This page is only visible to folks who come straight to it from the Forum. It is totally unedited and the photos are loaded straight from teh camera.  I have not yet attached it to my website!!  Enjoy yourselves!!

step one?  Cut a hole and grind  the big wad up pooky that holds the mast tube in place. It has to be smooth enough to lay glass on top of it. We know the mast tube does not hold water.  We have poured water in the tube and it has disappeared into the boat.  We must lay glass all around the tube so it will be watertight.

What is not pictured here is the repair made inside the tube.  The repair was simple and probably will work OK.  We mixed some West System epoxy with chopped glass and carefully dropped it in the bottom of the tube. We used one squirt of the West Gallon or resin   and Quart of catalyst  pumps. Then we cut a disc of  15 mil Teflon sheet as follows.  We used a Sharpie and the butt of a bottom section.  we traced around the bottom section and cut just outside the line made by the Sharpie.  We then pushed the Teflon disc down on top of the resin/ Our experience with West Epoxy at the bottom of a mast tube is the epoxy grabs the bottom of the mast and the mast will not turn .  The result was we broke out gooseneck.  Since that learning experience we have placed a Teflon disc on top of epoxy repairs at the mast step bottom.

Oh yeah...We didn't raise the mast any higher than it should be because the old tube was so worn the bottom of the tube was almost worn away.  OK maybe the mast will sit an eighth of an inch higher.  I say, "So what?"


OK back to this photo.  I used 24 grit paper on a five inch air disc sander. No I could not see what I was doing as my arm was in the way.  The light inside the boat is one of those florescent yellow things.  It is really handy for jobs like this.

Notice how there are disc marks all the way around the tube.  The resin and glass will not stick to the old mildew.  The grinding is very very important and absolutely must be thorough.  If there is stuff left to "wash off" sand it off.  Don't cut any corners!!



Note the chipped stuff around the mast step top.  We decided to fix that too. I used a 1 1/2 inch drum sander to sand away the top two inches of the tube wall. That made space for the glass you will see below.  The top of the tube was sanded with the 5 inch disc sander to make a recess there too.  Our plan on this repair is to make a glass piece similar to the stainless part that goes around the drain in a sink. This is a very high stress part of the boat so the piece has to be thick and strong and well attached to the deck.

This is the inside of the boat with the glass in place. We cut strips about 12 inches long and 3 inches wide. We wet out the strips two at a time and placed them all around the tube. This task is also accomplished by touch and memory.  The glass has to eitirely seal the tube or the boat will continue to leak.

I didn't test it. If it leaks at Wurstfest, we will know I didn't get it sealed correctly.

The new deck plate is in place and the repair on the outside is started.  Sorry I didn't remember to take a photo of the prepped area before glassing. Three are at least three layers of 1.5 ounce mat everywhere around the top of the tube.  It was almost perfectly filled. All we added later was the gelcoat. it is important that the gelcoat not be too thick as it has no strength and will crack.

Here is better shot of the glass work.  Note the tape is still in place.  When  we sand a repair like this one we sand down to the tape and then remove the tape. In fact we usually immediately replace the tape so we will not mess up the non skid..   but....the key is to sand carefully and not hurt the new tape.  The tape will not really stop a dedicated screw up from destroying the adjacent non skid. The tape is only an indicator layer that warns you to quit sanding there. If you mess up the tape...Pull it of and re tape again.  Fixing the non skid takes lots longer than replacing tape a bunch of times.

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