Peter Greig has been a rigger for over 40 years – originally from Melbourne, Peter moved to Port Douglas in 1989, and continued rigging in the lovely Queensland seaside port ever since.
Known around Australia for his incredible splicing skills, Pete has been quietly using textile rigging since 2000, not only on yachts but also on communication aerials in PNG.
His convictions are so strong that we thought he would be the perfect man to ask a few questions and learn more about the process:
Textile Rigging is perceived as the “go to” for racing boats. Do you see these textile rigs being standard for cruising production boats in the future? And do you think it is reliable enough for the cruising market?
I am on my 80th job with Dyneema…only three of those are racing boats ! Yes it is absolutely reliable for the cruising market, in 17 years I have not seen a single failure. I have five cruising furlers I have done in the last three years which are retrofitted with Dyneema forestays. The market is cruising boats, however more and more racing boats are attracted to the benefits of Dyneema.
What are the main advantages and disadvantages of textile rigging in your opinion?
Light weight, longevity, easy to work with, comparable to the price of wire. Nothing I have come across is a disadvantage. There has not been any recording of failure in 20 years. Maintenance is non-existent, nothing appears to affect Dyneema.
As a rigger what did you need to learn to adapt your knowledge from wire rigging to textile and fiber rigging?
Not much – splicing was part of my training so I only had to adapt to the construction of Dyneema and it was easy. I guess it is important to keep in close contact with the manufacturers so you are following their criteria.
Do you think the industry – and the various suppliers you work with – has enough fittings available for textile rigging or is there still room to improve?
Some of the manufacturers are slowing changing over to fittings we can retrofit to existing masts. There is no job that cannot have Dyneema fitted to it. You can cover just about every combination. There is always room for improvement and I know that there are more fittings in developement, however in most cases every mast can be retrofitted.
What are your favourite types of products when it comes down to choosing the right fittings for textile rigging?
Friction rings of course, soft blocks, and also soft shackles.
What do insurance companies say about textile rigging?
Insurance companies are accepting Dyneema rigging. It has been around for 20 years and there is no recorded failure anywhere in the world from professionally done splicing. However stainless steel cases have a huge amount of claims
What are the potential risks boat owners should be aware of when going blue water sailing?
Dyneema rigging potentially will outlast stainless steel. Only severe chafing from something very sharp could affect it, but the same way it would affect wire anyway. I have recently worked on a boat that I rigged 15 years ago and which has done 6000 miles in that time – there was absolutely no deterioration visible.