{Stus-List} Split backstay tensioner setup

Rick Taillieu rtaillieu at eastlink.ca
Tue Sep 13 14:52:42 EDT 2011

Very good point Bill,


I leave enough tension on to stop the forestay from flopping around when the
boat is docked.

If we’re expecting a bad storm I crank it about ¾ on to ensure nothing is
flopping around in the high winds.



Rick Taillieu


'75 C&C 25

Shearwater Yacht Club

Halifax, NS.




From: cnc-list-bounces at cnc-list.com [mailto:cnc-list-bounces at cnc-list.com]
On Behalf Of Bill Bina
Sent: September-12-11 1:10 PM
To: cnc-list at cnc-list.com
Subject: Re: {Stus-List} Split backstay tensioner setup


You might want the backstay that loose going downwind when racing with the
chute up, but that is the only time. When you leave the boat between
sailing, the forestay should not be at all slack. Too loose causes excessive
wear on the rig and will cause premature failure. It can crack swaged
terminals, especially.  It does not "give the rig a rest". Overall, too
loose is more wearing on standing rigging than too tight. You want movement
restricted. With the chute up downwind, the adjuster will go up without any
help. The rest of the time, and especially when not in use, the adjuster
should be set so there is at least some (moderate) tension on the forestay.

Bill Bina

On 9/11/2011 9:33 PM, Mark G wrote: 

I'm resurrecting the thread about tuning the rig on a C&C 25.   I think I
have my boat set up to the specs below although the 4-5" of play in the
forestay is somewhat difficult to judge.

I installed a backstay tensioner on my C&C 25 over the weekend.  What I have
is basically setup 3 from:


I use the CS Johnson car with the 5 sheaves.  I opted for the larger size
(max 1/4 wire) because the smaller size (max 3/16 wire) looked somewhat
anemic.  I use a 4:1 boom vang as the tackle, anchored to a shackle in the
casting at one corner of the transom.  A 3/16 wire rope pendant runs from
the boom vang up over the sheave in the car and down to a shackle in the
corner casting at the other side of the transom.  Nothing radical.

When I pull on the free end of the tackle to tension the boom vang, even
with just two fingers, the car easily travels down as it should.  But when I
try to release it, I find it remains stuck in the tensioned position.  I
have to reach up with a boat hook to release it.  It breaks free easily, it
just needs a little nudge.

I'm thinking there may not be enough tension in the backstay with the
tensioner fully off, so there is not enough force upward to release it.

I believe the pendant I use for the backstay tensioner needs to be
shortened, because I run out of purchase in the vang before any real effort
is required to pull it it taught.

Any advice?  I've never used a backstay tensioner before so I have no feel
for it.

Rick - could I get you to put a tension gage on one of the legs of the
backstay with the tensioner fully off?





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