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Old 29-05-2010, 11:33   #1
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Lubricating Rotating Mast

Hi folks, any suggestions for lubricating the cup & pin arrangement for a rotating mast?
The mast is down right now, and has a female "connector"
The deck side has a "cup", stainless pin, nylon bushing, and stainless bushing.

Boat will be used in salt water. Looking for something long-lasting since I don't want to take the rig off unless absolutely necessary.

Thanks for any suggestions.

-Charles
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Old 29-05-2010, 12:03   #2
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In my very limited experience, via a friend who has a rotating mast, it could be that your mast mount is 'self lubricating'. Is there any evidence of previous 'grease'? My friend's mast is bushed with 'Delrin' I think.
Polyoxymethylene plastic - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
My boat doesn't have sails so I'm no expert but it may be a line of investigation worth following.

P.
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Old 29-05-2010, 12:08   #3
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I'm with P. on this one...Or that nylon bushing may be doing it all.
Any evidence of a previous grease....how about signs of wear.
I had a Hobie 16 that had a similar set-up i.e. cup and bushing...I know it's a lot smaller but may work the same.
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Old 29-05-2010, 12:17   #4
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Hey fishwife & James; I don't remember if there was grease in the cup when I bought the bought in 2005, but the former owner helped me rig the boat after shipping and did place some sort of grease in the cup before we stepped the mast. He's a former Stiletto sailor, so I deferred to his expertise in those things.

-charles
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Old 29-05-2010, 12:25   #5
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Hey Charles...I really don't have any expertise in the area of grease...not sure what would give the longest life...sorry mate.
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Old 29-05-2010, 12:39   #6
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no real knowledge, but I wonder if water pump grease would be good? Would someone at Harken know?
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Old 29-05-2010, 12:53   #7
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If you use any grease it should be a lithium type (water resistant) grease. If the plastic is Teflon® then you will not need a lubricant. But if it's nylon then you will. Nylon does not have much lubricity and will wear if it gets dirty. Delron® is about half way between the two others as far as wear and lubricity.

I would think the cup would be on the upper section unless if it was not intended to hold grease. Is there a boot to go over the joint to keep the dirt/water out? How about any grease fittings (hole going into the cup)?
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Old 26-01-2011, 08:29   #8
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Grease used

Hi folks, thanks for all the helpful replies (very belated I know.... just sitting around watching the snow fall...)

Just wanted to post what I used as my solution:
I used Synco's "Super Lube High Temperature, Extreme Pressure Grease"
The "Synthetic Multi-Purpose Grease" was definitely too light!

The mast rotated like a charm afterwards.

Here are pictures of the cup & pin that the mast sits on, for those that have a similar setup:

First pic is without the boot; the second one is with the boot.
I'm not sure what the cup is made out of.

I don't have a photo of the "male" side of the rotating hardware handy, but it is a convex stainless fitting that is affixed to the mast end cap.

-charles
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