WetaForum Home Forums Mods and Improvements T-Handles and stay handholds

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      Paul WhitePaul White

        Sitting on the floats when sailing upwind in winds over 10-12 knots can provide a 17% improvement in leverage just by having your weight 20cm further from the centre of the boat. This means you can sail the boat flatter or even healed slightly to windward, which has proven to be faster than dragging the leeward hull.

        The problem for some people is to have the confidence that they can get back onto the tramp once they’ve dropped down onto the float. Firstly, you must be able to get your feet under the hiking straps when sitting on the float – if you can’t, consider adding another hiking strap outside the original to suit your leg length.

        You can use the wire of the stay to give yourself a handhold but it’s pretty slippery – a lurch upward from the sitting position can do it if you have enough strength in your stomach muscles but the easy solution is to add a handhold to the stay which you can use to pull yourself up.

        There are a number of systems in use:

        1. Create new custom stays Create a new stay with an additional swage for the handle (as used on many trapeze boats)
        Pro: Fully integrated into the rigging and very secure
        Con: Cannot be easily adjusted for different crew, expensive
        2. Prusik Knot You can use a Prusik climbing knot to tie a thin line around the stay that won’t slip and then tie a T-handle onto that. A Prusik is a short piece of cord which can be wrapped around a rope or cable to create anchor point. They can slide up and down easily, but lock around the rope when weighted.
        The cord should be around 1.5m long and the diameter of your cord should be 60% to 80% of the cable diameter. If you use a cord that is too thin, it will tighten easily around the cable and will be difficult to move freely. If you use a cord that is too thick, it won’t have enough friction to lock up when you need it to.
        Pro: Inexpensive and cheap to do. Adjustable
        Con: Unlikely to slip but it is possible. An asymmetric Prusik (Schwabisch) locks in one direction only.
        3. Clamp Swage
        Instead of getting new rigging made up with an additional swage on it, you could add a stainless split wire clamp to the existing wire of the stay – but bear in mind this does introduce a point of weakness and most of the clamps are not designed for this application.
        Pro: Easier and cheaper than getting new stays made up. Can be adjusted for height.
        Con: Hard to source the clamps in Australia
        4. Tube and Tennis Ball
        Perhaps the simplest adjustable solution which won’t slide down the stay. All you need to do is slide some plastic tube down the stay and then slice a tennis ball in two and create a hole in the middle so it can be slid along the wire to sit on top of the tube.
        Pro: Easy and cheap to do. Adjustable. Can save you from damage against the sway if you pitchpole.
        Con: Not the most elegant solution. Adds drag.




        • This topic was modified 1 year ago by Paul WhitePaul White.
        • This topic was modified 1 year ago by Paul WhitePaul White.
        • This topic was modified 1 year ago by Paul WhitePaul White.
        • This topic was modified 1 year ago by Paul WhitePaul White.
        • This topic was modified 1 year ago by Paul WhitePaul White.
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