The mizzen mast
step on Sam McGee is now squished to the thickness of cardboard, so I suppose the time has come to replace it. I do not want to drop the mast
if at all possible. The boat is a 39' C - Farer and I suppose the aft mast is probably 37' give or take. I estimate I have about 3" of expansion left in the turnbuckles.
My plan is to lay a 6x6 Pressure treated post athwartships fore and aft of the mast, resting on the raised bulwards which are about 15" higher than the mast step.
With these posts secured to prevent movement either side to side as well as fore and aft. Then a short piece of 2 x 6 on each side of the mast both on top and on the bottom of the athwartship posts. This should create a very stable collared area to contain the base of the mast from any unwanted lateral movements.
I plan to cut out the profile of the mast in a couple of pieces of 2" thick cypress to use as a clamp around the mast about 18" above the athwartship posts mentioned earlier.
Then I plan to loosen each of the shrouds for the mizzen a 1/2 turn or so and use a small hydraulic jack between the collar around the mast and the posts to lift
it in small increments, jack, loosen, jack, loosen etc...
After raising the mast a couple of inches I should be able to cut out the forward cockpit
seat / mast step plywood
piece, slide the precut/pre-fiberglassed new plywood
piece to replace the forward cockpit
seat / mast step piece in and secure it in place.
Reverse the process by tightening the turnbuckles 1/2 turn at a time, and throttle the release of the hydraulic jack to slowly set the mast back down onto the new mast step.
Thoughts and suggestions appreciated.