Hounds

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by Victor Lemmi, Aug 16, 2004.

  1. Victor Lemmi
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    Victor Lemmi Junior Member

    Could anybody tell me the meaning of HOUNDS in a sailboat?
    Tks
    VLemmi
     
  2. mmd
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    mmd Senior Member

    From a quick Google on "Sailing terms" I got about a dozen hits, all somewhat similar to this:

    HOUNDS.— The wooden shoulders at the masthead on which the eyes of the shrouds rest.
     
  3. Victor Lemmi
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    Victor Lemmi Junior Member

    Thanks a lot
     
  4. conny
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    conny New Member

    wrong!

    the hounds is were the forestay ataches to the mast
     
  5. jehardiman
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    jehardiman Senior Member

    Gong...Still wrong... ;)

    The "hounds" is one of those historical terms that I love to hate that lives on with new meanings. Both you and mmd are correct in the historical sense..

    Falconer (1815) defines the HOUNDS as
    A name given to those parts of a masthead which generally project on the right and left side, beyond the cylinderical or conical surface, which it preserves (sic) from the partners upwards. The hounds, whose upper parts are also called cheeks, are used as shoulders to support the frame of the top and trestle-trees, together with the topmast and the rigging of the lower mast

    Dana (1851) defines the HOUNDS as
    Those projections at the mast-head serving as shoulders for the top or trestle-trees to rest upon.

    For the traditional piece built lower masts with a topmasts that would also be where the shrouds and stays would connect.

    However modern sailing vessels do not have this type of mast construction, but still use the word. In the modern sense, the hounds could be refered to as anywhere and shroud or stay lands, but in my experience (US sailing yachts) when you say "the hounds" you are refering the area where the inner lower shrouds and lowest spreader are attached to the mast, as in "climb up to the hounds and look for the buoy".
     
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  6. mmd
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    mmd Senior Member

    Hi, John! Fancy meeting you here. As usual, you come upon the scene and outshine my meagre contribution with your learned contributions.

    I merely googled to show how easy it was to do this, rather than lecture from my personal library. In the well-respected book on gaff rigs by John Leather, he describes the hounds as being, "in traditionally rigged craft the shroud eyes are looped over the masthead and rest on wood bolsters set on wooden hounds cheeks transversally bolted through the mast. ... Alternatively a mastband or steel hounds fitting can be made with eyes or lugs to which the shrouds are shackled. It often incorporates lugs for spreaders and trestletrees, if a topmast is carried." This is in agreement with both my personal experience in the schooners here on the Nova Scotian coast, and with all other references I have.

    I don't recall any specific term for the terminal structure for forestays on traditionally rigged ships other than "hounds", but I may be mistaken. To further muddy the waters, I have no reference in my library to a given piece of structure called the "hounds"; there are "hounds cheeks" and "hounds irons" and "hounds fittings", but the references to the singular term "hounds" seem to be referring to the general area on the mast where the shrouds and stays terminate, and not a specific item.
     
  7. jehardiman
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    jehardiman Senior Member

    Yeah, I'm peeking in over here to see if anything interesting in going on. Rather than wade through the muck at WBF.

    As I recall on most traditional rigs, the lower stays are just doubled around the mast (comming out between the cheeks of the hounds) and served together.

    Maybe they are called the hounds because when a mast is bald-headed, the profile is that of a slack jowled hound (i.e. the cheeks form the snout and jowls and the mast doubling the ears).
     
  8. brian eiland
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    brian eiland Senior Member

    Are there any of the original posters still around,...particularly Jehardiman?

    I would like to explore some of the more modern uses of 'cheek blocks', 'hound blocks' , whatever we should call them. I just really like the idea of wrapping the rigging AROUND the mast tube rather than drilling into the tube and using those swaged fittings etc.

    per this posting, Aftmast rigs??? https://www.boatdesign.net/threads/aftmast-rigs.623/page-75#post-811436, I found a few nice applications on a vessel up in NS

    Sharpii made this reply here, Aftmast rigs??? https://www.boatdesign.net/threads/aftmast-rigs.623/page-75#post-811452
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2020 at 5:25 PM

  9. brian eiland
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    brian eiland Senior Member

    Pardon me, I've moved this discussion over to a new thread with a more complete title to include the words 'ckeek blocks'
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2020 at 5:26 PM
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