As I understand it, the mast cross section on the Hobie 16 looks something thing this:
I marked in red what I'm guessing is the break point: right behind the luff track. It seems to be a weaker point. My concern is partly for the vertical integrity of the mast, but more specifically, for the horizontal integrity. The crack is right about where the gooseneck shackle for the boom would rest with the downhaul marginally tight. I'm guessing that's handling a decent amount of the force of the sail directly at that location. It's possible the previous owner sailed it like this for years and never had an issue, but I'm trying to assess the urgency of the repair.
I've contacted my local sail shop this afternoon, and they have suggested that they do Heliarc (TIG) welding, and might be able to repair it, but will need to see it first. Has anyone had any experience with having a mast repaired via this method?
Failing that, I'll be looking for a used Hobie 16 mast. GD_NC, thanks for the suggestion on the "Looking to buy" section. I'll check it out, if it comes to that. Rab1516, I'm in the greater Detroit area, so MD would be a bit of a haul, unfortunately.