Bolero Deck Layout

This will be a constantly updated post with my thoughts and decisions about the deck layout of my modified Shields Knockabout. I have put a fair bit of thought into Bolero's deck layout for a number of reasons.

First I am tired of patched together rigging and deck hardware. I confess that I want things to work and work well.

And second, I want quality deck and rigging hardware but my budget can't afford to pay full retail for these "dear" components. So I need to have a pretty good idea of the components I want to use far enough in advance so I can bargain shop without holding up Tim.

I have reposted the Harken Compu-Spec loads summary for Shields class one design. I am mostly going with Harken components as I have had good experience with them in the past and also they are very available in non retail markets.

Primary this will be Harken's Midrange line of components but will vary based on the application. I have posted the prices I paid with West Marine's as a reference. My goal is to try and purchase sailing hardware between 50 and 75 cents on the retail dollar (usually West Marine). Not always doable but I try. It does pay to shop around.

The traveler components have been selected and purchased. I choose to go with a Harken 1626 Stand-up toggle car on a 1616 low beam track with Harken 2638 double carbo control line blocks. The end control fittings are Harken 1633 doubles with integral cam cleats. This is pretty much current traveler system of newly equipped Shields. $402 (Retail=$653)

The mainsheet blocks have actually been one of the bigger difficulties so far. The 1626 stand-up toggle traveler car is designed to have the mainsheet block directly fasten into it without using a separate shackle. Therefor the shackle pin on the mainsheet block needs to be either 1/4 in or 5/16 in. It almost seems that Harken is ensuring that I won't attach a wimpy block to their beefy midrange traveler system. Well this is exactly the direction that I initially headed since I purchased a 57 mm carbo fiddle setup which didn't fit.

After chewing on this for a while and letting go of my chosen "block color scheme" I headed in the direction that Harken wanted me to go and have decided on a Harken 1566 Midrange Hexaratchet Fiddle block with becket and cam cleat for the lower block. And a Harken 1559 Midrange Fiddle for the upper block. This system is also standard for Shields with a 4 to 1 mainsheet.

Mainsheet Reefing

The original Shields class doesn't have provisions for reef points on the Mainsail. I am still working on determining reef reductions that I want so the hardware selection and layout won't happen until I know more. My thoughts lean towards a two line reefing system with the clew lines running inside the boom and reef hooks at the gooseneck. I also like the idea of two of these Schaefer sliding jiffy reef blocks on a boom track.

Boom Vang
This is one of my toughest rigging issues. Since I am adding a small cuddy cabin where none existed before there is precious little room for a boom vang (there was precious little before the cabin addition). I don't wish to modify the rig so my choices are quite limited. I have pretty much decide that if I can squeeze in a four part boom vang and boom kicker I will be very happy. What I really want is the ability to control the boom while sailing downwind and lifting the boom during reefing and raising the sails. I realize that I probably won't be cranking down on the vang much to effect sail shape. So be it.

As it turns out the slightly undersized Harken Mainsheet blocks should work perfectly for the boom vang. So I will go with the Harken 2624 57 mm carbo fiddle with cam and becket for the upper and the Harken 2621 fiddle for the lower. If it turns out that I can actually achieve a reasonable boom vang angle I will reverse this set and lead the line aft.

Rigid Boom Vang
It is still way to early to know if the Boomkicker 1000 will fit. But I have happily used the 750 model for three years and will go with it unless a more conventional rigid vang finds a way to dazzle me.

Jib Lead Cars

In work.


I ordered replacement winches that match the original Shields winches. Lewmar 7Cs for the sheet winches and Lewmar 6Cs for the halyards. They do seem a bit small now that I have them but they must work right? The halyard winches will be relocated from their current below deck configuration. $546 (Retail=$740)


In work.


In work.


All of the spinnaker rigging will probably be postponed until next winter after I due a bit of sailing.

Spinnaker Pole Handling

All of the spinnaker rigging will probably be postponed until next winter after I due a bit of sailing.

Backstay Adjuster

In work.

Running Rigging - Line Selection
I will be replacing all of the running rigging on Bolero and making my own splices and whipped ends. New lines all around will be the icing on this cake. I am still trying to decide between cleverly colored lines and going the more classic route with white lines, or at least white with flecks. I am almost certain that I will be going with Cajun Trading Company for my line order. I used them earlier this year for a line order for our sailing program and was quite happy. Their prices are very reasonable so I don't have to order in large lengths to get a discount. So I can tailor my rigging by size, stiffness or color depending on my application. He is my ongogin list of current Shields running rigging. Bolero's modified rigging will follow as I figure it out.