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Slug gate

A forum for discussing topics relating to older MacGregor/Venture sailboats.

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Slug gate

Postby arknoah » Sat Feb 18, 2012 9:30 pm

Any suggestions for creating a slug gate for my Mac 25 (1984)? I have a single line reefing system, and want to be able to safely reef the main with the slugs falling ever so gently into the gate, and not just flapping around near the mast. I'm not someone who can easily fabricate one myself as Sumner did, though I have seen one for a Catalina 22. Does anyone know if that one or another easily available commercial product might work for me?
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Re: Slug gate

Postby yukonbob » Sun Feb 19, 2012 12:35 pm

try http://www.bwyachts.com/ i don't like the online store so I call them. I had an extra gate sent last year and i think it was $25 shipped up here. Order two incase one makes its way into the drink
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Re: Slug gate

Postby extreem » Sun Feb 19, 2012 6:40 pm

yukonbob wrote:I had an extra gate sent last year and i think it was $25 shipped up here. Order two incase one makes its way into the drink

Bob, do you have a picture of the BWY slug gate? I am also interested in this, but I couldn't find a picture on their website. Is it similar to Sumners?
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Re: Slug gate

Postby yukonbob » Sun Feb 19, 2012 7:48 pm

Image
Also check and see if they still sell their hardware kits, they had a couple with extra pins, forestay pins, gate, shackles, mast bolt, nuts with pretty much everything you could drop in the drink that you need for a Mac.
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Re: Slug gate

Postby seahouse » Sun Feb 19, 2012 8:31 pm

Hey Arknoah! :D

I have an M, and although yours might be different, I found that the location of the slot cut out of the mast track was much too high above the boom for the gate to be really useful.

Sure, it prevented the mainsail slugs from coming out and making a clumsy loose bundle out of the sail, but I still had to remove it (and slide the slugs, one by one, past the opening and back into the lower part of the track) in order to flake or roll the mainsail around the boom and put the mainsail cover on.

I ended up using a small piece of scrap aluminum (was an endcut from a door threshold) over the opening held in place by 3 drilled and tapped 10-32 stainless steel screws. Not a difficult project, even if you’re not handy, and the few tools you do need are cheap, if you have none. I did curve it slightly in a vise to match the outside radius of the mast so it looks like a factory part, and, while it does increase its strength, it's not essential, and really only necessary for aesthetics.

If a sail slug doesn’t happen to align with the cut opening in the mast, aluminum thin enough to be cut with tin snips would even do the job, as the normal pressure put on it would be slight.

The plate and 3 screws easily come loose at the beginning and end of each season when I remove the sail for storage.

For pictures of this see the mods section.

- Brian. :wink:
Last edited by seahouse on Tue Mar 13, 2012 7:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Slug gate

Postby RussMT » Sun Feb 19, 2012 8:35 pm

Sumners solution seems ideal. I don't know why he doesn't market them.

Hey Sum, wanna rethink making those for profit? I bet you could make some extra cash with your super welding skilz.
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Re: Slug gate

Postby snotnosetommy » Sun Feb 19, 2012 9:12 pm

arknoah,
I just looked at bwy yesterday, I believe the slug gate they offer is for M or X, not for M25.
And yes, Sumner's solution is the ideal and elegant solution. However, the sheet metal works just fine for me with a little fine tuning. It (two pieces) has to fit well enough to allow the slugs to drop in and also slide right out again, or you'll hafta go topside to fix it when you hoist sail.
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Re: Slug gate

Postby seahouse » Sun Feb 19, 2012 9:35 pm

Because the cutout of the mast slot is 2'+ or so above the boom, Sum's tool won't work on an M. What's that distance on the X anyone(?)- might work on them.

-Brian. :wink:
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Re: Slug gate

Postby Ixneigh » Mon Feb 20, 2012 7:51 am

I used a piece of starboard about eight Inches long and half inch wide. I made it so part of it inset into the opening so the inside channel the slugs travel through is smooth and flush. They go up and down without ever catching. The plastic is held in place with two small machine screws tapped into the aluminum. Undo the bottom one and pivot the plastic over to remove the sail. The reason the opening is so high is that it is optimized for bolt rope operation. Roger wants people to use the most efficient set up possible, I guess. And hang convenience.
If I ever find myself replacing the mast, I will use one with the cutout for the slugs much lower.

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Re: Slug gate

Postby Catigale » Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:15 am

You can buy the slug gate online from Defender or We$t Marine ...it's a pretty standard piece of kit.
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Re: Slug gate

Postby Doug91mac26s » Mon Mar 12, 2012 2:07 pm

Judging by some of the posts here, I'm not sure everyone is aware of what a slug gate is. If there is a standard unit available from West Marine, I haven't been able to find it, please post a link or a pic.

Here's the link to Sum's video of the device he made. Apparently BWY sells one for the X's and M's, but not the older boats.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VFjyPjJZzdE
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Re: Slug gate

Postby Hamin' X » Tue Mar 13, 2012 9:27 am

Just to clarify: The device shown by yukonbob is a slug stopper. A slug gate is a plate that bolts onto the mast and catches the slugs in a "U" shaped slot, just above the boom.

Rich
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Re: Slug gate

Postby abruzzi » Tue Mar 13, 2012 3:34 pm

One source for something similar is:

http://mastgates.com/

They look to have three designs--the nicest looking is the internal one which stays in place while you push each slug in and up and the gate deflects enough to allow the slug in, but pops back into place to keep the slugs from coming out. The web page design is a bit messy, but there are some videos that demonstrate how things work.

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Re: Slug gate

Postby restless » Tue Mar 13, 2012 4:37 pm

The restless solution for this can be seen here: http://www.ironengineer.com/mac/minimods/slug/index.html

it seems to work very well, and cost nothing but an hour :)
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Re: Slug gate

Postby Sumner » Tue Mar 13, 2012 8:44 pm

restless wrote:The restless solution for this can be seen here: http://www.ironengineer.com/mac/minimods/slug/index.html

it seems to work very well, and cost nothing but an hour :)


I like it...

Image

Open above and ...

Image

Closed. Very nice,

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Last edited by Sumner on Wed Mar 14, 2012 12:39 am, edited 1 time in total.
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