Do you want to lighten your maneuvers with textiles and rings? How to do it, why, and who to turn to

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Textile fibers and high-slip rings are replacing steel: fiber shackles, carabiners and pastecks are revolutionizing blankets. So let’s go find out what’s on the market to lighten your boat! (Image source: www.cruiserforum.com)


WHY TEXTILE?

But first we need to ask ourselves: why textiles? Once again the cruising boat world is spying on what is happening on the race courses to try to improve hull performance. The evolution of the species is also taking its course in the sailing world and is selecting what will be the new materials that will take the place of steel on board. Dyneema, PBO, Vectran, Polypropylene, Polyester HT, Kevlar, Supercable, and aramid fibers are replacing steel in countless contexts, from deck rigging to rigging: shrouds, shrouds, shackles, shackles, snap hooks, borosas, dredges, furling cables.
But what are the advantages of these innovative materials and what are their costs? Is it really worth carrying out a “restyling” of one’s boat under the banner of textiles? Some of the recognized advantages of these materials are their strength, light weight, increased flexibility, tensile load bearing, low elongation, and the peculiarity of not ruining the deck and hull because they are soft. There are more or less suitable solutions depending on the use of one’s boat: in fact, we consider it unnecessary to put textile rigging on a cruising boat used only for swimming. Instead, we see it more suitable for a racing boat where, in addition to rigging, the mast the keel, sails etc. will also be optimized. If you are a cruiser consider where to replace steel with textile: you will gain in weight (around 80 percent) and handling, also keeping in mind that, for the same diameter, textile offers greater safety in terms of strength and tensile load.

PROTECT TAPES / LOOPX
A high molecular weight polythene tape that provides high toughness, low elongation and high tensile strength. The three parallel fibers can bear a load of up to 20 kilograms each and make for fast and light loops (10 kilometers weighs 930 grams). www.protect-tapes.com; www.nauticplace.com

WICHARD / SOFTLINK
A soft loop developed by Wichard for boaters seeking performance and ease of use. Thanks to its stainless steel connector, Softlink can easily replace shackles and carabiners on deck, ensuring light weight, strength and great performance. Under tension, it can be mounted and removed with ease. www.cmarine.it

NODUS FACTORY / T- CLOSE K
An adjustable, self-locking textile attachment point, goes to replace knots, shackles or carabiners.
www.nodusfactory.com, www.fbyachting.it

ANTAL / HOOK
This system allows it to be “hitched” to a sheet for a “flying” barber: a lightweight solution for controlling a maneuver. The double-layer spliced Dyneema loop has the advantage of reducing wear and tear. The maximum diameter is 16 millimeters for a weight of 130 grams. www.antal.it

ARMING / REFERRAL IN TEXTILE
Armare makes professional custom applications with high-quality accessories that can last for a long time. www.armare.it

KOHLHOFF / MAST PADEYE
Why screw an eyebolt onto a shaft when you can replace it with a loop, passing through a high-strength aluminum alloy fitting? Kohlhoff’s Mast Padeye avoids having to drill the shaft with screws and rivets. www.kohlhoff-online.de

UBI MAIOR RINGS
If you want to lighten your boat and make it more competitive but at the same time simplify maneuvering, you will need to be careful when choosing deck equipment. Ubi Maior comes up with a series of cutting-edge “deck hardware” products. www.ubimaioritalia.com

ANTAL RINGS
Antal was the first to bring the rings to market: the basic range includes anodized aluminum models with center holes ranging from 5 to 28 mm in diameter . www.antal.it

RONSTAN / LOW FRICTION
The new low-friction ring, is compact and lightweight. This accessory is machined from high-quality aluminum with a durable, low-friction, anodized coating and is available in three sizes to suit lines up to 14 mm. Suitable for jib sheets, backstay, vang, lazy jack, etc. www.ronstan.com

ROPEYE RINGS.
Ropeye offers lightweight anodized aluminum self-locking rings with 10-, 14- and 20-mm-diameter internal holes for single- or double-braid sheets. www.ropeye.com

HARKEN RINGS.
Harken also introduces its series of Hard Lube anodized aluminum rings that make them ultra-smooth: they are available in 5 sizes with 8, 10, 14, 20 and 28 mm center hole. www.harken.it

WICHARD RINGS
Made of ultralight aluminum, the Wichard rings, available in 5 sizes) are ideal for splicing on top and used in a variety of ways as a quickdraw or attachment point. www.cmarine.it

SELDEN RINGS
Made of black anodized aluminum, Selden provides six sizes for its low-friction rings: the central high-slip holes have a large radius and measure from 5 to 30 mm inner diameter, 12 to 70 mm outer diameter. Tensile strengths range from a maximum of 12,000 kg to a minimum of 300 kg. As for the diameters of the sheets, they can vary from 3 to 20 millimeters. Simple and lightweight they are perfect to use for backstay, jib barbers, and more generally for all static loads. www.velamania.it

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