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 Post subject: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:53 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:29 am
Posts: 7
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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Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
Posts: 2551
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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Joined: Mon Oct 05, 2009 4:39 pm
Posts: 61
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: 410
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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'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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Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
Posts: 2551
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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Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2011 3:45 pm
Posts: 134
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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 Post subject: Re: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 8:22 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 02, 2012 7:36 pm
Posts: 46
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: 28
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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 Post subject: Re: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Sat May 17, 2014 7:45 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 02, 2012 7:36 pm
Posts: 46
Location: Near Toronto Canada
After lifting manually, and really stressing about it, I decided to go electric.

I had a manual pulley system rigged up, but then the Winch went on sale, so this is way better.

Total worry free mast raising and lowering.

Winch attaches to bottom of adjuster plate.
Image

I still need to add a roller on the front, that V block mast support is not going to make it.

Image

I moved the winch to line up with the bridle attachment points. So when the mast is up, the pins line up perfectly.

Image

Image

I am using trap wires for guiding the mast side to side. I added Stainless steel brackets to the front crossbar, to the trap wires just clip in. The idea is to make it quick and easy.

I had a 15 amp fuse in the power cable to the winch, it blew when it did the heavy lifting in the beginning. Had to get some jumper leads to boost it up. So I still need to sort out the power supply to the winch. I have it plugged into the 12v outlet in the truck of the Ford Edge, but it only delivers 20A. I will need to run some wire, or maybe get another small battery.


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 Post subject: Re: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Sun May 18, 2014 3:31 am 
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Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
Posts: 2551
Location: Jersey Shore
You need to replace those bridle wires big time! Those are some ugly kinks in that wire. If your other shrouds are in similar condition, I would replace the whole set.

As far as your power situation, you could always add a 2:1 purchase to the winch line. Or an even better option would be to raise the forward mast support (add an extension post). The problem is that when using the mast support at its current height, the angle between the forestay and the mast is initially so small that you get a very high load right at the beginning of the lift.

sm


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 Post subject: Re: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Sun May 18, 2014 6:00 am 
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Joined: Tue Oct 02, 2012 7:36 pm
Posts: 46
Location: Near Toronto Canada
srm

Yes the kink looks bad, but it doesn't have any damage. The bridles mostly look quite new, except for that kink. I will consider replacing it, depending on the cost.

I still want to make a few other mods to the trailer, move the rear support back, and as you suggested, raise the front one up too.

The leverage at that small angle is a lot, but the little winch pulls it up quite easily. First I need a roller, I think the friction there adds a lot of current draw.


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 Post subject: Re: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Sun May 18, 2014 7:37 am 
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Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
Posts: 2551
Location: Jersey Shore
Myoffroadhobie wrote:
srm

Yes the kink looks bad, but it doesn't have any damage.


Kink = damage. A kink in a wire rope will severely reduce the load handling capability of the wire.

Personally, I would not consider cost as part of the replace/not replace decision. It is a matter of safety and inconvenience if you dismast.

sm


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 Post subject: Re: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Sun May 18, 2014 9:33 am 
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Joined: Wed May 25, 2011 3:15 pm
Posts: 104
Location: Buffalo, NY
srm is right, kinks like those are pretty significant damage to the wire. Don't try to straighten it out, that weakens it further. Sailing like that WILL result in breakage. Likely a gust or wave will overload the wire, it will snap suddenly and the mast will come crashing down.

I know that rigging is the last thing you want to spend money on when you have so many other upgrades in mind, but standing rigging above all else is the last place you want to cut corners. Look at it this way, when the mast comes down, your trailer upgrades won't do much good with a broken mast, torn sail, broken crossbar or damaged hull... not to mention the possibility of physical injuries.

I can't quite tell the condition of the port bridle, but you should at the very least replace the one that's kinked.

Bridles cost $68.99 each, shrouds $72.99, forestay $94.99 (upper) and $82.99 (lower). Hulls, masts and crossbars cost $300+ each used, if you can find them.

Boat: a hole in the water that you throw money into :lol: :cry:

james, stepping the mast can be a bit tricky the first few times until you get the hang of it. I always have my crew hold the mast as high as they can as I get on the trampoline and grab it from them, and then they hop up and give me a hand with it. We walk the mast forward together, one person on each side so as to keep the mast stable side to side, and once it's all the way forward, I hop down and pin the forestay while he holds it. This two person method also makes it much easier to get around the diamond wires when the mast goes from waist level to about head level. Just be careful of your shrouds. Mine always seem to wind up getting stuck underneath the hulls as the mast comes up!

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Mike
Image
'79 H18 standard 'Rocketman II' sail #14921


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 Post subject: Re: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Sun May 18, 2014 1:41 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 29, 2011 4:27 pm
Posts: 553
Location: Central Oregon
One thing to be weary of with the small/cheap atv winches like that is the breakers welding closed. I had one run away once. Not fun and it was just hooked to a snowplow. But was bending stuff as it just kept spooling in no matter what I did with the control. I had to disconnect at battery to stop it. If it uses cheap china automotive style breakers I would replace them with a winch contactor setup.

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1980 H16
1997 Wave


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 Post subject: Re: stepping the mast
PostPosted: Tue May 20, 2014 9:25 am 
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Joined: Mon Dec 22, 2008 7:02 pm
Posts: 128
Location: Rockford, IL
I had a side shroud break and the mast come down on a Hobie 17. Luckily, no one was hurt and the damage was relatively minor and not too expensive to repair. The guy I bought the boat from told me he had replaced the standing rigging recently.

You aren't using a gin pole or something to give a straighter pull on the forestay? You're putting a lot of stress on the shackles and rigging by pulling at such a low angle. And it looks like you have a stub mounted on your mast for a gin pole?

I have a mast stepper III for my Getaway, but back 20 years ago, I made a gin pole from a 2x4 for my H-17. Worked fine, and cost almost nothing.

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