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Has anyone had one of these?

Riv

Member
My club has just been given hull 46355, it's got a centre jammer, I've never seen on like this that was original. There are no side deck cleat holes so it must have been sent out like this. I'll probably replace it with a ratchet block anyway. Nice piece of kit though, works well in light winds.DSCF8953.JPG DSCF8954.JPG
 

LaLi

Well-Known Member
Ha! That's the R 195 L. L meaning Laser - the base was specifically designed to fit on top of the hiking strap/centreboard brake fittings like that. It's still made by RWO, renamed R 1955: RWO (Marine Equipment) Ltd

This was never a widely popular choice even in the 1970s, but for decades, it was the only legal alternative to the side deck cleats (or no cleats). I think some successful Master used it as late as the 2000s (Mark Bethwaite, I believe - Aussies, is this correct?), and the charter boat providers at regattas weren't exactly happy when he drilled holes in their hulls!

But at some time during the last 15 years, this piece of equipment was deleted from the class rules. The current rule allows a block with any kind of integrated cleat, but it has to be attached to the eyestrap on top of the hiking strap plate. So yes, that fitting is illegal! No grandfathering.

As for functionality, the only good thing is of course keeping the ability to cleat the sheet while having clean side decks. The lack of a ratchet is bad, and you probably can't turn the cleat arm (horizontally) much without getting a very unfair lead. Also, the vertical cleating angle has to be a compromise that works in some conditions and on some points of sail, but less so in others.
 

Riv

Member
Going out this afternoon, nice 10-15, sparking water and no cleats eating into my leg..........good times
 

Riv

Member
Having played with it in a reasonable breeze it's comming off.

Cleat always seemed to be in the wrong position and jamming up and the lead for the mainsheet from the middle boom block had a lot of friction in it. Also the eye above the cleat caused a lot of friction. Oh well..:)
 

LaLi

Well-Known Member
Just remove the eye!
That would solve only one of the many problems with the R195L, and might very well create new ones.

This fitting pops up occasionally on 1970s boats, and unless people intend to race them, it's not among the first things to update. But once the control systems are working and the tiller/extension lengths are ok, then changing this one to a ratchet is the next thing on the list.

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Larry Golot

New Member
I mentioned removing the eye because this is just what I did on my '78 #56400 after the first sail. The eye was just catching the sheet in the cleat making a capsize more probable. I find the swivel block with cleat quite OK for now and I am prepared neither to install cleats on the side decks nor to buy a ratchet block or both. I have determined the right height for the adjustable cleat and it works well for me whichever position I take on the side decks. I heard that a ratchet block wears the sheet quickly. But maybe a cleat is not better...
 

LETLMT

Member
Can you send a picture of what the proper angle is? I have a ratchet block with a cleat (I know it is not class legal but I do not race) and was never able to get the angle right so I took the cleat off.
 

LaLi

Well-Known Member
I have a ratchet block with a cleat (I know it is not class legal but I do not race) and was never able to get the angle right
A block with an ”integrated” cleat is perfectly legal, but you probably won’t get the angle ever right for all conditions and points of sail. The R195L is different because the vertical cleat angle stays the same (in relation to the hull). But as you can read from above posts, it has other problems (including being illegal the way I read the rules).

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Larry Golot

New Member
Can you send a picture of what the proper angle is? I have a ratchet block with a cleat (I know it is not class legal but I do not race) and was never able to get the angle right so I took the cleat off.
I'll send you a picture ASAP. Could you also send a picture of your ratchet block, possibly with the cleat if you can?
I will sail the Laser in different conditions with that sheet block and report about the many problems LaLi is mentioning.
 

LETLMT

Member
I will not be back up to the boat until Spring. I also took the cleat off when I couldn't get the angle right.
 

Rob B

Well-Known Member
This was never a widely popular choice even in the 1970s, but for decades, it was the only legal alternative to the side deck cleats (or no cleats). I think some successful Master used it as late as the 2000s (Mark Bethwaite, I believe - Aussies, is this correct?), and the charter boat providers at regattas weren't exactly happy when he drilled holes in their hulls!
Excellent piece of trivia!
 
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