Wash/clean the sails, covers, alloy spars, rigging and loose gear

Standing rigging (shrouds, forestay, other items made of wire) just needs to be wiped over with an oil soaked rag.

I soak running rigging (sheets, halyards, contol lines,…) in a solution of washing powder for a week & then put them in a pillow case with the end tied up, wash them in a washing machine and then dry them.

Other loose gear can generally be washed with hot water & washing up liquid & dried.

Superspars have kindly provided this advise on maintaining alumium alloy spars (and the alloy sections of a gunter mast)

Once dry, items with moving parts, such as burgees should be lubricated with silicon spray (e.g.WD-40). Ball bearing blocks etc should be lubricated with McLube, a PTFE spray, light machine oil or silicon spray.

Sails made from hard sailcloth, such as polykote, are probably best just rinsed. Sails made from soft sailcloth, and spinnakers can be washed, carefully in the bath. Untie the jib sheets and wash them with the other ropes. Take care not to crease sails if you can avoid it. I would wash in fresh water alone. If sails are really dirty, then try some hand washing powder (e.g. Dreft) in the water. Rinse sails and then hang to dry,again avoid creasing as far as possible.

Nylon undercovers are usually not too bulky, so can be washed in a washing machine. More bulky covers, such as boom up, need to be washed in the bath. First make a mental note of areas which are particularly dirty. I fill a bath with hot water and hand washing powder, put the cover in, agitate is for a bit and they leave it soaking for a few days, agitating it from time to time. Then I scrub the surface with a scrubbing brush, trying to scrub the whole surface, paying particular attention to areas you know are dirty. Maybe leave it soaking for a bit longer and repeat the scrubbing. Then I drain as much water as I can and re-fill the bath with fresh hot/warm water and scrub it again. Then empty the bath and refill it to rinse the cover. Repeat this a couple of times and then dry the cover on the washing line.

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