I am pleased to report a happy ending to this one (or so it appears as I
haven’t actually sailed with the result yet, so fingers crossed!)
Today I took the end fitting off the boom, which amid much WD40, came off
remarkably easily considering it has been there 5.5 years from new. I then
used a 3 metre length of 25mm copper tubing with another metre or so of
stiff fencing guide wire taped to the end, hooked at the end, to pull the
sliding block back to the outer end of the boom. With the same contraption I
was the able to re-thread the escaped reefing line, though I had to draw
myself a diagram to get it right, following the way reef no. 2 looked. I
re-assembled it, found no bits left over, tested it as best I could and it
seemed as good as new. The longest part of the job was actually undoing a
blood knot around a shackle which had gone more or less solid with years of
being winched up tight.
Phew! What a relief, as usually such jobs involve me in much sweat and
swearing and several important parts lost over the side, but this actually
took less time than I imagined. Amazingly I was in shirtsleeves (in mid
November!) bathed in sunshine, and it was really rather pleasant.
My success is due in no small part to the advice I received here, so many
thanks for it indeed.
Duncan – ‘Fellowship’