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Tmacmi

Up the mast with in a bosun's chair.

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My mast head light is out and I have two questions.

1) I am presuming its easier to go up the mast when its on its cradle in a couple weeks. Is there anything else I need to consider?

2) I am concerned about its ability to bear my weight. Its a deck stepped mast and the compression post does not fully align to the mast. Any feedback?

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10 minutes ago, Tmacmi said:

My mast head light is out and I have two questions.

1) I am presuming its easier to go up the mast when its on its cradle in a couple weeks. Is there anything else I need to consider?

2) I am concerned about its ability to bear my weight. Its a deck stepped mast and the compression post does not fully align to the mast. Any feedback?

How big is the boat?

 

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DO NOT go up the mast on the hard - on any boat.

In my experience, no yard will allow it anyway. Boats on the hard are only propped up, primarily relying on the low CG of the keel to keep them upright.

Think of the Ft/Lbs of potential "unrighting arm" you will create at the top of the mast - your weight X mast length. Even on a small boat it will be well into the thousands.

On my 29' it would get close to 10,000 with me up there.

As long as everything remains perfectly vertical there is no "unrighting arm"  of course.

Just as long as......

Remember, you are betting your life that everything will remain stable.

But look at the penalty for failure Dude.

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DO NOT go up the mast on the hard - on any boat.

Completely agree.  Go up the mast when your boat is in the water.  A cradle is not built to handle 200lbs 30' up the mast.   

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I am concerned about its ability to bear my weight. Its a deck stepped mast and the compression post does not fully align to the mast. Any feedback?

It's usually not an issue.  I had no problem climbing the deck stepped mast on my Tanzer 22. 

Make sure that you use two halyards to pull yourself up, one for pulling and one for safety or both for pulling if you have two guys on the winches.

And DON'T use the halyard shackles on your bosuns chair - tie bowline knots in the halyards.  Known from personal experience!

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Its 28'. and I consider the answer to be a pretty emphatic no.

What about my question regarding weight should I desire to go up when its back in the water?

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1 minute ago, Tmacmi said:

Its 28'. and I consider the answer to be a pretty emphatic no.

What about my question regarding weight should I desire to go up when its back in the water?

You will have absolutely no problem going up the mast of a 28' boat in the water.  This is done all the time.  Your deck should have no problems, unless it is especially flimsy or rotten or weak.  The stresses of a strong wind on your sails are far greater than your body weight.  Think that a gust of wind can easily blow your boat well past 45 degrees - even down to 90 degrees. You, at the top of the mast, will push it 5 or 10 degrees at most.  Go for it.

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The downward force of your rigging is probably something like 2000 lbs on the base of the mast and the deck.  Unless your boat is one wave away from an impending implosion, your weight isn't a problem.    Like Foolish says, 5 to 10 degrees at most.  Though it'll feel like more when you're the one at the top of the mast!

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If you want to go up the mast whilst it's on the hard, run a spare halyard out each side to neighbouring cradles and crank them up. It's not really a big deal, it's like a broken mast punching a hole in your hull, everyone is scared of it but nobody actually knows of it ever happening. 

Flame away haters. 

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Bosun chairs often still have you straining above you to reach gear on the mast’s top, with that last screw just out of eyeline...

Whilst on the hard, hire a cherry picker and do it in comfort. Change your sheaves whilst your up there without weight on their halyards. Wander the yard and share the cost with everyone else who’s been avoiding doing their own lights, windex, sheaves, mousing new lines, inspections, etc.

If you go up via chair, use a climber’s double figure 8, not a bowline. And a second safety line. Never trust the shackle on its own.

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12 hours ago, Foolish said:

You will have absolutely no problem going up the mast of a 28' boat in the water.  This is done all the time.  Your deck should have no problems, unless it is especially flimsy or rotten or weak.  The stresses of a strong wind on your sails are far greater than your body weight.  Think that a gust of wind can easily blow your boat well past 45 degrees - even down to 90 degrees. You, at the top of the mast, will push it 5 or 10 degrees at most.  Go for it.

Just make sure you're happy with the halyard, and you're happy with whoever's in control of that halyard.

 

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You may find it worth running your halyard back to a sheet winch. Better ergonomics and no stand under the load 

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Just another note that the most dangerous part of going up on a halyard is the coming down part. That's when your helper has the line in hand and sweating around the winch without a clutch or other mechanical fix bearing the load. They let go, you go down. That's why on the way down I pull no more than about 6' of slack at a time in my safety halyard, which is held by a clutch. It's a lot of back and forth for the line handler but it also means you can never free fall more than 6'.

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18 hours ago, Alcatraz5768 said:

If you want to go up the mast whilst it's on the hard, run a spare halyard out each side to neighbouring cradles and crank them up. It's not really a big deal, it's like a broken mast punching a hole in your hull, everyone is scared of it but nobody actually knows of it ever happening. 

Flame away haters. 

Alcatraz, in theory you're correct. But being in the US, he's more likely to get thrown out of his yard and told never to come back. I can't think of a yard around Boston that would let you go up a mast while it's on the hard. Crane truck? Yes. Bosun's chair? no way.

