#05 36 PRACTICAL ADVICE FROM THE EDITORIAL TEAM Text and photos : Gilles Ruffet
Textile standing rigging
Textile rigging has us fantasising... It’s attractive, light and has a ‘racing’ look.
But it is also practical and useful aboard our catamarans...
TEXTILE STANDING RIGGING HAS US FANTASISING: IT’S EXPENSIVE, CERTAIN PEOPLE SAY.
NOT AS STRONG AS STAINLESS, SAY OTHERS, OR NOT JUSTIFIABLE. IT IS CERTAINLY LESS
VISIBLE THAN A CARBON MAST (THEREFORE NOT SO GOOD FOR THE OWNER’S EGO). IN
THE CHOICE OF A RIG, VARIOUS ELEMENTS HAVE TO BE TAKEN INTO ACCOUNT: THE PRICE,
OF COURSE, ELONGATION, INEVITABLY, AND BREAKING STRENGTH, QUITE OBVIOUSLY.
TODAY WE ARE GOING TO TALK ABOUT KEVLAR, PBO, AND THE ONE THAT RISKS
MAKING ALL THE OTHERS OBSOLETE: DYNEX DUX®.
KEVLAR®: GOOD aloft. But it is also twice the
FOR CRUISING price. The other problem with RUNNING RIGGING:
THREE CHEERS FOR SK 90.
Kevlar® is an aramid fibre, a Kevlar comes from its predispo-
polymer whose real name is sition to creep. To decrease Launched at the last Mets in
poly paraphenylene terephtha- this phenomenon, a tip is to Amsterdam, by the ropemaker
lamide (culture is like jam, the use a larger diameter; varia- Lancelin, and Blew Stoub, SK 90
less you have, the more you tions in length will then be finds its field of application mainly
spread it out...). It is the trade negligible. Kevlar rigging in the running rigging. Compared
name registered by its inven- seems to be quite well-suited with SK75 and SK78, SK90
to cruising use. Like all synthe- Dyneema® offers a large increase in
tor, Du Pont de Nemours. The
tic fibres, it is sensitive to strength (much greater breaking
problem with Kevlar lies in the
chafe. It is therefore essential strength) as well as in increase
difficulty of making splices,
to protect the parts concerned; in elasticity module (lower
thus the ends are associated
for example, where the genna- elongation). This fibre can therefore
with bi-cone type terminals. On be used for jib, gennaker or main
a 50-foot cruising cat, Kevlar ker sheet rubs, etc... One tech-
nique consists of replacing the sheets, or for running backstay
allows substantial weight purchases. For the standing rigging,
saving, compared with the use lower part of a shroud with a
stainless cable. A reinforced it can be used to make strops.
of stainless steel, and this
where it is most needed, i.e. sheath will also do the job, but
A Colligo Marine lashing: attractive and strong!
As strong as a cable...
guaranteed to last for more other fibres, these terminals Dux® doesn’t absorb water
than three years... The main can therefore only be made up (compared to Vectran), and
advantage of PBO comes from in the factory...or by an expe- last but not least, it is no more
its lack of creep (less than rienced rigger. expensive to fit to a multihull
0.2%) - less than single strand! Advantages: light. than stainless steel rigging.
PBO rigging allows 70% Disadvantages: its price… As for the terminals: the
weight saving aloft. PBO Use: standing rigging for racing process is not too technical,
cannot be terminated by a boats. and an experienced amateur
splice, or even knotted, so the should be able to carry it out.
ends present some difficulties. Otherwise, you can call on a
A FIFTH OF THE WEIGHT OF
Navtec offers bi-conic type professional rigger: Blew Stoub
STAINLESS STEEL, A THIRD
terminals which are quite in Lorient, Tripp Line Rigging
replacing it when it is worn to OF THE PRICE OF PBO!
similar to those used with
its limit will perhaps be quite Kevlar®. They are cheaper Dynex Dux® is nothing other
complicated. Kevlar is very sen- than those offered by the than Dyneema® which has
sitive to UV, and must be pro- British company, Future Fibres undergone a treatment to
tected in an ad hoc way. (represented in France by Blew make it even stronger. Here
Advantages: light, not too Stoub, in Lorient), which pass then is a new fibre which is
expensive. the continuous fibre back and light, very strong, doesn’t
Disadvantages: difficult splicing forth through two thimbles, the creep and is not very expen-
etc, creep, sensitive to chafe ends; the whole assembly is sive. The strength and creep of
and UV. then enclosed in a heat-shrunk PBO, for the price of stainless
Use: cruising or racing. polyurethane sheath. This pro- steel!
