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Restoring an 1976 Vanguard Intl. 470

btaylor

New Member
Hi, question: anyone know if it is possible to find out the original sail number? I won't be sailing in any regattas with this old girl so my project is just for the fun of sailing her.

Back story: bought two hulls (the other hull appears to be pre HIN so that means pre 1972), two masts (one is slightly bent (repairable) and missing the mast step assy), two rudder assy with tillers, two sets of sails, one boom, a spinnaker and a lot of misc hardware with a trailer for $850. I know, spent too much but was an impulse buy. I belong to the Hueston Sailing Association and we race and sail at Acton lake (we are in southwest Ohio). I own and sail a 1991 Macgregor 26S (classic), a 1986 Catania Capri 14.2, a 1993 Club Flying Junior (CFJ) and now this project. I had a 1976 Y-Flyer and a 1983 Precision 16 and sold them this year. My sailing instructors are in their mid to late seventies and have been racing/sailing since they were kids. One of my instructors came over yesterday and we stepped the mast and sorted out the shrouds and forestay. One of the club members, I found out yesterday, raced 470's back in the day so I have a source for some help. As with many of the racing dinghies there is no, "Rigging Layout" that is common among the sailboats and owners. Every racer has there own unique spin on how to run the myriad of lines and systems. The boiler plate has serial number 15995 but the HIN has a serial number of 1498 (model year 1976). Will post pictures as I go. I have already found a lot of good info on other posts.
 

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LaLi

Well-Known Member
It's there below the "US REG NO" on the builder's sticker :rolleyes: So it should say US(A) 1358 on your mainsail.

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torrid

Just sailing
Thinking back many moons when I sailed 470s. Given there are so many different manufacturers and so many different national authorities with their own numbering, it isn't like Lasers where a sail number is assigned to each hull by the builder. I believe when you buy a 470, it is up to you to contact the national authority who will then assign a sail number.

I had an old 470, and I was able to contact US Sailing and get a copy of the original measurement certificate. Presumably the sail number would be with that. However that was 30 years ago, and there is no telling what sort of documentation they still have.

edit - I see LaLi clued you in to the builder's sticker, so that is most likely the info you want. I had an early 80s vintage that was US 15xx, so 1358 would seem about right for a mid 70s hull. The class never was too popular in the US. As those era Vanguards were fairly rugged as least as 470s go. Glad to see the old girl getting back out on the water. Go easy on the rig tension.
 
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btaylor

New Member
Thinking back many moons when I sailed 470s. Given there are so many different manufacturers and so many different national authorities with their own numbering, it isn't like Lasers where a sail number is assigned to each hull by the builder. I believe when you buy a 470, it is up to you to contact the national authority who will then assign a sail number.

I had an old 470, and I was able to contact US Sailing and get a copy of the original measurement certificate. Presumably the sail number would be with that. However that was 30 years ago, and there is no telling what sort of documentation they still have.

edit - I see LaLi clued you in to the builder's sticker, so that is most likely the info you want. I had an early 80s vintage that was US 15xx, so 1358 would seem about right for a mid 70s hull. The class never was too popular in the US. As those era Vanguards were fairly rugged as least as 470s go. Glad to see the old girl getting back out on the water. Go easy on the rig tension.
Thanks, I was sailing a Y-Flyer this year (1976 vintage) and it is very similar method for rig tension - forestay is more of a safety line, side shrouds are "loose" and the "magic box" using the jib halyard is how the standing rigging gets tensioned. Mast rake could be adjusted on the fly via the magic box. Tuning guides gave the mast mainsail halyard to transom measurement guidance. When the jib halyard is tensioned right the shrouds are "tight" and the forestay was so loose we had a shock cord attached so that it would not flop around and get in the jib path.
 

btaylor

New Member
Hi, I keep forgetting to ask: this 470 has a 3/4" wide with a small lip "rubber" rub rail that is riveted on. I have looked high and low but cannot find something close. Has anyone has success finding something? Please share your research - thanks
 

LaLi

Well-Known Member
this 470 has a 3/4" wide with a small lip "rubber" rub rail that is riveted on.
Probably best to simply leave it out and patch the rivet holes. I think Vanguard dropped it from their later boats, and other builders didn't have anything similar either from the late 1970s on.

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torrid

Just sailing
Thanks, I was sailing a Y-Flyer this year (1976 vintage) and it is very similar method for rig tension - forestay is more of a safety line, side shrouds are "loose" and the "magic box" using the jib halyard is how the standing rigging gets tensioned. Mast rake could be adjusted on the fly via the magic box. Tuning guides gave the mast mainsail halyard to transom measurement guidance. When the jib halyard is tensioned right the shrouds are "tight" and the forestay was so loose we had a shock cord attached so that it would not flop around and get in the jib path.
Yes, the forestay is only there to keep the mast upright with the rig untensioned. All the tension is in the jib luff wire. Sounds like you already figured out what to do with shock cord and the forestay when the rig is tensioned.

