Posted By RichC on August 23, 2014
The convenient way to replace running rigging on sailboats are to purchase lines pre-made for a particular boat at places like SailboatOwners.com. Of course that would be the “easy” way, but it does discourage upgrading shackles and thimbles or whipping and splicing your own lines. Since our Encore is strictly a cruising sailboat, the premium lines, in my opinion, would be overkill, besides just buying raw rope can save a few bucks too. Upgrading to a better grade of shackle and thimble on the other hand seems justifiable (a few bucks more for shackles vs. many more dollars for super low stretch lines). I previously decided to go with Samson’s XLS Yacht Braid for its known “handling” characteristics and reputation as a strong, low stretch rope halyard. In fact, I recall that one of my favorite non-biased publications charted (below) it attractive when looking at “stretch vs. cost” too – Practical Sailor.
Currently I have a couple simple Wichard captive pin bow shackles attaching the halyard to the sails, but am planning to upgrade my newly repaired/re-stitched mailsail’s headboard to a Wichard key pin shackle with a bar (see PDF or Full 2014 catalog). Hopefully the second-hand $18 #81434 shackle I bought on eBay will fit the headboard and 7/16” lines once I splice in the nylon thimble?