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Upffront 2020 Foredeck Club LEADERBOARD

Trogear Bowsprits - Installing Above Existing Bow Rollers

by Phil Anniss 18 Nov 2021 09:00 GMT
Trogear Bowsprit installation ©

Retrofitting a bowsprit, to allow the use of code zero and asymmetric sails, is an increasingly popular performance upgrade for both cruisers and offshore racing sailors. A big consideration for installation is the setup of any existing hardware on your bow. In this article we look at specialist retrofit bowsprit manufacturers, Trogear, and the variety of installation methods available to cope with different bow layouts.

Trogear's preferred installation methods are through-hull or using deck mounting brackets, but both of these options require a relatively clear bow. The presence of a single or double channel bow roller will, in many cases, impede the ability of the sprit to be raised / lowered, which is one of its primary benefits.

On most boats above 35ft a bow roller is a very common feature. Over the years therefore, the Trogear team have become experts in adapting a large variety of bow configurations to accommodate their bowsprits, and they have also recently launched their universal bow roller brackets.

With a double roller channel the universal bow roller brackets will generally provide the perfect solution and, depending on the widths of the channels, the bowsprit can be mounted either outside or between the two brackets.

A single channel is a little bit more complicated. One solution is to add a second channel, or a partial channel / custom bracket can be fabricated to be bolted / welded to the side of the single channel, to serve as the attachment point for the Trogear brackets.

The use of the Trogear bow roller brackets means the sprit operates clear above the channel / anchor. This does mean you lose a small amount of available luff length, for the code zero or asymmetric spinnaker. However, on most cruising boats this is not an issue.

In addition to the bracket options, there are many different possible variations, depending on the setup and customer preferences:

  • For example, with a double bow roller it is possible to do a proper Through-hull installation, below the channels. In this case, the compromise is that the sprit will not be able to pivot upwards, and it is mounted with a fixed bobstay.
  • Sometimes, if the geometry allows, the sprit can be installed directly on the roller /channel itself, without brackets. This may require some modification of the roller or spacers to adapt to the geometry of the bowsprit.
  • Some customers chose to shorten their roller(s) so that the sprit can pass unimpeded during pivoting.

There are a very large variety of bow configurations, but the Upffront / Trogear technical teams are on hand to help you through every step of the retrofit journey. We are happy to help determine the best solution for your boat, in advance of purchase, and provide guidance on any custom fabrication required. This will often involve you providing detailed photos and measurements of any channels/ rollers, and where necessary we can provide drawings of the final solution.

The Trogear universal bow roller brackets are a standard thickness and designed for use with the AS40, AS50 and Atlas bowsprits.

If you have any questions about retrofitting a bowsprit to your boat you can contact us at , or by filling in the Bowsprit Enquiry Form.

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