Hints and Tips



Sun Odyssey 37 Mainsheet Track Upgrade

I installed a 2 metre long Harken traveler, the end pieces were custom made by the local stainless shop - Klacko Marine, great work. The traveler is so much better and easier to use. The first step was acknowledging that I would never be happy with the old Goiot unit. The unit was quite short and had significant wear. The centre pin was very loose in the traveler car and showed signs of coming apart.

The Harken parts were purchased off Ebay, I added a couple of blocks and the cool Harken black line that I bought at Defender. (a US online store). The end pieces were first mocked up in wood, then I fit the unit beside the old traveler. My stainless shop duplicated the wood pieces in stainless.

Removing the old traveler was tedious. First remove all the headliners. Then take the nuts off the back of the 6 very long bolts. The bolts were well bedded with a 3M 4200 like substance, so it all was hammered up from below. I used the Harken track with blind holes, the bolts slide in the track beneath the beam. This way I could reuse the holes in the deck with the new bolts.

The stainless end pieces are secured with 4 bolts each, just drilled into the deck and seated with 4200 again. There was lots of room for nuts and washers below decks. One tip I always adhere to - put the deck fitting on the 4200 and leave it. Then come back the next day and tighten up the nuts on the back. This way you don't squeeze out all the sealant before it's set. Plus I put masking tap around the fitting to keep excess sealant from getting on the deck.

I made new pads for the cheek blocks, I just couldn't get used to them angled to the "wrong" side. The end control pieces of the Harken unit are chamfered enough so the line can angle down without rubbing. The car is a Harken 3000 unit, the beam is the big boat size.

An added bonus, with the clutch open the line leads to the winch and my crew (wife) has no problems sliding the line off the winch to drop the traveler.

I took the old unit to Bacon sails in Annapolis and have never missed it.


Dennis Angle - SO37 Chumu