E38 Mast Damage

footrope

Contributing Partner
Blogs Author
Masthead_Bulge_On_hole01.jpgMasthead_Forestay_Plates.jpgMasthead_egged_hole01.jpg

The attached pics show the forestay attach point at the head of my mast. The mast is presumably the original which makes it 34 years old. I have owned the boat for 11 years and this is the first time I have taken it out of the boat.

It is in pretty good shape and I am preparing it for re-painting. The 5/8 inch holes are for a short pin that holds the forestay clevis fitting (it has a 90 twist, can't think of the proper name). Two 1/4 thick plates take the load of the forestay and the jib via this pin and fitting. The starboard plate is egged about 1/16 and the other shows a mark where the pin slipped part-way out of the hole. The plates are covered by a stainless plate that is bent to cover the outsides of both plates, thus hiding the damage and the slipped pin. The pin is about a sixteenth too short, IMHO. It has passed two rig inspections in the past 10 years by riggers.

We have not decided on a repair yet, but I am thinking the holes can be cleaned up and welded to fill in the damaged area and then filed back out to 5/8. I am talking to a rigger about that.

I am also thinking about having the yard cut back the steel cover so that the attachment holes and pin are visible for inspection. The remainder of the plate would be kept because it provides a guard for the sheaves for the two standby jib halyards, so they don't rub against the aluminum plates. The too-short 5/8 pin currently is captured between the plates and has no head or cotter pin. I would change to an appropriate pin if we cut back the cover.

Has anyone dealt with this before and have any ideas or comments? This is a Kenyon spar, I'm pretty sure. I am getting new standing rigging and am considering a backstay adjuster some day.

Thanks!
 

Martin King

Sustaining Member
One thing you might consider doing is boring oversize and inserting s.s. sleeves/bushings for the clevis pin. I did this on my aluminum chainplates to prevent the holes from egging out.
 

Guy Stevens

Moderator
Moderator
How much meat is there on the bottom of the pin

It doesn't look like there is enough meat on the bottom of the pin to simply drill it out and bush it.

How much is left there? It is difficult to tell from the photo.

Guy
:)
 

Guy Stevens

Moderator
Moderator
Another question

Is the other side in the same condition.

I know this seems like a silly question, but you would be surprised at some of the things I have seen.

Guy
:)
 

Martin King

Sustaining Member
It doesn't look like there is enough meat on the bottom of the pin to simply drill it out and bush it.

How much is left there? It is difficult to tell from the photo.

Guy
:)
If that's the case, then weld it up, grind it then bush it, although welding on corroded, pitted aluminum can be a challenge. Make sure you
clean the metal well before attempting it.

Martin
 
Last edited:

footrope

Contributing Partner
Blogs Author
More info

Thanks for the suggestions and comments. Here is the rest of the info and measurements I took.

The other hole is not really deformed, but has a mark on it between the plates like the shaft slipped out at one time. The two aluminum plates are covered by a bent stainless cover, which keeps the shaft for the center jib sheave in place. Unfortunately, the SS cover doesn't fit tightly enough to prevent the pin from slipping and becoming crooked, which I think put more stress on the hole that egged. It probably was that way for a long time.

The remaining material from the hole to the edge of the plate is approx. 5/16 + 1/64 which is 21/64 (0.328). I am really not a fan of the bushing idea, although we might have enough material if we were careful. The original amount of 'meat' would have been about 25/64 or 0.39 inch. So the loss to the edge is about 16% of the original 0.39

The SS cover is the reason that the inspections didn't detect the problem. The riggers couldn't be expected to disassemble the mast head with the mast up, obviously. All the more important to cut the hole in the SS large enough to install a conventional pin with a cotter key.

I'll see what the rigger thinks next week. It will definitely be a challenge to clean-up the corrosion for welding.
 

footrope

Contributing Partner
Blogs Author
Ugh

I haven't heard from the rigger, but a welder advises to bush it.

Reasoning:
1. Heat from welding will alter the heat treat of the plate to an unknown value.
2. A tight bushing will restore the edge thickness and strength of the plate back to the original (close enough anyway).
3. No heat required other than a little to prepare to put the bushing in. The bushing can be chilled with ice water prior to installation, apparently.

