Possible Mast crack - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 12-22-2011
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Possible Mast crack

Any thought's on this apparent 1" long vertical hairline crack at the mast immediately above the port aft lower shroud's stemball cup attachment hole.

I'm not sure it is a crack maybe just a deep scratch. How serious and any recommendations are appreciated.

Last edited by olddog60; 03-10-2013 at 07:01 PM.
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Old 12-22-2011
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Hmmmm, if it's a crack you should be able to at least stop it from getting worse by drilling a small hole at its end.
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Old 12-23-2011
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Like he said, do that soon!

I'm not a metallurgy expert (but there are some on this forum) but it looks like a crack to me. A dye penetrant inspection would tell you for sure.

If it was me, I think I'd drill it then keep an eye on it. But I might also think about getting someone with a TIG welder to run a bead down it.
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Old 12-23-2011
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That is a crack and it is serious. Most probabably the load of the shroud connection caused it. It is best to weld or apply a suitable patch.
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Old 12-23-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkSF View Post
A dye penetrant inspection would tell you for sure
Good advice .... but do the dye penetrant investigation OFF of the boat as the dye will deeply penetrate porous gel coat ... and you may never get it out.

Even if its 'above' the load point attachment (less serious than 'below' or radiating horizonally ... if it IS a crack then it 'should' be welded and a 'gusset' be placed behind etc. to increase the load bearing strength of spar at this area.

Is this a 'bendy' mast one that can be radically bowed to affect 'sail shape/performance'? .... and if so 'how 'old' is it and how 'hard' has it been used .... fatigue considerations as if this 'is' metal fatigue then there is more wrong with the mast than 'just a crack'.
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Old 12-23-2011
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In my opinion this is a fatique crack. The shape is not linear therefore a hole to stop it will not work. There is load also on top of the connection, ad this load caused the fatique metal to give away. A good weld or patch will keep the mast for a few more years but ithe whole mast should be monitored closely every year.

Using penetrating dyes is one solution to find out the cracks, but this method is really messy, cleaning from different parts of the boat might be really a problem. Instead you can use magnifying glasses of 40 -70x. They are sometimes sold as portable microscobes. You can see the crack with those. The use of dyes is specially preferred by some surveyors, because it is easier to take photos of the dyed crack.

Last edited by celenoglu; 12-23-2011 at 03:08 PM.
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Old 12-23-2011
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Thanks for your responses. I am working to find a resolution. If this helps it is a Z-Spar (Z600E).
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Old 12-23-2011
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Just update for all our education. This is what I have learned from the experts at Z-Spar.

Quote:
In most stress cracks like this there really isn't many ways to fix it correctly and strong enough to regain the integrity of the section. In most cases we make cover plates and mechanically fix them over the area for reinforcement. The one thing you do not want to do is weld the crack or anywhere on this mast. That said you MUST do something to prevent the fitting pulling out and a catastrophic failure.

For cost i think the best would be a flat rate to come and do the whole job as this needs to be done right and have someone with mast experience do the job.
Total cost for making and then installing side plate reinforcemant to the side of your mast including drilling stop hole and tuning the mast and rigging after the install. $2,110.00. That would be for everything and you dont need to take the mast out or move the boat i would do all the work with the mast and boat where they are now.

Last edited by Faster; 12-23-2011 at 05:24 PM. Reason: fix quote
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Old 12-23-2011
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Veerrryyy Interesting.

Might be worthwhile asking a local rigger about their take on the situation, with this information held in reserve. While there's some value in having the rig tuned and properly setup after the repair, this seems to me a pretty costly fix. Are they/he nearby?
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Old 12-23-2011
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Since I am new at this I don't know if the cost is high or not. I/we are looking at local folks as well. But being the holidays responses are slow. The cost I posted covers his travel from Florida to Texas. I just can't seem to see this happening on a 2003 boat. My thoughts are I may be able to get Z-Spars or Beneteau to provide some $$$ consideration.
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