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Best way to mark halyards for reefing

Steve W

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Use “rigging tape” of different colors.  You can buy a set of red, green, blue, and white.  1/2” wide.  Use same color on all lines: reefing luff, reefing leech, halyard & throat, and snotter/out-haul.  Use different color for shallow, deep, and extreme reefing.  On my Chessie I used red for the deep reef and green for shallow and blue (indicating “sky high”), meaning no reefing at all.  I wrapped the lines just a couple of inches short of the cleating spot so as to avoid the cleat chaffing the tape.


Occasional inspection gives warning as to wear and tear.  Get the sequencing right for releasing each line and setting/trimming in the final steps — and it works like a charm.  See Chessie’s Owners Manual (Part 2, page 14 — the paragraphs on reefing) on her build.



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