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Started by Matthew, April 10, 2018, 07:12:27 PM

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The Bobstay on Holly is wire 5mm it has frayed I was thinking of replacing with 6mm stainless or Galv chain and 5 mm rope lanyard to secure to bowsprit. It might be safer that a wire slicing the mooring pontoon and the people on it Has anyone done this is there any downside.?


Hi Matthew.
Yes, I have used a galvanised chain for many years, (I wouldn't bother with stainless). In my view, a much better solution than wire as you can determine its condition visually much more easily. Wire, stainless in particular can give way without any visual warning and is nasty to handle when it gets damaged. Chain is also much more resilliant when (not if!) you get snarled up  on a mooring!


What size chain do you use and do you use a rope lashing or a bottle screw or turn buckle . Matt


Hi Matthew.

I think the chain was 6mm. To tension, I use a block and tackle arrangement wherby the chain can be slackened off from the foredeck if necessary (having first taken the strain off the forestay). I have very rarely needed to do this, but it allows me to retract the bowsprit if required.

To prevent the chain snagging on mooring lines when using a swinging mooring in tidal conditions, I use a primary line attached directly to the bow eye (almost at water level).

I know you shouldn't fit a stainless shackle with a galvanised chain, but in my Winkle Brig situation where the boat is kept on the trailer between outings it hasn't been a problem for me as the chain is not subjected to continuous salt water contact so galvanic action is minimal (and can be checked annually).  I find galvanised shackles to be much more problematical.


Hello Matthew,

Traditional at large sailing vessels the bobstay was made of a chain, my WB is fitted with a 6 mm stainless steel bobstay, I would recommend this strongly.

Chain material should be 1.4571 (because of corrosion resistance) or if you prefer areas with saltwater 1.4462.

Unfortunatly it is difficult to get fittings, turnbuckles a.s.o. made of high grade stainless steel. I have chosen AISI316 because it is easier to acquire.

At least I think, if a system is as strong as its weakest element AISI 316 (1.4401) will be the practical choice for chain and elements.

Kind regards


Life is happy, life is sweet, on a gaff rigged boat of 16 feet!