Wisdom upon high

EASLOOP

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My wooden mast is in desparate need of sanding and varnishing - but - it is about 40 feet long and keel stepped. Taking the mast down is not easy for me due to it's length and the rather short crane at the boatyard. So I thought about going aloft and working from a bosun's chair.
My boat is 28' loa, 8' beam and 4' 6" draft. She has a long iron keel. I am not very good with heights so I will need to know that I am safe. Is going aloft wise? If so should I go aloft while she is afloat? or should I wait until the autumn when she is chocked up ashore and go up then? Or, would you advise striking the mast and get over the dificulties.
HELP!! /forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif
 

Norman_E

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Sanding and varnishing whilst aloft in a bosuns chair is going to be pretty difficult, especially as you will have to make several climbs over many days to put on sufficient coats of varnish. In practical terms you will have the problem of having to do it in sections, with a webbing loop round the mast from your harness. You really need two other people to help. One to haul you up, and another with a safety line. If you have nobody to control a safety line then the webbing loop needs to go in a complete loop and a half round the mast so that it locks and arrests a fall if the halyard fails.
Mast climbing is best done whilst the boat is in the water.

I really think you need to bite the bullet and have the mast taken out, and work on it supported by trestles at ground level. You will work much easier, and do a better job.
 

EASLOOP

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Yes, I fear you are right. I felt that that would be the best route to take but wanted to see if that was confirmed, which you have done.
Thanks for your input. I will have to find a way of getting the mast down.
 
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