Kicker – Advanced High Load Solutions
Introduction and Comparison Chart
New from Southeast Sailboats is a range of free running high load blocks from Harken, Allen and Ronstan that make it easier to pull the kicker/vang on. These block assemblies are available with or without an SK99 Dyneema primary line spliced on. The table below shows the main attributes of each solution.
Our Harken based solution uses a 29mm Fly block with Dyneema loop and shackle/key. The 29mm Fly block features a titanium sheave for strength/light weight, and our Dyneema loop has been strength tested at Marlow ropes to greater than 1000Kg. The kicker key is the newer/stronger type and the shackle screw is secured with Locktite – we leave nothing to chance. Weight of the assembly without primary line is 48g. This is what Team GBR sailor Michael Beckett has to say about it…”The first time I used the Harken fly block, in place of the old typical wire block at the top of the vang, it was a distinct and welcome improvement. Attached to the vang key with a neat soft-attach and shackle it has no issues taking the load of the vang, whilst significantly reducing the friction in the system. The new block doesn’t look that different to the old, it really is just a simple case of making the vang much easier to pull on. I would recommend this to anyone looking to improve their control lines in any way, but particularly to any smaller sailors who feel like they ‘should’ be depowering more but struggle to pull enough vang on. Also, for anyone looking to change from a 15:1 to 12:1 system to help keep control lines tidy with less rope lying around; this block will really help.”
Earlier this year Southeast Sailboats asked Allen if they would manufacture a custom version of their 2030 Extreme High Load block so that the kicker key could be attached to the block without using a loop/shackle. This new block is now available. Featuring Allen patented dynamic bearing technology with CNC machined aluminium side cheeks and a precision turned stainless steel sheave this 30mm block makes a significant difference to the free running of the kicker making it easier to pull on. The Allen solution is neater as it integrates the kicker key, but a fraction heavier at 58g excluding primary line, due to the stainless steel sheave.
Our Ronstan based solution uses a 30mm RF35019HL high load block with Dyneema loop and shackle/key. Our Dyneema loop has been strength tested at Marlow ropes to greater than 1000Kg. The kicker key is the newer/stronger type and the shackle screw is secured with Locktite – we leave nothing to chance. Weight of the assembly without primary line is 62g.