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 Post subject: Main Sheet replacement
PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 6:53 am 
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Location: SE Michigan / NE Indiana
I'm sure this has been discussed in the past, but my various forum searches have turned up empty.

Last season I tried an Ebay special and was soundly reminded of the "you get what you pay for" adage. It'll make a nice dock line in 2012, thus am in need of a replacement.

Can anyone provide recommendations on brand/type? Assuming it should be 3/8" or 9/10mm. There appear to be a multitude of brands and types based on various cores, covers, braids, etc. Looking for something durable, flexible (no strange twisting tendancies), and easy on the hands. I do try to race a bit, so getting that last 2" sheeted in a blow is a priority as well (low friction in the blocks, but something my (or my crew's) hands can get good purchase on).

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 8:06 am 
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Location: Jersey Shore
I'm actually a fan of both the stock 3/8" spun dacron Hobie mainsheet, and New England Ropes Sta-Set line (maybe a slight favor to the Sta-Set). These are probably both considered pretty low-tech lines compared to some of the other lines that are available these days, but in my experience, they both seem to work just fine for an 18 mainsheet system. They come in towards the bottom end of the price scale at about $1 per foot. I find that they run through the blocks nice and snap in and out of the cleat just fine, so I have yet to see a reason to put an expensive sheet on my boat (and have seen others with expensive sheets that got chewed up and needed to be replaced within a year or two). My crew and I always wear gloves when we race, so holding either of these lines has never been an issue.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 8:25 am 
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NE Ropes Salsa. (http://www.apsltd.com/c-1601-salsa-new-england.aspx)

Nothing else even comes close.

5/16" runs through the blocks much better than 3/8"

Not too expensive at $1.21 / ft.

Keep your eye on APS' sale line section (http://www.apsltd.com/c-4751-line.aspx). You can usually find a piece long enough for a mainsheet, especially when they run specials in January and February (selection is a bit thin right now).


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 10:55 am 
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Location: Saratoga Springs, NY
MBounds wrote:
NE Ropes Salsa. (http://www.apsltd.com/c-1601-salsa-new-england.aspx)

Nothing else even comes close.

5/16" runs through the blocks much better than 3/8"

Not too expensive at $1.21 / ft.

Keep your eye on APS' sale line section (http://www.apsltd.com/c-4751-line.aspx). You can usually find a piece long enough for a mainsheet, especially when they run specials in January and February (selection is a bit thin right now).


Have you had any durability issues with the Salsa? I've used it on larger boats and really liked it, but it seemed to get chewed up in the cleats over time.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 12:39 pm 
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Location: Bowie, MD
I like the stock Hobie 3/8" best. I have tried two other higher tech options and have come back to the Hobie stock line. First I tried a really limp line in order to get it to run through the blocks better. Can't remember the name, but in order to achieve max flexibility, it had no core. Ran through the blocks really quickly (sometimes too quickly, i.e. slips out of your hand and instant teabag) but with no core, it slipped through the traveler cleat. Tried a 5/16" line. It does run through the blocks better, but it caused me to have achy hands (guess I'm getting old). Switched back to 3/8" and no more aches and pains. I would also recommend not getting a line that doesn't absorb water. A heavier, wet line is much easier to snap out of the mainsheet cleat than a dry, lightweight line.

Jim


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 1:16 pm 
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Location: Metuchen NJ
When I renovated my boat, I used New England Ropes cordage. At the time West Marine had a big sale. I was able to purchase their best lines at a very good price. 2011 was the 3rd season with these lines. They work very well, are easy to grip and look nearly brand new.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 1:49 pm 
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I just upgraded to the Robline Racing Sheet, 3/8" single braid dyneema blend. It's pretty expensive, but super lightweight, doesn't tangle, and has a nice feel. The spun dacron I used to use got so waterlogged and heavy it would get hard to cleat. This stuff stays light all day.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 3:54 pm 
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Location: Lake Champlain, Vermont
I have Robline fse on the 17 (a little thinner than recommended) and Conception by Yale on the 18. It runs a bit flat in the blocks but sweet (light, floats, soft, grippy) Salsa and Buzz are nice but a bit more money. I have used NE Sta set but its a little stiff for my style. I use it on the jib right now.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 6:26 pm 
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Location: Detroit, MI
SNovak wrote:
Have you had any durability issues with the Salsa? I've used it on larger boats and really liked it, but it seemed to get chewed up in the cleats over time.
No problems in the Harken cleats. I run it on my 17. The 16 has NE Ropes Bzzz line, which is similar, but less expensive. On my 14, I use Paraloc Stingray, which is way more expensive, but I got it as a spool end (cheap) from APS.

Of the 3, I like the Salsa best.

Mainsheets are a very personal choice (as evidenced by Jim Doty's preference).


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 6:29 pm 
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Location: SE PA/ Chesapeak Bay
Second ... the Yale Conception !!!!!! I use the 5/16" for my mainsheet and the 1/4" for my jibsheet ... it runs slightly large ... very soft/easy on the hands ... doesn't absorb water .... good stuff !!!

(Also using it on my niece's Laser ... all the other Junior sailors are amazed at how light the line is ..... and it doesn't sag down and drag in the water when running downwind ....)

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