Cal 2-27 anchor and masthead light rewire problems - SailNet Community

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Old 10-28-2013
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Cal 2-27 anchor and masthead light rewire problems

I have a 1976 Cal 2-27 I bought a few years ago and the navigation lights have never worked. I suspect the mast was down at some point... Katrina survivor and all. Anyway I decided to finally hoist my 250 lb self up the mast and pull the anchor light. I had already identified the wires for it by energizing the breaker and testing to find the live wires. I cut the old wires in the cabin where they run up through the deck next to the compression post, and connected the new wire to the old so I could pull up the new as I pulled out the old. Well, the old wires broke. Come to find out the wires from the actual anchor light fitting were not even the same wires that were connected to the anchor light switch! Anyway, now I got no way to pull the new wire. I try to run a fish tape down the mast and get nowhere. There are frames or baffles or whatever that stop it and I can't find the hole that MUST exist for wiring. If I just knew where it is, like center, forward, aft, to the side, whatever, maybe I could find it.

I really don't want to have to drop this mast. I am on severely limited finances and can't afford to take this to a yard. I don't want to have to run wires up the outside of my mast. I am tired of hoisting flashlights up halyards. I really want to get this mast rewired. Any ideas? Thanks!
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Old 10-28-2013
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Re: Cal 2-27 anchor and masthead light rewire problems

Here's what I use for fishing wires in the mast. This will require another trip to the masthead:

Ball Chain #3 Spool Aluminum 100 Feet - Amazon.com Ball Chain #3 Spool Aluminum 100 Feet - Amazon.com



I used the link to Amazon for illustration purposes only. There are many sources, including your local hardware store. Ball chain is heavy enough to go around most obstacles with some trial and error and its pretty easy to spot with a flashlight shining through the exit hole at the base of the mast and to snag with a bent coat hanger.

One note of caution: don't pull the new wires with the ball chain - it doesn't have much breaking strength. Once the ball chain has been fed from the masthead hole to the base, attach it to a stronger pull line and feed that to the base. Then attach the pull line to your wire. Good luck!
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Old 10-28-2013
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I rewired my mast this past yr...some of these have a conduit that runs the length and keeps the wiring from fouling on the halyards. ...tech drawings from the manufacturer should indicate the location. ..on mine I had to redrill the masthead to gain access...I ran the new wires and then capped the hole...
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Re: Cal 2-27 anchor and masthead light rewire problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by ECS-IB30 View Post
I rewired my mast this past yr...some of these have a conduit that runs the length and keeps the wiring from fouling on the halyards. ...tech drawings from the manufacturer should indicate the location. ..on mine I had to redrill the masthead to gain access...I ran the new wires and then capped the hole...
My halyards are external. I might have conduit but I don't think so. I will see for sure tomorrow. Going to do some drilling and looking. Today I had to spray some bug bombs into the mast. One problem with external halyards is the inside of the mast goes for decades without being disturbed. Wasps love that. It only takes one little hole for a bunch of them to build a bunch of nests, and from 1976 to now is a long time for them to accumulate. So my problem might be that the mast is clogged with their nests. I got 32 feet of fish tape up in there from the bottom so if it isn't just curled up then it is pretty close to the top. I hope it is. That will make everything alright. Once I got the fishtape through bottom to top, I am sitting happy.
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