 

If it's a 28 foot boat, deck stepped, why not just rig a gin pole and lower the mast while it's on the hard and work on it without worrying about dropping tools?

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28' boat. Coming out of the water for the season. Why not just pull the rig? Think about all the other things you can inspect/repair while its sitting horizontal.

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1 hour ago, ryley said:

Alcatraz, in theory you're correct. But being in the US, he's more likely to get thrown out of his yard and told never to come back. I can't think of a yard around Boston that would let you go up a mast while it's on the hard. Crane truck? Yes. Bosun's chair? no way.

Alcatraz is the jolly kiwi we spotted swinging a chainsaw with one hand around a boat on the hard. His safety advise comes with a slap in the shoulder, and a she'll be right, mate. :-)

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Don’t use a bosuns chair either, use a proper climbing harness. 

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6 hours ago, mad said:

Don’t use a bosuns chair either, use a proper climbing harness. 

I use a harness and a bosuns chair. It's way more comfortable.

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On 9/24/2019 at 2:31 PM, Tmacmi said:

Its 28'. and I consider the answer to be a pretty emphatic no.

What about my question regarding weight should I desire to go up when its back in the water?

got a bridge nearby, one around 25- feet?  or a sandbar with a steep bank to kedge the mast down?

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It’s a deck stepped mast. It doesn’t need to be pulled. Just pull one pin and pivot it down.

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On 9/26/2019 at 4:40 AM, martin.langhoff said:

Alcatraz is the jolly kiwi we spotted swinging a chainsaw with one hand around a boat on the hard. His safety advise comes with a slap in the shoulder, and a she'll be right, mate. :-)

And she was right, mate. I don't understand your disdain, Leo uses a chainsaw on a boat and he's a craftsman, I use one and I'm a jolly Kiwi idiot??? Go fuck yourself, I'm not in the fucking mood. 

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9 hours ago, Alcatraz5768 said:

And she was right, mate. I don't understand your disdain, Leo uses a chainsaw on a boat and he's a craftsman, I use one and I'm a jolly Kiwi idiot??? Go fuck yourself, I'm not in the fucking mood. 

It's all in good humor, mate. A bit of context too. Sometimes, or for some folks, she'll be right is the right attitude.

I didn't say, imply or think idiot.

If you handle the chainsaw, you can handle a bit of banter.

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I use a Spinlock harness with a double figure 8, tied close to the harness. I don't use the belay loop - run the halyards through the harness webbing.

Has anyone tried a munter hitch on a winch for descending? It works well on a carabiner, but not sure about the larger diameter of the winch. Before modern belay devices, that was just "the way".

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Definitely just drop the mast when you pull the boat. 

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Ain't it great when the Prozac kicks in? ;)

Have you got legal weed down there yet? It seems to have added a lot of mellow around here. I find much less need to go on PA to vent these days.

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Borrow an ATN climbing set-up.

You then do not need anyone to help.'

with the foot stirrups you can get that extra 18 inches and stand above the mast which is massively helpful when working on masthead lights.

Be sure to crank down the backstay before ascending to tighten the rigging on that deck stepped mast.

Only do it in the water.

Hump my 300lbs up the mast on my 32 foot deck stepped mast all the time.

on the way down I am washing and lubing the track, checking all the clevis pins, tangs, spreaders, boots, vhf whip connections etc.

 

Check your club/marina.  Chances are someone has an ATN system and is willing to let you borrow it.

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On 9/25/2019 at 12:22 PM, hard aground said:

28' boat. Coming out of the water for the season. Why not just pull the rig? Think about all the other things you can inspect/repair while its sitting horizontal.

this. jfc, you can drop the rig on a deck stepped 28 with 5 good friends, or its a couple of boat bucks do get the yard to do it.

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On 9/24/2019 at 4:40 PM, HFC Hunter said:

Bosun chairs often still have you straining above you to reach gear on the mast’s top, with that last screw just out of eyeline...

Whilst on the hard, hire a cherry picker and do it in comfort. Change your sheaves whilst your up there without weight on their halyards. Wander the yard and share the cost with everyone else who’s been avoiding doing their own lights, windex, sheaves, mousing new lines, inspections, etc.

If you go up via chair, use a climber’s double figure 8, not a bowline. And a second safety line. Never trust the shackle on its own.

Yup, did exactly this,  great idea and a ton of fun to operate.....  getting above the thing you are working on makes for much easier work. 

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I've seen instances where people have put a pair of folding mast steps up there to do that very thing.

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On 9/24/2019 at 4:40 PM, HFC Hunter said:

Bosun chairs often still have you straining above you to reach gear on the mast’s top, with that last screw just out of eyeline...

Whilst on the hard, hire a cherry picker and do it in comfort. Change your sheaves whilst your up there without weight on their halyards. Wander the yard and share the cost with everyone else who’s been avoiding doing their own lights, windex, sheaves, mousing new lines, inspections, etc.

If you go up via chair, use a climber’s double figure 8, not a bowline. And a second safety line. Never trust the shackle on its own.

Totally agree on the double figure 8.  You can even improve on it here.

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Bosuns chairs still ok with OSHA, I use a climbers harness and webbing loops or strops to get to top above chair, nkt OSHA approved, can add chest to get work done.

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