Single Pole System
You could try the Spiro™ launcher:
Yes there is an alternative system. If you can get hold of a copy of Mark Chisnel and John Hodgart's book "Dinghy Systems" (ISBN 1-85310-392-6 published 1993) there are pictures of a single pole system on a 505. Unfortunately I believe the book may be out of print so I will attempt to describe the system. The single pole has its uphaul and downhaul permanently attached at the outboard end of the pole. The inboard end of the pole has a ring that slides along a shockcord stowage system just like a Merlin. There is the fairly standard shockcord stowage ramp at an angle of about 30 degrees along the boom, but instead of the shockcord attaching to the front of the mast in the Merlin fashion, it simply carries on in a continuous loop all the way round the front of the mast and back down to the other side of the boom. It is only held up because it passes above the pole eye on the mast. The inboard end of the pole has a standard spinny pole fitting but the outboard end can be a fork if so desired, rather than the standard clip. The idea of the system is that the inboard end of the pole can pass round in front of the mast in order to stow either side of the boom. With the forked outboard end the guy will drop out when not under tension (and hopefully not before!). The comment in the book reads "It works well in 505's but has not caught on in other classes." I have never used such a system but I suppose it wouldn't really cost much to try it.
Mr Vines, I have a spiro in my shed, bought it after discussing the merits the system with Nick powell who used it on 505's and 3413 when he had it about 15 yrs ago.system seemed to be idiot proof so it'll be fine for you! I'll bring it down on Sunday .
There have been many complaints of Spiros causing black eyes on this forum before...
maybe not so idiot proof after all! still I bet not many 505 crews at 6 ft plus ever complain...............food for thought.
John B (3404)
I changed to twin poles having used a single pole system with starboard side stowage. Worked like a twin pole set up, but it has a piston on the outer end.
David, try taking a look at Chris Pollard's N18, Antedote. It has a self-launching single pole system. I sailed the boat with Charlie Morgan and Kaan Yargici at last year's N18 champs at Weymouth and the spinnaker launching system worked well.
Thanks for all of these. Ill have a look at antedote and try mr P's 'idiot' proof system. If not the non
We have been using a twin-pole Spiro for the last 3 months. New to Merlins, and the crew cannot stretch her arm above her head - so the only way of launching a pole is to pull a string.
Our boat (3666 - Enchanted Evening) is at Brightlingsea: Happy to show people, and to steal anyone elses ideas for improvements!
Pictures, to make it easier to see, are here:
Errrmm - I can't make this link work for me. It just opens up my Windows Live Account. I must be doing something wrong but don't know what. Help please?????
Just realised that happens for me too!! But at least you get to know a bit faster!!
Does this link go straight there?
You just use the box marked "link" below the box where you write your main message.
Nah... it must be harder than that! :-)
Yep - that link works perfectly. Thanks
Andy Hay - 3626 Business as Usual
Chris - just ensure that with the pole out your set-up is not overlength. I am not sure that the reduction in length from the removal of one of the pole end is not enough to offset the added length of the Spiro. I am sure that you have trimmed off the relevant inch ...
That was something I reminded P&B to check when they were setting it up...
DV if you collect a few twigs , some bits of tape, some cotton string and a couple of nails you should be able to build a pole system up to your normal standard.......