April 5, 2012 at 5:39 pm #1876
Hi, guys- I’m new to the forum (and a new O-30 owner as well), and while I’ve read as much as is out there on rig tuning for these boats, a couple questions remain. My boat came with a sliding track (two slides) for a forestay, and I have a very new UK Halsey tape drive #2 genoa, among various other headsails. The forestay is incredibly slack. With no backstay tension, you can grab the forestay and it will “flop” 3 feet in all directions. The mast is vertical. I can’t see any prebend, and there is virtually no rake. I’ve sailed the boat twice now (as originally set up) and you can easily bottom out the backstay, which is rigged incorrectly, but that’s another issue I can sort out on my own. Anyway- tensioning the backstay creates plenty of mast rake (and bend), then I get quite a bit of weather helm as a result of the entire sailplan moving aft. I’m currently a J24 sailor, and the tuning guides (which there are several) are very detailed with respect to all sorts of tweaks and mods, but I can’t find much in the way of specific info on how much tension (with or without backstay) you should have on the forestay. Any help would be most appreciated!
RayApril 5, 2012 at 5:58 pm #2664
Congrats! Which boat did you get?
I am unsure what you mean by two tracks for the forestay. How much adjustment do you have left in the turnbuckle? If it is max’d, then you MIGHT need to inspect the frame under the mast step.
On Old School, there is probably less than one foot of “flop” with no backstay on at the dock.April 5, 2012 at 5:59 pm #2665
I’m confused. You have a sliding track that your forestay is attached to? Send a picture, I have to see this. I’ve never seen one, much less on an Olson.
From memory, the forestay length is in the 38′ range.
Here is a link to specs: http://sailboatdata.com/viewrecord.asp?class_id=944
You should not have a track. It should be a tack, just like the J/24. Unlike the J/24 (my previous boat), the Olson does not like prebend. Prebend makes for a softer forestay. Rake is used to balance the helm, not prebend. The Ullman/Olson tune guide gives a spec for backstay length. There is a forum topic in general topics about where the step should be. 24 & 3/4 from the forward bulkhead rings a bell, but check it out.
Where are you?April 5, 2012 at 6:12 pm #2666
Old School made a point also..a weak point in the boat is the frame under the mast step. It most likely is failing, although it probably by itself is not making that much slop in the forestay unless the step is in on the bottom of the sump!
I posted a group of pictures on my last fall replacement of my frame. Look for that as well for future reference.
DO POST a picture of your setup.April 5, 2012 at 6:35 pm #2668
I’ll have to take photos (I’m at work currently), but the mast-step was recently re-done, and it has jockstraps installed. I am confident that the boat is solid (no springy anything down below). The boat has had good finishes in the local phrf fleet, so I’m not inclined to change much. There is a turnbuckle at the base of the forestay that has a lot of adjustment (I’d estimate that I can effectively shorten it by at least 5 or 6 inches). The track attached is a double-sliding track, made of plastic (uv stable, I hope!), but it can accomodate two headsails- raise a #3, while the #2 is flying, then lower the #2 (which would have been a godsend on our J24 when the wind kicked up around here)- we’re in Charleston, SC… for now. I coulda sworn I read (and saw drawings) suggesting a little prebend is good, but 1-2 deg of mast rake is also all you need. I’ll be goofing around on the harbor this weekend and will experiment with a few things. I’ll also post some photos soon. Thank you for the tips so far!
RayApril 5, 2012 at 6:38 pm #2670
Oh, forgot to mention- this boat was “Wrinkles” (#202). We’re redocumenting her from Tucson, Az and of course, “Jojo” is from Tucson (so are we).April 5, 2012 at 6:53 pm #2671
LOL…NOW I know what you are talking about!!!! LOL.
That is a Tuff Luff or Harken Luff Track. No pics needed. It was all about terminology.
Here is a link to the Ullman Tuning. You set the forestay turnbuckle to make the backstay/rake the right distance. http://www.olson30.org/the-boat/tips-and-tweaks/ullman
To start with: Shorten the forestay so the mast is straight up and you have maybe 6-8″ of deflection. Start there! Then measure the main halyard to the corner of stern/deck per Ullman guide. Adjust forestay to get the correct length and go sailing. I think you know how to fix helm from there. Prebend will be an inch or less. Shroud tensions are usually tight, no need to adjust them like the J/24 for wind conditions. The diagonal is only medium tight. Double or single spreader?
