Mast restoration commenced
The carbon mast is in a poor state, so this is next on the list. The good news is that the carbon tube itself is in great condition, so it will be a matter of
- removing the sail track,
- cleaning off the old epoxy
- undoing the epoxy joint where the carbon tube joins the aluminium tube.
- re-joining the tubes with fibre glass
- restitching the sail track onto the mast with Kevlar tow
- coating the mast to prevent a reoccurrence of UV degradation of the epoxy.
Epoxy basically has no UV resistance, so it has to be coated with a suitable spar varnish or paint.
This is the joint that needs fixing. As you can see, the epoxy has degraded completely and provides no strength whatsoever.
Kevlar tow joining the sail track to the carbon mast has come loose along its whole length:
The sail track has been removed and both track and mast cleaned up in readiness for its re-attachment. This took me quite a few hours today with careful use of a heat gun and scraper. I had to be very careful to avoid heating the mast and melting the epoxy/carbon laminate. As you can see, the carbon mast tube is in good nick.
The joint between the carbon mast and aluminium mast base has also been cleaned up in readiness for fibre glassing. The hole you can see is for the gooseneck pin. It goes through to the other side as the boom rotates the mast.
The next post will show the re-attachment of the track.