Harken Vang mast pin size

Thread starter #1
Hi all.
I got my hasty eBay purchased Laser1 today. Given the wind decided to move the rig from the radial bottom mast onto the full. Somewhat suprised to find the hole diameter on the mast bracket for the vang/kicker was too small for the (one and only) vang pin I have. The pin is clearly the right diameter for the vang assembly so getting a smaller pin didn't seem like the right option. On inspection I suspect the radial bottom section has had the mast hole drilled out (but could be wear).
The vang is Harken, so I guess this is an upgrade.
- Does anyone know if the harken and standard vang pin diameters are different? (Don't know the age of the mast sections)
- is it safe to drill out the mast bracket hole to accept the harken pin?
- any other options/obvious stuff I'm missing (this is my first foray into boat ownership!)
I'm just aiming for club racing, so not fussed what is class legal.



Well-Known Member
I don't know what the Harken pin diameter is, but the class rules say, "The mast tang hole may be drilled to take a larger pin." No measurements given. I'd say it's safe to enlarge the hole to take whatever pin the Harken fitting takes.

The Radial isn't a reefed Standard. The different rig sizes aren't meant to be used by the same people in different conditions, but by different sized people in all conditions. They're essentially different weight classes. If you're just below 75 kg you can go either way with the Standard and Radial, but try to choose one or the other and adjust your weight a bit instead.

Club racing is racing, and if you're racing, you will have to follow the class rules. Many will likely tell you otherwise, but they're all wrong, period. If you have any rules questions, post them in the "politics" section - I am happy to (try to) answer them, and I believe so is AlanD, who used to be an official measurer. And of course, you can read them yourself here: Laser Class Rules – International Laser Class Association
I just ran into the same problem, the new Harken vang block comes with a 1/4" diameter hole and pin, the lower vang plate on my mast is a 3/16" hole, so it doesn't fit. Thought about reaming it larger, but wanted to check the forums first to see if there is enough room to do so without the vang plate failing/bending/snapping off. Any feedback is greatly appreciated.


Active Member
There are two sizes: the one for the Allan Bros-made vang and the other for the Harken. I found that out when I tried to overcome the standard stoneage technology. When freezing cold, it's only a matter of time before one part drops into the mast-hole... Ultimately, I've opted for a pretty large bow shackle with a pin that exactly fits the hole of the vang! The bow shackle makes it easier to attach a teether that holds the mast in place in case of an emergency (teether = mandatory on big events).

The bow shackle works perfectly, but the nicest solutions are on this page (Caveat Emptor, off course)

West Coast Sailing


Well-Known Member
(teether = mandatory on big events)
A mast retention line is mandatory in all events, big or small. But the shackle sounds like a good idea, I've used one myself in a similar way with the old Allen cleat block + swivel to attach a cunningham block to the tang.



Active Member
Mandatory yes, inspected, controlled or enforced? Never. The only inspection was during the WC under 17. But no-one checks if the line is still there during races. Quite an opposite of what we were used on Oppi tournaments... like, no whistle on the PFD is a no-go. Checked at the gates by the regatta organisation.