Funny about the twin track! Call it a luff groove.April 5, 2012 at 6:54 pm #2672
The Track you refer to is a head foil prob. a “Tuff luff”. First thing is to get that sag out of your head-stay. The rig should be set up fairly tight. Is it a single or double spreader rig? Rod or wire?April 5, 2012 at 7:00 pm #2673
That sounds familiar (“Tuff luff”), and it is a double-spreader rig. I believe the intermediates are cable, but the lowers and uppers are rod. Now if I determine that the mast is perpendicular to the deck (which by eyeball, it sure looks like it is, and it is straight as an arrow), I should tension the forestay fairly tight? That would be a cinch..
RayApril 5, 2012 at 7:00 pm #2674
hehehe…welcome to big boats with headstay foils!
1) I beg to differ with Bruce…the rig does like to be adjusted. Perhaps not as much as the 24, but I play with my headstay and lowers tension pretty regularly.
2) Prebend is for suckers. A touch of inversion at the dock is what most mains I have seen are asking for.
Of course, each headstay and boat are different, but my turnbuckle is pretty far out for light, and about half way tight for heavier conditionsApril 5, 2012 at 7:12 pm #2675
Scot..adjusting on the Olson is to tweak and so simple in comparison to the J/24. Ray is used to adjusting for EVERY race for the current condition. A J/24 won’t sail at all with the wrong upper/lower shroud tune. You would be left in the dust if you ‘tweaked’ like an Olson. The Olson tweaks are for balancing helm…much easier to detect and fine tune. I do that as well, Scot…some day we will meet on the course! LOL.
Ray..prebend on the Olson will ruin forestay tension when you put on the backstay. Just the opposite of what you want, of course. You want a straight up stick as the general rule. Think of the J/24 heavy air shroud tension guide. It makes a stiff mast and more upright so that the backstay pulls the mast back, not just the top of the mast aft and let the middle go forward. Welcome to the masthead rig as well!April 5, 2012 at 7:18 pm #2676
forgot to add: all of this is to have a straigher forestay and helm balance when the wind pipes up! You can adjust your backstay ‘slop’ at full ‘off’ to leave the forestay with a 6″ deflection and be on the right page for light stuff and downwind running. The backstay tension is as big a deal on these boats as the shroud tension is on the J/24.April 5, 2012 at 8:25 pm #2680
Thanks, you guys- that’s tons of help! I’ll do this stuff this weekend, and see how she sails–just wish there were another O-30 around to compare…April 7, 2012 at 10:24 pm #2685
Okay- did a few things on the boat today, but mostly took a few photos. Here are two- one of the forestay, and another of the backstay. There are two 6″ long plates that join the toggle to the bow plate, and I took them off, then attached the stay directly to the bow plate (I’m hoping that’s what it’s called?). When you remove those plates, you effectively shorten the forestay by 6 inches, then I went back to attach the backstay, and couldn’t the way it is currently configured (which I’m pretty certain is not correct) and that brings me to the second photo. I can’t for the life of me figure out why someone would rig a backstay like this. There is a plate on the top-center of the transom that all of the tensioning is transmitted to. There is no tension on the backstay chainplates unless you have the backstay completely loose. You can see in the photo (I’ve got the backstay trimmed maybe 20% and the stays are loose and flopping around. It seems to me that you could just remove them, although I think I’d prefer trimming the backstay to both outboard chainplates rather than just the one in the center. Does it matter? Also- I think you can tell from the forestay photo- I’ve almost bottomed-out the turnbuckle. It was almost all the way backed out (about 4 inches of travel to where it is now).
RayApril 8, 2012 at 12:38 am #2687
Wow..that forestay plate is weird! I’ll take a picture of my forestay turnbuckle tomorrow and send it to you. It has an additional toggle, but it is not anywhere near the length of those plates! Plan on dumping them and adding a toggle.
The backstay is screwy. Those two wires going up from your two tacks can go. You need a block at the top (wire block for strength!) and figure out a way to run a line from one of the stern plates up to the block and attach to the cascade you have. The cascade is anchored on the other tack. The good news is it look like you have lots of the right kind of blocks.
There is a forum topic on backstays…look for it. There were a couple of opinions on how to rig.April 8, 2012 at 10:20 am #2688
Thanks, Bruce- I remember reading that topic on backstays, and I’ve copied out the two diagrams. I’m going to ask the sailmaker (local UK Halsey guy)- I think he may have had something to do with that forestay. I’m sure he’ll sell me all the hardware I could possibly need!
