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  #1  
Old 03-22-2009
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Coduit Through the Mast

Hello Everyone,

I have gleaned countless tips and strategies from the contibutors of these forums about refitting my 1973 Columbia 8.7. The time has come for me to pull new wire through the mast and I want to install pvc electrical conduit. The problem is the mast has a solid styrofoam core. Does anyone have experiance or words of wisdome for pushing conduit through a 42' styrofoam packed mast?

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zeph
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Old 03-22-2009
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okay, you want to cut saw teeth on the end of the pipe, push and turn to saw your way thru. you will need to pull it out a few times to clear it. but even better is to get electrical metal tubing and do it with that. its the same out side dia and its thinner so it will be easier to push thru. after you get it thru, pull it out and then put the pvc in place
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Old 03-22-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by solzephyr View Post
Hello Everyone,

I have gleaned countless tips and strategies from the contibutors of these forums about refitting my 1973 Columbia 8.7. The time has come for me to pull new wire through the mast and I want to install pvc electrical conduit. The problem is the mast has a solid styrofoam core. Does anyone have experiance or words of wisdome for pushing conduit through a 42' styrofoam packed mast?

Working On The Dream,
zeph
The first question that comes to my mind is, why are you installing the conduit?

Isn't it possible to simply pull the new wire through using the old wires as messengers?
Unless you plan to remove the Styrofoam, you won't have a problem with wires slapping.
Sounds like you may be making more work for yourself than you need to.

If you really want to install the conduit, then remove the Styrofoam. I can't think of what purpose it could serve anyway.
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Old 03-22-2009
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I have always considered what goes on inside my mast as one of the grand mysteries of life.

Good luck and please report back when you've discovered the secret.
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Old 03-22-2009
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Thanks knothead, it would be great to use the existing wires as a mesenger cable, but they are packed so tightly with the styrofoam that they won't move without breaking. How would you remove tightly packed styrofoam from this 42' long tube? Scottyt's method of sawing through the styro stuff by turning jaged metal conduit might work. Has anyone ever done this before? There should be a brace between the spreader brackets and also between the shrould conections. Getting around those might be a challenge. Yes, billy the inerworkings of our masts are best left a mystery until we trully need to know there secrets. I appreciate everyones feedback.
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Old 03-22-2009
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Lacquer thinner will desolve styrofoam.
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Old 03-23-2009
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Originally Posted by solzephyr View Post
Thanks knothead, it would be great to use the existing wires as a mesenger cable, but they are packed so tightly with the styrofoam that they won't move without breaking. How would you remove tightly packed styrofoam from this 42' long tube? Scottyt's method of sawing through the styro stuff by turning jaged metal conduit might work. Has anyone ever done this before? There should be a brace between the spreader brackets and also between the shrould conections. Getting around those might be a challenge. Yes, billy the inerworkings of our masts are best left a mystery until we trully need to know there secrets. I appreciate everyones feedback.
Sounds like someone used expandable foam. The masts that I've seen that have Styrofoam it usually is cut to fit and the pieces slide out rather easily.

I have made a "drill bit" with a long pipe to cut through a rubber dam in a
Selden mast once but you might have a little problem with the core. You are basically making a long hole cutter.

Bottom line is, Styrofoam isn't too hard and you should be able to break it up or something.
Good luck
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Old 03-23-2009
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A lot of petro-chemical solvents will dissolve styrofoam. Do you just want to punch a hole in it or remove it entirely?

If you're putting in a conduit, I would remove the foam entirely.
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