Now I have to find someone to bore out the hole and make and install a bushing. This seems like a good way to go. I'll check with the rigger.
 

footrope

Contributing Partner
Blogs Author
Hidden from view

Attached pic shows how the forestay toggle connection is hidden by the SS cover. The cover can't be removed to inspect the toggle pin and nose piece holes unless the axle for the two outboard sheaves is removed. The axle is retained by small rectangular covers. See the small unpainted area on the mast.

I'll probably have to tape or otherwise cover the cotter pin, or use a roll pin, to prevent chafe on the outboard halyards. They are seldom used as we have a roller furling jib. We have only had one spare up to this point, so if I only reeve one spare jib halyard on the head side of the clevis pin, then the chafe danger is greatly reduced.
 

Attachments

Last edited:

footrope

Contributing Partner
Blogs Author
Cracked welds - masthead

On the overloaded plate (with the egged hole) I found a cracked weld and sanded it to get the paint off. I will be cleaning off the paint on the rest of the welds on the mast to make sure no other welds are cracked. This is not great news, except that it is the weld material and not the mast or the masthead material itself that is cracked. I've informed the rigger and talked to my welder about the repair.
 

Attachments

footrope

Contributing Partner
Blogs Author
Weld repair done

Crosssing my fingers that this weld repair is better than the previous. It looks better. Based on the appearance of the other welds on the mast, that cracked one was probably a repair that failed. Since the overload issue was still present, I'm not surprised the weld failed. I guess we'll see after a few months of sailing if the weld is holding.

The bushing repair for the damaged holes that I specified was incorrect. So, instead of a 3/4" OD bushing, we are going to use a 7/8" OD to make sure we get all the damaged part of the egged hole removed.

I have changed my mind on the pin configuration for the forestay toggle. It would be better to use either:
- a slightly too long 5/8" dia pin that is held by the steel cover. 1/8 "too long (1/16" overhang) would bulge the cover on both sides slightly, but no chance to slip in between the plates
- Or, I could still go with a pin that has a head and get a groove machined for a c-clip or a circlip (like on a winch shaft).

Both these ideas avoid chafe on an halyard that runs by the area.

IMG_20140909_102147_817.jpg
 

footrope

Contributing Partner
Blogs Author
Bushings installed and off to paint

The next step on the mast rehab is minor corrosion cleanup and paint.

Masthead_Repaired_Bushings03.jpg
 

footrope

Contributing Partner
Blogs Author
It's back and it's black. Tides Marine Strong Track installed

Hi all,

The mast, boom and spreaders are back at the boat and the paint job looks very good. As part of the full-batten main we purchased (we also bought a 130% jib) we got the recommended Strong Track and batten car system. Getting the old aluminum track extrusion off was a worthwhile effort, but it was a chore since the three sections were installed before the welding was all done. Thus we had to grind out an exit slot and do the hercules imitation to bend it every 6 inches as we took it out. Lots of bending for the 20 ft. sections.

The Strong Track fits into the mast slot rather loosely and it will rotate a few degrees until it contacts the mast surface on either side. Does anyone on the board have this system with their main and how did it fit and perform? I'm curious about the fit of the track especially. It is so slick, I can't imagine a problem with the hoist and drop, but I have heard stories about batten cars hanging up in the past.

Mast_with_Strong-Track02.jpgMast_with_Strong-Track01.jpgMasthead_painted01.jpgNew_Mainsail_Ericson Emblem.jpg

Thanks,
Craig
 

Guy Stevens

Moderator
Moderator
Full battened main no issues

I have a full battened main on the 46 and have no issues with the tides marine strong track. I have installed them on over a dozen boats, and can't think of a better solution.

Guy
:)
 

gadangit

Member III
Hi all,

The mast, boom and spreaders are back at the boat and the paint job looks very good. As part of the full-batten main we purchased (we also bought a 130% jib) we got the recommended Strong Track and batten car system. Getting the old aluminum track extrusion off was a worthwhile effort, but it was a chore since the three sections were installed before the welding was all done. Thus we had to grind out an exit slot and do the hercules imitation to bend it every 6 inches as we took it out. Lots of bending for the 20 ft. sections.

