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I pulled my Morgan 382 out of the water today. I need to unstep my mast because I'm replacing the standing rigging, removing/inspecting the chainplates and doing some other work on the mast. My yard doesn't have a mast crane, so they cannot unstep my mast.

The yard manager uses a guy with a bucket truck to remove masts. He normally does tree work, but he has pulled a few masts for the yard in the past. Obviously, this worries me a bit.

Does anyone have suggestions? There isn't a marina anywhere near me with a mast crane, so I need someone to come to me. Hiring a crane seems pricey.
 

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One of the biggest yards in Seattle uses a boom truck for stepping and unstepping masts. I'd be comfortable with it if an experienced rigger is involved.
 

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Wanderer
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A lot of buckets have a material handler built into them. A material handler is basically a mast with a winch. The amount of weight they will lift depends on the angle of the boom. Having worked out of buckets all of my life, if the guy in the bucket thinks its safe... it should be safe. After all, if the truck or boom breaks, he is at the top of the boom.

Cheers
 

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Some travel lifts have a boom crane attached. I've pulled my mast twice this way. 58'. A couple of extra hands is a good idea to help guide the mast out of the boat if it is keel steeped. Also attach an extra line around the base to prevent the mast from flying around. Usually the night or day before, I've taken out all the pins, marked the turnbuckles so I can get the mast back in approximate tune, done all the little jobs in advance off the travel lift guys showing up. The last time was tide dependent so only had a two day window to work with. Give some thought as to what is going to be used as the strap that goes around the mast. Some yards have proper lifting straps, others it may be up to you to provide one. How will you support the mast once it's out of the boat? Close to power if you need it? Tenting an option? I pull off the windex and wind transducer prior to pulling the mast, these little goodies seem to get broken easily.
Good Luck!
 

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Are they both insured? I would send an email and get a reply in writing.
 
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Freedom isn't free
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Unstepping a mast is not that complicates, done it many time, but never used a " bucket truck"

Selden have a lot of useful stuff here: Assembly and operation : Seldén Mast AB
Read this guide "Hints and advice" page 60 Unstepping the mast
http://www.seldenmast.com/files/595-540-E.pdf
I think that is the 3rd or 4th time I've run across that document from Selden. It's a really comprehensive guide to all types of masts, and rigging, and I find myself reading and re-reading sections of it and learning more each time.

Just thought I'd give a written +1.
 

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The bucket should be no factor. The guy shouldn't even be in the bucket (unless he has to drive it from there). YOU have to be in charge though. It's a super easy operation. I was very aprehensive and unsure the first time I unstepped mine, but when we got it off and set down, the wife and I looked at each other and said "that was easy". Stepping requires a little more, but the "bucket" operator should just do what you tell him to. If the marina is doing the job, i.e. your paying them... then they're in charge and also responsible. Good Luck!

Dave
 

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You're on the hard? The boat won't be rocking or the sails full. The mast isn't going to be under much load. Its a flag pole. Use StaSet or something like it to create a bridle that takes the place of everything. Hoist it with a halyard and attach to the toe rail. You could even anchor it to the ground.

Granted, my mast is probably 15' shorter than yours (and deck stepped), but we use 3/16" SaySet for our bridle every weekend. 3/16 has a tensile strength of around 1900 pounds. A static mast might see (guessing) 100 lbs. on any given line in a stiff wind. But this means you'd have to go aloft to replace the rigging.
 

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Cranes are expensive to rent, but especially on the hard you may have no choice.. Because the boat and mast are on stands the required lift is now 6-8 feet higher than otherwise.. even a travellift with a boom won't be able to do it (they usually pull the stick with the boat still in the water below the travel lift platform).

The issue is not the weight - that's easily manageable - but the pickup point and the balance of the suspended stick. You want to to be relatively neutral, preferrably slightly butt-heavy. The last thing you want is to pick it up at too low a point and have the masthead windmill to the ground as soon as the butt's out of the mast partners.

In the interests of safety (yours and the boats around you) biting the bullet and hiring a crane may be the best plan.
 

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Weight should be no problem but experience may be a problem if the operator is not familiar with mast operations. You really need a very complete and detailed procedure for your particular mast, from detaching wiring to which side of the mast and where to place the lift noose, control lines, hand signals to the operator, etc. Planning is very important. Mistakes can be costly and very dangerous. If neither you nor the bucket operator have not done this, look for someone with experience to help. I have raised and lowered my mast many times but always use a laminated step by step, numbered sheet I made to make sure I don't screw it up.
 
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