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  #1  
Old 10-10-2008
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Mast up or down for winter?

I have a catalina mk 28 tall rig. I have always removed mast for winter storage because I read it is less stressful on deck. Thoughts? If the mast is left up (cheaper), please advise right way to loosen stays and shrouds, how loose is loose and when is it too loose?

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Old 10-10-2008
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I've done it both ways (and the same with the mast up or down). At our prior and soon-to-be-prresent marina the travel-lift won't accomidate a mast being up so we have no choice. I prefer to leave the mast up for convenience. Mast down is probably less stressful on the rig and certainly allows for maintenance and better treatment of the anemometer, Windex & VHF antenna (as they can be removed for storage); and it encourages a full standing rigging check-over twice annually (once down & again just before going up).

When loosening the turnbuckles I would back off three or four turns. (Our 34 was deck stepped). It should be snug, but not fully tensioned. Loose enough to allow flex & motion is too loose as metal will suffer stress fractures from repeated flexing and your chain-plates are designed for a steady pull - not the sudden jerks & stops from a loose mast.
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Old 10-10-2008
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I'll keep it up this year but will bring it down next just for inspection.
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Old 10-10-2008
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I don't know enough to answer your question, on my boat it's pretty simple, drop the mast or it won't fit in my back yard I am interested in a Catalina 28 as my next boat though (along with a few other models) and would like to know how you like yours?
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Old 10-11-2008
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mast up or down, how is the catalina 28

tall rig with fin keel, sails great, especially with 110 foresail. Lots of room in cockpit, sleeps six easily below but storage, except ice chest, is VERY SPARSE. Backing is weak with two blade prop, but forward handles well. There was no skimping with deck hardware. Overall, very nice boat .
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Old 10-11-2008
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It makes no sense that a mast system designed to take the large dynamic forces it is subjected to in winds and seas pounding to windward, would not be safe in a static mode in a properly supported and blocked dry storage situation. Leave it up unless you have a reason to take it down.
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Old 10-12-2008
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I agree with Cam. Why is this even a question?

Leave the mast up, do not touch any of the rigging adjustments. Just leave it alone, trust us, your boat will be fine.
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We take ours down because we've no choice: The haul-out/splash is via a crane, so the mast can't be left up. If we had a choice, I don't know which way we'd go. Mast up with the boat sitting in a cradle or jack-stands seems kind of scary, what with that extra wind load up there, and I imagine makes it harder to fully-cover the boat, if you so-desire. Taking the mast down and putting it up is a hassle, but it does give you an opportunity to check-over all your rigging, etc., thoroughly each season.

Jim
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Old 10-13-2008
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We just brought our boat to the Long Island Sound. Interestingly enough, we have yet to find a marina on the NY/CT side (haven't looked at Long Island) that doesn't tack on a surcharge for storing your boat with the mast up. The general surcharge is 15% of your storage fee. I've asked why, and multiple marinas stated that "Due to winds, we have to put more stands on boats with their masts up and we have to check them more frequently". I don't know what to think of this since none of the marinas on Lake Champlain or Annapolis that we've spoken with have a surcharge, and I can't see the winds being that much higher in CT where our boat is now.
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Old 10-13-2008
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If you live in an area that is subject to winter freezes it is preferable to take the mast down. Things expand and contract at different rates. Water can be inside things in funny places and cause cracks or deterioration in things that you don't see unless you examine the masthead carefully.
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