Spreader Removal - Mast Stepped - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 2 Old 07-08-2009 Thread Starter
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Spreader Removal - Mast Stepped

After sailing a pearson 26 extensively the past couple of years, I upgraded to a pearson 30 last fall. When I bought it, the mast was already stepped. I'm planning on sailing the boat down to the Bahamas or maybe even the Caribbean this fall. Right now I am trying to ID and correct any potential problems that may arise before they occur. One of these potential problems is with the spreaders. After taking a trip up the mast this previous weekend, I noted that the spreaders are showing significant signs of aging, so I want to take them down to refinish or replace them. However, I am not planning on taking the mast down before the trip, and would like to avoid doing so if at all possible. The boat is currently moored in a fairly protected location. Do you think that the lower shrouds and stern and bow stays will be enough support for me to go up in the bosuns chair to remove the spreaders for a day or so?

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post #2 of 2 Old 07-09-2009
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First, ease the backstay an inch or so to reduce the compression load on the masthead. Then use your jib halyard to haul two lines to the masthead, one for either side of the yacht, and make these fast to the toe-rails near the cap shroud chain plates. Then you can ease the cap-shrouds enough to allow you to remove the spreaders once you assend the mast. Without the lateral support at the masthead while you're up the spar, you risk the possibility of buckeling the mast above the spreaders as you swing outboard to free the spreaders from the cap shrouds. Your weight will cause the yacht to heel somewhat which will induce an eccentric load at the masthead from the halyard supporting you. Without some the lateral support the mast will bend sideways, inducing more heeling and eccentricity (like the ponding phenomina of rain on a flat roof). While the spar section may be stiff enought about its fore-n-aft axis to support the induced load, why risk it?


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