I used to own some trailer sailboats, but now have a 1988 Hunter 33.5, but with the fractional rig it's too tall to get under the KY Lake bridges. I am searching for a way to make my mast folding rather than unstepping it.
Yes, I have similar questions and have been thinking on it. Apparent, folding mast setups on larger, long, and heavy masts like yours and mine present some interesting issues to solve.
On my 27 Buccaneer I lower the mast via the trailer's high mounted winch lowering to the aft and onto a temp cradle at the stern. It works just fine but then I have to un-pin the base and carry the mast forward for stowing.
I now have a 30 ft Seafarer I will be trailering (yea I can) but it's mast is much longer and heavier than my 27's. I'd like to investigate folding options where it folds down with the base 1/3 (or so) going forward and the upper 2/3 (or so) pivoting aft... and stay fully stayed.
I'm getting old enough that a "push button mast raising and lowing system" is starting to look pretty attractive. It must to others too, but as someone else put it there's not all that much yankee ingenuity happening anymore.
Has anyone ever seen such a system? Cables?, hydraulics?, compressed air? What are those million dollar toys doing? They are push button everything aren't they? If some factory can design and build something I can too.
I have a simple lateral force "in motion" stability system worked out mentally for the whole traverse from full up to full down... even in a worse case cross wind.
I have the initial pivot movement mast elongation problem worked out conceptually anyway (for my the Seafaer's mast setup) so as to not un-stay. I may be able to design a pivot lock release catch system up through the center and be operated from inside the cabin below the mast...humm have to think on that more. Just came into my head as I was typing.
These are all old very simple systems I'm thinking in. Nothing all the magical about them.
Leaning toward weather protected simple 12vt gear reduced motors, cable drums, and cabling/pulley systems... with manual hand crank backups. Conforms to the KISS rule. But hydraulics are not out of the question either yet, but you know that just when I need it bad in a river current and a low bridge coming up, that's exactly when the motor or engine driving the hydraulic pump will fail. 12 vt Electric and cabling is readily available on-board and can be manually backed up more easily.
Getting closer on concepts... time to get the old drafting table uncovered and start drawing it out and work up the math. I prefer it over my CAD Program actually.
PS, Are you all telling me (through the lack of words) that no-one, or no company has done such a thing for the push button only million-aire owners? I actually find that hard to believe where money was no object. Oh... never mind, they just pay the marina. I forgot they pay others to do things for them (dummy me!). I would rather not have that cost... and I'd really want it available under way... for multiple reasons.
Thanks for your thoughts...