That's why they call them boats, they break and require a lot of attention. They require more attention and patience then anyone i've ever dated.
Unless you run the new mast cable, and replace the mast head
unit, you will not be guaranteed that you have 1 trip left.
Regarding the friction stuff, you should have lubed that to make sure its spinning freely. I didn't have that friction problem. You should have also calibrated the wind direction prior to going up there.
For your one last trip, here is what i would do...
If you find a "new" masthead unit, hook it up to the main unit in the cabin
and make sure you read 0 wind angle when wind vane
is pointed forward. And forward would be in the direction of the masthead unit's arm. Spin the wind speed sensor and make sure you get wind speed reading.
If you don't find the "new" masthead unit, you need to calibrate wind direction aloft. Keep masthead direction vane pointing forward as straight as you can, while someone downstairs adjusts the wind direction screw on the main unit to show 0 degrees. You'll never get it to 0, but +/- 5 would be a success. And that screw is difficult to work with. Its not intuitive, you don't just turn and increase or decrease the degrees reading. There is a significant delay from when you turn until the degrees displayed settles to a value. To get a feel for what you're doing you need the wind vane
to not move. I dont remember if you can really clibrate the entire +/-180 degrees. If not, you might have to take the wind vane off, and rotate it without rotating the servo.
This guy has a good writeup and pics...
Wind Speed Indicator Repair
Let me know if you run out of patience, I'll gladly buy your masthead unit from you.