Retractable Sail Control System

FAQ’s

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How is EZ-JAX different from lazy jacks, such as the ones sold in marine stores?

  • The EZ-JAX system retracts along the boom when you are not using it, unlike most lazy jacks that stay up all the time. This unique feature of the EZ-JAX system eliminates three common problems associated with ordinary lazy jacks;
    1) you must modify your sail cover to accommodate the control lines
    2) the battens catch in the lines while raising the sail
    3) the lines and blocks chafe the sail because they are always in the way. You deploy the EZ-JAX system only when you are ready to drop the main. The rest of the time EZ-JAX are retracted below the boom, where they are out of the way.

2. My boat and mainsail is not close enough to measure. How can I order one of your systems?

  • Just phone us at 1-877-585-9162 and we will search our database for specifications on your boat. We have sail information on most boats.

3. My mainsail has an 11 foot E-dimension. Do I need a 3-line or a 4-line system?

  • It depends on the size of the boat and the weight of the sail. In general, we prefer the 4-line system for heavier sails and high aspect rigs because it gives better support, as well as having stronger cheek blocks for the control lines. A 4-line system includes an additional set of lines which reduces the distance between control lines on the sail when dropping the main. More lines means more control and less sail falling off the boom on your deck or head. For boats under about 30 feet and E dimensions 11 feet or less, the 3-line system is usually adequate.

4. My mainsail has a 16 foot E-dimension. What's the difference between a 4-line         system and a HD system?

  • The Heavy Duty (HD) system comes with stronger cheek blocks and 5/16" control lines instead of 1/2" . This allows the system to control the weight of a much heavier sail. A 4-line system will work fine on a mainsail with a 16 foot E-dimension.

5. I have a jiffy or slab reefing system on my boom. Will there be interference between it and the EZ-JAX system?

  • No. The reefing system and the EZ-JAX system can be used simultaneously.

6. How do you raise and retract the system?

  • On each side of the sail are cascading lines that are held up by a control line that goes up through a cheek block and back down to a cleat mounted near the gooseneck. Like your halyard, when the control lines are pulled the system is raised into position. When released, it falls of it's own weight and the system can then be attached to the "keeper kit".

7. What holds the EZ-JAX system in place when retracted along the boom?

  • A "keeper kit" - a piece of shock cord on each side of the goose neck, one end attached to an eye strap on the front face of the mast and the other end attached to a nylon hook. The hook is used to hold the system in place when the system isn't being used.

8. How does the cockpit control option work?

  • The cockpit control option includes control lines long enough to extend to cockpit and a pair of retracting lines that when pulled will retract the system along the boom. We can also provide instructions for modifying your existing keeper kit to allow and automatic release when the free end is tugged from cockpit.

9. Can I use EZ-JAX with a rigid boom vang?

  • Yes, because the EZ-JAX System does not require a topping lift, it is the perfect complement to a rigid boom vang.

10. Will the control lines vibrate against the mast and be noisy?

  • No - you can pull them away from the mast with a short piece of shock cord. Or you can put cleats on the shrouds so the control lines will not touch the mast at all. You can also mount the cheek blocks on the spreaders a few inches from the mast.

11. Can I mount blocks on the spreaders instead of on the mast?

  • Yes - We can supply blocks and eye straps to be mounted on the spreaders out a few inches from the mast.

12. What hardware will I need to lead the control lines to the cockpit?

  • For each side, port and starboard, you will need a turning block at the bottom of the mast, one or more fairleads to lead the line to the cockpit, and a clam cleat at the cockpit.

13. How can I reduce corrosion between stainless steel screws and my aluminum mast?

  • We supply a small tube of Loctite 242 (blue) with each kit. This reduces the likelihood of corrosion, as well as keeping screws from vibrating loose.

14. What if a bail holding one of my mainsheet blocks happens to be right where you tell me to place an EZ-JAX eye strap?

  • We will tell you where to place each eye strap, usually, on the bottom centerline of the boom. If it happens that one or more of these positions is already occupied, you can move fore or aft a few inches from our designated spot, or you can place two eye straps at the position but low on the sides of the boom.

15. I want to include a sketch showing location of fittings on my boom. Where should I measure from?

  • Please make all measurements from the aft face of the mast, to the nearest inch. Our installation instructions give measurements from that point.

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