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J/35 Stuck and could be dangerous!


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#1 Tyson0317

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Posted 02 August 2014 - 06:13 AM

Sorry in advance for the stupid watermark that was inserted by the trialware I used to cut down the video clip.

 

http://youtu.be/O2_x9lAZ4A4

 

Please check it out and I would like to hear from you old sea dogs about what you think happened there. There was a fair bit of load on the sheet and I wanted to ease it, but the load was so high that the cam cleat would not open. Obviously, this should not happen... So what did I do wrong? That cam cleat is not new, but works properly. I am wondering if the teeth maybe need to be polished. I would think that applying any kind of lube would be a bad idea - right?

 

 



#2 Rushman

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Posted 02 August 2014 - 06:18 AM

Photos of the offending cleat would help

Uncleating is downwards ?

#3 Tyson0317

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Posted 02 August 2014 - 06:52 AM

Ill get some over the weekend. Yes, uncleating is down. It's a Harken cleat - part of a Harken windward sheeting car system. That should not happen, right?



#4 Rushman

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Posted 02 August 2014 - 07:28 AM

Not sure without more details.

I usually uncleat while keeping some pressure on the main sheet. Recently on a Young 11 I found lifting sheet with my foot helped when cleating, the opposite to uncleat while keeping tension on the sheet.

First ideas are no pressure on the main sheet tail, main sheet too small, cams are worn or cam are lifting slightly jamming the sheet between them.

Pulling some main sheet ON, uncleating then releasing might work better than your current method

#5 DRIFTW00D

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Posted 02 August 2014 - 12:40 PM

Make sure the SS metal bracket holding it is not bent. If so bend it back. The little balls in the cleat ware out. Check and if so replace them or just get a new clear. Id get it fixed immediately.

Also the balls in the travlier ware out. Big money as the whole sliding thing is replaced.

#6 DrewR

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Posted 02 August 2014 - 12:48 PM

On my J/35 it happens frequently. If it's a Harken block, what I do is raise the cam part as high as possible (remove the frame holding the cam cleat and raise it to the top position.) My mainsheet trimmer has a technique, he pulls the halyard tight and stomps on the line to pop it out of the cleat when it's highly loaded.

 

I did replace the frame holding the cam cleat this winter as it was slightly bent and I went down a line size on the sheets. Both seemed to help.  My boom preventer had the same frame on it's cam cleat and it was like new so I just swapped it with the one from the mainsheet. I wouldn't worry about the jaws in the cam cleat. I would say replace the blocks, but Harken prices being what they are, reposition the cam cleat if it's not at the highest point first.

 

But single handed it can be a bitch. 



#7 ~HHN92~

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Posted 02 August 2014 - 12:49 PM

How old is the sheet, is the cover worn/soft? Along with the cleat old sheets get 'grabby', especially a spot that is always in the cleat. If so, maybe reverse the sheet so fresh cover is in the area that gets cleated under pressure.

 

With the pressure a 35 mainsheet can have on it sometimes foot help is required.



#8 Alcatraz5768

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Posted 02 August 2014 - 07:58 PM

We used to have this drama with a centreline mounted mainsheet swivel cleat, when the traveler was dropped the tension meant you couldn't release the sheet at all. Got a spinlock power cleat, one flick even under max load. Awesome.

#9 DrewR

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Posted 02 August 2014 - 08:32 PM

We used to have this drama with a centreline mounted mainsheet swivel cleat, when the traveler was dropped the tension meant you couldn't release the sheet at all. Got a spinlock power cleat, one flick even under max load. Awesome.

 

How did you mount it?  Pics?



#10 Alcatraz5768

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Posted 03 August 2014 - 04:08 AM

PXR08/10 T. It has the same bolt centres as a mid sized harken cam cleat. Ours was the right way up, so you might want to check weather it will fit in there upside down.

#11 Great White

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Posted 03 August 2014 - 04:25 AM

Sorry in advance for the stupid watermark that was inserted by the trialware I used to cut down the video clip.
 
http://youtu.be/O2_x9lAZ4A4
 
Please check it out and I would like to hear from you old sea dogs about what you think happened there. There was a fair bit of load on the sheet and I wanted to ease it, but the load was so high that the cam cleat would not open. Obviously, this should not happen... So what did I do wrong? That cam cleat is not new, but works properly. I am wondering if the teeth maybe need to be polished. I would think that applying any kind of lube would be a bad idea - right?

Ah yes, I have been there and like you have stepped on the sheet and fought it to get it uncleated. There is just a lot of load on those. Becomes dangerous if you are trying to head down in a crossing situation and can't get it released. If you can pull in as you release, you can stand a chance. But again, there is just a lot of load on it. Since you really need to lighten the load on the cleat to get it to release, you can first release the fine trim and then the coarse trim. Or you can try dropping the traveler first and then try the sheet.