The Strong Track fits into the mast slot rather loosely and it will rotate a few degrees until it contacts the mast surface on either side. Does anyone on the board have this system with their main and how did it fit and perform? I'm curious about the fit of the track especially. It is so slick, I can't imagine a problem with the hoist and drop, but I have heard stories about batten cars hanging up in the past.

View attachment 15063View attachment 15064View attachment 15065View attachment 15066

Thanks,
Craig
We have this system on our E39 with full batten main and absolutely love it. Every single person who has come on our boat is amazed at how easy it is to hoist and douse our main. I typically hoist at the mast and can pull the sail 97% of the way up no problem. Takes about 5 seconds to get up and .25 seconds to come down.

Chris
 

footrope

Contributing Partner
Blogs Author
Thanks Guy and Chris. I'm looking forward to the drop part. Especially when it stays in the lazy jacks.
 

Dan Morehouse

Member III
Craig, what product did you use to paint your mast? And did you have any corrosion/pitting elsewhere on it? Mine has a lot of corrosion bubbling in various places, and it won't be long before I have to go down the same road you just went, at least as it relates to paint. I have also never had the rig out of my boat in the 6 years i've owned it.
 

footrope

Contributing Partner
Blogs Author
Dan,
It is Awlgrip. The painters did some corrosion repair on it before the paint. I'm afraid to add it all up.

There were some bubbles and wear areas.

Craig
 

footrope

Contributing Partner
Blogs Author
Nose shield modification

I finished the nose shield modification this week. Now I can use a conventional clevis pin and cotter key for the forestay attachment. It turned out ok. I laid out the location of the center of one side and drilled a pilot hole. Then I tried to drill straight through vertically to the opposite side. Eyeballed it as close as possible. Then I used a step drill to get to 9/16" on one side and did a fit check. It was off center. Fixed that with a dremel and then cleaned up the hole to 5/8" with the step drill again. Repeat for the other side. When I install it and the other stainless steel shields I will coat it with Tef-gel to prevent the aluminum corrosion seen in the earlier shots.

The shaft for the three sheaves, jib and two wings, is just visible in both shots. It is so scored and rough that I am replacing it. I can get a 1/2" shaft, cut to 4.65" for $3.21 if I go pick it up at Online Metals (I'm just a satisfied customer).

Masthead_Nose_fairing_mod05.jpgMasthead_Nose_fairing_mod02.jpg
 
Last edited:

Baslin

Member III
Craig,

I found your thread here. Looks great! After reading through and seeing what kind of damage may be under the stainless plate, I think I will be having a look under mine......Question: How many sheaves do you have at your masthead? I have two sheaves, one on each side of the stainless steel plate....Is there also supposed to be one in the center of the mast, directly below where the forestay attaches???
 

footrope

Contributing Partner
Blogs Author
There are three sheaves at the masthead. There is one sheave in the center between the aluminum plates for the jib halyard. The primary jib halyard exits under the toggle, of course. There is one sheave on either side of the two center plates. There is one axle for all three sheaves and it is accessible through the small covers on either side of the mast. It will be tricky to remove the three sheaves and install new ones with the mast up, but I'm sure it can be done. I don't think the sheaves can fall down inside the mast, but you should pass a small line around each one and secure them before you tap the axle out. My aluminum sheaves were worn and the pressed-in bushings were almost gone, so I replaced all of the sheaves. The mast had been up for at least 20 years before I started this work.

I have only one of the side sheaves rigged with a spare halyard and it is on the "head" side of the clevis pin. If I ever rig a second one I'll have to deal with the cotter pin to eliminate chafe. A task for another day.

If your pin for the forestay toggle is the proper length, then you won't necessarily need to pin through the steel cover as I did. My pin was short by at least 1/8-inch. Even so, when my pin got out of the hole it was never going to fall out without severe damage to the rest of the masthead. I found quite a bit of surface corrosion up there, on the plates, under the paint. You'll be able to clean that up while you're at it. "Salt" air reaches the top of the mast unless you're in a fresh water lake.
 
Top