Carbon mast life expectancy - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 25 Old 12-01-2010 Thread Starter
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Carbon mast life expectancy

Guys, give me a help here:

A carbon mast will last less than an aluminum mast?
The radiation (uv), with time, will affect the carbon?
What is the life expectancy of a carbon mast?

a Forte carbon fiber mast has at least double the life expectancy ( comparing with an aluminum mast)

FORTE CARBON FIBER MASTS

U/V clear coat varnish finish as standard, plus the UV inhibitor built into the resin
provides excellent protection against the elements.


http://www.seldenmast.com/Selden_Carbon_For_PDF.pdf



Excellent protection means what? It will last longer than an aluminum mast?



Regards

Paulo

Last edited by PCP; 12-01-2010 at 01:05 PM.
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post #2 of 25 Old 12-01-2010
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The two on my Freedom have been standing since 1983 w/o any problems.
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post #3 of 25 Old 12-01-2010 Thread Starter
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Are they painted, or just black, with a varnish over?
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post #4 of 25 Old 12-01-2010
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My mast and plenty of others are just fine at 40 years so it sure not gonna last 80

The way the yards around here handle masts i would sure not want carbon as its the small dings that kill them and many are painted white and when the second paint job is needed it becomes pretty costly job

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post #5 of 25 Old 12-01-2010 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tommays View Post
My mast and plenty of others are just fine at 40 years so it sure not gonna last 80
Your mast is a carbon or an aluminum one?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tommays View Post
The way the yards around here handle masts i would sure not want carbon as its the small dings that kill them and many are painted white and when the second paint job is needed it becomes pretty costly job
What is a ding? it is a small knock?

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post #6 of 25 Old 12-01-2010
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Paulo,

A "ding" is a small dent or blemish, usually caused by an impact.

For instance, if someone parks their car too close to yours, they might hit your car with their door when they open it. If they hit your car hard enough, you might end-up with a "ding" in the side of your car.

Or, if you are pounding a nail into wood with a hammer, and miss the nail, you might make a ding where the head of the hammer impacts the wood.


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post #7 of 25 Old 12-01-2010
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My 1981 J24 which was only raced has its orginal aluminum mast and my Cal 29 is 1970 and its orginal aluminum mast does just fine and i see no reason it could not last another 40

Just look at a carbon road bicycle and what happens from the tiny rock chips the tires throw up

Is carbon better sure BUT is it practical or necessary for 98% of the owners NO

We use a Carbon spinaker pole on the 35' and its great because its so light BUT were on #2 as #1 failed pretty catastrophically and did its best to try and take some crew with it

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Last edited by tommays; 12-01-2010 at 02:20 PM.
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post #8 of 25 Old 12-01-2010
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Also, carbon fiber masts can have serious issues with metal hardware attached to them. The graphite is more noble than any of the metals and leads to galvanic corrosion cells forming unless care is taken to isolate the metal from the carbon fiber.

A ding is a small dent or scratch caused when a mast bumps into something else. Scratches can be particularly bad for laminate masts.

Also, for a cruising boat, an aluminum mast makes more sense. It is easier to repair/replace an aluminum mast than it is a CF one, especially in more remote areas. Also, CF has issues with lightning—far more so than Aluminum.

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post #9 of 25 Old 12-01-2010
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My two carbon masts have no corrosion at fittings or winches, no dings or scratches and no problems with lightening. Painted white, they have been sailing for about 20 years. My booms however are aluminum and have scratches, chipped paint, and lots of corrosion around cleats and fittings.

My carbon masts are about half the weight of my old aluminum masts greatly reducing the weight aloft allowing the boat to sail fast in heavier winds without excessive heeling.

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post #10 of 25 Old 12-01-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by priscilla View Post
My two carbon masts have no corrosion at fittings or winches, no dings or scratches and no problems with lightening. Painted white, they have been sailing for about 20 years. My booms however are aluminum and have scratches, chipped paint, and lots of corrosion around cleats and fittings.

My carbon masts are about half the weight of my old aluminum masts greatly reducing the weight aloft allowing the boat to sail fast in heavier winds without excessive heeling.
Good input, Priscilla... what boat did you retrofit Carbon spars onto?

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