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Well. As with so many things that are projects on old boats, its scary to ever use the word complete. So the mast refit is maybe complete. Or at least its theoretically better than it was before. Who can say?

This weekend I started off by replacing the upper tang compression tube.  You may say, but Tate, you just did that.  Yes it is true, but I didn’t like the slop in it.  So I bought a slightly bigger and thicker walled tube to put through the mast and put it in.

Upper tang mast compression bolt

I also went ahead and crimped all our mast head wiring connections and used heat shrink on all of them.
Mast refit wiring complete

This was followed up by labeling, testing, wrapping, and securing all the wires.  Everything seemed to check out so that was nice.  And then it was on to a smaller project that I thought might make the boat a bit more easy to sail.  We bought a lazy jack kit.
Lazy jacks as part of the mast refit

The only thing about the lazy jacks is that you have to put pad eyes way up the mast and that was a bit daunting while dangling from the bosun’s chair so we took this opportunity to go ahead and install them now.  They were secured with four screws each.  We drilled pilot holes, put the screws in, took them out and then liberally coated with some Tef-Gel before the final securement.
Lazy jacks screwed in

Dani was overjoyed by the bright and clean white nylon lines attached to our rather motley mast.
Nylon line for lazy jacks

Speaking of motley.  How is this for a photo?  Its the pile of stuff that came off the mast right before we got started with the project.
Rigging pieces on deck of Sundowner

And so down it all came off of the deck and we began reinstalling all of it carefully, line by line.
Putting back on mast

And here I’m quite pleased that the mast seems whole again.
Mast put back together

The final step before we can step the mast once more is to get the bolt holes redrilled out on the mast step.  I wanted to make a good template for this so I found an old scrap piece of thick plywood and drilled my holes in it then bolted it up to the mast base to be sure it fit correctly.
Mast base template

It did.
Fitting mast base template

Using this template I drilled out the holes in the deck through the deck.  We had previously filled all of these holes with epoxy resin that had been thickened to prevent any future leaks from penetrating the wooden deck core.
Drilling deck holes for mast tabernacle

And so finally, I think the mast step is ready.
Mast refit step ready

It will be a nervous day when the crane and cherry picker return and its up to us to get the stick standing again.  So long for now!