I have been looking forward to writing this article. Being a gear freak I honestly bought my first 10 rings, before actually knowing where to put them. And...we are not talking wedding rings here. I investigated for a while, and ended up buying Antal Low Friction Rings from www.svb24.de - who had them in stock and ready to ship to Copenhagen.
Low Friction Rings & What you will see in this article
Story about my experience with low friction rings
Ideas on where to put the low friction rings
Dont's - and there not to put them
- Where to buy them
No bullshit - I don't have any affiliate deals or places do send you shopping. I have experienced that these small rings are too expensive compared to the production price, but the savings compared to replacing your old blocks of various kinds make them worth every cent. However, what really makes them work buying - is because we love tampering with our boat and putting these things on gives you a fun task to go work with.
Where to put low friction rings
Here's a number of ideas for you. Some you will probably implement right away, while you might consider others plain stupid, or useless. However, you mush remember that within financials and general prioritization of maintenance of your vessel these initiatives with the rings, are going to provide you extreme amounts of value for the money in regards to the time/money versus satisfaction model. (I will make a separate article on this model I just realise.)
- The bowsprit for tack-line
- Gross purchasing on vang
- Reefing lines in mail sail
- Furler line leads
- Lazy jacks upgrade
- Genoa car leads
- Gross purchase on backstays
- Fairleads for halyard re-routing
- Cunningham purchase
Where NOT to use Low Friction Rings
Fine tuning of vangs & backstays
High load - fine adjustment
Low friction rings are particularly not good in specific places where the lines will see ongoing adjustment of very high tension. A winch can s save you a lot of times, but when you see a need for specific fine-tuning, the low friction ring provides enough friction to make it difficult to make a very small adjustment to a line under high tension.
Low load - fast release
When easing a sheet or any other line, that is under low pressure, the rings also provide more friction than a tiny block and can have a negative effect on your trimming setup. Don't use them for this. Using a low friction ring for the main sheet, is therefore not advisable. I can assure you this, having sailed a few races on my 24 footer 'Rasta Lis' using a 12 mm ring in stead of a block for part of the main sheet system.
Where to buy low friction rings
Honestly, it doesn't really matter where you buy low friction rings. They are available from a number of brands, and pretty much all decent riggers and chandleries has them in stock.
Here's a few brands that I have noticed.
- Antal low friction rings
- Harken low friction tings
- Windesign low friction rings
- Ronstan low friction rings
- Barton low friction rings
- Ropeye low friction rings
- Allen low friction rings
- Selden low friction rings
- Wichard low friction rings
- Fiori's ring low friction rings
- X Rigging Ring
- Arbpro low friction ring
- Omega pacific (this ring is a much different design.)
- Premium ropes
I bought my first rings from SVB24.de - a german retailer distributing all types of goods. Watch my unboxing below (in danish).
The honest unboxing from SVB24.de
I received the package unboxed it, and pretty much planned for six months what to do with them - as the season didn't really allow for anything boating related at the time.
Click the image to open the video.
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