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Hey guys! I'm in the process of replacing my mast on my 1975 Venture 23. I'm replacing it with a hobie 18 mast, I'm new to sailing and have two general questions.

1. I've got the shrouds attached and fore stay, but don't know how much I should tighten them down. For instance the fore stay has a sort of tensioner on it, just don't know how tight to make it.

2. I've attached the aft stay a few inches above where it previously was. Therefore the stay is just a bit too short. Are there any local remedies to this situation (ie home depot or lowes) or do I need to order a stay extender online?

3. The main halyard line is too thick to go through the pulley at the hobie masthead. What sort of replacement rope am I looking for? I'm just learning to sail, not racing or anything. Can I source a rope from a hardware store?

4. The previous owner sold me the boat with a "1 person mast raising system" he built. It looks like a 5' long board with a hand winch and 4 pulleys running back and forth. Could anyone explain how I use this?

Thanks for all the advice!
 

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1. Start with snug, then go up 2-3 full turns. It's better to be a little tight than too loose. But they should not be bar tight.

2. Do you have a pic? Does it still connect into the bulk head or reinforced section of the boat?

3. How big is your current main halyard? send me an email at [email protected]

4. You'll need to post a drawing or photo of the setup for an accurate description of how to use it.
 

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Camp – I glad to read that your mast replacement project is proceeding along. Here are a couple of thoughts:

1 Basic tension is determined by wire diameter. The best way of measuring it is with a “Loos Gauge” (wire tension gauge). If you can’t borrow one at the marina then do the “hand” method described earlier. If you have access to a similar boat (size), pull on their shrouds to get an idea of the tension you are looking for. When you are sailing and you see your leeward shrouds “sagging” (headstay too) then give them an extra turn. When everything is set, wrap some tape on the turnbuckle threads to mark the proper setting – important as you will be dropping the mast for trailering.

2 What is the gap size on the aft stay? Can you fit a second turnbuckle in there? The rigger’s way of closing the gap is by inserting "toggles". They come in 1 – 2 inch increments and are sold from any on-line rig shop.

3 Hardware store rope is good for clotheslines only. Halyards need to be low stretch which you will not find at the hardware store. What is the diameter of your current halyard? You could probably be fine with using something like StaSet or StaSet X. It is pretty affordable and available on-line.

4 Without looking at what you got, I think the previous owner used a gin pole set up to step the mast. Fairly simple. Put the mast base in the step. Attach the back stay as well as the upper and lower aft shrouds. Put the gin pole at the base of the mast. Run the jib halyard over the gin pole and to the bow. Use the hand winch to crank it up. The back stay and lower aft shrouds will keep the mast from falling forward. Take care while hoisting as the mast doesn’t have any lateral stability while going up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
2 What is the gap size on the aft stay? Can you fit a second turnbuckle in there? The rigger’s way of closing the gap is by inserting "toggles". They come in 1 – 2 inch increments and are sold from any on-line rig shop.

-Its about 1-1/2 feet off. Can I go to the hardware store and buy a length of cable and some clamps to solve this?

3 Hardware store rope is good for clotheslines only. Halyards need to be low stretch which you will not find at the hardware store. What is the diameter of your current halyard? You could probably be fine with using something like StaSet or StaSet X. It is pretty affordable and available on-line.

-Awesome! Just found the rope at a local sailing shop.

4 Without looking at what you got, I think the previous owner used a gin pole set up to step the mast. Fairly simple. Put the mast base in the step. Attach the back stay as well as the upper and lower aft shrouds. Put the gin pole at the base of the mast. Run the jib halyard over the gin pole and to the bow. Use the hand winch to crank it up. The back stay and lower aft shrouds will keep the mast from falling forward. Take care while hoisting as the mast doesn’t have any lateral stability while going up.

I dont think its a gin pole. Its like a 2"x4' with a hand winch bolted to the middle of it and 2 pulleys on each end. The wire runs back and forth between the pulleys and has a hook on the end of it.
 

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Camp,
Where are you again? Dallas? Austin? No chance that there is a West Marine with a rig shop nearby?

You could get by with a wire pendant IF (big IF) you can get the wire out of stainless wiire the same size as your back stay and you can get the ends wrapped around thimbals and machine swaged. You might be able to get by with double Nicro Press swages (better if you can get them pressed with a big press, not so well if you do "hand" swaging) There must be some sort of crane and rigging guy out there that can do this. The other way is to make a tang out of stainless. The problem there is one of the ends needs to be "split" so it can go over the chainplate (eyebolt) on the stern.

The mast raising contraption sounds pretty unique. I wonder if the previous owner mounted it on the front pat of the trailer? The concept is for the halyard or hoisting line to divert higher than the resting mast so when you crank on the winch, the top of the mast raises up and not get pulled along horizontally.

You are getting really close to getting back on the water! Good for you. Work out these last few issues and I look forward to your report on Monday!
 
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