RayApril 8, 2012 at 1:25 pm #2689
Have you measured your forestay length? It should be just over 37 feet. An old survey of Olson 30’s from the 1980’s had the average forestay length of 37 feet 2.5 inches.
BillApril 8, 2012 at 6:19 pm #2690
Here are two pictures of my forestay turnbuckle equipment. Hope this solves your mystery!April 8, 2012 at 11:11 pm #2691
Hmm- I’d bet many boats have interesting hardware accomplishing similar things. I’m seeing that in the J24 fleet on the east coast. Bill, I have not yet measured my forestay length, but will do that soon, if for no other reason, to establish a benchmark to get close to good mast tuning- and I think I’m very close already. I took a few photos of the backstay today, and here is what I came up with after a few adjustments of various hardware. I am quickly growing a great collection of shackels, cleavis pins and ring-dings as a result, but I will get that forestay length, pin-to-pin soon. Here is a shot of the backstay after I removed the old cable strops and attached the trimming blocks to the tangs on the transom.April 9, 2012 at 1:07 am #2692
YOu have the same toolbox as me. LOL.
It is looking better! I still recommend one tang be for the bitter end and the other for the cascade. It helps center the backstay. Only requires a block at the backstay rod. (assuming you still have a rod backstay..getting rid of that should be on your ‘to do’ list)April 9, 2012 at 9:48 am #2693
Ya know, I do have a rod backstay, as well as a rod forestay… thought that strange (and nervous, since I have no idea how old they are). I laid awake much of last night wondering how much replacing all the rod rigging is going to be- I’m assuming it’s all original, but I can find out quickly enough. The way the backstay is now, it’s pretty well centered (at least by eyeball)- I had my wife pull it all the way on, then slowly release it and it seemed to track straight back and up (my view sighting from behind the mast). The problem I quickly discovered with having the cascade over to one side is where to attach it all. That would be something like 3 different blocks (one is the triple) going to just one point. The plates on either side of the transom are pointed and only have one hole. The larger plate in the center has something like 5… Here’s a shot of the transom prior to my moving things around.April 9, 2012 at 11:10 am #2694
Stay with rod for all but the backstay. The intermediates are wire.
Someone went to a lot of work to add that center attachment point. What a waste..and how are you going to control the outboard?
My boat has one added thru deck eye for the triple block and it is near one tab on the deck. The rest attaches to the original tabs. The two singles can attach to the tabs as well..just add clevis’s. Much cleaner and you will have an opening to the outboard.April 9, 2012 at 5:37 pm #2695
On Fast Company I removed all the cascade and plates from the boat. To much windage. Replaced the wire w/ 1/4″ Amsteel. I have a single block fixed to this about 6′ off the deck. From there it splits, through the deck on each side to cheek blocks low on the inside of the transom, back up to stand up blocks on inside of the transom, then forward with 3×1 to 6×1 and the control lines exit just aft of the traveler on each side. It is about 48×1 purchase. If there is interest I’ll take some photo’sApril 9, 2012 at 6:51 pm #2696
Jim – I wouldn’t mind seeing the pictures if you take them. I need to re-rig my backstay when the mast goes up in a couple of weeks. Thanks
Ray – I have a similar forestay setup. The boat was rigged for a furler at one point in its life and I suspect that the bars were put in when it was taken out instead of replacing the shorter stay. Yours might be there for the same reason.April 9, 2012 at 7:55 pm #2698
Same here, Jim- I’d love to see photos.April 10, 2012 at 10:35 pm #2702
I just found out today that the standing rigging is 18-20 years old. It was inspected by a guy at Charleston Yachting (Randy Drafts) about 2 yrs ago, and he said it looks fine. Although, I have no idea how he inspected it or what that entails. I always thought standing rigging should be replaced at least every 15 yrs or so, right?April 10, 2012 at 11:40 pm #2703
It would worry me. The prob. w/ rod is there is no warning before it lets go. Seems most of the problems are found up top where the fittings exit the mast.April 11, 2012 at 12:02 am #2704
That’s kinda what I suspected (and have been reading). I’ll contact the guy at Charleston Yachting and see how confident he was in that assessment and if he checked up high at the mast ends.. then maybe put in an order for new cable rigging!
Incidentally, where do you guys go to buy stuff like that? It’s not like there’s a huge demand for O-30 one-design parts out there (I’ve already checked). Do you just drop the mast, remove everything and take it to your local rigger and say, “please duplicate these”?
RayApril 11, 2012 at 12:11 am #2705
Go rod again! Zero stretch.April 11, 2012 at 12:14 am #2706
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