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 Post subject: EZ Mast stepping
PostPosted: Sat Aug 02, 2008 7:59 pm 
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Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 7:55 pm
Posts: 7
I have never stepped my mast down, and need to do it for the first time. I have purchased the EZ step and hand winch. I am nervous about tipping my mast down by myself, does anyone have any suggestions?? I have a 1992 H20 and an EZ stepping kit. Also the kit recommends reinforcinf the kit with schedule 80 metal tubing?? Any advice would be helpful.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 8:33 am 
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Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
Posts: 2572
Location: Jersey Shore
My opinion, make sure you are totally comfortable with the EZ stepper before you use it. The Hobie 20 mast is tall and heavy and if you drop it or it gets out of control, it will be very dangerous. A better bet may be to just get some additional man power to help you lower the mast manually. Get two people up on the tramp, and one person operating a winch connected to the main halyard. With three people you should be able to lower the mast safely.

BTW, schedule 80 is a classification for heavy walled pipe. I assume that with the added weight of the Hobie 20 mast, they want you to use a stronger pipe then is normally supplied with the kit.

sm


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2008 5:28 am 
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Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Sun Jul 01, 2007 10:32 am
Posts: 23
Location: Minnesota
I would avoid doing it yourself at all costs. I've had a trying year of stepping every time I sail, usually with a new crew each time. A few lessons I've learned:

- The hardest part of lowering the mast is getting the rotation right so you don't bind the mast at the front crossbar.
- I use a ring on the stepping pin at one end and a cotter pin on the other end. (It came out once and was a nightmare.) Two cotter pins might be better if you don't know which way you'll rotate.
- Once the mast is down and on its side, the diamond wire will be supporting the mast at the rear crossbar. Without someone to hold the end of the mast you may stretch, kink, or damage the diamond wire.
- Ensure you have one trap wire tightly secured to the ends of the front crossbar to avoid swinging unless you're very confident you and your crew can keep it straight.
- If you attach the trap wires as supports for the first time while the mast is up, remember how much line you added or tied off - if you tighten them while it's down and raise from there you'll stretch, break, or bind going up.
- Don't tie the supports to the barber hauler blocks in any manner that could bend them. (Learned the hard way.)

Good luck!

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Bill
H20 #433
Southeast Iowa


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2008 6:28 am 
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Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
Posts: 2572
Location: Jersey Shore
Quote:
- The hardest part of lowering the mast is getting the rotation right so you don't bind the mast at the front crossbar.


I've never had that problem on the 20 or 17. Rotate the mast to 90deg before dropping and then bring it down.

Quote:
- I use a ring on the stepping pin at one end and a cotter pin on the other end. (It came out once and was a nightmare.) Two cotter pins might be better if you don't know which way you'll rotate.


You should decide which way you'll rotate the mast before dropping it and then make sure that the split ring is facing towards the front so that it is on top when the mast is down. I don't use anything on the other side (cotter pin, split ring). Just slide the pin in, drop the mast, pull the pin out. I also never sail with the pin in.

Quote:
- Once the mast is down and on its side, the diamond wire will be supporting the mast at the rear crossbar. Without someone to hold the end of the mast you may stretch, kink, or damage the diamond wire.


Yes, definitely you want someone to go to the back of the boat to hold the top of the mast after you've brought it down. Don't sit the mast on the diamond wire.

I never used any type of side supports when raising/lowering the mast. Probably not a bad idea, but I always just used a second person or a winch if I though it was going to be a difficult drop.

sm


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2008 5:31 am 
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Site Rank - Captain

Joined: Sun Jul 31, 2005 4:43 pm
Posts: 108
Location: Tulsa Oklahoma
an easy way to raise and lower the mast while the boat is on your trailer is to use the winch. I put a turning block at the top of the mast support then run the winch line thru it to one set of the trapeeze wires(left or right). by using the trap wires from one side the mast will stay rotated 90 degrees like it should. then with one person on the winch and one person holding the mast you can raise or lower it easily. by using the trap wires to raise/lower the mast the forestay is loose and makes attaching it or releaseing it from the bows much more convinent.

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Tom & Nancy Page H20 803


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