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I agree with your statement that rigging wire does not usually fail without there being some fairly obvious problem with it. I have been on boats with rigging failures, have rerigged a lot of boats, replaced broken spars and so far none of these failures were caused by the wire wire parting, it has always been the connections. The swages are the most common failure I have seen but one other area of concern that is sometimes missed are the clevis pins which can look fine until you remove them and find cracks that are usually where they bear on the tang or chainplate.
I’m a lurker here and love watching this forum for the very useful nuggets of information that leak out on a daily basis from the owners so don’t usually contribute but buried down in the original question on this topic was a statement: "BTW, one owner noted that he was told by Gaetan that he had never seen an Amel with a failed rig. “
I can’t say whether or not this is actually true or not, but on a passage from Bermuda to Antiqua this last November, there was an Amel (a Kirk I believe) that lost it’s rig in a series of squalls that two other Amel’s (Super Maramus - including the one I was crewimg on) went through within radio distance of each other without drama. The other Amel saw them and went over to lend some fuel so that they could make landfall as they were about 400 nautical miles from shore when it happened and weren’t sure they had enough to motor in. I have left the names of the boats out in order to protect the privacy of the owners. Also, there is a youtube episode of S/V Delos (another SM) on youtube where they re rigged her (they had the fittings professionally done in Thailand but did the installation themselves) and had cut one of the fittings apart just as Eric mentioned with his sage advice - they found that it wasn’t far away from failing after being “inspected” bay a professional rigger. I’d listen to Eric on this one…. (Back to lurking until I get my SM hopefully this fall).
Future SM Owner
On Jan 2, 2018, 10:44 PM -0500, 'sailormon' kimberlite@...
Rigging wire does not usually fail. The rigging usually fails at the fittings. Beside magna fluxing or x raying
You do not know what is going on inside the fitting.
Gaetan’s head rigger showed me a swage eye stud that he cut open with a band saw. It was on its last legs- the attached wire looked fine. He showed me a new swage that he had cut open from his rotary swaging machines. You could hardly see the strands of wire as the swage was so tight.
Kimberlite is in the open ocean 85 percent of the time, if not sitting in a hot marina with salt water down in the swages. After 15 years , it was time for me to replace the rigging. I had previously mentioned that I replaced 3 pieces of wire and fittings at a very reputable St Maarten rigger due to the impending failure of the wire two fitting and one fitting was cracked. That was 2 years ago.
However we have put a lot of miles on Kimberlite.
Rigging is like the line in dirty harry “how lucky do you feel?”
If you are just coastal cruising then I guess if the rig comes down and doesn’t kill anyone you will be fine.
However using an Amel for what it was built for , I would change the rig.
Kimberlite Amel Super Maramu #376
Aletes SM#240 1999 is also facing the re-rigging decision. Various people and sources on internet search suggest wire rigging service life of 16, 12, or even 6 years. Most recommendations are by those with vested interest in replacements, ie. riggers and wire manufacturers. I have seen a Coast Guard report relating to failures on commercial catamarans in Hawaii that talk about 10 years. Finally I checked with our insurance agent. I figure if any entity has skin in the game (other than the boat owner/occupants) it would be the insurance industry. Our agent was quick to say that the insurance carriers are OK with standing rigging up to 20 years. Thereafter they will require detailed rigging inspections (not just looking up from the deck) every 2 to 5 years (depending on the insurer). This seems like a reasonable and reasoned way to address the aging rigging question and for me was comforting relative to the somewhat arbitrary nature of the shorter lifespan recommendations.
So. Here we are with an 18 year old boat that in Amel terms I would consider lightly used (probably less than 12 months total in the open ocean). We are looking at a $13K investment with Gaetan at Caraibe Marine, possibly later this month. This is not quite a case of “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it” but it does feel like, if a thorough inspection does not identify any problems, why replace a perfectly good rig, especially one this robust.
Anyway, we are leaning towards doing it. There seems to be no way to evaluate investing $13K in the equation of risk v. peace of mind.
Aletes SM#240 Falmouth, Antigua
I've been in the group a while but don't often access it. I' finishing up a circumnavigation and planning to replace the rigging on my 1995 Super Maramu. It looks great to me, but it is 22 years old. I have three quotes from different riggers in different countries. The costs vary greatly for both labor and parts, but especially labor. I have included a summary of the quotes below broken down by labor and parts. All quotes are for 316 stainless steel and includes all turnbuckles and upper eye pieces. My question to this forum is whether any of you have knowledge of Jason Romell in Trinidad. I've had good reports on Gaetan of Caraibe Marine in Martinique who is recommended by the local Amel office. Romell is recommended by Peake Yachts in Trinidad where my boat is on the hard. I include these details since it may help other owners thinking of re-rigging. BTW, one owner not ed that he was told by Gaetan that he had never seen an Amel with a failed rig. I provide the costs in Euros and US Dollars converted at a rate of 1.19 US dollars per Euro.
Trinidad - Jason Romell
Martinique - Caraibe Marine
Seattle - Northwest Rigging
Seattle Higher Than Trinidad By
Martinique Higher Than Trinidad By
NW Higher Than Trinidad By
I am trending toward the less expensive quote from Trinidad contingent on meeting Jason on Friday. But I'm very tempted to go for the more expensive quote from Martinique given the recommendation form Amel. Ken Powers had Aquarius rigged in Martinique last year and was quite happy.
Any comments appreciated. Happy New Year to all!