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Gaskets are the lines used to secure squaresails to their yards. When a squaresail has been taken in, i.e., when the sheet have been cast off, the gear hauled up, and the yard hauled down, men will go aloft. They furl the sail, wrapping it into a bundle with the amount of care varying with the conditions. The gaskets, which are dangling from the yard in a special coil, commonly known as a "gasket coil" are loosed and then wrapped around the yard and sail, typically from fore to aft, and made fast. When the sail is to be set, "the men [run] up on to the yards [and] cast off the gaskets, holding the sail under their arms" until, at the call "Let fall. Sheet home", they release it.[1] The gaskets will be recoiled before the men return to deck.


  1. O'Brian, Patrick. The Complete Aubrey/Maturin Novels:The Far Side of the World. ©1984. W.W. Norton & Company, Inc. 500 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10110: p. 3432
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