Schaefer 1100 Roller Furling System
This page was last updated on 30 January 2002

Last fall, we purchased the roller furling system to take advantage of 2000 pricing and a good deal from our local sailmaker.  With spring in the air, and the sailmaker hankering for a hoist measurement so they could build out new genoa, it was time to assemble the system, at least partially.

rfstep1.jpg (69880 bytes)The first step was to obtain a new headstay, which I purchased from my rigger.  He installed a swaged terminal at the lower end, but left the top end raw to accept a Stalok terminal that is part of the roller furling kit.  We had measured the old headstay that came with the boat, but I wanted to double check before cutting the new one to the proper size.  To do this, I stretched it out in the back yard by  tying one end to the deck and using my tractor to pull it taut.  Then, I was able to get an accurate measurement.  I also disassembled part of the old decrepit roller furler that was installed so I could determine whether the turnbuckle was open or closed.  (open).  The measurement, pin to pin with the turnbuckle open, was 31'-8-1/2".  I made some subtractions to the length to account for parts of the roller furling system--the lower link plate, the Stalok terminal, and a double toggle at the upper end.  This made for a total deduction of 8-3/8", so I cut my new headstay (turnbuckle open) to 31'-0-1/8".

rfparts.jpg (54952 bytes)rfstep2.jpg (49796 bytes)I laid out all the parts that came with my furling system.  This included a number of aluminum foils, the drum assembly, connectors, rivets, and a few other pieces.  With everything organized, I was ready to begin.  The first thing to do was to disassemble the drum assembly, so I did that according to the instructions.

rfstep3.jpg (139688 bytes)Next, I installed the short link plate at the bottom of the headstay, and closed the turnbuckle as required.  Then, I slid the lower swivel over the top of the stay and down to the bottom, securing it with a pin.

rfstep4.jpg (120292 bytes)I slid the torque tube assembly over the stay, and secured it to the lower swivel as required.  This tube is where the turnbuckle resides, and it is relatively easily disassembled for easy turnbuckle adjustment.

frstep5.jpg (112540 bytes)Next, I slid down the first, special section of foil extrusion, which is designed to slip into the torque tube and is then clamped in place with a special fitting.

rfstep7.jpg (139356 bytes)The next part was the stainless steel feeder, which attached directly to the lowermost section.

rfstep6.jpg (125552 bytes)With the  feeder installed, I began slipping full extrusions over the stay, and connecting them with special connector pieces that come with the kit.  Each joint is then secured with eight rivets--four in each end.  I continued installing the extrusions in this way until I was about 8' from the top of the stay.
rfstep8.jpg (138532 bytes)Near the top of the stay, I had to cut the last  extrusion to length.  Laying the last two pieces out, I determined the final length as called for in the instructions and cut the extrusion with a hacksaw.  Then, I installed it in the same way.  This leaves a couple inches of the stay exposed at the top. I then slid the upper swivel assembly over the top and down the stay.

rfstep10.jpg (139552 bytes)The top of the stay is then secured with a special joint connector, and covered with an aluminum cap.

rfstep9.jpg (86196 bytes)Here is the completed foil assembly.



With the foil installed, it was time to install the Norseman terminal at the top.  I had never done this before, and wasn't quite sure what was involved.  

To read about installing Sta-Lok terminals, which are similar to Norseman, please click here.

stalok1.jpg (85128 bytes)First, you install the lower portion of the fitting over the wire and push it down out of the way; then, you unlay the wire, exposing the core.

stalok2.jpg (94864 bytes)Then, you install the supplied cone over the core, leaving an amount of core equal to 1-1/2 X the wire diameter exposed above the core.  With this done, you have to reform the outer wires over the core, keeping it in the right location.  This was sort of a pain, but worked out OK once I got the hang of it.

stalok3.jpg (90828 bytes)Then, you bring the lower half of the fitting up and screw in the eye/top of the fitting.  You screw it down tight, then remove the top and check to ensure that the wires are evenly distributed around the cone.  Mine were.  Then, you apply a  gob of sealant inside the fitting and screw down the top again, making sure that sealant comes out the bottom of the fitting.  Unscrewing the top one last time, I applied some thread locking compound and tightened it the final time.  The fitting is now installed.

At this point, the furler is assembled as much as it can be until the mast is stepped.  At that time, the turnbuckle will have to be accessed again to tune the mast.  When that is all set, the drum can be reassembled.

After the mast was stepped, I completed the installation.  All I had to do was reinstall the parts of the drum, which I had left off during initial installation to protect the components.  The drum comes in four pieces--two halves for the top and bottom sections--that simply screw together once inserted in slots in the furling lower swivel.  Then, the stainless steel line guard could be installed.  Of course, I had to be very careful not to drop anything overboard!




I finally got the drum completely installed.  It took a little while to get the stainless guard aligned properly--it was tough getting the allen screws started in the tight space beneath the drum.  Plus, everything is 100 times harder when you're surrounded by water.

Once that was done, I led the furling line aft through a series of block (see below) to the cockpit.  with everything set up, I called my sailmaker to come out and take final measurements for the new genoa I had ordered months before.  We had agreed that we wanted to make sure that the hoist was exactly right, and that meant having the mast stepped and furler installed to be sure.  However, I only had to wait a few days for my sail to be completed.  When it was, I hoisted it up and tried my new gear.  It was wonderful, although it looked like maybe I'd have to adjust the placement of the forwardmost block a little bit.

When I installed the lifelines and stanchions, I also installed some neat Schaefer Clear Step guide blocks.  They slip over the tops of the stanchions and are secured wherever you want them with a set screw.   These keep the roller furling line out of the way.  There are three of these blocks--one on each stanchion--plus a spring-mounted block on the pulpit.  These are part of a kit I purchased for my Schaefer unit, although the kit comes only with two stanchion blocks, so I bought a third separately.



We have now used the system for a full season.  We are extremely happy with it--it rolls very easily, and has never been a problem.  No maintenance was required.  I rerouted the furling line slightly after I found that the line would sometimes become too loose when unfurling, which allowed it to once get stuck at the forward side of the drum.  I was easily able to clear the snag, and I noticed it before it became any more of a problem.  Moving the pulpit-mounted spring block further forward provided a better lead, and the system was flawless thereafter.


Glissando, Pearson  Triton #381

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