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jumaggafanny 10-15-2008 09:38 AM

Chimera mast
2 Attachment(s)
I have always stepped Chimera's mast (Helms 25 #504 1975) with a single 10ft.long Gin-pole lashed near the foot. Using a 4:1 tackle, it's just not that hard to make it stand up. However in the true "antlers on th' wall" style I have over the last decade managed to hang a few extra items on my mast. Radar reflector: negative ion dissipation brush(rabbits foot for lightning); mast head nav/anchor lights & VHF antenna. This added weight, my membership in AARP and gusty winds provided me a challenge when I was making preparations to trailor away from Gustav. I have decided to change to an "A-frame" system. I am posting pix of my current system.

Wayne25 10-16-2008 11:26 AM

I use a similar gin pole as you. But instead of the block & tackle, I put a block foreword and run the line back to my main winch. My wife does the cranking while I keep the mast centered. That way she can cleat off if needed. With your added mast weight, I can see where my single speed winch would be hard to crank.
I don't see the A frame set up. I've heard of this done by modifying the shrouds somehow to keep the mast centered so there is no danger of loosing the mast sideways. Is this what you are doing?
Here are some pictures of my mast rest set up.

And a quick sketch of gin pole.

Wayne25 10-16-2008 11:28 AM

Can you use your trailer winch for the gin pole? My trailer winch is too low and the cable would hit the bow of the boat.

jumaggafanny 10-16-2008 01:15 PM

I've used my ole stand by 4:1 that has a camcleat...this is the same rig I use to haul my booty to the masthead when it's up. I have no real complaints with power issue however twice now against my better judgment I have lowered the mast while afloat, couldn't have done that w/trailer winch. I do have a 2-speed trailer winch and it still wears me out if I'm forced to pull Chimera up onto the trailer at a low water state or poor ramp.

I just turned down the OD of some 3/4" sch 160 st.stl. pipe to fit the stanchion base. I intend to swing from this point since I know the base to be strong and they're located in line w/mast base. I've seen some swing from the shroud chain plates, but I am looking for more control tha I can get from strap attachment. Plan "A" is to use 3/4-1" EMT for the frame I have to figure out a head configuration for the "A". I want it to be rigid in use but break down fast and store small. This is one of those parts I'll use 1-2 hrs yearly and doesn't have a 2nd use.

jumaggafanny 01-20-2009 08:13 AM

I finally got around to taking a pix of the McGyver rig I've made to step my mast. I was intent on making something that can travel wiht the trailer easily when not inuse. I have 3/4" electric conduit (EMT) 10 ft length as the basis. the top end is a ring wiht two legs welded to slip fit the conduit. I made 2 eash hinged tubing assemblies to fit into the stanchion base and allow the swing of the mast raising.


Wayne25 01-20-2009 08:41 AM

jumaggafanny 03-15-2009 05:10 PM

Mast stepping "rig"
2 Attachment(s)
I ended up with a few false starts making this rig work for me. I wanted something that breaks down since I have to carry it to my launch site a state line away. I am using 1" Electric conduit (emt) and used 1" OD 0.065 wall st. stl. pipe for the fittings, I used an cut ring of 2" pipe at the apex of the A-frame. This would not be suitable for Helms that do not have lifelines and the attendant stanchions. I was pretty pleased with myself for using the stanchion base, I couldn't lose the stanchion since the life line keeps it near and I know it's mounted and backed well. I still use the 4:1 from the bow to the frame. I anitcipated the need to shorten each side of the frame but that wasn't required. I am fortunate to have an inner stay to attach since mainstay involves installing the roller furling.

Wayne25 03-15-2009 08:03 PM


Did you use 10' EMT lengths. I measured the distance form the stansions to the pulit and it looks like 10' will be just right.
I'm making one also to replace my Ginpole. Although the ginpole is longer and gives more leverage, the A frame is more stable.
I also got an idea from Utube to make anothe A frame from the deck hand rails to the mast slot to support the mast laterally. I'll see if i can find the clip and post it. It looks simple and secure.

jumaggafanny 03-16-2009 03:08 PM

Mine are 10 ft, I intend to modify the Stbd one by cutting 3" off to center it. I only raised the mast once and set it back down. When it quits raining I'll try it again with the mast antlers.

Wayne25 03-16-2009 04:32 PM

I also found out that my stanchion plates are not placed the same on each side. Neither are my pad eyes for the shrouds. I think they said "That looks good" when they installed them. it also means my rigging is different in length from Port to Starboard. Not by a lot, but enough to almost have no more adjustment on my starboard side turnbuckle to make sure my mast is plumb.

Here is that U Tube cut of the mast raising rig on a Catalina 22. He uses chocks in the handholds and a gooseneck fitting in the mast groove that rides up and down to accommodate the difference in the hinge plane. Good idea. I'm going to try it.
YouTube - Mast Stepping Catalina 22 (1st Take)

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