Guy Hilton has been busy over the winter preparing his Dufour 39cc in Swale Marina for summer cruising this year. Work has included an engine overhaul and fitment of a new boom to suit his in mast furling system. Guy wanted to upgrade the standard blocks fitted to Barton, so phoned Barton for advice on which blocks to fit for the kicking strap, mainsheet and furler line.
The original kicking strap was quite inefficient with just a 3:1 purchase. We have doubled the purchase by introducing just one extra block mounted on the boom to give 6:1 purchase. The kicker system uses a size 6 plain bearing block on the boom with two size 5 blocks in the cascade. The mainsheet system has been replaced with size 7 plain bearing fiddle blocks, the line is then run forward to a single plain bearing size 7 turning block to the rear of the kicking strap then to the mast base and back to the cockpit, the winch is then used to trim when loaded.
The advantage of the up and over system is to remove loose mainsheet from the aft seating area which can become entangled or un-jammed by unsuspecting crew. Guy has a young family so safety is always foremost on board. Guy has agreed to give us a long term report on how the new blocks perform, he regularly sails over 1,000nm each summer and this year he is planning a cruise up the East Coast and over to Holland, so a good test is assured.
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