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A friend has a Furlex on his Bristol 29.9. It is very hard to unfurl and furl. The drum and upper swivel seem fine. It's worse when the halyard is tightened. The luff of the headsail seems a little long for the length of the headstay - that is, there's not much room between the swivel and the mast. Any ideas?

Thanks.

B.C.

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1 hour ago, ctutmark said:

Has he tried varying backstay tension (assuming there's an adjustable backstay)? 

That was often the issue with ours.  Sagging headstay makes rollers uncooperative. 

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two weekends ago,  my furlex on my 88 moody started binding up top at the halyard swivel.  it furled fine.  but unfurling , the swivel would rotate about half turn before unfurling a couple revs and then bind again.  I tried easing the haylard,  try snugging,  still bound up. 

pulled the genoa down and lubed up the swivel then sent it back up...  Worked fine this past weekend.

have you lubed upper and lower bearings recently.  Worth a shot, its cheap and easy.  Might set you back a beer and an hour.

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Furlex furlers have a continuous sleeve so if anything got in it or there is a strand loose as above it no go.  I think they use sealed roller bearings too but don't quote me on that.  The halyard restrainer is important to eliminate wrap, they have a min angle in the instructions. Would try the tips above take the sail off and see how it works.  Any bumps on swivel or drum are a indicator of bad bearings.

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On 9/27/2021 at 9:26 PM, ctutmark said:

Has he tried varying backstay tension (assuming there's an adjustable backstay)? 

Don't know.

On 9/27/2021 at 9:28 PM, mgs said:

Is this a new furler or is it a new issue or is the sail new?

hows the headstay/backstay tension?

Ctutmark beat me to it

Old furler.

On 9/27/2021 at 9:31 PM, Ishmael said:

Is the halyard wrapping around the forestay at some point in the furl? Is the top shackle getting too friendly with the sheave?

Don't know - can't see from deck.

On 9/27/2021 at 9:34 PM, See Level said:

Take the sail down, then see how it rotates, then using downline on the upper swivel, send it up and see where it gets sticky 

Top swivel is fine - moves very freely.

On 9/27/2021 at 10:57 PM, PaulK said:

That was often the issue with ours.  Sagging headstay makes rollers uncooperative. 

OK

On 9/28/2021 at 12:07 PM, Marcjsmith said:

two weekends ago,  my furlex on my 88 moody started binding up top at the halyard swivel.  it furled fine.  but unfurling , the swivel would rotate about half turn before unfurling a couple revs and then bind again.  I tried easing the haylard,  try snugging,  still bound up. 

pulled the genoa down and lubed up the swivel then sent it back up...  Worked fine this past weekend.

have you lubed upper and lower bearings recently.  Worth a shot, its cheap and easy.  Might set you back a beer and an hour.

I suggested opening up lower swivel and seeing if it's full of gunk.

On 9/28/2021 at 12:51 PM, jsaronson said:

Spin halyard getting caught at the top of the jib?  

Don't think so.

On 9/28/2021 at 7:23 PM, basketcase said:

check that a strand of the forestay has not snapped and is jamming up onside the extrusion..... Ive seen that before.

I'll suggest this.

21 hours ago, SASSAFRASS said:

Furlex furlers have a continuous sleeve so if anything got in it or there is a strand loose as above it no go.  I think they use sealed roller bearings too but don't quote me on that.  The halyard restrainer is important to eliminate wrap, they have a min angle in the instructions. Would try the tips above take the sail off and see how it works.  Any bumps on swivel or drum are a indicator of bad bearings.

Hmmm.

When I furled it the other day, I used the winch. There was a lot of variance in the resistance. I think there may be something up with the lower drum, gunk and shit, or perhaps a loose strand. I'll pass these suggestions on to my friend. Thanks to all.

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28 minutes ago, Bull City said:

 

Don't know.

Old furler.

Don't know - can't see from deck.

Top swivel is fine - moves very freely.

OK

I suggested opening up lower swivel and seeing if it's full of gunk.

Don't think so.

I'll suggest this.

Hmmm.

When I furled it the other day, I used the winch. There was a lot of variance in the resistance. I think there may be something up with the lower drum, gunk and shit, or perhaps a loose strand. I'll pass these suggestions on to my friend. Thanks to all.

It's not just a matter of the line getting overlaps due to not enough tension on it when the sail unfurls, I assume. Question mark optional.

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If its an old furler, you can work with a dangerous assumption that it worked properly at one point so it isn't an installation issue. Furlex uses grease in their bearings and they can dry out sometimes and get pretty nasty.

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18 hours ago, Ishmael said:

It's not just a matter of the line getting overlaps due to not enough tension on it when the sail unfurls, I assume. Question mark optional.

No, we checked that, but agree it can be a problem.

6 hours ago, mgs said:

If its an old furler, you can work with a dangerous assumption that it worked properly at one point so it isn't an installation issue. Furlex uses grease in their bearings and they can dry out sometimes and get pretty nasty.

I suggested he look at this.

16 hours ago, basketcase said:

totally sounds like a broken strand to me.......

This was on the list I sent to him yesterday. 

BTW, he appreciated the advice from everyone.

I should note that he is not a very fastidious sailor. As an example, he has had the boat for 10 years, but had never untied the bowlines on his jib sheets. When I untied them, we manually unrolled the sail, and the luff tape was not in the groove on the foil. He was a little surprised, I was astonished. We re-hoisted the jib (with tape in the groove), and re-wound the furling line.

The operation improved but was still problematic as described in my initial post.

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