Re: Main sheet boom slider broken

Paul Stascavage

Good day fellow sailors/repairmen.

Just to follow up on this posting, although my block was cracking, it was not in really bad shape. Hence, I did what many of us do and put the task at the bottom of the todo list.

Well, time doing what it does best, things changed for the worse.  After inspecting the block recently, I had to bite the bullet and get the job done.  It was a pain to drill out the screws that I could not remove with an impact driver, but once everything was drilled out, the job wasn’t too bad.

In evaluating the cause for the failure, it seemed to me that the weak link in the chain was the size of the original screws and the minimal thickness of the aluminum track that the screws were threaded into.  Hence, when re-installing the new block (and the one aft that needed to be removed to slide out the failed one), rather than re-tapping for the same size screws in an offset position, I did something different. 

I had 1/4 inch aluminum backing plates fabricated (see photos).  These were drilled and tapped to accommodate 1/4-20 alan head screws (the blocks also had to be drilled to accommodate the larger screws).  We maneuvered these into place using string attached to the ends of the plates, and with some finesse and patience, we were able to line it all up and bolt everything together. 

This method should be much stronger than the original installation, and enabled me to keep the blocks in their original location.

Hope this may be of some use to those who have yet to deal with this issue.  BOAT - Broken Or About To.

All the best,

Paul Stascavage
SM #466 - s/v Rita Kathryn
Currently Exploring City Island, NY

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