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PostPosted: Tue May 31, 2011 4:55 pm 
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Tue May 31, 2011 4:42 pm
Posts: 1
I recently found two holes at the base of my mast which appear to be due to corrosion. My guess is saltwater was trapped in the mast when I turtled the boat six years ago. I am concerned the mast could fracture. Has anyone seen this problem before? Do you know of any solutions other than replacing the mast? Thanks! -Jim

PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2011 6:44 am 
Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
Posts: 3298
Location: Jersey Shore
I probably wouldn't be too concerned about this. The mast has a lot of holes in it already (gooseneck, mast base, spreaders, mast tang...). So as long as you caught them early and they're small, probably not a big deal. If they're under 3/16" diameter, I would drill them out (a round hole makes for less of a stress concentration than a jagged hole) and install an aluminum rivet coated with silicone caulk to seal it back up. I did a similar repair on an 18 mast early this year where the forestay had begun to wear a hole in the mast from whacking it while trailering.

EDIT: The pics didn't open initially on my browser. I agree with below, that looks pretty nasty. I would say probably try to come up with a sleeve of some sort that you can slide up in the bottom of the mast (maybe a piece of mast from one of the other models would fit) that goes to just above the gooseneck. It looks like there is significant corrosion around all of the stainless fittings at your mast base.


Last edited by srm on Wed Jun 01, 2011 9:06 am, edited 1 time in total.

PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2011 8:33 am 
Site Rank - Admiral

Joined: Wed Jan 27, 2010 12:38 pm
Posts: 227
Location: Roswell, GA - USA
That corrosion looks scary to me. There is a lot going on in a small area at the bottom of your mast, lots of holes for fittings and stresses with compression of the mast and the loads from the diamond wires (not familiar with the wire on the front of the mast but it does put tension on that area).

The big concern is if the rest of the mast is as corroded as that one area but on the inside where you can't see it. If the mast were to fail due to compression and bending load at that point it could be dangerous.

My suggestion would be to maybe remove the mast bottom and inspect the inside. If it looked OK then clean it up and remove the salt water and put back together, if it looked really bad, I guess new mast.

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