022 at 08:05 AM.

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Todd Bradshaw View Post
    A hunk of line with a loop spliced into one end and a wooden toggle attached to the other end, which is then passed through the luff grommet, around the spar and back through the loop also works well and is likely easier to attach and/or detach than any of those above, yet it tends to be plenty secure in use.
    This was the SOP for securing a trysail to a mast. I’ve used it for that a good few times.
    IMAGINES VEL NON FUERINT

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Todd Bradshaw View Post
    A hunk of line with a loop spliced into one end and a wooden toggle attached to the other end, which is then passed through the luff grommet, around the spar and back through the loop also works well and is likely easier to attach and/or detach than any of those above, yet it tends to be plenty secure in use.
    A modern version of this would be a dyneema soft shackle.
    Steve

    If you would have a good boat, be a good guy when you build her - honest, careful, patient, strong.
    H.A. Calahan

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Quote Originally Posted by stromborg View Post
    A modern version of this would be a dyneema soft shackle.
    The strength of Dyneema isn’t needed in this application. Has anyone tried making soft shackles from Regatta Braid, a polyester single braid?

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Quote Originally Posted by JimConlin View Post
    The strength of Dyneema isn’t needed in this application. Has anyone tried making soft shackles from Regatta Braid, a polyester single braid?
    none of this over the top stuff is needed , not even the word.."robands".
    some old line with crap knots works as well as anything

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    I know dyneema is overkill for attaching a sail to a spar, but it uses up short bits of line that would otherwise be tucked in a drawer someplace. My own sails are simply laced on, it took some time to get the right combination of tension along the head and tightness to the yard.
    Steve

    If you would have a good boat, be a good guy when you build her - honest, careful, patient, strong.
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    The sail on my Bobcat had individual pieces of small line, one for each grommet, tied with reef knots.
    What's not on a boat costs nothing, weighs nothing, and can't break

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Todd Bradshaw View Post
    A hunk of line with a loop spliced into one end and a wooden toggle attached to the other end, which is then passed through the luff grommet, around the spar and back through the loop also works well and is likely easier to attach and/or detach than any of those above, yet it tends to be plenty secure in use.
    I just unlaced and took off the fore and main for winter and said myself I should find a faster solution.
    I like the loop and toggle idea.
    Smart and good looking.
    Gonna prepare that for next season.
    Thanks.
    Gerard.
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    If you are going to concern yourself with the fastening of a sail to the spar, it is important to note the sailmaker almost always considers the sail's "luff" as attached to a straight surface (or line) from end to end. In the case of lug and similar spars (without track) the side of the spar that should be a straight line is the "back".
    Otherwise (if it is not straight) then each and every roband should be a different length leaving the luff of the sail a straight line.
    So many of the lug and gaff rigs that I see have all the curve or "shape" built into the sail removed by clumsy attachments resulting in a "flat" sail with poor performance.
    With sail track, the side of the spar attached to the luff is the straight line. With head sails attached to a stay the sag or curve is carefully considered by the sailmaker to end up with the desired draft in the sail.
    Flat sails (with the luff round removed by poor lacing) may be photogenic, but they don't work very well.

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    I have been experimenting with this for the past couple of seasons. I found that if the roband is left free to find its own position, the toggle will wind up in front of the mast when the sail is lowered, and once this happens, the toggles can weight the roband down enough to drop through the ones below it. Raising the sail again required clearing these to make certain things were running freely to prevent things hanging up. My solution this season was to use a bit of whipping twine to fasten the wooden toggle end just ahead of the sail luff, so the toggle can’t swing around to the front of the mast and potentially snare a neighboring loop of the roband line once lowered. B5DD23EF-1B41-45A5-9299-338E99B57A8C.jpg
    As Steve notes, smallish bits of cut off can be effectively repurposed from a junk drawer as robands.
    Last edited by John hartmann; 11-02-2022 at 01:52 PM.

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    My mistake.
    I thought it was about the head laced on the gaff.
    Gerard.
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    It may not be a mistake, and you may be correct—both luff to mast and sail head to yard/gaff have been discussed in this thread.

