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kjones 07-21-2013 10:33 PM

Southern Cross 31 Compression Post/Mast Step
Good evening all,

I'm considering purchasing an SC31 for extending offshore cruising. I looked at one (owner finished) over the weekend that seems to be in good shape in general; however, there was one area that I found concerning. If you all have a moment to give your collective expert opinions on the matter it would be greatly appreciated.

There is slight indention in the deck at the mast and corresponding protrusion in the headliner. It seems that the compression post (which is in good shape) is only supporting half of the mast. The bolt to starboard of the cluster of four bolts is the "facing forward" photo is the port side aft bolt of the mast step plate. The bolt in the "facing aft" picture is the port side forward bolt of the mast step plate. It seems that the only thing supporting the port side of the mast is the thin strip of bulkhead running across the headline to the compression post that is supporting starboard side of the mast.

1) Is this enough of a red flag to preclude moving forward with an offer survey and sea trial?

2) If not, could this issue be fixed by pulling the mast and sistering an additional compression post to the existing one?

Pictures of the mast step and headliner can be found here:

Thanks in advance!

Shinook 07-23-2013 09:36 PM

Re: Southern Cross 31 Compression Post/Mast Step
I'd ask someone more familiar with those boats how the mast step is constructed. The weight is going to be spread out over the bulkheads somehow and it's not necessarily going to be obvious to the naked eye.

On some boats I've seen, there is a metal plate fiberglassed between the deck that spreads the load over the bulkheads, so on deck it seems like the only support is the deck itself, but in reality there is a support glassed in that spreads the load out. I would defer to someone with more wisdom on these specific boats, though.

The droop could be because the support has rotted (wood), rusted (metal), or the rig was left too tight.

Bene505 07-23-2013 11:48 PM

Re: Southern Cross 31 Compression Post/Mast Step
I know someone who's had his SC31 for decades and is completing a 5-year, very extensive refit that he's doing himself (moving portlights, streamlining keel, rebuilt rudder, completely re-doing the interior from scratch, etc;).

PM me your phone number and I'll ask him to call you.


tjvanginkel 07-24-2013 01:03 AM

Re: Southern Cross 31 Compression Post/Mast Step
There is also a Southern Cross owners Yahoo group
SouthernCrossSailboats : Southern Cross Sailboats
Once you are a member you can pose your question there.
I am an owner and our boats compression post was moved by the PO so that the mast would be fully supported. There does not appear to be any lingering issues.

kjones 07-24-2013 08:06 AM

Re: Southern Cross 31 Compression Post/Mast Step
Thanks all!
Bene - sent you a pm.

Tanya - I've been exploring the owners site but it seems that one can only pay the fee by check through mail? Is that correct. I'm having a hard time finding a PayPal or other online option.

tjvanginkel 07-24-2013 10:40 AM

Re: Southern Cross 31 Compression Post/Mast Step
The Yahoo group is different than the SCOA. It is an email discussion group, no fees, you just sign up for a yahoo acct and send an email to the administrator. The link I posted should get you headed in the right direction. And the association is only payable by cheque.
All the best in your decision.
We really love our SC31!

miatapaul 07-24-2013 05:38 PM

Re: Southern Cross 31 Compression Post/Mast Step
Well you can tell it was owner finished, with the level of finish there I would make sure you got a really good price on it!

kjones 07-25-2013 08:22 AM

Re: Southern Cross 31 Compression Post/Mast Step
Tanya - got into the yahoo group. Very useful indeed!

Miatapaul - absolutely taking that into consideration.

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