Topic: Swageless vs. Swaged Standing Rigging

Hello All,

As I begin to learn about standing rigging and what the best plan is for replacing mine, I am considering whether I should just buy the wire myself and a bunch of "swageless" terminals and build my own or have a boatyard with the fancy compression machine build my rigging wires by pressing on the standard swaged terminals.

I'm wondering what opinions are out there from fellow contessa owners about whether swageless is as good as swaged?

It does seem pretty cool to be able to simply cut the wire and tighten down a compression-style swageless terminal and tighten it down with a couple of wrenches.  I'm thinking that with an extra swageless terminal and some extra wire.........fixing a broken stay or shroud at sea would be pretty easy too, unless it broke up high.

Any guidance on these standing rigging matters would be greatly appreciated.

Best wishes,


Re: Swageless vs. Swaged Standing Rigging

One advantage would to be able to open them up to inspect for rust every few years. I had a shroud that started breaking strands at sea, even though there were no signs of rust from outside of the swag.  After it was replaced, destructive testing showed that there was sever rust damage down inside the swag. They were 25 years old with some salt water years.

Re: Swageless vs. Swaged Standing Rigging

I've used Norseman or Swagelok fittings on every boat that I have had since 1972.   With the exception of rod rigging, you can't get any better.  I've seen a lot of bad swaging on both production and custom rigs.  It's a no-brainer (in my very humble opinion)