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The Refit begins !

Posted on Fri 13 November 2009 in Projects, Systems - Rigging

If you follow @DeepPlaya on twitter you know a lot of this stuff, but for those of you who only read the blog here’s the full scoop.

Wednesday afternoon we moved Deep Playa over to A dock where <The Yard> uses the fixed mount haul out cranes (you could pull your dinghy this way) to remove masts. Because the cranes are fixed height you have to time all of this with the right tide to allow them to lift or lower your masts successfully. We got there right on time which in boatyard time means we were early. We milled around then docked and went to work. Basics steps to de-rigging your boat are as follows:

  1. Remove all of your sails and running rigging
  2. Unhook all of your mast lead wiring. This may require cutting some wires, you can add a terminal strip afterwards.\ You might want to lift the mast and see if there any connectors within the mast instead of cutting directly.
  3. Remove any boots around the mast if it is keel stepped
  4. Attach crane to the mast and snug it slightly so it will keep anything from falling over
  5. Pull all the cotter pins from the rig and loosen all the turnbuckles. Depending on your rig some can be removed before others.
  6. Snug the crane
  7. Completely [remove] disconnect all the standing rigging (Thanks Tom for the clarification)
  8. Lift the mast off of it’s step, being careful to lead all the wires cleanly out.
  9. Put the masts on a cart and take them to the yard or lower and fasten them on deck.

So, that’s the ideal way to do things assuming everything goes perfectly. I did not remove my wiring before I got there so I had to quickly do that. I ended up cutting the thick data wire to the RADAR (which I plan to upgrade) only to learn there was a connecter under the mizzenmast. The main could not be picked form its maststep. The aluminum mast was fused to the steel step, horrible combination of metals.

Because they couldn’t get the main out and it was dark we had to wait to finish pulling the rig until the following morning. They managed to get the mast out by grinding off the bolt heads holding the main maststep to the boat, then the pulled the whole mast, step and all up a few feet and knocked the step off the mast with a hammer. With the step removed the whole thing slide right out.

Now that the rig is down the boat was hauled and setup on jacks in the yard.

I spent the remainder of the day removing hardware from the masts. This went much better than the booms. There was a lot more hardware that easily unscrewed. I still have quite a bit left to do, but it feels good to be making progress rather than waiting to start.

You can see more pics of the refit as it goes along in our 2009 Refit set on Flickr.