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 Post subject: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:53 am 
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Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:29 am
Posts: 4
I'm a newbie to hobie sailing and had a scary time raising the mast for the first time. The side to side play raising the mast made me worry. Would changing the base and pin from my worn 1981 assembly eliminate this? Or is this a problem that I'm going to have to overcome on my own. Thanks.


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 Post subject: Re: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 12:45 pm 
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Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
Posts: 2406
Location: Jersey Shore
The mast definitely needs to be stabilized side-to-side, otherwise you will snap the mast base and the mast will come down. The mast step hinge is not strong enough to keep the mast from rotating off centerline. You either need to hold the mast manually or tie the trapeze wires to the front crossbar to hold the mast steady. In my opinion, doing it by hand is the safest and the best way to step the mast.

Are you trying to raise the mast using a winch?

sm


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 Post subject: Re: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 6:19 pm 
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Site Rank - Captain

Joined: Mon Oct 05, 2009 4:39 pm
Posts: 58
Try to have the boat pointing into the wind if you can. Having the trap wire's at the crossbar should help too. Having said that I broke my pivot this year lowering the mast. Doing it by my-self, crosswind was too much to control the thing as it came down. Lesson learned :x


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 Post subject: Re: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 11:43 am 
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Joined: Sun Aug 26, 2007 5:40 am
Posts: 388
Location: Metuchen NJ
I'd agree that raising the mast by hand is a safe way, but at 59 years old its getting a bit tougher for me.

In raising, my crew will walk the mast up as high as he can raise it overhead, where I take over the rest of the way up while on the tramp. This method works much better than a 'clean jerk' up and over by yourself.

...and I tend to have a windy day's breeze at my back doing so.

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Chris
'88 H18SE Arís


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 Post subject: Re: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 12:33 pm 
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Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
Posts: 2406
Location: Jersey Shore
I should clarify, raising and lowering the mast by hand, with two people if necessary, is the safest IMO. Using two people makes stabilizing and lifting the mast much easier. The crew stands behind the boat and lifts the mast up to the skipper standing on the tramp. Then the crew jumps up on the tramp and both people lift the mast up. If it's windy, I will often have my crew un-pin the forestay and then jump up on the tramp and help me bring the mast down too. A little extra help makes all the difference and I trust two sets of hands on the mast a lot more than I trust a jin pole and a maze of wires, ropes, and straps. Plus it's much quicker to just do manually.

sm


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 Post subject: Re: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Thu Nov 14, 2013 3:43 pm 
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Site Rank - Captain

Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2011 3:45 pm
Posts: 124
Location: Saratoga Springs, NY
If you have two people, I agree that doing it manually is the way to go.

If you're by yourself, then a gin pole makes life much easier. Hooking mine up only adds about 2 minutes to the setup time, and i don't have to worry about stabilizing everything by myself, or holding the mast upright while I fumble with the forestay pin, etc...

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1990 Hobie 18SX #2077


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 Post subject: Re: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 8:22 pm 
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Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Tue Oct 02, 2012 7:36 pm
Posts: 22
Location: Near Toronto Canada
Sorry sailors I have to disagree.

Maybe if you have at least two people on the tramp I will agree its the quickest way, that is the only advantage.
Even though it is not excessively heavy the mast has so much leverage, if you lose it or slip even briefly, that thing is going to hurt you or the guy standing at the bottom waiting to catch it, or itself.

I made myself a stepper, more or less like the mast stepper 3. With the pole and winch, trap wires for side stabilization.

It takes a bit longer, but so worth it. Easy and safe. I really recommend a stepping device.


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 Post subject: Re: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Sat Nov 23, 2013 11:10 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 08, 2007 10:20 pm
Posts: 27
As made evident by the variety of replies, it depends. I have tried it many different ways. I now keep a short length of rope tied off to each end of the front crossbar with a carabiner to quickly attach to the trapeze wires to stabilize the mast side to side. I also use a spare jib block and cleat mounted on my trailers mast cradle to hoist my mast from 45 deg to vertical and hold it in place while I secure the forstay.

When I am with an experienced person on a not gusty day I just lift the mast up from the tramp and hold it until my crew can secure the forstay.

When I am alone I use everything to get it up. :roll:

Try a bunch of different things, pick the one you like best. The only thing I would not recommend is lowering the mast without the stepper pin/craftsman screwdriver. Did that once, actually didn't end too poorly, but it could have.

One last piece of advice. Try lowering your mast with your jib furled around the forstay. Once the mast is down, take off your forstay/jib and gently coil it. This trick is nice for older jibs that have temperamental zippers.


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