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Date Posted: - Friday - 05/29/09 - 5:33pm
Subject: I'm trying to fix my saggy mast step.
I've got a Mariner 31 with a bowed mainmast and a saggy mast step. A previous owner installed a big stainless steal arch to address the issue but I think it was too little and too late. The forward door to the head was never able to open and the cabin top was visibly depressed under the mast step.
I think the proper way to deal with this issue would involve unstepping the mast, tearing off the cabin top, beefing up the arch, and rebuilding the cabin top.
I really don't want to do that. I really really don't want to do that. I've seen the work that Randal and some others have done in the cabin rebuilding department and I admire it but I don't want to get into that stuff. Besides, I'm told that the entire deck, cockpit, and cabin top on my boat was rebuilt around 8 years ago. There's no indication that water is getting through anywhere near the mast step and it doesn't seem like anything is delaminated or rotten around there.
So, given that I didn't want to address the issue that way and, given that I don't really know what I'm doing, I hatched a plan that even if proven ineffective is at the very least a fun experiment and an excuse to do some welding.
Here are some photos of what I've done so far: http://www.flickr.com/photos/kibele/sets/72157617972117480/
Basically, my plan is to force the roof back up into its correct position with an expandable compression post, build some braces to reinforce the arch that is supposed to hold up the mast, install those braces while the roof is still in the 'up' position, remove the compression post thingy, and hope like hell the bracing is strong enough keep the mast where it should be.
As you can see in the pictures that I posted, I've got the roof jacked up at this point and I'm in the process of figuring out what kind of braces I'm going to make and install. I've got some ideas but I'd love to hear input from other who've thought about this problem. It seems that I'm not the first M31 owner to end up with a saggy mast step.
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mast step -- Kathy Campbell SHADOW M32-#3, - Saturday - 05/30/09 - 10:07am
Shadow,s supporting mast beams were also being depressed under the load of the main mast- the next boat will have a keel stepped mast. It wasn't till I had a professional rigger tune the rig that the forward beam cracked. I had two shipwrights take a look and both said the shrouds were tensioned too tight. Brion Toss has a DVD on tuning the rig. Anyway, Bill and I laminated a new beam out of oak and Ranndal Reeves can show you the compression post he used on Murre, which I'm putting in Shadow.
Yours truly, Kathy
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Main Mast Support -- Bruce (gitano), - Monday - 06/ 1/09 - 1:01pm
Randall Reeves and I composed a "Projects" piece for installing better main mast support. I believe Randall is about to post it soon. I have installed an arched T-beam fabricated out of ss flat stock. The curved flange was 1/4" and the web was 1/2". I also added an additional section of beam below the steop so I could through bolt the bronze step and have good surface area for the fender washers below. I used 3/8" bolts with fender washers up through to the step with eye nuts on top. The eye nuts will be used for attaching blocks when I run the halyards and control lines aft. I have never had any deck deflection or compression issues with this arrangement. Cheers
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