The magic box is an older system for the jib tension. Now most 470s have a multi-purcharse tensioning system that is fed back to a cleat along the side of the centerboard. I guess the intent is to make it easier for the skipper to adjust the rig tension. The crew is usually either out on the wire or has their head buried in the chute. If the magic box is working for you and allows you to get the boat out on the water, I would just leave it.

The tuning guides will suggest very tight rig tensions, in excess of 300 lbs. Those numbers are for Olympians with brand new hulls. You do not want anywhere near that much rig tension in a 50-year-old hull.
 

btaylor

New Member
Thanks for the insight - just enjoy restoring and sailing these old girls and keep them out of the scrap heap for a little longer. By the way, I have a "bent" mast that came with this package. For non-competitive racing the mast could probably be "straightened" using the tried and true methods for club boats. If anyone wants the mast let me know. If no takers I will cut it up for scrap.
 

LaLi

Well-Known Member
The magic box is an older system for the jib tension. Now most 470s have a multi-purcharse tensioning system that is fed back to a cleat along the side of the centerboard. I guess the intent is to make it easier for the skipper to adjust the rig tension.
Magic boxes were ditched in the early 1980s when people realized that cascading systems with floating blocks have considerably less friction. Most magic boxes (especially ones mounted on the mast) also have a relatively short range of adjustment, which makes jib halyard wire length pretty critical. But if an old box runs reasonably smoothly (you may have to disassemble and clean it) and gets you in the ballpark tuningwise, keep it.

Newer 470s do have the jib halyard led to the skipper, so you can even play with it in gusts :confused: :D In recreational use, you really don't need to touch it on the water.

The tuning guides will suggest very tight rig tensions, in excess of 300 lbs. Those numbers are for Olympians with brand new hulls. You do not want anywhere near that much rig tension in a 50-year-old hull.
It depends on the individual hull. As a rule of thumb, the vast majority of 470s built after 1986 can take adequate rig tension. Older than that are more hit or miss, with the percentage of "misses" growing rapidly with age. You have to test it. A few cracking sounds are normal :D but if things really start to deform (such as the centreboard jamming in the case), then ease a little.

In any case, I believe it's still best to take present-day tuning guides as a starting point, and then see how the old (I assume original) sails look and feel on the water.

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btaylor

New Member
Thanks for all of the insights: so far I have been able to sort out the usual stuff, main halyard, jib halyard, centerboard control lines, traveller control lines, outhaul control line, mainsheet, vang, jib sheets, spinnaker pole line and rudder stuff. All working and not in too bad of shape. What I am not addressing yet are the trapeze lines and the spinnaker stuff - after I get the other aforementioned tested out on land and then the water I will take a look, with my friend who use to race 470's in the 1970's, and see what is needed to get them in working order. The previous owner gave me boxes and boxes of line, hardware and related. My question is what are the sheaves for in the lower part of the mast (aft and forward facing the bow). The picture is the aft facing section and there appears to be one or more sheaves in the front (not shown) of the mast.
 

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LaLi

Well-Known Member
Lots of possibilities there.

First, the mast looks like it's considerably newer than the hull. It's a round profile, is it a Z-Spar? The heel fitting is of the type that fits all post-1970s mast steps. Fundamentally it's a mismatch with your boat, but it probably works as there's no visible play in any direction.

The fitting was most likely intended to be also used in classes other than the 470, with different requirements for halyards and control systems. The sheaves are there more as possible choices, not all of them intended to be used in all boats.

Stuff that might come out of a 470 mast heel are the three halyards and the spinnaker pole uphaul (topping lift), maybe the pole downhaul (foreguy), too. The foreguy is actually the only one that might come out at the front side. As all of the sheaves are plastic, I assume no wires were intended to pass there, so that leaves the spinnaker halyard and pole uphaul. You have to look higher up on the mast to see how they are led to see whether you need these sheaves at all. Typically the spinnaker halyard goes from there on the port side to be cleated at the aft end, or behind, the centreboard case, while the topping lift cleats on top of the case.

By the way, have you already measured the position of the mast heel? That type of step is usually located quite far aft, and you probably want to move the heel a bit (one hole may be enough) forward. The minimum distance from (the aft face of) the transom is 3055 millimetres to the aft edge of the mast (including the mainsail luff groove as if it extended all the way down); most tuning guides recommend around 3100.

