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Eliminating backstay
I have what is described as a 'too heavy' American RL 24 mast. The upper shrouds are anchored 11" behind the mast. What is the least (and most) distance aft that I could move the deck anchors to eliminate the backstay.
Jim Jones31-Jan-2013    Edit    Delete 
Re: Eliminating backstay
Jim, welcome.

The skiff rig used on the drop keel RL24s is a completely different installation to the heavier masts used on the swing keel RL24s in Australia.

Looking at the photos of American masts, they are heavier again than the swing keel masts that still have backstays.

Simply removing the backstay on an American mast is likely to make adjusting the mast bend in stronger winds impossible and the sails would soon overpower the hull as winds increased.

On my drop keel yacht, the shroud chain plates are actually a slopped track bolted to the deck. Rig tension is increased bending the middle of the mast by hauling the shroud back along the track increasing the tension and moving the anchor point back at the same time.

The top of the mast tappers from the light round section from about 80mm to about 40 mm where the halyard sheave sits in the tip of the mast.

Changing rig to a skiff rig with no back stay is a big job normally done by a rigger and sail maker.

I would not recommend removing the backstay without a complete change of mast and sails.

If you are concerned about improving your current rig, the first thing is to get a new mainsail with minimal draft. Alternatively get maintenance done on your old mainsail including reducing the draft.

Many sail makers don't realise the RL24 is a lightly ballasted yacht and does not need a lot of draft in the sail like a keel boat. The flatter sail (less draft) works well with the light displacement.
Greg1-Feb-2013    Edit    Delete 

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