Mast Oxidation and Protection - SailNet Community
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Mast Oxidation and Protection

Is this oxidation and how do I get rid of it? Also, the mast is an anodized mast so I know I have to be careful to not remove the finish. I don't want to paint it because I don't want the hassle of having to repaint every few years. Also, advise on cleaning and polishing it protecting it etc. Thanks, PS Mast is down replacing all standing, running rigging and all turnbuckles.


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Re: Mast Oxidation and Protection

No picture so can't tell you if it's corrosion. You can wax the mast with auto polish to give it some protection. Insulate dissimilar metals and use TefGel/LanoCote/LocTite for all fasteners. Be sure the drain holes at the base of the mast are clear so no water can pool inside the mast. The mast on my Pearson 35 is almost 50 years old and still looks good.
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Re: Mast Oxidation and Protection

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Re: Mast Oxidation and Protection

Pessimistic guess is that the sails or lines have chafed the mast enough to remove the anodizing in those areas.

Optimistic guess is that it is something staining on the most, in which case some time with solvents or mild auto polish or white compound might take it off.

But if that's the anodizing worn through, you may it very difficult to transport a mast to anyplace that can still strip and re-anodize something as long as a mast. Which could make it paint time. You might want to ask around and find out just how where you'd need to send it, and what that would cost you.
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Re: Mast Oxidation and Protection

Aluminum self heels against oxidation/rust. The aluminum forms a protective layer of oxide that prevents further corrosion. The oxide is rough and doesn't look all that good but it doesn't affect the strength or long term health of the mast. Anodizing is essentially a controlled oxidation that doesn't have the rough and blotchy surface of the organic oxidation. If you can't live with the mast's current appearance you can paint it but you will be subjecting yourself to a lifetime of maintenance headaches.
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Re: Mast Oxidation and Protection

I had a boat with a painted mast, and I did repaint it once in the time I had it. It looked great for years after the paint job, and I just did it with spraybombs in the back yard.

As long as you prep well and use a good paint, you can get a finish that will look good for many years. I don't think there is a huge amount of maintenance to be done, although you may find yourself painting again 10 years down the road to keep it looking good.

The important thing is to avoid chaffing. Your mast looks like it had halyards stowed to the base of the mast where they were free to chaffe and slap every time the wind blows.

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Re: Mast Oxidation and Protection

A lot of the maintenance on a painted mast seems to be caused by halyard slap. Karma, huh?(G)
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Re: Mast Oxidation and Protection

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Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
A lot of the maintenance on a painted mast seems to be caused by halyard slap. Karma, huh?(G)
Yes, halyard slap is a pet peeve of mine, particularly if sleeping on board in a marina! I vowed many years ago that my boat would never be the source of such annoying sounds!

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Re: Mast Oxidation and Protection

Amusing how many people let there halyards slap it isn't goof for the halyard or the mast and if you live onboard you do whatever it takes to eliminate it !
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Re: Mast Oxidation and Protection

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Originally Posted by SchockT View Post
Yes, halyard slap is a pet peeve of mine, particularly if sleeping on board in a marina! I vowed many years ago that my boat would never be the source of such annoying sounds!

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I’m with you, pet peeve of mine also. It’s all about how/where you tie you halyards and in our case ez jack lines. Aside from the noise when your there, it bothers others and wears on your mast as evidenced by the OP


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