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Old 24-05-2022, 03:29   #1
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Cracked my carbon spinnaker pole

Hello Forum. An over zealous crew mate cranked too hard on the carbon spinnaker pole guy and pulled the pole against the shroud and cracked it. Still worked ok as I think most of the forces exerted on the pole are compression. But I need to fix it. I was thinking of getting carbon fiber or Kevlar tape (they are called tape because of shape but are not adhesive) and wrapping the pole at the crack using epoxy to bond. But it sounds messy and I will need to paint over it. Or is there some self adhesive option that will work? Plenty of carbon fiber tapes out there but most seem to be decorative for that carbon fiber “look”. Not actually functional. Any thoughts?
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Old 24-05-2022, 04:10   #2
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Re: Cracked my carbon spinnaker pole

Sorry to hear of your troubles. I think it would be difficult to use a CF tape and wrap a pole and not have it look like trying to fix a broken stick with a thick wrap of duct tape. If the damage was close to one end I would consider cutting it off and living with it shorter. Another thought is to use some braided tube and devise a system for compacting it around the prepped area (vacuum bag, cling wrap, visqueen, heat shrink tubing) while the epoxy sets so as to maintain a tight lamination and not float the tape over the repair.

https://www.sollercomposites.com/CarbonSleeves.html

They had some articles advising how to do this before.



The caveat is that the pole will be less flexible at the repair.
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Old 24-05-2022, 21:24   #3
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Re: Cracked my carbon spinnaker pole

Bonding carbon tape over the crack with epoxy should work. Don't skimp. The repair will still be cheaper than a new pole, and you can sand the repair pretty smooth. People are finding that paint is better UV protection for their carbon spars than Clearcoat or varnish. White is a good choice because it keeps the poles from getting hot in the sun, too.
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Old 25-05-2022, 03:32   #4
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Re: Cracked my carbon spinnaker pole

Spot, above, is spot on. Buy some sock--I get mine from Composite Envisions--and pull several epoxy-soaked layers over the sanded-down wound and wrap it tight till they cure.
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Old 25-05-2022, 06:21   #5
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Re: Cracked my carbon spinnaker pole

Rather than sanding, which will cut some fibers, I would tape a plastic envelope over it and pull a vacuum. If you don't have access to a vacuum pump, you could use a shop vac in a pinch. It won't compress the layup as much, but will do a lot and leave a smoother surface. Ideally you would use breather fabric and peelply, but I have managed without. Again, not ideal.

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Old 25-05-2022, 07:24   #6
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Re: Cracked my carbon spinnaker pole

Could you repair it from inside by fitting an inner carbon tube that just fits inside the pole with some adhesive to bond it to the outer pole?
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Old 25-05-2022, 09:42   #7
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Re: Cracked my carbon spinnaker pole

Get a new pole and be safe.
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Old 10-06-2022, 18:11   #8
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Re: Cracked my carbon spinnaker pole

To close the loop I ended up getting carbon fiber 6 inch diameter sleeve and epoxy’d it in place. It is flexible and conforms to the tapering pole. Looked pretty neat but still a big black band of carbon fiber on a white pole and with a few jagged edges. So then I covered it with a sleeve of elk hide that matches other chafe points on the boat, the wheel and hand rails. So now it just looks like we thoughtfully added a chafe sleeve to the spinnaker pole to prevent chafe from some fake chafe point.
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Old 11-06-2022, 16:53   #9
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Re: Cracked my carbon spinnaker pole

Generally a carbon pole that is damaged is cut open and sleeved. The maker may have a repair kit for the diameter like you have. I would reach out to them.
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