Topic : Mainsheet Cleat

I've just bought my first Merlin and am having a problem with the mainsheet. The rope goes through a ratchet block on the back of the centreboard case and then though a cam cleat. Is this a common arrangement? I find that it cleats automatically when sheeted in, which means that every time I want to ease the sheet I have to jerk it upwards out of the cleat. This makes balancing the boat a lot less smooth upwind. My previous boat (a N12) had an aft mainsheet with no cleat which is why this in new to me. Should I remove the cleat or am I just using it wrong?

Thanks in advance

Posted: 03/07/2007 11:55:11
By: James
Yes this is the common arrangement.  Your cleat is too high/block too low if you cannot easily uncleat the main with a straight pull from the hiked position.  A lot of the arms the cleat is held on are adjustable for height but if yours is not try using a longer shackle on the block.

Posted: 03/07/2007 12:31:34
By: Andrew M
If the mainsheet is runs out of the mainsheet block too close to the cleat then it can jam itself. This can be sorted by getting a smaller ratchet block. 

An alternate option is to get rid of the ratchet block and put a 4:1 purchase on the mainsheet. If you then use a slightly thinner mainsheet it will run as easy as the 3:1 purchase with a ratchet.

I should think you would need the cleat to cleat the main sheet off when hoisting the spinnaker.

Hope that will help.

Posted: 03/07/2007 13:50:00
By: Crew
I will see if I can adjust it next time I sail then. I hadn't thought about the spinnaker hoist, it's a good point.

Posted: 03/07/2007 14:18:17
By: James


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