So after experimenting with a Spinlock cleat(releases too easily and can slip), I bought one of these:
http://www.fisheries...h-trigger-cleat

I have heard that the SF J35's used them and I believe they are a favorite of the Etchells fleets. You mount it upside down and to release when it is honking, you just pull the sheet up against the trigger. Hold it there and you can gently let it out or dump it. I have never had an issue releasing the sheet in strong winds with it. In light air, it releases down like a normal cam cleat. Fairly spendy(what isn't), but it has been well worth it. It has lasted several years and only shows some wear where the sheet rubs on the plastic base.

#12 Bump-n-Grind

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Posted 03 August 2014 - 06:31 AM

couldn't tell if you had a gross and fine trim on that arrangement, but if it's load lock, easing the fine trim a bit might release it.

i've never had that happen though... more likely to have the bearings on the trav car bind up



#13 Great White

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Posted 03 August 2014 - 06:36 AM

couldn't tell if you had a gross and fine trim on that arrangement, but if it's load lock, easing the fine trim a bit might release it.
i've never had that happen though... more likely to have the bearings on the trav car bind up

I watched the video again, and the fine trim is already let out as far as it will go.

#14 ~HHN92~

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Posted 03 August 2014 - 02:51 PM

Definitely need something done there, the breeze did not look that high, so it should not have been that hard to release. GW's cleat looks like a great answer, might have to check that one out.

 

Now the other solution is to get a main trimer so you can concentrate on driving. I've done both driving and trimming but on a 35 but having a trimmer that learns to work with you is priceless. I had one guy who went home with bruises on his upper arm from 'asking' him to travel down in big puffy breeze and a armful of tiller to handle.



#15 Bump-n-Grind

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Posted 03 August 2014 - 08:06 PM

+100 on getting a main trimmer



#16 DrewR

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Posted 03 August 2014 - 08:28 PM

Definitely need something done there, the breeze did not look that high, so it should not have been that hard to release. GW's cleat looks like a great answer, might have to check that one out.

 

Now the other solution is to get a main trimer so you can concentrate on driving. I've done both driving and trimming but on a 35 but having a trimmer that learns to work with you is priceless. I had one guy who went home with bruises on his upper arm from 'asking' him to travel down in big puffy breeze and a armful of tiller to handle.

 

+1. I finally have a mainsheet trimmer who I can rely on 100%. "helm's loading up" almost instantly brings a slight ease. We are getting really in sync. BIG difference in my sailing not worrying about the main. 

 

Also, when I replaced the mainsheets this winter, I made the fine tune line longer. It's my 'emergency release' when I'm sailing shorthanded or alone. It adds to the spagetti in the cockpit but worth it in control. I'm a pain in the ass about keeping the fine tune the right length and set it on the tacks just so I have an 'out' if I can't release the gross under load if I don't have my regular mainsheet trimmer on the boat.



#17 jc172528

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Posted 03 August 2014 - 08:36 PM

couldn't tell if you had a gross and fine trim on that arrangement, but if it's load lock, easing the fine trim a bit might release it.

i've never had that happen though... more likely to have the bearings on the trav car bind up

 

Were those Harken mid-range blocks(?), if so lose them.

 

Get a decent set-up, best I've found is Antal.



#18 Great White

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Posted 03 August 2014 - 09:16 PM


couldn't tell if you had a gross and fine trim on that arrangement, but if it's load lock, easing the fine trim a bit might release it.
i've never had that happen though... more likely to have the bearings on the trav car bind up

 
Were those Harken mid-range blocks(?), if so lose them.
 
Get a decent set-up, best I've found is Antal.


Nice setup, but this is what my J35 coarse/double ended fine tune mainsheet looks like. Yes, the fine tune blocks are smallish. Have never had a failure. The coarse tune blocks and traveler are big boat series:
DSCN1596.JPG
I like the double ended fine tune style. When I replace the fine tune sheet, I am going to splice it into a continuous loop. With plenty of line now, I currently have the ends tied together. It can be trimmed without coming down off the rail.

#19 Tyson0317

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Posted 04 August 2014 - 07:10 PM

Glad to see that I started another discussion ;-) 

 

Thank you guys a ton for the help!

 

To answer questions:

- Uncleating is downwards.

- Sheet quality is good. It is a very tick line, I would say somewhere in the 14mm range. It is not brand new, but is in great 'broken-in' shape where it is nice on the hands. 

- Close-up pics posted below.

- Yes we were under load.

- I dont remember if I had the fine trimmers let out on both sides, but the problem that I run into with these is that the upper block of the fine tune can only go so high. I can release them and the block just gets sucked up to the boom and can go no farther. Especially with vang on where the boom is pulled down.

