Designing Gaff Rigs

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by EAP, Apr 1, 2007.

  1. EAP
    Joined: Aug 2006
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    Location: MIAMI, FL

    EAP Junior Member

    I'm Looking For Any Credible Information On Designing And Sizing Gaff Rigs, Ie: Shrouds, Stays Etc. At This Moment I Am Using 'pricipals Of Yacht Design' Lars Larrson, Knowing It Is More Geared To Sloops And Fractional Rigs. I'd Like To Be Able To Verify My Findings.
    Any Input Would Be Greatly Appreciated
    Miami, Fla
  2. Andrew Mason
    Joined: Mar 2003
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    Location: Perth, Western Australia

    Andrew Mason Senior Member

    See if you can get a copy of "The Riggers Apprentice" by Brian Toss, it has a lot of detail on rig design and much is aimed at traditional type rigs.
  3. ukebert
    Joined: Feb 2007
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    Location: UK

    ukebert blank

    There's a lot of information in "The Gaff Rig Handbook", but almost certainly not technical enough for what you want.
  4. Robert Gainer
    Joined: Jul 2004
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    Location: New York

    Robert Gainer Designer/Builder

    Yacht Designing and Planning by Howard I Chapelle has information on designing a gaff rig.
    All the best,
    Robert Gainer
  5. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    In most gaff rigged craft, the loads are not particularly high, especially when compared to modern Bermudian racing rigs. They typically are designed overly stiff, heavy and redundant and operated rather slack by current practices in high aspect rigs. The point loading and panel strains should be well documented in several books, including some of the noted above. Rigging specifics covered by Herreshoff, Chapelle, Leather, Cunliffe and others favor galvanized wire (usually of different construction then what is available today) and hand splicing. Adjustment to wire and terminal sizing will need to be made to account for different material properties and working load limits. These are all readily adaptable with fitting and wire manufacture spec's in hand. A very general rule of thumb used by these old salts, was take twice the displacement of the vessel and make this the working load limit, for the likely weakest link in the rig. Ideally the whole rig should explode just after this limit is reached, if everything is sized properly, but then in this world, the seas would always be glass like and blowing 10 knots on your beam, continuously, until you need to come home, when the it would clock around 180 degrees.

  6. Cliff Pope
    Joined: Nov 2005
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    Location: UK

    Cliff Pope Junior Member

    I have found Gaff Rig by John Leather invaluable in re-rigging a small traditional gaff cutter.
    Lots of practical examples, diagrams and photographs, and the odd warning against "theatricality" - ratlines, etc.
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