Posted by: yachtanomaly | November 1, 2011

Equipment redux – part duex

Coming down the coast of Maine, I lost a Tylaska spool shackle when the sail flogged it loose. These are, according to Tylaska “flog proof”. They are a small bit of kit machined from aluminum round stock, but they are quite proud of them: about $50 discount priced for $2 worth of material – material that sinks.

It looked to me like the spool shackle was not sized optimally for the line anyway, so I made a few myself in the dimensions required – for research purposes. It took about 1/2 an hour to program the Prototrak lathe, and then about 2 minutes to make one. And an additional 2 minutes to make another. I did not pretty them up, thought I would wait to see if they work (and if they sink…).

The generic version of the Tylaska Spool Shackle

They worked just fine.

At the US Sailboat show in Annapolis, we ran across the Tylaska booth. I asked them about it, and they “never heard of this happening”. It turns out I am the source of things that people “never heard of happening”. This was not a singular occurrence. He took some notes but his interest stopped short of handing me a replacement which happened to be sitting there right on the table.

Another failure off the coast of Maine was the leaking Navtec vang hydraulic cylinder. It was leaking at the fill port, and the local representative could not get it filled and sealed again. Off it went to Navtec, and after some discussion I had them put a high pressure Schrader fill valve, which is the modern way. Unfortunately, the same cylinder now leaks at the piston seal, perhaps because it has been disassembled too many times in its young life. So off it will go to Navtec again. It has travelled far more miles than the boat.


‘Anomaly’ is currently hauled out in Cardinal, Viriginia



  1. Nice to see you “growing” your own shackles, but while you mention the “sunk” cost of the Tylaska, you fail to mention the sunk cost of the milling equipment needed to make one. I suppose Tylaska doesn’t have a problem with it unless they show up on Alibaba Express for $10. Then again, i don’t think yachting is really about saving money. But please do let me congratulate you and not flog this subject to death.

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