Tidesmarine Sail Track [E35-3]

Hagar2sail

Member III
I know quite a few boats on this forum have Tidesmarine sail tracks. We are looking to install one on our E35-3 and I ordered the measuring kit. I went down to the boatyard the other day and measured everything, but two things came up.

1. The gate opening is single sided and tides specifies a double opening, this would render my gate useless if the track ever was removed but the track was modified as they recommend.

2. The gooseneck is too close to the gate opening. They want 10” and ours is at 7”.

One thing I noticed is the gooseneck is sitting over what I would expect is a transition from the blank plate that hides the wiring track below the gooseneck and the sail track above. I am wondering if I could unscrew the gooseneck and then just feed the track up the mast from that opening??

F60C1F06-6973-4FB0-923C-FBB813A0CAB3.jpeg

Anyone who has installed one, have you had similar issues? Did you just modify your track or did you get clever in a similar or different manner?
 

Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Moderator
Blogs Author
1. I don't think anyone will ever go back to the 30+ years old sail track once they have seen Paree (I mean the smooth-running Tides system). Enlarging the gate in the track is simple with a grinder, and the opening could always be modified back to normal with a side plate.

2. Seems to me that removing the gooseneck gudgeon would work fine to allow the track to be inserted. There is a good deal of pushing involved in installing the long, coiled-up insert into the existing track, and I think the 10" is just to give the installer some room.

But ask Tides, they're used to all sorts of issues like this. The installation is in reality quite straightforward. As you know, the big Tides slugs probably need a sailmaker to install them on the mainsail, and they make the luff of the sail stack higher on the boom, which might require a new or altered sail cover. It's all really, really worth it.
 

Hagar2sail

Member III
Christian, thanks for the thoughts. I didn’t think about the slides making the luff higher. Our cover and mainsail are both old, so maybe this should wait until we are ready to do both.....

Don’t know what you mean by a side plate? If we modify the track to Tides specifications, I don’t think we would be able to go back no matter what, though I am sure I would never want to. I’m just always hesitant to do anything I can’t reverse if I can avoid it. As I see it I would have to open my gate up on both sides and for another 3” longer than it is, so the plate would no longer tuck under one side and it would not be long enough anyway.
 

markvone

Sustaining Member
Hagar,

If the thumb screw knob and plate in your existing mainsail track (in your picture) is your current mainsail slug stop, it should still work with a double sided track opening. Or, raise the stop up to just above the new double slot. But with the new Tides track installed you wouldn't need the old mainsail stop and I doubt anyone would want to revert to the original track. Also, as a last resort, a machinist could make an external gate for the track, or check for one at Rigrite (an audible GASP! is heard from the crowd).

I would be reluctant to try to remove those stainless gooseneck screws in the alum mast section just to install the Tides track. Seems likely to expand the scope of this project. I would definitely call Tides for install tips.

Mark
 

markvone

Sustaining Member
Hagar,

Edit: A new stop plate in the old track that is tall enough to reach ABOVE the double slot, using the existing threaded hole and thumb screw is all you would need to go back to the original track.

Mark
 

c.gustafson

Member I
Hi Hagar,

I installed the Tidesmarine sail track on my 38-200 about two years ago --- and I'm glad that I did. Like you, I didn't have the recommended space between the goose neck and the gate opening. I had to remove the boom, but I did NOT remove the stainless steel harness that is screwed into the mast. Worked just fine. I suggest you simply give it a try and see if it slides up the mast track reasonably well. I will say that it is not easy --- it does take some effort to get the track all the way up the mast. Since your mast is down, you have an advantage in that someone can pull the mast track from the top as another person is pushing the mast track in from the bottom.
 

JSM

Member III
I installed a Strong Track on my last boat and loved it. Used a Dremel tool with a ball shaped grinding bit to open up the other side of the track. Very easy.
Keep the track rolled as you are pushing it up the mast. Unrolling only a few feet at a time keeps things very managable.
The Strong Track along with a stack pack and lazy jacks made dousing the main effortless.
 

Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Moderator
Blogs Author
modified back to normal with a side plate?

Mark answered this in #5. (The only issue with an "open" track gate is that the sail slugs fall out of it when the mainsail is lowered. )
 

steven

Member III
very happy with mine. Among the best purchases I have made.
Though the sail stack can be an issue.
As Christian points out you may need a mod to the sail cover.

Also, after installation I could not reach the top of the stack to close the sail cover.
My partial solution is to leave the bottom two slides out of the track so the sail furls low enough for the head to be in reach - just barely.
Have been considering adding a fold out step on the mast.

--Steve
 

Hagar2sail

Member III
Thanks for all the info guys. We are trying to decide if this is going to be in the budget this year. It would really stink if our sail cover didn’t work, and I don’t really want to extend the old cover....so might end up being a package deal with the looming new mainsail.
 
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