Chip Ford's 1974 Catalina 22 Restoration Project
Sail #3282  l  Marblehead, Massachusetts

The never-ending project to fill my hole in the ocean while bailing it out

Preparing for Sailing Season '09
Replacing the Boom

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Click thumbnails for a larger picture


Initially and for years I thought the foot of the old main sail was stretched when there was no room on Chip Ahoy's boom for an outhaul. When I replaced it last spring with a new Ullman Offshore main sail there still was no room for an outhaul. From inquiries to the discussion group, I discovered the boom that came with the boat was 4 inches too short -- it should be 10 feet in length! Last fall I found a replacement locally, with the plan to replace it for the upcoming season.

I hung the two booms on the mast so I can remove the hardware from the old boom (top) and replace it on the longer boom (bottom). I'll run the lazy jacks and single-line reefing lines, setup the boomkicker and boom vang, to insure a more perfect placement this time.  (Apr. 19, 2009)

That additional 4 inches ought to provide room for an outhaul. The diameter of the two booms are of slightly different shape, so I don't think simply replacing the end caps will work. I'll likely need to drill and tap for the pigtail tang.

Unseasonably warm weather arrived today, hitting 85 at 4pm and breaking the record for this date by two degrees. Bob Donovan and his crew who park their trucks and store their plows and equipment in our lot delivered a surplus workbench (with an old vice attached) yesterday -- the perfect setup for working on the booms!  (Apr. 25, 2009)

I was out by late morning, moved the booms off Chip Ahoy and got ready to begin swapping the hardware. The workbench makes this project a whole lot easier -- and that vice sure is coming in handy.

Hallelujah, it feels like summer's arrived! In celebration I even dug out the shorts and boat sandals from winter storage. By late afternoon I had some of the hardware swapped, but it's slow going. The old boom's hardware is coming off in pieces -- I'm either snapping off screws due to thread galling or drilling out rivets before I can replace the part with the newer, better quality tackle from my old (short) boom. Tomorrow's weather forecast is for more of the same, sunny and in the 80s until late afternoon showers and possible thunderstorms roll through.  (Apr. 25, 2009)

I completed swapping out the booms hardware late today. The weather was again unseasonably warm, another record-breaker at 87 by 4pm and mostly sunny. I love it! In the next day or two I'll hang the 'new' boom and run the rigging, see how everything fits and works. The weather forecast for the next few days looks great; cooler, in the 70s tomorrow, then back into the high eighties on Tuesday. I seem to be recovering from my spleenectomy nicely (the incision's scar is visible in the above photo) -- I was more aware of my skinned knuckles today than the surgery!  (Apr. 26, 2009)

The 'new' boom is ready to be hung.  (Apr. 28, 2009)

Today was another temperature record-breaker for the date, 92 at 2pm, about the time I finished hanging the boom and getting it rigged.

Once the boom was attached to the mast, I added the main sheet, lazy jacks, boom vang, and boomkicker.

Everything seems to be there and in the right position.

I changed the direction of the lazy jacks line, turning the cheek block around, so the line leads aft now where it'll be easier to reach without going forward. The cheek block and line's cleat is on the opposite side of the boom.

The new boomkicker adjustable boom track, recently purchased from Catalina Direct, installed.


The boom seen from the starboard side.

The boom seen from the port side. (Note the repositioned lazy jacks cheek block and new cleat for its line.)

Mission accomplished -- the boom has been successfully replaced. All that remains is to hoist the main sail and rig the outhaul, make sure the reefing lines still work, and add the new cunningham.  (Apr. 28, 2009)

Continued . . .

Moving on with Season 2009 improvements
It's never-ending ... but Sailing Season '09 has arrived!

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