Bluenose Canadian Schooner


December 24, 2017

Day 632.

The staysail is a large sail situated between the fore and main masts.  It is fairly straight forward in both its construction and rigging.


The sail was made in the typical fashion, using a paper template.  As with other sails, the seams run along the longest edge.


The staysail itself is made in the typical fashion.

Staysail Halliard


The staysail halliard can be really complex, or really simple. The plans indicate that over the time period of the original Bluenose, there were different methods used for rigging this line.

Since the staysail can be rigged to run on either the port or starboard side, the halliard is designed to be switched from side to side.  In the simplest form, it is a line with a hook on either end, run through a block.  One hook grabs the sail, while the other hook catches the sheer pole.  To switch sides, the hook positions are reversed.

A more complicated rigging method was also shown on the plans, with multiple blocks.  I looked at this, but wasn’t able to fully get my head around it, so I opted for the simplified version.

The staysail halliard as I rigged it is a simply rigging line that runs from the top corner of the staysail, through a block attached to the main mast, and down to the sheer pole where it is hooked.


The staysail halliard runs between the sail and a block on the mast.

Staysail Throat Halliard and Tack


The staysail throat halliard and tack are run together, as there is a pendant connecting the two.

The throat halliard is pretty simple – a line attaches to the sail, runs through a block on the stay bail, and runs down to a pin where it is belayed.



The throat halliard runs from the sail up to a block, then down along the mast.

The tack is also simple, running from a corner of the sail down to a pin.

The unique detail here is that that where the tack is seized to the sail, a short pendant is is also seized.  The other end of the pendant has a fairlead on it, and the throat halliard runs through this fairlead.  This keeps the corner of the sail close to the throat halliard.


A short pendant with a fairlead holds the lower corner of the sail close to the throat halliard.

Staysail Sheet


The staysail sheet runs on the side where the sail is positioned.  Like other sheets for higher-up sails, it has a pendant that runs to a block.


The sheet starts with a pendant on the lower corner of the sail.

Line then runs through the block down to another block on the rail, then off to a pin where it is belayed.


The pendant runs to a block, which runs down to the deck.

At the rail, it runs through a block before being belayed to a pin.


The lower portion of the sheet has a block, then the line is belayed.

The staysail is the next-to-last sail I need to install.  Only one more to go.


The completed staysail.