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Old 20-08-2010, 15:19   #1
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Climbed the Mast

Today I climbed the mast and performed my first job. Scary!!! It took me around 2 hours to accomplish this feat.(of which I'll compaire to doing a job on the outside of the space station ) 25 feet doesn't seem very high. Until you are on the other end of that 25 foot mark. And that still is a ways from being halfway up. Went up 2 other times for practice but didn't like how the bosens chair fit so I made a spreader for it and is now much more comfortable to sit and work in. Not much of a accomplishment for you seasoned cruisers but for someone like me who poops through feathers, it's up there.
WD
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Old 20-08-2010, 15:24   #2
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Mine is 85 feet off the water. Going up at rest in a marina is nothing compared to going up off shore in 5 ft seas, believe me.
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Old 20-08-2010, 15:25   #3
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Good work man. Once you can work aloft and dive your own boat, there's not much left but the stuff in the middle. I still get a little weirded out going up. I need to run some fairleads all the way up 46' of spruce. I think I might get one of those ATN Top Climbers from west. It's hard enough getting that job done without needing to coordinate the schedule of the person down on the deck hauling you up.
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Old 20-08-2010, 15:26   #4
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Originally Posted by speciald@ocens. View Post
Mine is 85 feet off the water. Going up at rest in a marina is nothing compared to going up off shore in 5 ft seas, believe me.
My dad (who is salty as hell) told me that he was on a big race boat and when they needed to go up the mast they'd close haul and heel over so the guy could scramble up it with hands and feet. That still blows me away to imagine that.
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Old 20-08-2010, 15:49   #5
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I went to the top last week. 63' off the water at the dock. Really no big deal. I was disappointed at the 2 steps near the top for standing on while working up there. They were too high to use.
Surprised at how relatively easy it was for wife to crank me up. Had a dock mate there to assist so there were 2 at the winches.
Also surprised that she brought me down!!!!
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Old 20-08-2010, 15:51   #6
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Does anyone have experience with the Mast Mate climber?

Mast Mate Home
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Old 20-08-2010, 15:52   #7
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rebel heart--would be the only way to get me up there--i dont know about while under way, tho---wow...impressive and cool way to get the height out of the way!!
friends of mine use mountain climbing harnesses for the reinforcement of their bosun's chair for safety and for comfort--is an extra line but makes added safety ...
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Old 20-08-2010, 16:10   #8
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Yep, My boat is on a mooring full time... I set up a 4/1 mechanical with a climbing harness... Works great just remember 4x the needed climbing height for the rope, no assistance needed to haul gear, just need a bucket pre-staged and pull up parts and tools.

Gets real interesting when the bigger boats go by and the boat gets a good rock going...

My mast is about 52 feet above the deck.
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Old 20-08-2010, 17:34   #9
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I have rock climbing gear and do it like Zeehag's friends, but as I am getting older, there will come a time I will be unable to use it all. I have a bosuns chair that I made a spreader for(makes it able to sit straight upright) and I use the rock climbing harness with belay device for safety and use 2 halyards, one for the chair and the other for the belay safety. The wife helps pulling up with one of the winches. But I think I'm going to get a 4 to 1 outfit so I can pull myself up instead of using another person, assenders and all the related equipment. Gets to be to much equipment floating around. I'm still scared to go up much higher than I have. It took me until the end to even begin to relax in the chair and let go of the mast with my free hand.(the mast musta thought I was in love with it cause I was hugging it so tight) I couldn't imagine going up with five foot seas and swinging 65 feet up in the air. Still more work to do up there but that is for tomorrow.
WD
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Old 20-08-2010, 17:46   #10
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Our previous boat had an electric anchor windlass which easily allowed my wife to take me up the mast.

The Dragonfly doesn't have one.

I don't miss the power winch much, but it sure was nice for ascending the mast!
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Old 20-08-2010, 18:29   #11
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Mast steps, such as:

Amazon.com: Folding Mast Step Aluminum Folding Mast Step: Sports…

Go up in any conditions. I use a climbing harness with a safety halyard but not for hoisting; to get up, I climb. Also useful if you loose your main halyard...
Second best - the electric windlass...

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Old 20-08-2010, 19:19   #12
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Iceman...was gonna say that..you guys can save five hundred bucks just by learning the prussik hitch...or any of dozens of other climbing hitches and rigging it right...just don't ever get into an argument with a cliber about which knot is better...trust me..the ford/chevy thing is nothing..
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Old 20-08-2010, 19:28   #13
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Originally Posted by svcambria View Post
Mast steps, such as:

Amazon.com: Folding Mast Step Aluminum Folding Mast Step: Sports…

Go up in any conditions....
Noob question - could drilling into the mast to mount those be problematic in any way?

Just curious.
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Old 20-08-2010, 19:58   #14
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I once years ago free climbed a stick. Now I use a 4:1 tackle. A few more teRse from now I'll be using steps. The op was right on if you're uncomfortable at 25' take a moment and adjust things until it seems right. I've gone up 35 ft decided it wasn't right turned around adjusted things and then try again. I do alot of solo stuff so ilearn to trust the inital hesitation is it fear or judgment. Lean tword judgment if it ain't right check it reef come down what ever.
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Old 20-08-2010, 20:57   #15
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Quote:
Noob question - could drilling into the mast to mount those be problematic in any way?
Not really - it takes three tapped holes to mount a step, but the holes don't stay open, they are filled with stainless steel screws so there is no remaining gap, just a solid extrusion again. Coat the screws with lanacote, tuff-gel, or loc-tite so they won't sieze...

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