Here is a pic of my mainsheet system using Ronstan block’s.
I’m a past employee of Ronstan and these days, both a supplier too and customer of Ronstan for components for stainless wire balustrading.
So this boat other than some Allen micro flip flop blocks in the tunnel and the below deck furler, is a complete Ronstan fit out.
These mainsheet/ Orbit blocks have a unique attachment method that with spectra loops (which extra long loops can be either made or be separately purchased) allow ideally the mainsheet to run through them without any friction or need to hang the block through a saddle or thimble.
Having any type or size of ratchet on the Jib sheet, in my opinion, is absolutely essential for any size, shape or strength of crew. My main reason for having ratchets on the jib sheet is so i can ease the jib a bees wotsit in a lull, or when we need to grunt up the jib for a bit of choppy water… (they are also good for windy two sail reaches when i can’t see anything) Without the ratchet, its hard to control the amount you ease, inevitably you let too much out then re trim. There are others pros as well for ratchets, can’t see many cons apart from the extra ££. For what its worth, we use 40mm switchable ratchet blocks from harken, and we use a 6mm calibrated/marked sheet. Even with 6mm sheets, it does help light wind tacks if you can turn the ratchets off.
After racing last Sunday, we were thinking about the way that spinnaker sheave blocks have been evolving. In the Ovi Mk IX it was a bit agricultural – led across decks, outside tanks and around extra sheaves …. but in the Mk X they followed the Dingwall and Composite Craft boats in having sheets travelling in tubes through the tanks. In the Ovi the sheet emerges at the back of the cockpit, but in the Composite Craft Dingwall design it comes out further forward. These two photos are what it looks like at the back of the boat…
This is the Ovington idea, It looks a bit frumpy somehow, but those micro blocks are very light and easily replaced. And my goodness, they run exceptionally freely. So looks aside, I’m pretty impressed actually. You can also get at it easily if anything goes wrong….!!
The next photo is the Composite Craft Fifteen sailed by Charles. You would have to say that the frumpiness isn’t there! I can’t identify the fitting for the moment, but I guess it is some kind of very free running ball bearing block. Access for replacement looks easy enough too. What about threading the sheets through? Hmmm….
It would be totally unlike Charles to have a fitting back there that is heavier than the Ovington solution, but with the metal casing I suppose it just might be. Maybe the Ovington has more weight in the fibreglass to build up the housing…..
So …. a big “hmmmm” on this one…..
On the new Ovington Mk X, the spinnaker sheets emerge from a tube running through the stern tank. So if the helm grabs them in the rear cockpit during a gybe, they rub direct on the gelcoat – not good.
I first saw this solution on a P&B boat and have fitted them to my Mk X – it works a treat. In this photo you will also see stern toestrap adjusters on a P&B boat. They are the little silver cleats on the rear bulkhead…
Contrast this with another feature on the blog about the Ovington Mk X at the dinghy show. I feel you’ll see a slightly better arrangement in that blog post….