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Old 12-03-2021, 10:29   #16
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Re: Rewiring the Mast without Unstepping

You will need large enough holes at both the top and bottom of mast especially if you plan on inserting a conduit. (Which I wouldn't recommend.) How the heck would you secure it to the inside wall of the mast? A conduit slamming and banging inside the mast would be even more annoying than wires or halyards.

You will need a small exit hole for the spreader lights you want to install. You can tie pull cords on to everything (the the anchor and steaming light wires as well as the mast head electronics, if any) and lower them to and out the hole at the bottom as close to the mast step as possible.

You may have to enlarge some of the holes. I did this in situ but then had the opportunity to pull the mast when the boat went into the hanger for a paint job.

This made it possible before re-stepping to secured the wire bundle with four (4) very large stiff zip-ties every three feet. The zip-ties were cut to be just a little longer than the inside diameter of the mast so when the bundle was inserted at the bottom and pulled to the top the zip-ties needed to be bent slightly to create a series of springs to hold the wire bundle in the center of the mast from top to bottom. (Note: I have external halyards only) Works like a champ, no slamming and banging of wires, cables or conduits.
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Old 12-03-2021, 21:41   #17
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Re: Rewiring the Mast without Unstepping

As an easy fix run new wires and clip them to the shrouds or backstay until you can unstep the nast
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Old 13-03-2021, 07:08   #18
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Re: Rewiring the Mast without Unstepping

I did a complete mast rewire recently.
Biggest problem was squeezing the new cables through the hole at the mast base. Also perched at the top of the mast holding the new wind instrument in one hand, drill in the other and trying to hold on
Doable but bit of a mission! Here's some photos:
https://halologbook.wordpress.com/20...3/up-the-mast/
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Old 13-03-2021, 14:46   #19
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Re: Rewiring the Mast without Unstepping

I rewired my mast with it up, but my 1 hour estimate turned out to be all day. My plan was to use the old wires to pull in new ones. The old were tied together at spots and they were on either side of through bolts. Therefore I had to do some creative fishing.
My boat did not have a conduit and the old wires did bang. For the new wire bundle I cinched heavy duty nylon ties about a foot apart. I left the tails on the ties and adjacent ties were 90 degrees. Thus the nylon tie tails spiraled up the mast holding the new bundled wires toward the center. No more banging. I had to cut a 1" by 2" feeder hole at the base of the mast.
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Old 14-03-2021, 17:18   #20
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Re: Rewiring the Mast without Unstepping

Quote:
Originally Posted by gchead View Post
I did a complete mast rewire recently.
Biggest problem was squeezing the new cables through the hole at the mast base. Also perched at the top of the mast holding the new wind instrument in one hand, drill in the other and trying to hold on
Doable but bit of a mission! Here's some photos:
https://halologbook.wordpress.com/20...3/up-the-mast/
I see you're using both a bosun's chair and a Mast Mate ladder together. I've been considering getting a Mast Mate. Did you find that the combo helped with your stability, or getting your head above the masthead?
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Old 14-03-2021, 17:24   #21
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Re: Rewiring the Mast without Unstepping

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Originally Posted by j.g.evans View Post
I rewired my mast with it up, but my 1 hour estimate turned out to be all day. My plan was to use the old wires to pull in new ones. The old were tied together at spots and they were on either side of through bolts. Therefore I had to do some creative fishing.
My boat did not have a conduit and the old wires did bang. For the new wire bundle I cinched heavy duty nylon ties about a foot apart. I left the tails on the ties and adjacent ties were 90 degrees. Thus the nylon tie tails spiraled up the mast holding the new bundled wires toward the center. No more banging. I had to cut a 1" by 2" feeder hole at the base of the mast.
Thanks J.G. I figure that if the problem isn't the navigation fixtures themselves, that this will be a lengthy, even multi-day, project. My first step is to go up and assess what exactly the condition is, take some multimeter readings, and bring the fixtures back down with me if there's a fault there. If I need to buy replacements, that will obviously add to the timeline.
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Old 14-03-2021, 17:39   #22
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Re: Rewiring the Mast without Unstepping

While I wasn’t able to get up the mast myself this weekend, I did manage to fly a drone up there and get some pictures of the masthead. Looks like the wiring to the anchor light is exposed to the elements outside of its sheathing. There appears to be a pull string or something like it (yellow cord) coming out of the top, but I don’t see evidence of this at the mast base. Also the VHF antenna is missing, so plan to replace that as well. Let me know if you see anything else it looks out of place.

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Old 14-03-2021, 17:42   #23
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Re: Rewiring the Mast without Unstepping

I just helped a friend rewire his mast. He changed out the cable for his wind instruments and wired up his new LED mast head lights. It took two hours. We didn't take the mast down. If you have wires already up the mast use them as chasers to either pull the new wires down or tow pull down a couple of 1/8" tracers. If you have to put tracers in an easy way to do this is to add a short length of bicycle chain as Ann Cate suggested. The advantage to doing so in my mind is that you can use a magnet on a stick to find the chaser at the bottom of the mast. any type of ferris metal will work. I once used a hacksaw blade. It is much easier with two people. Just make sure that your botsun's chair is comfortable otherwise two hours up the mast and you will be singing a few octaves higher.

On the other hand it is probably a good idea to pull the mast and check all of the standing rigging but we can only do what our budgets allow.
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Old 14-03-2021, 17:48   #24
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Re: Rewiring the Mast without Unstepping

Ya know, Peel, i'm gonna spend some more of your hard earned money....if the VHF coaxial cable is old (over 20 yrs), you might consider upgrading that, as well as the antenna itself. It can make quite a difference, if you upgrade the quality. We cheaped out on this once, and Jim has said repeatedly that he wished he had gone with better quality.

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Old 14-03-2021, 18:06   #25
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Re: Rewiring the Mast without Unstepping

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Ya know, Peel, i'm gonna spend some more of your hard earned money....if the VHF coaxial cable is old (over 20 yrs), you might consider upgrading that, as well as the antenna itself. It can make quite a difference, if you upgrade the quality. We cheaped out on this once, and Jim has said repeatedly that he wished he had gone with better quality.

Ann
Well, as you can see from my photos, the Antenna itself is missing completely (though the bracket and cable are still in place) I think I'm going get a Shakespeare 5215 3' whip and attach it to the existing cable. If that doesn't test well, I'll replace the cable itself. Would there be a better antenna choice in the <$100 range?
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Old 14-03-2021, 23:57   #26
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Re: Rewiring the Mast without Unstepping

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Originally Posted by Peel View Post
I see you're using both a bosun's chair and a Mast Mate ladder together. I've been considering getting a Mast Mate. Did you find that the combo helped with your stability, or getting your head above the masthead?
Yes I found the Mast Mate ladder essential. The bosun's chair didn't give me enough height and I had to stand on the top steps of the ladder to work on the top of the mast.
I used the bosun's chair as a safety harness (and also to sit down on when my knees started shaking
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