Step-by-Step Pictures (2)
Quick Overview Pictures
H260 Launch Checklist
This checklist was compiled
using info from the sailboatowners.com
archives and my own experiences. We're always looking for a better way to do
this. Feel free to suggest improvements and correct errors.
Want the Keystone Cops version
of the checklist? Click here
to see a quick summary of possible screw-ups when launching and
retrieving the boat.
||Park in an area
with clear overhead access including the path to the ramp. Chock the trailer if
necessary. The mast is 35' long - add another 10 feet or so on the trailer
you'll need a lot of clearance.
||Untie any hold
downs & bungee cords & make sure the shrouds are clear. Pull on the
furler to make sure the "T-ball"
hook at the top of the furler is secure. Caution: keep a couple of the
bungies that hold the furler to the mast near its base. These are needed
to keep the roller fuller from flopping around as you raise the
mast. Review this diagram
before proceeding further.
||Slide the mast
back in preparation for raising. Don't pin the base yet. If you need to install
the Windex/antenna, now is the time to dip the head of the mast down so it
drops as close to the ground as possible. I usually do this myself but this is
one of the few times where having a helper is nice.
the base. This can be difficult. At first, it will take some cussing, the
right tools, and some practice before it gets easier. Wiggling the mast from
side to side usually helps. A light coating of Teflon lube will help insertion
of the pin. Don't forget the vang bracket. Here's the tools
gin pole and attach one side to the red jib halyard, the other to the
mainsheet. Attach bottom end of mainsheet to "U"
bolt in anchor locker. Tension mainsheet so jib halyard takes the load.
Verify that jib halyard is securely tied -- use
a cleat, don't trust the rope clutches etc. See
||Tension red jib
halyard (verify it is not blue main halyard) so pole is about 10
degrees. Mark the red halyard in the clutch when it is when under tension.
The next time you raise the mast you'll know exactly where it should be. The
halyard stretches so that when it takes the full load it will be perpendicular
to the mast. If you forget this you'll end up with a dent in the pole where it
is inserted in the hole. Secure halyard to cleat on side of deck & lock line
||Verify that all
stays are not tangled; make sure turnbuckles and terminations are in proper
position. The little grey clips are designed to keep the "T-ball" for
the stays in place. The "T-ball" at the heads
of the stays can come out of the slot when raising the mast so tape or clip them in
place or watch them carefully to make sure they don't fall out. Use surveyors or
masking tape to tie the
shrouds to the safety lines to prevent them from misaligning. Check that all
halyards and shrouds are not snagged on anything before raising mast.
||Standing in the
cockpit, lift up on the mast while pulling on the main sheet, just to get it
going. Use the port winch - it's easier. Once you get the mast a few inches off
the rear crutch, recheck that everything is OK. Once you get it up about
three feet, it will start getting much easier. Don't go too fast, watch that
everything is running free, if it gets hard too pull, stop and verify that
nothing is caught. If you have to let go of the mainsheet line, make sure that
you tie it off securely first - don't trust the cam cleat on the
||Once the mast is in
the full vertical position, tie off the mainsheet on a stern cleat. Make sure
everything is clear.
||The next task
is installing forestay or the roller furler. Tighten the mainsheet as much as
you can. It can be difficult to pin the roller furler. If that still does
not work, you
can use the boom vang and a cable arrangement to pull the RF closer to the
hole. I've found that a 1/8" cable will fit through the bracket. Attach the
vang to the cable on one end and the ladder on the other. The helper can assist
by pushing up on the middle of the furler to take the bow out of it while you
pin the drum to the bracket.
pole and crutch.
||Install Boom, feed
mainsail slugs into mast slot starting with head of sail, attach main sheet
and boom vang, and topping lift. Tidy up topping lift, reef and outhaul lines at
||Open fuel tank vent
and prime the gas line.
||Ready fenders and
dock lines. Two 25' dock lines at the stern and bow can be tied together so
one person can control the boat as it comes off the trailer. This technique is
good when docking.
centerboard is secured in up position.
||At this step I
usually verify the ballast
tank valve is OPEN so it begins to fill upon launch of the boat. However, if
the ramp is very shallow, you might have to wait until the boat floats free of
the trailer before opening the valve.
||Ready to Launch --
Extend tongue for shallow ramps. The pin for the tongue extender might be
difficult to reinsert, so a large awl or marlinspike or screwdriver will help
align the hole. Make sure trailer tie down is removed, disconnect trailer lights
from vehicle, good idea to have chocks ready, esp. on slippery ramps.
boat down ramp, tie up boat and park vehicle.
engine and rudder. Warm up motor. Open
Ballast Tank! It is not a good idea to try to sail with an empty ballast
tank. Close the valve after you are sure the tank is full. (
|| Hook up trailer
and chain. (Don't hook up brake wiring).
||Squirt dish soap on
||Shallow ramps may
require you to extend trailer tongue.
||Guide trailer down
||Make sure ballast
tank valve is open.
||Verify centerboard is
||Raise rudder &
pin. You only have to drag the rudder a couple of times before you start
||Guide boat on
||Winch boat on trailer
(double loading might work)
||Secure bow winch
||Slowly drive out,
stop and let water drain. Comment loudly to observers that you'll get that leak
fixed some day.
||Tie Down boat.
||Tie Down motor so it
does not bounce.
||Remove vang and
||Install rear mast
||Install gin pole and
attach one side to jib halyard the other to mainsheet. Attach bottom end of
mainsheet to "U" bolt in anchor locker. Tension mainsheet so jib
halyard takes the load. Secure mainsheet to bow mooring cleat.
||Verify that jib
halyard is securely tied -- use a cleat, don't trust the rope clutches
||Tension red jib
halyard (verify it is not main halyard) so pole is about 10 degrees. Secure
halyard to cleat on side of deck & lock line stopper.
forestay/roller furler drum. Bungee headsail to mast so the furler won't flop
around when lowering the mast.
||With mainsheet hooked
on bow mooring cleat, ease tension, and lower mast onto crutch. You'll have
to give it a good shove to get it started down.
||Remove mast step pin,
disconnect mast base from step. Replace pin, vang strap, and cotter pin.
||When you slide the
mast forward the head of the mast will dip close enough to the ground for
someone to remove the Windex.
||Lower and slide the
mast forward on mast crutch until base of mast rests on pulpit.
These instructions are for entertainment only. The author knows
nothing about boats so you should take all of this with a grain of salt. Get
some lessons. Use of any part of these procedures is at your own risk.
Your decisions, adjustments and actions must be based strictly on your
own knowledge and research. If you want to sue me, forget it as all my money is
in a Swiss Bank Account or buried in a secret location, yada, yada, yada, etc,