Posts Tagged 'harken 2135'

ins & outs of ratchet blocks

here is another really cool video by Harken to visually demonstrate how their ratchet blocks work to reduce the load that your hands see for holding lines that are trimmed often (so your mainsheet on a Sunfish, and spinnakers or jibs & other lines on other sailboats).

they use a load cell (or load indicator) on the line going to his hand to show the load reduction that occurs with a ratchet block.  a key note: the load required to trim (or pull your sail in) is the same as without the ratchet system, but the load required to ease or hold the line is reduced (quite a bit) due to the ratchet block mechanism (a combination of the “stopped” sheave and the grooves that increase friction).

Sunfish sailors often use one of the following blocks for their mainsheet control:

I’ve traditionally used the 2135 (shown here on my mainsheet controls upgrade post), as it is usually cheaper, and the switch is usually easy enough to reach if I wanted to release the ratchet mechanism to allow the line to run freely.

Advertisements

Harken blocks: ratchet vs. ratchamatic

Harken has put together a nice video that explains the difference between a ratchet block and a ratchamatic block.

the main difference is that the ratchamatic blocks are load-sensing and have a “ratchet that instantly engages when a predetermined load is reached. When unloaded, the ratchet pawl seamlessly disengages to allow the sheet to run out instantly during mark roundings and jibes. The Ratchamatic allows lightly-loaded sheets to run freely in both directions for fingertip control” (source: Harken Q&A)

Sunfish sailors often use one of the following blocks for their mainsheet control:

I’ve traditionally used the 2135 (shown here on my mainsheet controls upgrade post), as it is usually cheaper, and the switch is usually easy enough to reach if I wanted to release the ratchet mechanism to allow the line to run freely. for a Sunfish sailor looking to race, the 2625 might be a better option as it will let the mainsheet out easier when your time spent changing tacks could make the difference in a race.

h/t: @harken

10% off orders at APS

APS has a quick promotion going on right now for Sunfish sailors – 10% off on orders over $100, from now until August 15, 2017.

Sunfish parts can be found here.  might be the perfect time to upgrade your Sunfish lines package, and maybe get a Harken ratchet block and the other various parts for your mainsheet block upgrade.

 

sunfish rigging knots

here is a quick refresher on how to tie the knots required for rigging your Sunfish.

Basic Rigging

the halyard connects to the upper boom with a clove hitch:

the halyard should be led through the deck fairlead and then tied off to the deck horn cleat using a cleat hitch:

if your mainsheet does not have a snap clip on the end of it, then you can tie the end of the mainsheet to the bridle at the back end of your Sunfish with the very useful bowline knot:

after passing the mainsheet through the (2) boom blocks on the lower boom, feed the mainsheet through your mainsheet ratchet block (or similar).  as a safety measure, you should then tie a stopper knot into the end of your mainsheet.  I like to use a figure 8 stopper knot:

as an alternative, you could also use an Ashley stopper knot (as recommended by Shoreline Sailboats):

all of these knots (and more) are detailed at Animated  Knots.

___________________________

if you don’t have a ratchet block for your mainsheet, I would highly recommend one.  I’ve been using a Harken 2135, and it is a very nice system for controlling your mainsheet.

Img0213_019 mainsheet block

for additional information on rigging your Sunfish, see my compilation of various Sunfish rigging guides.

mainsheet block stand-up spring

last summer, I upgraded from a swiveling fairlead and cleat to a ratcheting carbo block for my mainsheet.  the ratcheting carbo block (a Harken 2135) was/is a nice improvement – I like how the grooved edges of the sheave in the block grip the rope to ease the tension my hands/arms see from the sail pulling on the mainsheet.  I haven’t installed a cam cleat on the cockpit lip of my new Sunfish yet, though – the plastic trim on the cockpit lip is sort of in the way, so I haven’t decided what to do there yet.

I had originally bought a stand-up spring, but as I mentioned back in October:

it was ridiculously hard to compress the spring down and then to try to slowly feed the little split ring onto the pin holding the ratchet block in place

but, a few weeks ago I followed the advice of some posters from the Sunfish Forum, and used (2) zip-ties to slowly compress the stand-up spring (a Harken 071) so that I could install the ratchet block.  I also installed a spring cup (Harken HSB2) – which sits above the spring, and just below the base of the block. it’s about $2 for both the spring and spring cup, so a cheap upgrade.

for my sail on walled lake last week, I got to test out the ratchet block with the stand-up spring, and I must say – I am a big fan.  it works just fine, and will automatically rotate with the mainsheet when I change tacks.  there are a few times with really light wind where I’ll have to reach up and twist the block to the right direction, but overall it performed adequately.  I just wish I had installed the stand-up spring earlier now, as it keeps the block from flopping around and scratching up the surface of the deck.


Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 1,344 other followers

my2fish archives

my2fish stats

  • 505,199 hits
Advertisements