Today we added a third reef to the boom

The previous weekend I managed to get the genoa and main attached with Emma, in quite blustery conditions in the marina.

This weekend Ben and Ollie came down to help work out how to get the slab reefing setup.

The reefing system consisted of lines running inside the boom back to the the mast, with 3 clutches at the far end of the boom.

Two reefing lines were of the correct length, but the third (the green and blue rope pictured below) was the length of the boom and no longer.


I found what looked like a third reefing line in a bag of ropes, so we removed a split pin on the end of the boom (topping lift end) which released 3 plastic wheels to give us more room.

My attempt to attach the line to the short rope and pull through the boom failed, so we lost the short rope.

So we had to figure out a way to thread a line through the boom. After several failed attempts, an awesome guy called Steve who was working on his own boat, came up with the solution.

Queue a “Cable Access Kit”, which is basically like a long bendy chimney brush, with various attachments such as hooks or eye hole attachments, which you can use to push electrical wires into into tight spaces.


We attached a reefing line to the thin bendy pole, and after a few unsuccessful attempts, we managed to thread the line through the boom and out the other end.


I’m not sure how else we could have done this, without taking the main off, taking the boom off and tipping it on its end and letting gravity do its job.

Finished article


A massive thank you to Ollie and Ben for their patience and resolve.


Author: Tim Butler

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  • Reply Ben July 2, 2013 at 8:45 am

    You forgot to mention how burnt we got 😀

    • Reply todayiboughtaboat August 15, 2013 at 5:01 pm

      Sorry, yes we also got very burnt!

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