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btaylor

New Member
Not fully done but ready for the water. Sailed her successfully for about an hour in light wind but the deck filled with water slow but surely - the transom plugs were installed and all of the other plugs were installed. I went over the hull from end to end and fixed all defects so no "holes" below water line. I was wondering if the self bailers and/or center board "gasket" screws could be leaking? Cannot find any information about how to repair self bailers and the center board "gasket area" seems to be covered with some type of "poured" or "formed" metal over where I would expect screws. There was water in the forward area that I drained out too. Anyone have any thoughts or experiences in this area?
470 (2).jpg
 

LaLi

Well-Known Member
With "the deck filled with water" I take you mean the cockpit filled with water :rolleyes:

The classic point of leakage in 470s of all vintages is the centreboard pivot bolt. Simply tightening it may be enough, but you should also have fresh rubber washers (neoprene is fine) there.

The bailers of course is the other likely culprit. You may have to replace them, depending where exactly they leak. The centreboard gasket however is unlikely to let water in the boat (it's supposed to do the exact opposite :D ), as its mounting screws don't pierce the inside surface of the bottom (do they? Post pictures from both sides).

If with "the forward area" you mean the forward tank, that leaks most often from the cockpit side through poorly functioning drainhole fittings.

I suggest that you test all these areas by filling the boat on land with enough water that the centreboard pivot bolt gets submerged. Then watch where it comes out from the bottom side! (And if the forward tank gets any of it.)

On another note, what's your mast rake? The rig appears to be unusually upright with the boom very high. You seem to have the shrouds in the uppermost hole, so at least there's room for adjustment.

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btaylor

New Member
Hi, sorry I meant the cockpit area was filling with water (not like sinking filling but just annoying filling) but we did not have the bailers open. It was a slow and steady fill over about and hour but was just enough to make your feet wet. The picture did not have the jib tensioned to rake the mast - I assume that the magic box tensioning of the jib sets the mast rake? I assume that the standing rigging thought process is similar to what I know about Y-flyers - forestay is just for safety, side shrouds loose until jib tensioned, magic box sets mast rake. Thanks again for your insights and I will test your suggestions this weekend. This 470 is a blast to sail and I hope to race her in our handicap races soon. Photos when she is rigged properly will be forth coming.
 

LaLi

Well-Known Member
You mean the jib halyard is loose in that picture? Oh my, that makes it even more out of tune :confused: The boom should be roughly horizontal with everything set up for light-to-medium conditions.

Anyway, you've got the basic idea right, though I think it's better to think about shroud position setting the rake, and jib halyard setting the tension. Either way doesn't really matter, as you can't have one without the other :D

Are you familiar with the method of mast rake measurement?

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LaLi

Well-Known Member
Which tuning guide do you recommend?
To tell the truth, I don't think any of the current ones online (that I know of) are very good. They include irrelevant measurements and/or apply to present-day mast sections only, and aren't compatible with one another. Their English language can be pretty interesting, too :D

My own quick and dirty basic tuning for people without a tension meter or adjustable spreaders: pull the jib halyard until the mast bends a few centimetres, and measure with the main halyard in normal sailing position the distance from the mast top to the top of the transom. If this reads about 670 cm, then you're in the middle of the ballpark. Just looking at your last picture again, I would expect your number to be a lot higher. You will likely have to take the shrouds many holes down, and quite possibly lengthen the forestay to achieve that. (Which is no problem as you can use rope there as an interim solution.)

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btaylor

New Member
Thanks and understood. Very similar to other racing dinghy setups. I have a long tape measure that I attach the main halyard and take measurements.
 

btaylor

New Member
With "the deck filled with water" I take you mean the cockpit filled with water :rolleyes:

The classic point of leakage in 470s of all vintages is the centreboard pivot bolt. Simply tightening it may be enough, but you should also have fresh rubber washers (neoprene is fine) there.

The bailers of course is the other likely culprit. You may have to replace them, depending where exactly they leak. The centreboard gasket however is unlikely to let water in the boat (it's supposed to do the exact opposite :D ), as its mounting screws don't pierce the inside surface of the bottom (do they? Post pictures from both sides).

If with "the forward area" you mean the forward tank, that leaks most often from the cockpit side through poorly functioning drainhole fittings.

I suggest that you test all these areas by filling the boat on land with enough water that the centreboard pivot bolt gets submerged. Then watch where it comes out from the bottom side! (And if the forward tank gets any of it.)

On another note, what's your mast rake? The rig appears to be unusually upright with the boom very high. You seem to have the shrouds in the uppermost hole, so at least there's room for adjustment.

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I have had the 470 out several times and raced last Sunday. I fixed the centerboard pivot bolt leak. I wanted to test to see if the bailers were leaking so I duck taped them from underneath before putting in and when we went out the water in the cockpit area was almost nothing compared to Sunday's race. Any guess on the type of bailer? I found a PDF for repairing Anderson bailers but not sure what is on my boat.
 
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