cess is more expensive than The main disadvantage of
PBO: EXPENSIVE AND NOT
that offered by Navtec, but it is Dynex® is its creep. A new
also lighter. Navtec also offers arrival on the exotic fibre
This is polyphenilene – 2.6 terminals in titanium, but the market, Dynex Dux® is, accor-
bezobisoxazole (culture...), in cost then becomes similar to ding to Colligo Marine, the A Vectran lacing to tighten a
the form of microscopic that of Future Fibres. Unlike the “first 12-strand rope which PBO lower shroud.
filaments. It is produced by just offers similar characteristics to
one manufacturer, the 1 x 19 stainless steel cable.” Olivier Cusin in La Rochelle,
Japanese company, Toyobo. What exactly are these charac- etc. Dynex Dux’s only slight
PBO appeared at the begin- teristics? On paper, it has lots shortcoming comes perhaps
ning of the 2000s, and was at of advantages. Firstly, its from the fact that it is a bit stiff
first used mainly on big racing strength, as it is advertised as to begin with, and it takes
boats, for technical manufactu- being 15 to 45% stronger, a few days sailing for it to
ring reasons (difficulties in pro- according to its diameter, than become softer.
ducing small fibres). PBO rigs Dynex® . Next, it doesn’t Note however, that there is not
are expensive. If you have the creep. In fact, on a Dynex rig, yet any long-term experience
means... However, just like creep can be as much as 2 to with this miracle product...
Vectran, its resistance to UV is 3%, which means that lashings Advantages: Light, does not
poor, and it is therefore essen- have to be tightened regularly. creep.
tial to protect it with a sheath. Here it is considered to be Disadvantages: Rough to begin
PBO remains delicate and has negligible. Anti-UV protection with.
the shortest of lifespans; thus On the Fast Cat 435, here is is ensured by a synthetic Use: cruising, racing.
even with a sheath (or a the link between the textile sheath: aesthetically, it
coating) to protect it from UV, shroud and the lower stainless therefore appears like a woven
it does not appear to be steel terminal. fibre. Other qualities: Dynex
SINGLE STRAND VERSUS DYNEX DUX®.
Let’s take the example of a fast multihull, a 12-metre racing trimaran with a 17.5-metre rotating wing mast, supported by 10mm diameter cap shrouds,
18 metres long, and 8mm diameter shrouds, 14 metres long (we can consider that the bottlescrews have already been replaced by lashings).
The forestay is considered to be in stainless steel, but it supports roller reefing gear, and stainless steel is retained.
IN SINGLE STRAND STAINLESS STEEL.
A single strand stainless steel cable, 10mm in diameter (1 x 19 of 2mm) weighs 0.495 kg per metre, the cap shrouds will therefore weigh:
36 x 0.495 = 17.82 kg. A single strand stainless steel cable, 8mm in diameter (1 x 19 of 1.6 mm), weighs: 0.317 kg per metre, the shrouds will
therefore weigh: 28 x 0,317 = 8.876 kg.
Giving a total weight of: 26.696 kg. To which must be added the terminals, which can be estimated at 5 kilos. The weight of the lashings is
negligible. Giving an approximate total of: 30 kilos.
IN DYNEX DUX®.
Colligo Marine, in Arizona, in the United States, considers that for an equivalent strength, 11mm Dynex Dux® should be used for the cap shrouds, and
9mm for the shrouds; with its titanium terminals .
A reel (100m) of 11mm weighs 8.3 kg, giving 0.083 kg per metre, and, for our 36 metres: 2.988 kilos for the cap shrouds. A reel of 9mm weighs 5.4
kg, giving 0.054 kg per metre, and for our 28 metres: 1,512 kilos. Giving a standing rigging weight of 4.5 kilos. With the titanium terminals, this gives
a total of approximately 6 kilos.
The weight saving is nearly 24 kilos aloft. This is certainly not huge, but kilos aloft are the most penalising. In addition, we can also make savings on
the running rigging (the halyards). Pitching is reduced; we therefore sail faster!
Colligo Marine in the United States, supplied us with an estimate of 1,379.32 US $ exc. taxes for the 11mm cap shrouds in Dynex Dux®, with termi-
nals, lashings etc., and 995.72 US $ for the 9mm shrouds, and their peripherals. Giving a total of 2,375. 04 US $ exc. taxes, or (at end of December
rates) 1,646.89€ exc. taxes. Of course the prices elsewhere will be noticeably different. The differential with stainless steel single strand is therefore
not very great.
Colligo products are distributed in France on the one hand by Delta Voiles, and on the other, by Christian Malardeau, the Corsair trimaran importer.