Sint Maarten has almost anything you might want or need in the way of yachts. As a mega yacht haven as well as a Caribbean racing destination, it's here. Prices are not cheap as the services are good but not outrageous either. Being a duty free island helps quit a bit.
Our friends s/v Terrapin had FKG re-rig their 30 year old Valiant 47 and were very happy with the results. We got to watch first hand as they did this. We decided while we were here to take advantage as well and have FKG check our rigging. We knew with 1997 rigging the standard answer on a rigging check would be "you need all new rigging." However, we wanted to know the why, how and every detail in between. Additionally, this would give us a base line and starting point for a future re-rig. FYI - standard re-rig is every 8-10 years, 5-7 in some cases depending on location and sailing conditions...(ie Caribbean salt and sun) and less then 5 years if you are racing.
|Teabagging shows age issue - DON'T go there otherwise!|
Arthur and his helper ( am so sorry I don't remember his name) came out to our boat in the lagoon and immediately got to work inspecting our rig after a few questions. Tom and I watched closely so we could learn as much as possible.
I nearing had heart failure then Arthur...while aloft....started shaking the mast violently. *I was still in amazement at the speed and ease at which Arthur acceded up the stick. It takes me forever to get up there! Then he was swing from the back of the mast out around the to the front and back again like Russel Crowe in Master and Commander. WOW!
They checked everything thoroughly and then came the moment of truth......gulp......"I don't find anything wrong with your rig other than age. It's time you start thinking about a new rig but there isn't anything that screams NOW. If it were my boat, I would do it at the end of the season."
Okay. Again, we knew age would be an issue but we hoped that there wouldn't be anything more. He did find two minor but very important items that needed to be fixed immediately. The pin on the boom has never seemed quite right. Turns out it's the wrong size - as in undersized. Additionally he found that cotter pin on the headstay furler was coming out in a weird way. He took some measurements and came back the next day while we were gone and fixed those.
We were extremely please with FKG. We are told they are on the high end of rigging when it comes to prices. However, they are completely professional, fast and very good (from what we have seen). We will not be re-rigging at this point but sometime in the future. We may or may not have FKG do it but certainly they are high on the list.