Whether its running rigging or standing rigging it has something in common: It's rigging. Rigging is with mess of wires, lines, fittings, and sails that make up the nervous system of a sailboat.
Edson recommends that steering wire be replaced every ten years. I'm at about three times that. There was significant observable breakage of strands at the rudder quadrant as well, so I had to bite the bullet and get this done. And while I was at it, modernizing the engine controls seemed like a great plan. Oh, and I love those leather wheel wraps!
Life Line Replacement
There are few things that look as cheesy as badly cracked white plastic on a nice clean stainless steel cable. Since these life lines are in rough shape, and they are widely considered to be critical safety gear, it's on the priority list. While the replacement is pretty easy, I learned a lesson in measurement and assumptions.
The lines on this boat were old, frayed, and UV-damaged. Time for some new ones. Ninety percent of this voyage was surfing through the seemingly infinite number of choices. Once the decisions were made it was a snap to order them, and replacement is pretty easy once you figure out how to run a messenger line.
New Main Sail
My main sail is in bad shape. It's blown out, has seems starting to give way, etc. I'll be keeping the old main for another season as I have more pressing upgrades to do right now. As an interim solution I brought it to a local sail maker for a thorough inspection and repair of any visible issues. It's certainly not going to win me any races, but I can put it into further service.