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    On the gaff rigged iceboat TIPPY where the sail had to come off every time it was used, set up fast in freezing temps and hoisted and doused easily I copied a traditional Dutch technique. Robands combined with forth and back lacing. The toggle robands run on the diagonal with each one cowhitched to a grommet. One leg goes up the other down. I used i/8" braid with a tight seizing to the toggle and another one making a loop. Recommended.
    Ben Fuller
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  19. #19
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Quote Originally Posted by John hartmann View Post
    It may not be a mistake, and you may be correct—both luff to mast and sail head to yard/gaff have been discussed in this thread.
    OK.
    For the luff itself around the mast, I make straightforward lacing with a heavy line and it works well coming loose as i release the halyard.

    Luff.jpeg
    Last edited by Rapelapente; 11-02-2022 at 05:30 PM.
    Gerard.
    SCHOONER FOR EVER, GOELETTE A PERPETE

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    This is how I did mine. I have small boat, so not knowing how big your boat is, this might not be hefty enough. But I just used some 550 cord, some wooden beads, and a piece of 1/2" dowel to make the toggle. I tied knots between the beads to keep them and the toggle in position. Loop comes through the grommet, over the toggle, and done. Beads are 3/4" diameter I think. The beads make it super fast to raise and drop the sail. Slides up and down my birdsmouth mast nice and easy.
    20210317_181518.jpg
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  21. #21
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lee.007 View Post
    This is how I did mine. I have small boat, so not knowing how big your boat is, this might not be hefty enough. But I just used some 550 cord, some wooden beads, and a piece of 1/2" dowel to make the toggle. I tied knots between the beads to keep them and the toggle in position. Loop comes through the grommet, over the toggle, and done. Beads are 3/4" diameter I think. The beads make it super fast to raise and drop the sail. Slides up and down my birdsmouth mast nice and easy.
    20210317_181518.jpg
    The wooden beads work very well on small boats and you can use the last bead on the strand as a button or" toggle"
    I just make a clove hitch with the line at the cringle and a wee bowline in the far end to accept the bead/toggle with about 4 beads spaced in between. (In the picture above just substitute a bead for the "toggle"). That is how I do it if the sail needs to remove, if the sail doesn't need to be removed and can be just rolled up around the spar, I use light webbing, like 1/2" and sew it together in a loop seized to the cringle.

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Well for now, until I make some toggles(I think I have some hardwood dowel.) I used the falconer 1750 (just like saying that) with the reef knots. My spars are round and fatter in the middle as per the sailplan. Unthinkingly I followed the curve, making the middle robands slightly longer. Just like Canoyawl's comment. East to adjust and it seemed to be finding it's own place some. When pulled the sail was about 1/2" off the boom and yard.

    Gave a couple much larger boats (25-35') a good run for their money beating upwind today.

    If I can't get 1/8" 3 strand to eye splice locally maybe I'll just serve the loop and toggle, or use a buntline hitch. I think the toggle setup would be a fun project for the many rainy nights approaching.

    For my boat I'm talking about robands to the boom and yard, not the mast
    (I think i need on for the luff grommet to the boom and yes my sail is up too high. At this point the breeze was pretty light.)
    IMG_3855.jpg
    Last edited by Toxophilite; 11-03-2022 at 12:13 AM.

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    For that, I use simple roband and reef knot.

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Canoeyawl View Post
    If you are going to concern yourself with the fastening of a sail to the spar, it is important to note the sailmaker almost always considers the sail's "luff" as attached to a straight surface (or line) from end to end. In the case of lug and similar spars (without track) the side of the spar that should be a straight line is the "back".
    Otherwise (if it is not straight) then each and every roband should be a different length leaving the luff of the sail a straight line.
    So many of the lug and gaff rigs that I see have all the curve or "shape" built into the sail removed by clumsy attachments resulting in a "flat" sail with poor performance.
    With sail track, the side of the spar attached to the luff is the straight line. With head sails attached to a stay the sag or curve is carefully considered by the sailmaker to end up with the desired draft in the sail.
    Flat sails (with the luff round removed by poor lacing) may be photogenic, but they don't work very well.
    In my case the boat's designer drew a tapered mast with the backside a straight line (he also drew it square in section but I think everybody has instead gone with round) lacing the sail loose enough to let the luff be straight while accommodating the curved mast always takes a few tries to get just right.

    The gaff and head of the sail curve in opposite directions, finding their "happy place" is an ongoing quest. Since the set of the throat-to-peak line doesn't reveal itself until the whole sail is up and full of wind I've been slow to play with it. At one time I just ignored it but as you pointed out once the small things add up on a small boat so I'm trying to chase them down now.
    Steve

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?



