Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Mast - Missing Rivets

Lower Shrouds Missing Rivets at the Mast

The last time I had to go up the mast (replacing the damaged Wind Transducer at the top of the mast) I noticed that there were two rivets missing on the Port Side that hold the Lower Shroud Plate to the mast. It's obvious that there were never any rivets in the empty holes, so they have either been missing since the boat was built, or the plate has been removed and replaced sometime, how long? Who knows, and we have owned Eximius for 2 1/2 years and we never noticed their absence. 

I only found this issue because I was inspecting the mast as I descended as I do try to take the time to check things out whenever I can, perhaps I should be a little more deliberate.

Anyway, the solution is pretty easy. Drill the 2 vacant holes to the correct size for steel pop rivets, coat the rivets with Lanocote, and pop in the rivets. Of course this has to be done while held up to the mast in my Bosuns chair about 20' off the deck.

I know! that water looks awful.

This pic was from my position at the Spreaders. I used my standard method to climb the mast - Bosuns Chair, 2 halyards tied off at the base of the mast - one for my feet & seat, the other a safety line. Prusick knots on 3 lines, slide them up or down the halyard with my weight either on the Seat or the Foot straps.

On the deck is our Dink with drill set sitting atop of it. In front of the dink at the bow is Peggy - just making sure I'm safe.

The reason for climbing the mast. The two new pop rivets are installed (Top left & lower right) with a view of one of the Prusick knots tied to the Main Halyard.

I hadn't realized that the shroud plates were secured by a huge bolt that runs right through the mast, the Rivets only hold the steel plate in place, I'm guessing that plate is just to take the strain off of the bolt where it passes through the Aluminium Mast, the metal of which is about 3/16" thick at that point.

Selfie view of my climbing gear. The thin white line is my tool bag lifting line. I pulled the bag up once I was secure at the spreaders.

I secured the foot straps to my feet by tying my sneaker shoe laces around the straps to stop the straps coming off of my feet, that has happened in the past and is a pain as it's really tough to reach down to your feet when suspended in the climbing rig.

Our neighbors on the other side of the canal are on vacation, and have family house sitting, so I was their entertainment today.

Had to take a selfie on a day like this. Sorry for the grimace, I was concentrating on trying to lean back for the pic while keeping my balance with my feet against the mast.

Sure is a nice view from up here.

On the way down, I checked out our Steaming Light and Deck Light. I think that installation includes a whole tube of silicone caulk, grrrrrr!

The lense of the steaming light is very opaque! I can see a replacement in my future, that's going to take a lot of effort as there really is a ton of Caulk plastered all around that lamp.

I think it has been modified as that type of lamp typically has the deck light built into the bottom of the lamp fitting. The existing deck light is probably Halogen (big amps) and very bright-too bright to look up at. The Steaming light is not so clever, I can tell it's lit, but not sure if it's visible over the appropriate distance. I'll probably end up drilling out those pop rivets that hold the steaming light in place and replacing the entire fitting.

What do you think? Original?

It's a cluster buck.

Future fun up the stick.

Even worse than I thought!

If you click on this pic and zoom in, you might be able to see that the 'New' deck light is wired into the old composite fitting that had it's deck light removed.


With the rivet job done, I lowered myself down to the deck. Easy Peasy.

I can sleep at night now not worrying that the mast will fall due to missing rivets.
Probably it was not an issue, but I feel better now that the missing rivets are in place.

See you on the water - we're heading down to Biscayne Bay this weekend, just in case you're in the area.


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