Rig upgrade of old boats
What advice does anyone have on the merits of upgrading the rig on an NSM2 (Paranoia) to a carbon mast/boom? Is the cost prohibitive and implemention difficult? Would a hog stepped version be sensible/simpler (I know this would restrict the rake)? Trouble is she's not raced a lot but it might make an interesting project.
When I put carbon sticks on my NSM4 6 years ago, there wasn't a canterbury tales with carbon sticks for less than 4 grand. My boat was already deck stepped by a professional so all I did was put a new mast, boom and some second hand sails on it, plus some new ropes because all the blocks needed moving. Cost - 2 grand. It was worth it for me, because I got a very competitive boat (against other NSMs and ally rigged tales ). I guess as you're asking about hog stepped then it isn't deck stepped - therefore, yes, unless you're a boat builder, it's going to be tricky.
hi dave ,yes it has been done before,jon bingham put one on raspberry ripple (hog stepped),would suggest you contact him,i know he was very loath to sell it afterwards ,but they were very special circumstances,regards d.h.
It's certainly been done on raspberry ripple, and it was hog stepped. I don't know what went wrong at the open at blithfield but the mast did break. Don't know what was done afterwards and have not seen the boat since.
I bought NSM2 Galactic Gnu 3346 3 years ago and she had already been deck stepped by Lawrie Smith some years before but had alloy spars. Have been slowly upgrading her ever since and fitted a 2nd hand carbon mast last autumn (£800). Still need to change to carbon boom. Have kept the old spars so that we can always sell her at a lower price and keep carbon for new boat. Would like to think she is now faster and easier to sail. Managing to frighten some Winder Mk 2s at Blithfield when I'm not making too many mistakes. Performance is now almost certainly crew limited not boat limited. Suspect we will never challenge the front of the fleet but see no reason why we should not aspire to top half/third on restricted waters or at Salcombe. I know that a colleague of mine has concluded that deck stepping his NSM4 is probably too expensive and is going back to his NSM2 that has already been deck stepped but has alloy spars. As ever suspect it is down to your personal cost/benefit judgement and is swayed by how attached you are to your boat. Good luck whichever way you go and hope to be closer to you at Salcombe this year.
Have you gone to carbon poles for a start Dave? light airs benefit taking weight off the leech, Swop to carbon boom also good for similar reasons. From experience the change to deck stepped is mostly all about the different sailing techniques for raking rigs and the arranging and calibrating of all that extra string-a big job not to be lightly undertaken-probably worth trying out boats with modern rigs to familiarise first before starting any deck stepping exercise-especially if going straight to (any variant of) 'one string'.
I sailed Elusive 3347 for a while, in between Hywel B-Perkins' ownership & Mervyn Allen, who spent quite a bit of money redecking and undoing the deck-stepped rig. Paranoia is IIRC the 1st boat off Laurie Smart's frames in that batch, which included several well-known and successful boats of the 1980's. I do not know who had done the deck-step conversion in Elusive, but it was apparent that the boat had not been sufficiently strengthened in the shroud attachment area and I had a lot of trouble with the front end of the side-deck being forced up and the boat twisting. Some of this may well have been from poor maintenence (I have learnt my lesson, but I don't think Hywel has yet!) but it's also the case that Paranoia will be held together with quite elderly Cascamite or similar. If you do deck-step her, you will need to ensure that you strengthen and stiffen up the area around the shroud attachments and the join of the side-decks to foredeck as otherwise it will not take the strain imposed by the rig in waves and wind.
If you want to stop an old boat from squeezing shut, check the various photos in this gallery for ideas.
One of the early issues using a carbon mast in a hog stepped arrangement is that the mast is taking point loads sideways at the mast gate and is prone to failure at deck level. (If I remember Elusive had that issue before being further tweaked to deck stepped). This can be got around with local reinforcement of the mast with sleeves etc but it is a point to be aware of.
Rod & Jo not so Sceptical
We much reduced 1620 closing up by adding 4mm s/s rods connecting a plate running transversely through the hog below the (hog stepped) mast foot to the foredeck very close to the mast on either side. It's dirt cheap, interferes with nothing, and to a first approximation if the deck can't rise w.r.t. hog then the shroud positions can't move inboard too much; it's a rhombus.