    Sometimes I wonder if I should build a new gaff, curved to match the sail. Wouldn't that be cool?

    Oh dear, I think I may have just generated another winter shop project...
    Steve

    If you would have a good boat, be a good guy when you build her - honest, careful, patient, strong.
    H.A. Calahan

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    That curve in your sail creates the "draft" the luff should be a straight line...
    If the luff is curved the sail is flat.

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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    This a strange photo of a cool boat. Look at that huge boom! There seems to be a cat-headed specter on your bow!

    Quote Originally Posted by stromborg View Post


    Sometimes I wonder if I should build a new gaff, curved to match the sail. Wouldn't that be cool?

    Oh dear, I think I may have just generated another winter shop project...

  28. #28
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    David Smiths Alden Indian

    and his lil dog Zippy.

  29. #29
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ben Fuller View Post
    On the gaff rigged iceboat TIPPY where the sail had to come off every time it was used, set up fast in freezing temps and hoisted and doused easily I copied a traditional Dutch technique. Robands combined with forth and back lacing. The toggle robands run on the diagonal with each one cowhitched to a grommet. One leg goes up the other down. I used i/8" braid with a tight seizing to the toggle and another one making a loop. Recommended.
    Ben,
    Do you happen to have pictures? I'm not sure I am visualizing it correctly.
    Alex

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  30. #30
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    I thought he was using long robands that toggled into each other making back and forth lacing, yes?

    Quote Originally Posted by AJZimm View Post
    Ben,
    Do you happen to have pictures? I'm not sure I am visualizing it correctly.

  31. #31
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Quote Originally Posted by AJZimm View Post
    Ben,
    Do you happen to have pictures? I'm not sure I am visualizing it correctly.
    That's how I've got the luff of my sprit sail set up. The robands have an eye seized in one end and a stopper knot on the other end. Then they're cow hitched into the grommet and connect to each other. I've found it to work pretty well and a lot faster than my previous setup of tying individual robands with a square knot.


  32. #32
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Quote Originally Posted by The Jeff View Post
    That's how I've got the luff of my sprit sail set up. The robands have an eye seized in one end and a stopper knot on the other end. Then they're cow hitched into the grommet and connect to each other. I've found it to work pretty well and a lot faster than my previous setup of tying individual robands with a square knot.

    I'll have to look at my iceboat pics, not sure if I have it but this is pretty much what I do except I alternate the lacing so in this case if the bottom one goes bottom left to top right you won't see the next one as it goes the other way. That way the laces go slack as the sail is lowered. When you look at it it looks like you have skipped a lacing . I found an Iceboat pic, out don't remember where the instruction is to post a pic.
    Last edited by Ben Fuller; 11-03-2022 at 07:21 PM. Reason: more info
    Ben Fuller
    Ran Tan, Liten Kuhling, Tipsy, Tippy, Josef W., Merry Mouth, Imp, Macavity, Look Far, Flash and a quiver of other 'yaks.
    "Bound fast is boatless man."

  33. #33
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ben Fuller View Post
    I'll have to look at my iceboat pics, not sure if I have it but this is pretty much what I do except I alternate the lacing so in this case if the bottom one goes bottom left to top right you won't see the next one as it goes the other way. That way the laces go slack as the sail is lowered. When you look at it it looks like you have skipped a lacing . I found an Iceboat pic, out don't remember where the instruction is to post a pic.
    You're right, I've got it set up as spiral lacing at the moment. I keep meaning to try forth and back, but the sail comes down easily enough I haven't bothered.

  34. #34
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Thanks Jeff and Ben, That picture is very helpful and I think the setup would work very well for my Camas Moon. A lot faster to rig and un-rig than the lacing I am currently using
    Alex

    “It's only those who do nothing that make no mistakes, I suppose.”
    - Joseph Conrad, An Outcast of the Islands

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  35. #35
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    Default Re: Robands? Which do people prefer?

    Quote Originally Posted by John hartmann View Post
    the sail luff, so the toggle can’t swing around to the front of the mast and potentially snare a neighboring loop of the roband line once lowered. B5DD23EF-1B41-45A5-9299-338E99B57A8C.jpg
    As Steve notes, smallish bits of cut off can be effectively repurposed from a junk drawer as robands.
    Off topic: what is your mast construction? I have never seen anything like that. It looks like stitched Bamboo floor mat??

    Ken

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