In the end, how did building the tapered aluminum mast, compare cost wise to an extrusion? even a used one?
Seems like a lot of welding time, gas, consumables, etc...
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First, by "extrusion" I will assume you meant to say a "modern mast oval cross section extrusion" as my schedule 80 water pipe mast is also an extrusion.
I kinda dig the old timer look of a traditional gaff rig with a the luff laced to a round cross section mast rather than the sail tracks, spreaders, uppers, lowers and all that other jazz associated with the more performance oriented oval cross section masts.
Only the top 4 feet of my mast is tapered and this was done for aesthetics. Many people who use round cross section spars do not taper the ends. This works just fine.
I needed to lengthen all three of my spars (I reused the pipe from Panope's previous schooner rig) and took the opportunity to taper - just because it looks cool to me.
I will repeat that last statement because it is very very important:
BECAUSE IT LOOKS COOL TO ME
I could try and justify thousands of the decisions that I made while rebuilding Panope with logical, practical, or economical factors. In the end, that is all just of bunch of BullS#!T because this project was a creative outlet for me - driven by emotion.
Is yours an emotionally driven project?