New Flip Flop Block Range

40mm flip flop blocks for spinnaker halyard

Flip flop blocks are designed to pivot around a central fixing point, this keeps the rope close to the deck, mast or boom whilst still allowing the block to articulate to the correct lead angle, ensuring friction stays as low as possible whilst still guiding the rope to where it needs to go.

The new 40mm flip flop block range features a laser-cut stainless-steel body and backing plate, guaranteeing each one is finished to the exact same measurements and quality finish. This precision manufacturing style allows for maximum strength in the smallest form possible.  

All three versions of the new flip flop block range include a 40mm dynamic sheave – Twin rows of stainless-steel ball bearings running on a stainless-steel axle, with a nylon sheave to guide the rope.

  • 40mm flip flop block
  • backing plate of 40mm flip flop block
  • new 40mm flip flop block with cam cleat
  • 40mm flip flop cleat with ball bearing sheave

ILCA Wear Protectors

A1649 ILCA Wear Protection For Web Press Release

The ILCA (laser) is one of the World’s most popular sailing dinghies, with over 215,000 boats sold worldwide, it would be no surprise to find one – new or old – in almost every dinghy park around the globe.

Allen has been involved with the ILCA/ Laser class ever since the early prototypes. One of which was actually fitted out in the Allen factory! You will still find the Allen Vang unit and cam cleat base pictured in the class rules, as all of our ILCA fittings are still class legal.

More recently we have been developing several ILCA specific products, one of which we are now pleased to be able to sell directly to anyone.

Introducing the ILCA Wear Protectors, a product designed to stop the damage which can be caused by the mainsheet traveller blocks, ensuring your boat stays protected.

Anyone who sails an ILCA will know that having your traveller line as tight as possible is a huge performance gain. However, the tighter the traveller the more it forces the mainsheet traveller block to rub and chafe the gelcoat on the transom of your beloved boat.

This damage occurs because the mainsheet traveller blocks are harder wearing than the thin layer of gelcoat on the deck of the boat. Over time the mainsheet block will dig into the deck of the boat, creating serious damage and resulting in the need to have repair work carried out to the boat. But, all of this can be avoided by installing the ILCA wear protectors.

The ILCA wear protector is designed to fit around the existing traveller fairlead – A.282A. An item which is the same on every ILCA dinghy, due to the one-design nature of the class.


How to service an Allen Cam Cleat

how to service cam cleats

Cam cleats are a vital part of most control systems on both dinghies and yachts. Without them, you would have to hold onto the rope for hours or make the rope off around a horn cleat, not ideal if you want to quickly adjust something!

Cam cleats, like most parts on a boat, need regular maintenance. The most obvious sign as to when the cam cleat needs some TLC is when the cam jaws start to stick in the open position which in turn allows the rope to slowly slip through – defeating the object of having a cleat!

Servicing your Allen cam cleat is quick and easy, you just need a couple of tools, some replacement parts and 5 minutes of your time.

TOP TIP – Always wash the cam cleats on your boat with fresh water after sailing. This helps remove any salt, grit or sand from the internal mechanism. Ensuring your cam cleat will operate smoother for longer!

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Types of Cam Cleat

How to service a Cam Cleat

Working Loads

Shop Cam Cleats


New Product: Tii-Lock-40

Ever wanted to easily attach one of our Tii-on blocks via a continuous spliced loop? Well, now you can with the new Tii-Lock-40.

Tii-Lock-40 is a small T shaped plastic moulding which fits perfectly into the central hole of our 40mm Tii-on Block. It allows for a continuous spliced loop to be locked into place, with no chance of it shaking free.

The new concept was developed to give a quick, easy and strong option for attaching the A2040Tii block. The Tii-Lock-40 also makes replacing the blocks on the RS Aero boom really straightforward.


How To Attach a Tii-On Block

All of our Tii-on blocks are available with a Tii-shackle – a loop of Dyneema which is through spliced at one end and diamond knotted at the other.

However, it’s important that you pair the Tii-shackle and Tii-on block correctly. Otherwise, the block could fail.

It can sometimes be a bit fiddly to get the Tii-shackle around and through the holes of a Tii-on block, so we recommend using a piece of kite line or whipping twine to help pull it through.

Watch the following video for a demonstration of how to use a Tii-shackle, Tii-on block and Pad-Tii.


Back to Back Block – Product Feature

back to back block in use on a vang

The back to back block is an interesting product and one that a lot of sailors might not understand how to properly use in a system. In this short article, we will explain the applications of this extremely useful block and how it improved the reliability of a Vang strop. 

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What is a back to back block?

How can it be used?

Back to back in a Vang system.

Product range details.

Firstly, what is a back to back block? 

Our back to back blocks feature two sheaves, both with our patented dynamic bearing technology. The sheaves face opposite directions to allow two control lines to run at a maximum of 180 degrees to each other. Held together with strong stainless steel side straps and nylon mouldings ensures the block will not separate even under two very high opposing loads.


How To Use Sailing Dog Bones

allen dog bones

We know what you’re thinking “how can a dog bone be used on a sailboat? We’re not playing fetch!”.

Well, the type of dog bone we’re talking about here is not something you would want to feed to your favourite four legged friend.

No, the type of dog bone we are talking about is a small, lightweight, ‘dog bone’ shaped piece of aluminium. And they are becoming increasingly more popular on modern sailboats.

So, in this article we will explain a few useful ways to use a dog bone that will soon have you fetching one from your tool bag! 


New Optimist Sprit System Pack

Over the last few years we have been supporting a different sailor every season with our Allen Academy Optimist. Throughout this time we have had the pleasure to support some very enthusiastic young sailors who have relayed their important feedback to us.

From this feedback we have developed a cutting edge Optimist sprit system, which is now available to purchase.

Our new pack is pre-spliced and race ready, so all you need to do is attach it to the boat for the smoothest and best looking setup available.


Ratchet Blocks – Switchable Vs AutoRatchet

Switchable Ratchet Vs AutoRatchet

The ratchet block is arguably one of the most important pieces of hardware used on a sailboat, so choosing the correct size and type can make a big difference to how you sail your boat and what feedback the sails give you. In this article you will find out all about how the ratchet block works, the difference between a switchable and AutoRatchet as well as the different sheave options.   

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What is a ratchet block?

How does a ratchet block work?

Why use a ratchet block?

Switchable vs AutoRatchet

Wave Sheave or Normal Sheave

Working Loads

Suggested Rope


High Load Thimbles – Why, When, Where?

High Load Thimbles Spliced.

Also known as low friction rings these handy bits of hardware are used across many different areas of a sailboat. But they’re nothing new. In fact the high load thimble has been around for some time, just in slightly different forms. Originally made from wood and used on old style tall ships for adjusting running rigging and then more recently moulded in plastic to create light-weight, cheap alternatives. And now, CNC machined from high grade aluminium. But why, when and where should you use a high load thimble?

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What is a high load thimble?

Why use a high load thimble?

When should a high load thimble be used?

Where can a high load thimble be used?

High load thimble sizing guide


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