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Thread: Question re windsurfer masts

  1. #1

    Default Question re windsurfer masts

    Hi, a quick question to those of you who have in the past or do use a windsurf mast for your sailing canoe.


    What is the external diameter of a standard mast near the base?

    I have tried googling, and I have found other information, but none on the diameter.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    Going from memory I'd say about 3" outside diameter and hollow to take a mast foot. They taper down to about inch and a quarter at the top. From memory they are about 4 meters long.
    Big Al.

    Only when the last tree has died
    and the last river been poisoned
    and the last fish been caught
    will we realise we cannot eat money.
    ~Cree Indian Proverb

  3. #3

    Default

    Thanks Al.

  4. #4

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    I am certainly not an expert on windsurfing, but I did buy 6, or so, to use with my outrigger canoe. I just went out to the garage and measured the mast base, it is 2 & 1/8 inches, although technically it is probably specified in mm. I have a wooden mast that has a 3 inch base, I have never seen a windsurfer mast that thick.

    Bob

  5. #5
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    We have used windsurfer masts in the past and they were 2 & 1/8 inch at the bottom. They worked quite well with a bermudan sail and are cheap enough to buy second hand.

  6. #6

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    Thanks again for your replies.

    That is my intention Dave, but only use one half for now.

    I'm just playing with an idea for a small sail on my Z-pro TA300, but its very much experimental until the prototype has been trialled. I've bid on a mast on ebay. The mast will be the only expense, unless the bidding gets silly for me and I'll go back to plan A.

  7. #7
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    Where are you?

    I have a mast here in Poole you can have.

  8. #8
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    I am trying to use one and it is a pain to attach fittings to as the pop rivits just kinda crunches it up. Through bolts could be fine I guess but you can't really tighten them too hard. Not ideal.... I am thinking of just getting some ali pipe...

  9. #9
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    Just went out and measured my mast, and you are right guys, its not as big as I thought. Just over two inches in diameter.......shows you how long its been since I went windsurfing.

    Sorry for the bum advice Badger.
    Big Al.

    Only when the last tree has died
    and the last river been poisoned
    and the last fish been caught
    will we realise we cannot eat money.
    ~Cree Indian Proverb

  10. #10

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    Thanks No Idea, but I live in Leeds; not exactly down the road ;-)

    Can'toe i hadn't intended to attatch directly to it, I was thinking of a system similar to curtain rings for the sail.

    Big Al, no worries.......but re-read your post with a twisted mind and how women veiw us, it made me laugh!

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by badger74 View Post

    Big Al, no worries.......but re-read your post with a twisted mind and how women view us, it made me laugh!
    Must admit, as I wrote it I thought it could be a "double entendre" but couldn't be bothered changing it.
    Big Al.

    Only when the last tree has died
    and the last river been poisoned
    and the last fish been caught
    will we realise we cannot eat money.
    ~Cree Indian Proverb

  12. #12
    Join Date
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    You can fix anything you like to the mast - so long as you fibreglass it on.

    Have a look at my kids "My Mast" page on here

  13. #13
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    Not near Poole? There must be someone on here thats nearer with a scrap windsurfer who can donate a mast!

  14. #14

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    I liked your lads blog.

    I've bid currently 99p on a mast thats in Immingham. I'm not too bothered if i don't win, as the orignial plan was to gaffa tape 4 x 2m long bamboo canes together to form the mast 2m tall and about 40mm thick. It is only for testing, because if the frame holding the mast on the inflatable is not succesful, I don't want to spend a fortune finding out.

  15. #15
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    Thank you.

    Please tell us how you get on - and show us any pics you take.

  16. #16

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    I will do.

    Family problems surfaced over the weekend so I didn't go after the mast. I will now stick with the bamboo canes and hopefully get the prototype up and running this weekend.

  17. #17
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    D rings?

    Have you seen how the sail is tied onto a gaff rig, such as you get in a mirror dinghy?

    A rope is literally put through the top hole in the sail and run round the mast to the next hole down, through it and on round and down to the next hole.

    It seems horrible, but works.

  18. #18
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    MIror dIngIes arnt gaff riged thay have a gunthor rIg whIcg Is a closer relatIve to a bermuden than a gaff cold be a good rIg for a canoe

  19. #19
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    I used a gunter rig for many years on my canoe and it had its benefits - shorter spar length being one. Reefing was achieved by the "jiffy" method ie bundling up the lower part of it before rehoisting. This is ok but not as good as rolling round the mast with a burmudan.
    Here's my first rig - you should be able to see the two parts of the mast (mast and yard technically but the yard is really a mast extension)


    Here's another - Tony is just tensioning his halyard so the yard is still at a slight angle; Andy has yet to raise his sail so you can see the short mast as well as the sail with yard and boom still lying on the canoe.


    Reviewing some of the exped accounts from our old website (http://homepages.rya-online.net/ocsg...xpeditions.htm) this pic jumped out at me as illustrating a range of 4 different rigs:

    Nearest is a fully battened lugsail, then a fully battened, jiffy reefing bermudan on a mast track, then my gunter and lastly a soft roller reefing/furling bermudan - all have their pros and cons but all very serviceable rigs.


    As usual there is "nothing new under the sun" - very many of the sailing canoes from 150 years ago used gunter rigs.
    Last edited by windorpaddle; 6th-July-2012 at 01:42 PM.

  20. #20
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    well I solved the problem of affixing things to the windsurfer mast by doing a pour of epoxy resin and microballoons into the top of the mast. I just taped off the end and poured it in from the other side. I made the mix quite thick but next time will err on the thinner side as it took ages to make its way down the mast. So now my mast has some of those plastic jobbies with the stainless inserts bolted right through at the top for the halyards to go through. It is very solid indeed. The resin only goes down about 2 inches so it is not adding a lot of weight to the top. I will do another pour in from the bottom and then tape off the bottom and flip the mast up again to create a more solid mast foot at the bottom. Then I just need to solve the attachment of the pulley for the sprit in the middle and I am sorted. I am looking for the right size of discarded carbon dome tent pole, then drill a hole through the mast and epoxy a short piece of the tent pole in for a line to go through.

  21. #21
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    hi Cantoe

    I cant see what you are doing in my head.

    Any chance of a few pics?

  22. #22
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    Ok. Here we go. Took a while to get round to downloading and fiddling the pics.

    This pic shows the end of the mast filled with the resin and micro balloons




    Here is a pic of the gaff I am making for my modified finn using a windsurfer mast. The gaff jaws where shaped and glued on with thickened epoxy. I then did a fill on the inside of the gaff pole (windsurfer mast) and put a few stainless steel screws through the wood and into the filled section. The whole thing was then sheathed in glass with epoxy. Just need to paint it now. The other end of the gaff spar is also filled. I now shove a piece of polystyrene down the spar first then do the fill. It is easier than doing a pour from the other side. Here it is in the vacuum bag getting the glass sheathing.



    Here it is out the bag after some sanding.



    I used the gaff for a season after doing a resin and glass tape wrapping but neglected to paint it all. Was probably in a hurry to get on the water. One season under the African sun and the glass was crumbling to dust and the one gaff jaw was about to snap off. It did get put through some quite strong winds however. I would say I need to paint the jaws and the tip of the spar white and then varnish the whole spar with a uv protecting layer of something. Also make a better sail cover for when the boat is sitting at the jetty all season long. I don't think windsurfer masts have much in the way of uv protection on them.

  23. #23

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    This is what I ended up doing with my Zpro 300. I hope the link works as I'm still on my hols and cant post proper photos until i'm back home.

    https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?...1&l=c07b0a4f92

    I just need to learn how to sail!!!

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