 

 

Drew and Bum if you want to come crew on my boat, or know a good main trimmer that does, please feel free to put us in touch. In the meantime, I need help with getting my main sheet to unlock under load.

 

GW, as always, your comments are worth their weight in gold. Do you by chance own Fisheries stock? ;-) I clicked the link - what is the $60 plate? Do I need it? The cleat for $120, seems boat-reasonable. However the plate looks like something outrageously overpriced. Is this the thing to do?

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#20 Great White

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Posted 04 August 2014 - 08:08 PM

GW, as always, your comments are worth their weight in gold. Do you by chance own Fisheries stock? ;-) I clicked the link - what is the $60 plate? Do I need it? The cleat for $120, seems boat-reasonable. However the plate looks like something outrageously overpriced. Is this the thing to do?

No, I don't own stock at Fisheries, but I have made enough purchases there to own a corner of the store and I do get a great discount with the account I am on.
According to the specs I found, the Nash cleat(marketed by Harken) has a fastener spacing of 2". Your existing cleat looks like the offshore cleat with a fastener spacing of 2-1/16". Looks like I mounted the Nash cleat directly to the cam cleat bracket by opening the hole up a little or bending the mounting bracket a little and without the spacer plate. The adapter plate has a fastener spacing of 2-5/8". Measure what you have first to get an idea of what will work. If it is the right size, reuse the fairlead from the old cam cleat, or buy a new one from http://www.fisheriessupply.com/.

Try keeping some tension in your fine tune at all times with the block about 1/2 way between the boom and the deck. That way you can let it out or sheet it in when you need to. From the video, the fine tune is let all the way out and the coarse trim is tight. It appears to me too that your vang looks kind of loose. This can increase your sheet tension.

We have a similar yet unrelated issue with cam cleats on my boat. Often the spinnaker pole will get trimmed back without someone baby sitting the foreguy. When it is finally noticed that the foreguy is quite tight, lots of jerking and kicking goes on trying to uncleat the line until someone lets the pole forward an inch or so and relieves the pressure a little. It is always something!

#21 port tack

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Posted 04 August 2014 - 08:25 PM

I don't sail a J35 a lot but, shouldn't you have a main trimmer racing fully crewed in what appears to be some breeze?  I could be wrong.



#22 Bulbhunter

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Posted 04 August 2014 - 08:52 PM

LOL - ahh yes the old cam cleat under heavy load. Easy fix head up ie point into the breeze and unload the main then you can release it. The issue being you need to pull the sheet, over come the load on it to release it from the old style cam cleats. Any fordeck man with experience on a bouy racer that does the occasional big wind ocean race will tell you the joys of swinging their entire body weight on a halyard cleated to the mast as the back of the bus screams to blow the halyard... Seems only this time the back of the bus gets to experience a loaded cam cleat for a change.

 

I switched my smaller boat main sheet to one of these. Works great and needs less attention and force to release or lock. Granted my U20 has lower loads too.

Spinlock

http://images.search...part=ironsource



#23 HHN92

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Posted 05 August 2014 - 03:12 AM

Fine tune blocks have never been an issue. Your set-up looks like ours, and your sheet looks good. Careful on the vang sheeting though, if the boom is old/not reinforced she'll only take so much. Ours is reinforced now, with a sleeve where she was spliced back together. ;) 



#24 Schnick

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Posted 05 August 2014 - 07:51 PM

Mine releases upwards, which is a bit easier to do by hand when loaded.  You should be able to just flip the cleat on most Harken fittings.

 

However, I've always found on anything about 24' and up that a good kick with your feet is probably the only way to release mainsheet after about 10 knots of wind.  It's just a technique thing.  And it's much easier to manage if you are not also steering?



#25 Tyson0317

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Posted 25 August 2014 - 10:03 PM

I ordered the system that GW recommended (linked above) without the converter plate. It took like 3 weeks to arrive and I installed it yesterday. Fit without modification! Nice gizmo and an interesting solution to the problem. Mine is mounted upside down, so I have to pull the line up, which hits a lever and opens the jaws. We manually loaded the boom quite a bit to test it's function. The good: I can always release the sheet without having to stomp on it. The bad: Pulling up to open the jaws only releases the heavy load, then the gizmo stops working because the up-force on the lever equals the force on the cleat. I then need to jerk down as with a regular cleat to get the rope completely out. Ideally, it would be cool to just have the sheet release work in one motion, whereas now you yank up to release heavy load and after that's done, you yank down to release the sheet. Wish they had it in different trims also to fit the look of my other Harken gear, but still I am happy about the purchase.



#26 Great White

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Posted 25 August 2014 - 10:22 PM

Use it for awhile and it will become second nature. I usually hold it against the trigger and let it out that way until it is either as far out as I want it or the pressure relieved enough to drop it out of the cleat. Mine is mounted upside down and then rotated as high as possible.






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