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On the 2015 boats the spin halyard goes all the way to the transom before dropping into the backbone as the take down line. This gives and extra 4' for the chute and allows 1 spin patch instead of 2. After using this system for a few days we elected to retrofit a 2013 that was experiencing excessive friction on take downs. Harry put together a "kit" with the block, backing plates, a longer sock and a new halyard. Here's a few notes if you elect to do the same.
I used a rotozip tool to cut the hole for the block and a dremel to open it up where it was still tight. I cut the hole as far aft as possible while still allowing the rotozip to lay flat. I forgot to take a picture but the hole is slightly off center to account for the traveler support. The hole for the bag bungee is slightly off to the opposite side. I bought a 7/8" hole saw as I cant cut a perfect circle with the rotozip.
The backing plates for the new block are solid fiberglass and pre tapped for the screws that Melges included. After failing to hold them in place with string through the holes I finally mixed up some epoxy and used the cover plate for the block to hold them in place while they dried. Once the backing plates dry you may need to go one more round with the dremel before the block will fit. Gluing them in place also means the block is easily removed if you need to rerun your take down line. There are new shorter machine screws for the traveler support bar and you have to remove the clips for the boom crutch to ensure there is nothing to snag on in the tunnel. Melges includes a fairlead to hold the halyard off of the floor under the tiller cross bar.
We used an metal snake to rerun the take down line and new sock. This was a huge mistake as the snake doesnt lay flat and went over top of the hiking strap lines and bungees. We ended up using old battens to lay flat on the bottom and not snag anything on the 2nd attempt. Just tape them together, 3 upper battens will work, and tape a loop of small line to the end that you can pull out of the holes for the new block. Run the take down line 1st and pull it tight to get it off the floor. Then run the line for the aft end of the sock. Make sure to not cross them or else you have to pull everything out and start over.
On the aft end of the sock we use a loop of bungee along with a loop of line a few inches longer. If the bungee breaks the loop prevents the sock pulling forward with the chute. We put a shackle through the loop to hold everything in place.
The 2015 sock is made out of mesh and has less friction than the solid one too. I like to turn it inside out and spray it with McLube before putting it in the boat. Every little bit helps. Overall it was a fairly easy upgrade and were looking forward to seeing if the sets and douses are a little faster this year.
This tuning tip was brought to you by the 2015 National Championship at LEHYC. Register Early to secure housing!
See you on the water!