stepping/unstepping mast on Cal 25-2 - SailNet Community

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Old 04-08-2013
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Cool stepping/unstepping mast on Cal 25-2

Can a few experienced old sea dogs give me a thumbs up on how to go about unstepping or stepping the mast on a Cal 25-2 (Mark II)?

I am considering buying one and within the year I should haul it and have a new bottom job, hull paint, deck paint etc.

I owned a Cal 24 for seven years and taking the mast down or putting it up was a fairly routine job for three people. There is a fitting on the deck of a Cal 24 with a bolt fore and a bolt aft so you can unstep the mast either direction by taking one bolt out and using the other as a fulcrum point..

But I'm looking at the Cal 25-2 and no such luck. It seems to go down into the deck and on the one I'm looking there is what may be a collar or sorts around the base of the mast where it meets the deck. Do you somehow remove this collar and, voila!, it makes itself self evident how to proceed?

The seller of this boat is a landlubber who seems to know so little about his craft.

Does this mast by chance require a crane? Or can 3-4 people safely bring this mast down using a gin pole system? I simply can't see how you get the base of the mast loose.

Anyone familiar with this boat?
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Old 04-08-2013
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Re: stepping/unstepping mast on Cal 25-2

While no expert.. I'd rate that ya need a crane! The "I" dimension is listed as 33 feet, plus whatever's in the cabin to the keel; perhaps another 6 feet. So..ya wanna humpa near 40 foot bit of aluminum pipe, replete with rigging??

Din't think so!

**IF** it's not a keel step; or ya look into one that's not, go peek at a vid by Seaward showing the way they recommend stepping their masts. Quite the process; but relatively easy and straightforward. With the right additional rigging as shown there, it's piece of cake!
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Re: stepping/unstepping mast on Cal 25-2

deltaten, thanks! I will look at that Seaward video. I've read some of their boats come with a gin pole system.

The boat I'm looking at -- the Cal 25-2 -- is deck mounted, not keel mounted. There is a compression post in the cabin that takes the brunt of the weight. It's cleverly blended into the cabinet work so it is not noticeable.

So that's my dilemma. It is resting on something at cabin roof level. That boot at the base where the mast meets the deck is the clue. I think it got glassed over and painted and removing it my mean using a sharp tool to dislodge it. I don't know.

I have a Cal 25-2 factory manual I got online and it gives no clue. It was printed in the late 70s, early 80s and uses a typewriter and crude graphics. We have come such a long way. I don't know how their customers knew to step the darn thing when they took delivery from the factory. A factory rep must have helped.
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Re: stepping/unstepping mast on Cal 25-2

"It seems to go down into the deck and..." is the part that led me to believe it was keel stepped. Dunno Cal's plan, so there it is.

Ya might need to do some investigation on just how the mast base is set. Perhaps a PO had some leaks and liberally applied goop around it?? Sounded almost like a mast boot... another indicator of keel stepping.

Seaward and some others use mast/deck hardware that can be used as a hinge when stepping. If yer gonna hafta chew off the old crud surrounding the mast, it'd pay to change out to hrdwr that will do the same.

regards,
Paul
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Re: stepping/unstepping mast on Cal 25-2

I'll check that out.

It would seem odd to have a keel stepped mast on a 25 foot boat. I will investigate further. There may be a hinged fitting underneath that boot.
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Re: stepping/unstepping mast on Cal 25-2

The other clue that it's deck stepped is the compression post down in the cabin. So I'm dealing with some oddball fitting under the mast where it's attached to the deck.
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Re: stepping/unstepping mast on Cal 25-2

Pictures man, we need pictures. Mere words do not convey the dire situation that
you are about to enter. You would think if it was keel step the mast would be visible in
the cabin. Pretty hard to hide a big chunk of metal in a 25 foot boat.
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Re: stepping/unstepping mast on Cal 25-2

Captainmem, it's not keel step. There is no aluminum in the cabin. But there is a compression post built into the teak cabinet work, I assume for aesthetics since compression posts are not works of art. You can tell it's a compression post because it's 3 to 3 1/2 inches thick x 6 and is located right under the mast.

I will try to get photos. The boat is not mine but one I am looking at buying. So I have to get with the seller to get back aboard and back inside.
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