Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Gloucester, Mass. USA
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How to properly fit a Mast
Okay. I''ve dealt with keel stepped masts all of my life and I can tell you this: If you don''t wedge the mast, you''ll never get a boot to hold together and keep the water out.
Here''s the plan: After the mast is stepped, set up the rigging so the mast is floating in the center of the aperture, then use wedges, cedar shingles work well enough or you can buy a set of framing wedges, the type that carpenters use to wedge window and door frames, to wedge the mast in place.
Now, there are two schools of thought here but as you''re dealing with that small of a gap, it shouldn’t matter. Either wedge the mast centered in the aperture or wedge it against the forward edge. I usually wedge hard against the forward edge myself.
Don’t be bashful! Run those babies home! Yes, solid is good. Then take a utility knife and score the wedges just above the opening and snap them off. Reinstall the boot over all and you’re all set! Good luck.