I am relatively new to sailing and have been learning as I go. Two years ago I bought a 1986 C&C 33. I had the boat moved to its current location via truck and the movers stepped the mast and had the boat rigged and in the water before I arrived at the docks.
I never gave too much thought to the rigging process and assumed they did everything properly, but as I read more about sailboats, I see several references to blocks or wedges used to center the mast where it comes throught the cabin top as well as where it is stepped on the keel.
My boat has two stainless steel "ears" (for lack of a better word) that attach to the mast on the inside of the cabin, right where the mast comes through. Does this replace the wedges? And there are no wedges or blocks where the mast sits on the step. Should I have wedges there?
There is a gap between the outside diameter of the mast, which of course is round and the inside diameter of the step, which is square. I have read that you can add wedges fore or aft of the mast at the step to add or remove mast rake.
I am not really concerned about the rake at this point, but the possibility of the mast shifting in the step. Is this something to be concerned about, or am I all confused?
Any help would be appreciated.
The shrouds pull up the deck and that wants to squeeze the boat and the beam wants to decrees while the cabin top is pushed up. The two brackets you see are to fix the cabin topís height and keep the boat from distorting. You also need wedges or something like spartight to fix the position of the mast in the partners. It is two different forces and needs two different fixes.
All the best,
If as I recollect the straps or ears that you describe, connect between the mast and the mast collar, and are fairly strong and ridgid -then you wouldn't need any mast wedges, as the straps serve to secure the mast in the center of the thru deck opening. Does that in fact seem correct?
I wouldn't worry about wedging the foot of the mast unless you want to move the foot fore or aft for more or less rake. With the straps and the shroud tension, the foot is likely to move. To reposition it, you'd need to unload the shrouds, disconnect the straps and probably take a line around the mast to a winch and crank on it.
Thanks for all the information. I went to the boat this weekend and looked closely at the partners, I do feel they are sturdy enough to keep the mast centered.
Given you are new to sailing, I would have a rigger check the mast and rigging and do a basic static rig tune to make sure everything is set proper, this is not only for safety but also will impact how the boat sails, and should only take about an hour of his time, and you will learn a lot in the process, my experience, the rigger will see things you would not even know to look for.
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