Installing a new boomkin, stern pulpit and radar arch

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On Tuesday (January 13th), the additional parts for the stern boomkin and pulpit arrived from Westsail Parts Company to Blackline Marine Inc. The most important parts that we were waiting for were the boomkin pads and of course all the hardware to install the boomkin and pulpit. As soon as the items arrived, we were back in business and started the process of installing the stainless steel boomkin to the stern of the boat.

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As mentioned in our previous post, we removed the old wooden boomkin and it was a good thing as we were seeing signs of wear underneath the wooden parts and on the deck. All the holes were sealed with an epoxy resin and the deck painted with a similar grey colour as to the rest of the deck.

Wooden boomkin from above with mainsheet winch

Wooden boomkin from above with mainsheet winch

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Port side boom kin


Deck after removal of wooden boomkin

Deck after removal of wooden boomkin

The new stainless steel boomkin is made of 1-1/4″ inner diameter pipe with an 1-5/8″ outer diameter pipe, and a stainless crosspiece similar to the one on the old wooden boomkin with a 4″ vertical web. The boomkin mounts on the side of the hull with the hull pads on the end getting bolted just below the rub rail instead of on top on the deck.

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The first step to the installation was to level the boomkin prior to attaching the boomkin pads to the hull. We spent some time making sure that the boomkin/pulpit was level and that the whole setup matched the sheer line of the hull towards the aft.  There was a lot of discussion among the four of us before we were completely satisfied with the location of the boomkin pads against the underside of the rub rail and the level of the boomkin and pulpit. This process seems easy and probably is, but we wanted to drill new holes once.

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One hole was drilled on each side of the hull into the lazarette as per the instruction manual and after one final check the boomkin/pulpit was removed so that Blackline Marine could make a modification to the pulpit – they added a arm-bracket to the starboard side of the pulpit to accommodate our Simrad tiller pilot.

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Old tiller pilot mounting arm



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New and improved tiller pilot arm mount


The previous lifelines were also to be replaced with stainless steel pipe rails but for these rails to fit properly and in line to our boom gallows, the rails had to be bent using a pipe bender.  We also took this opportunity before completely installing the pulpit to run all the wires for the radar, hailer and stern light up through the deck, through the inside of the stainless steel pipe of the pulpit and arch, and then reconnect to the devices .

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The new boom kin, stern pulpit, and radar arch look awesome and has freed up so much space in the back/stern area. It is amazing how much space the old deck mounted boomkin took up.  We are eventually thinking of moving the solar panels to the stern area and attaching them to the rails but that is a project for down the road.

New stern pulpit, boomkin and radar arch - port view

New stern pulpit, boomkin and radar arch – port view

New stern pulpit, boomkin and radar arch - aft view

New stern pulpit, boomkin and radar arch – aft view

New stern pulpit, boomkin and radar arch with a starboard ladder

New stern pulpit, boomkin and radar arch with a starboard ladder

Finally, even though we have a mid-boom traveler in place on our Westsail to handle the mainsheet, we decided to go with fiddle block with the cam cleat built-in to handle securing the mainsheet in the stern area. A hoop was welded across the boomkin pipes with a strap welded at the top in the centre over the tiller. With this set-up, we now don’t need to use the mid-boom traveler anymore. The mainsheet was re-run through the traveler and to the new fiddle block with the cam cleat to give us a 6:1 purchase. We hope this system will work for us when sailing and that we don’t have too much of a purchase.

Mainsheet fiddle block and cam cleat

Mainsheet fiddle block and cam cleat

The only thing we did not add back onto the stern pulpit that was removed was our Aries windvane; something we are potentially looking at replacing down the road with a more up to date windvane.

On another note, while we were living on the hard, we discovered that our boat was ‘hot’!  Actually, our inverter was ‘hot’ (something was loose inside and was touching the casing of the inverter); in turn, our inverter was grounded to all the stanchions.  Rob discovered this while getting off the boat while touching the stanchion and metal scaffolding at the same time after it had rained; the result was a shock similar to touching your tongue to a 9 volt battery (apparently something Rob and all the other guys in the yard could relate too). We got Stan and Simon from Canoe Cove Marina to quickly replace our 1750 watt inverter with a 1500 watt Xantrex Xpower Inverter; and once again our boat is ‘cool’ again.  Phew!

We’d like to thank Brent, Matt and their crew (Jeff, Andrea) at Blackline, and Stan and Simon at Canoe Cove for all their help and advice. ~ Sophia & Rob


6 responses to “Installing a new boomkin, stern pulpit and radar arch

  1. Pingback: Heading ‘home’ to Cowichan Bay | Sailing Pups·

  2. Looks like some great improvements! What are you thinking of replacing the Aries wind vane with? Any reason you’re not satisfied with it? Just wondering 🙂

    • Hey Guys, Our Aries is like the first or second model (1968-1971). It’s extremely heavy and solid which is good and bad; the main thing is that we can’t get replacement parts so with the current upgrades we decided to make a change, maybe with a Monitor wind vane. Any thoughts from your end? R

      • I can imagine it’d be hard to get parts for one of the older Aries vanes—you don’t see many around. We used an Aries ‘Circumnavigator’ (not sure what year, but it was pretty new, the Danish version) for our old boat that we got second-hand and it was great. Held up well, steered most of the way, never needed new parts. The new boat came with a Cape Horn, which we both really like. It’s super sturdy and seems to steer a bit straighter, though that could be the boat, too. I don’t have any experience with Monitors, so can’t help out there, but we do recommend the Cape Horn.

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