I accidentally pulled out the reefing line that went from the back of the boom around the shuttle block and then back to the back of the sail. I've had a heck of a time trying to get the block back to the back of the boom to rethread the line. Has anyone had this happen and if so, how did you ever get the block all the way to the back of the boom? I'm hoping not to have to take the boom apart. I've tried pushing it back wards with a stiff wire but it's getting hung up somewhere in the boom. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Had the same issue on my 31. I unfortunately had to remove the rivets on the end cap and then fished the shuttle toward the stern end of the boom with a very stiff piece of wire with a hook on the end. I was replacing the reefing lines and was all done when one of the lines I had put in the shuttle came out due to operator error. After that event I tried every thing I could think of with no success before having to remove the end cap. Once it was off the job was fairly easy to get the shuttle to where I could rethread the missing line. My shuttle was only about half way in the boom so it wasn't too much of a chore to fish it out the stern end. I suppose if push came to shove you could remove the entire boom and loosen the reefing lines enough to shake the shuttle toward the either end to have better access to snag it. I think that the removal of either end cap would make this pretty simple if you had to go to this extreme to get it. I was very careful when I drilled out the original stainless rivets making sure to use a drill bit just big enough to loosen the rivet and not enlarge the hole. Getting new stainless rivets to replace them was fairly easy from the yard where the boat is kept in the winter and they even loaned me their mega sized rivet gun to put in the replacement rivets. Later I saw the same rivet gun at Harbor Freight so if I needed to buy one I knew it wouldn't be hard to find. I now know to be much more careful if I ever have to replace the reefing lines again. What should have taken maybe twenty minutes took several hours with many trips to the boat yard.
I should have added that any fitting attached to the boom is going to make it hard to move the shuttle without some sort of tension on the reefing lines since the shuttle is somewhat suspended in the boom when tension is on the reefing lines. Other rivets , machine bolts or screws in the boom all catch things that will slide along the bottom of the boom.
Been there. You didn't say whether the shuttle has one line (the forward one) around it or not. If yes, then I would imagine the job would be harder, in that you're not only moving the shuttle, but line as well.
I wound up getting a lightweight piece of metal tubing, and taping a hook (fashioned from a coat hanger) on one end. I fed that in through the aft end of the boom, without taking the end of the boom off. The shuttle in my case was completely free, with No lines on it. I pulled it back to the boom end and got it out. As Bythebay said, everywhere there is something attached to the boom, there will be a snag, so you will have to be patient and give the shuttle some help by "lifting" over the rough spots. Etc., etc., etc.. I spent probably 35 - 40 minutes fooling w/ mine.