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Thread: Running Rigging on E27

  1. #1
    Contributing Member I
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Redondo Beach, CA

    Running Rigging on E27

    I'm replacing the running rigging on my 1977 Ericson 27' Tall mast. West Marine is having a 40% off sale on sta-set poly lines tomorrow so it seems like a good time =) Unfortunately I'm 3,000 miles away from my boat, so I could use some guidance. I've done research, but would be great if someone could vet it for me.

    Mast is 34', boom is 10'. Halyards are winched and cleated onto the mast.

    Main/Jib Halyard:
    3/8" x 45'. It will be attached to a wire that hoists the sail, so I only need one mast length. I figure mast length plus an extra 10' or so for emergency situations (hauling someone/something from overboard). Is that overkill? I've seen some places specify 5/16", thoughts?

    3/8" x 65'. This is the one I'm most unsure of. My mast is tabernacled, so I'd need to lower it. Doing some basic math, if it's 4' block to block when the boom is horizontal, It would be ~17' block to block when the mast is down and the boom is vertical. Multiply that by 4 for the 4:1 block and tackle (52') and add 10ish feet for some slop. Should this be longer?

    3/8" x 40'. Boat length * 1.5

    Boom Vang: 3/8" x 20'. Boom length * 2

    Outhaul: 5/16" x 20'. Boom length * 2

    Topping Lift:
    5/16" x 20'. I'm just guessing on this one. Would 1/4" be OK? I'll probably get this one extra long just in case (it's always good to have some extra line anyway).

    Seem reasonable? Thanks!
    Last edited by AndrewD; 03-15-2017 at 05:09 PM. Reason: Halyard clarification

  2. #2
    Curator of Broken Parts toddster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Oregon - The Gorge
    Blog Entries
    Are you going to splice the halyards to wire yourself or buy the pre-spliced ones? The wire may need to be shortened on those. Or go to all rope?

    The topping lift length seems short, but depends on how it's rigged. Length of mast + length of boom for me. My topping lift is actually something like 3/16 or less - almost like a shoelace. But it can be hard to handle without gloves. Same for the outhaul.
    Vang seems short, but again depends on how it's rigged.

    Maybe buy some line to rig boom preventers? Reefing lines?

    You might want to think about present or future man overboard procedures. To hoist a MOB with a Lifesling (for example) requires a block and tackle with enough line to lift from the water to several feet over the lifelines. (One block hoisted on a halyard, other block to the MOB.) That could be a dedicated piece of gear, but I figured I'd use the vang, which is 4:1 on my boat - because it's always right there. Hence extra rope on the vang. Could also use the mainsheet I suppose, if easily detached.
    s/v arcturus E29 #134

  3. #3
    Contributing Member II
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Lake Texoma, Texas

    Halyard thoughts

    I was going to use rope to wire halyards but after talking to a few riggers I chose to go with all rope. Most of the new ropes are stronger then wire and have less stretch, go figure. After several conversations with riggers at west marine I went with his advice and made the move to all rope and have no regrets 😊
    E35-3 #154
    s/v Sunflower

  4. #4
    Advanced Beginner bgary's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Everett, WA
    Blog Entries


    +1 on all-rope halyards. With modern lines, there's no reason to use wire (and add the hassle of a wire-rope splice).

    I'm not a fan of Sta-Set, though. It is a polyester core (vs. some of the stronger dyneema-cored lines), and it doesn't have the best wear characteristics. There are better lines out there and, when on sale, about the same price.

    I like New England's "VPC" a lot for halyards, Samson's "MLX" is also very good and reasonably priced.

    "Makana" (ex-Thelonious)
    1985 Ericson 32-III #604
    Makana blog: here

  5. #5
    Contributing Member II
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    North Channel, Lake Huron, Ontario
    Switched my E27 to all rope and no regrets. If you go that route you should think about changing your masthead sheaves. The groove is a different configuration for ropes. Not critical but I upgraded nonetheless. Zephyrwerks can fix you up. Great service but he's in busy mode now.

  6. #6
    Contributing Member I
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Redondo Beach, CA
    Awesome, thanks for the advice everyone! I decided to just replace the mainsheet, outhaul and topping lift for now, since they are in pretty bad shape. Once I get everything else squared away, I'll look into switching over to an all rope halyard system.. I like the simplicity of it. I'll look into new sheaves on the mast since I'll likely be dropping it at some point anyway.

    Thanks again!

  7. #7
    Sustaining Partner
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Brentwood, CA
    Went to all rope halyards 12 years ago. 5/16" is plenty strong and you don't need to change the sheaves.
    Grant Kiba
    '73 E27
    Antioch, CA

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