Westsail Owners Alliance - Thread: "Bridge Traveler Conversion"
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Thread: "Bridge Traveler Conversion"

12,268 posts on 2,444 threads   •   From Mar 07, 2004 - Jan 08, 2012


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Bridge Traveler Conversion

Aaron Norlund


We're considering how to deal with mainsheet placement in the building of our boomkin and stern pulpit. One of the options is placing the blocks on top of the rails, but I'm concerned about the amount of force the main could put on them.

The other option is mounting a bridge traveler, or set of blocks on the deck forward of the dodger. These would attach to the boom in a couple places. I'm curious if our LeFeil boom would be strong enough to accept the mainsheet on two or three bails about mid-distance.

Something like this, though I'm thinking of mounting two single blocks via padeyes, one with a becket, the other a simple single, with two singles on separate bails on the boom.


What do you think? I am trying to avoid having a line run aft through deck organizers from the mast, to the cockpit.


Bud Taplin

Aaron, You need to spread out the load on the boom, and should use three bails. One directly above the deck blocks, one aft as far as possible but not interfere with a dodger, and the other one the same distance forward of the center one as the aft one is.

You can do it with a block on each side, but one needs to be a double. The blocks on the boom would mount going across the boom, and the deck blocks would also be across the cabintop. You would need to use a cheek block on deck to turn the line and run it back to the aft end of the cabintop.

You would still probably need to use a vang on the boom to properly shape the mainsail. The advantage of a traveler is that you can get a straight down pull when the boom is part way out. This is not possible when pulling from a block on each side of the cabintop.

Attached is a picture of the Garhauer traveler I am now using. All ball bearing for easy sheeting.


Aaron Norlund


Thanks for answering my question. The only concern I have with the traveler is that there is no way to avoid running the line to the gooseneck, then the base of the mast, and aft to the cockpit. If I use two cheek blocks on deck, I could have the line run to a fairlead in front of the dodger cowling, then through, without having the line running from the mast on back. I have a thing against lines running on the deck - but I suppose it'd be no different than the stays'l sheet. Then I could use the same boom vang system I've been using with my end-of-boom sheeting.

If we decide to go this route, I'll be in touch for a set of bails.

Aaron N.

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