First I installed the jib control car set up with the 3:1 block system. This was a easy upgrade that will allow me to control the forward and aft position of the jib car; used to set tension on the clew of the jib and help shape the sail by thereby putting tension the leach (back of the sail) it either holds or spills wind from the top etc.. Not complicated in practice, but hard to explain. A simplistic view is you move it forward when in light air/downwind - and pull it back when going upwind (purist take note, I know what it's for, this is for my landlubber readers).
Then the deck plan/ line routing change (the other 6 hours of the day)
The overview - shift one deck organizer (3 line) from the stack of 2 I have on the port side over to the starboard side and use it to lead the Boom Vang, OutHaul, and Cunningham back to the helm station.
This entails fabricating new teak blocks to both raise the lines off the deck and position the organizer so that it is level, not to the deck, but to the line itself.
That also means installing a new 3 position line clutch at the helm, ditto on a teak block to make it level.
On the port side I originally didn't bother with the teak blocks, so really this meant making four blocks, all of them individually shaped and angled to ensure the best possible fair lead of the lines.
After a lot of careful measuring - which means I took a piece of paper and held it to the coaming and then drew a line marking horizontal and level - I came up with a angle of 12 degrees. There is a reason I call my woodworking items "made by I".
Simple fact - over a four foot distance the human eye can detect deviations of as little as 1/16 of an inch from true. I've got a book case that proves it.
I've also got a jig I made a couple years ago to cut tapered table legs for a walnut end table set I made. The jig, simply stated holds one end secure and has a sliding clamp for the other end that lets you adjust the line of cut by as much as 6 inches. The whole jig then slides on the groove of my three hundred pound cast iron topped table saw. Extremely accurate, smooth cuts result.
I didn't use that.
I love my hand tools. I cranked out my vise, my hand saw, smoothing plane and block plane.
To make a long story somewhat less boring, I then made the blocks again using actual measurements and my precision powered tools. Then final shaped them with the planes.This is what the line clutch looks like installed and "loaded"
For what it's worth - the line clutch is level to the horizon (minus the bounce of the boat etc.. It's actually level, really it is.
This is an overhead view of the starboard side. You can see the organizer forward directing the lines back aft. The Cunningham line on the inside is interfered with by the end car of the jib controls. All boats are compromises. In this case the choice was maximum jib car movement or a bit of minor interference on the least loaded line. I couldn't move the organizer outboard (to the right for the land folks) because I had to be able to fasten it below.
A sheepshank knot is the simplest and lowest profile (size) knot to attach two same sized lines together. I got lazy and decided not to messenger a new line through the boom and back. The outhaul line only needs 6-10 inches of play so this is fine for now.
Just for those land lubber types (and maybe a new sailor or two) that is wondering what all these things are for - and why I want them at the helm station (where I sit) here's a simple explanation:
The main halyard bring the sail up and down - and is the primary way of tensioning the luff (front) of the main. It's not very efficient at that because the rope is some 60 feet line and it stretches proportional to it's length, it also has a lot of force on it so it's not convenient to adjust. For the reason a guy named Cunningham invented a system where a simple cringle (metal grommet in the sail) about 2 feet up from the bottom, with a rope through it that you can pull DOWN on will allow you to tension the luff simply, faster - and with less effort. You make it tighter going up wind - and looser going downwind (so it catches more air). Same deal for light or heavy air (weak wind, strong wind).
The outhaul is used to pull the clew (back bottom) of the main sail back to tighten the foot (and therefore 'bag' or curve of the sail - or to loosen it and create more bag; mostly in the bottom third of the sail. Again, upwind (tight), downwind (loose); and same deal on light and heavy air. In light air you want a curved "baggy" sail to provide power over speed. It's far better to be moving slow than to not be moving at all :)
The vang pulls the boom downward independent of the main sheet - sometimes you want the boom held down, but the main sheet loose because you need the boom angled way off to the side (for instance going downwind with the wind behind you. You want the boom held down so it's not bouncing all over the place in rolling waves (bouncing disturbs sail shape and spills air). Pull on the vang, and presto chango you are speeding along and not clanging and banging.
The port side organizers and clutches hold the port jib control car and the main halyard and the first reef line - so all lines to raise and lower the main are in one spot. I don't have a single line reef system; the reefing line pulls the back of the sail down and secures it to the boom; for the luff to be held down when reefed I need either to go forward and put the grommet on a hook at the mast, or a separate line run back from that grommet (much like the Cunningham, but beefier) to do the same thing - pull down and hold down the luff, when reefed one does not want a baggy sail for any reason.
I choose the separate line.
Generally when it's time to reef (make smaller, shorten etc..) a main sail it's not time to be farting around on the front of the boat.
Here's a sample clutch line block I cut on the first go around, this is before planing, smoothing and final shaping. I didn't think to take a picture prior to install - the block is actually shaped in 3 dimensions (fore, aft, and side to side).
I now return you to your regular broadcast channel.
Or, go sailing.