Please select your home edition
Edition
Allen Brothers

Keyball Review with Quinn Edmonds & Fin Oliver

by Ben Harden 30 Apr 15:59 BST

Allen's first recipient of the Allen Academy Optimist was Quinn Edmonds back in 2016. Since then, Quinn has gone onto sail an RS Feva very successfully with his crew Fin Oliver. The boys are now starting to transition into the 29er, making sure they have a head start once they become too big for the Feva.

When transitioning to a new boat, such as the 29er, there are many new things and skills that a sailor will be required to learn. The most important for the crew in this case being the ability to trapeze. So, the first thing any crew will need before learning to trapeze is a harness. Being well informed of the latest Allen products Fin decided he would try the Keyball trapeze system. Here's what he thought:

"Quinn and I have been transitioning into the 29er, as with starting to sail any new boat we needed some new kit. One of the first things we needed was a trapeze harness. Luckily when we first started, I was able to get my hands on an old traditional hook harness, however, I didn't find it very comfortable.

I also kept getting the hook caught on things when we capsized, as you do when you first learn to sail a 29er! I found I got stuck on the gunnel quite often. I soon decided that I needed to find a better alternative.

Having sailed with Quinn for some time now, I know all about the Allen range of hardware. I was aware that they offered an alternative, the Keyball system. As soon as I could, I bought one and have been really pleased I did ever since.

Unlike a traditional hook system, it has just a plastic socket molding on the harness. I soon found that it is less likely to cause damage to the boat as it has no sharp edges. Also, I found it much easier to clip and unclip compared to the traditional hook. I have the Banks Sails version of the harness which I find incredibly more comfortable and fitted than the other harnesses I had tried.

When using the Keyball system I feel very secure when on the wire and still have very good movement and flexibility around the boat. This has made me much more confident in the boat and I feel that I can tack and gybe better than I could with the traditional hook.

I have been asked several questions by coaches and other sailors about the Keyball system, such as; how I hold on during the exits of tacks and gybes. Personally, I think that even though it has a thin handle my hand still always lands on it, and the flexible ball on the end is easy to slide into the socket on the harness. So, I don't think that grip is a problem.

I don't think that anyone would have any trouble adjusting to using the Keyball if they decided to switch from a traditional hook. Overall, I really like this Keyball system and don't think I'll be changing anytime soon." Allen launched the Keyball trapeze system at METS 2014 and since then Allen has gone onto work with some of the top harness manufacturers such as Zhik and Banks Sails to provide an alternative to the savvy sailor who is open to trying something new.

The Keyball system is available as both a ready-made harness and as a retro fit-able kit. To find out more about the system watch the following YouTube videos or head over to the trapeze section on the Allen website.

Keyball walkthrough with designer Tom Clayton and OJS photography:

YachtsandYachting.com information video:

Related Articles

Team Allen Dominates Wild Weymouth
A testing week at Weymouth for the 49er and Nacra 17 Europeans Team Allen sailors emerged triumphant last Sunday after a testing week at Weymouth for the 49er and Nacra 17 European and Open European Championships, an important step towards Tokyo 2020. Posted on 22 May
Allen Brothers to support the 420 Worlds
Serious prizes for podium finishers Allen Brothers, the leading UK manufacturer of performance sailboat hardware, is pleased to announce its support for the 420 World Championships taking place this summer in Vilamoura, Portugal. Posted on 20 May
Allen to sponsor the RS600 Nationals
19 boats have already entered with Stone SC Allen Brothers is pleased to announce its continued support of the RS600 fleet by sponsoring the Nationals taking place at Stone Sailing Club over the 28th – 30th June. Posted on 18 May
Allen Academy Optimist
This year's lucky recipient has been selected Another sailing season has started and with it the Allen Academy Optimist has also gone to a new home. This year's lucky recipient of the Allen Academy Optimist is Patrick Bromilow of West Kirby Sailing Club. Posted on 13 May
Allen Brothers gains ISO 9001 accreditation
Recognition for British company from the United Kingdom Accreditation Service The UK's leading manufacturer of performance sailing hardware, Allen Brothers, has recently undergone an audit to gain ISO 9001 certification, and as a result, the British company now has accreditation. Posted on 18 Apr
Interview with Team Allen's Laura Marimon
We speak to the Chris Rashley's Nacra 17 crew at the RYA Dinghy Show 2019 Mark Jardine, Managing Editor of YachtsandYachting.com and Sail-World.com, talks to Team Allen's Nacra 17 crew Laura Marimon at the RYA Dinghy Show 2019. Posted on 19 Mar
New Pivoting Mast Step from Allen
Designed for dinghies or small keelboats that have easily adjustable rigging whilst sailing The pivoting mast step is designed for dinghies or small keelboats that have easily adjustable rigging whilst sailing. By allowing the mast heel to pivot it reduces loading points in the deck of the boat and spreads the forces more evenly. Posted on 18 Mar
Performance Sailing magazine
Allen Brothers celebrate the launch of their new website To celebrate the launch of its new website, Allen Brothers is offering its Performance Sailing Magazine as a free download from the new site. The magazine features information on all 2019 product launches taking place at this year's RYA Dinghy Show. Posted on 26 Feb
New products and what to see at the Dinghy Show
Allen Brothers will be showcasing new ranges and several boats On the 2nd of March the doors will open to the public for the 2019 RYA Dinghy Show and Allen Brothers will once again be displaying a range of new hardware and fully fitted boats on stand C82 in the Great Hall. Posted on 25 Feb