Steel Mast Specifications:

Watertight Construction:   First and foremost the entire mast structure is to be fabricated Watertight.  While access covers are specfied at the top and bottom of the mast they must be sealed watertight ar the end of any work that may require access to the interior of the mast.  The mast must be kept watertight at all times.  Rust does not form where there is a lack of oxygen.


Materials:   Cold-rolled steel, pickled in oil is used for the main column, usually between 16 and 14 gauge in thickness.  Cold-rolled material is readily available, uniform in thickness, and has the mill scale removed.  Pickling the material in oil protects the metal from rust during fabrication until it is painted.  Other parts of the mast, such as the mast head fitting, tangs, and doublers can be fabricated from any low-carbon steel.

Exterior Halyards:   Exterior halyarsd are the only option.  Not only because fabrication is simplified, but the mast must remain watertight.  With the mas watertight, painting the interior of the mast is not required.  Rust does not form when oxygen is not present.

Welding:   My preference of welding electrodes is type 6011.  This electrode provides  good penetration of the welded material.  Good penetration is necessary along the seams joining the half section of the transeverse divider of the mast.  In general, all welds are ground smooth for painting purposes.  Care should be taken to avoid over-grinding the mast and thereby removing material thickness.

Tack Welding:   Before any continous welding is to be done on the mast the entire mast structure is only tack welded in position.  Tack welds should only be as large as necessary to keep alignement.  By the entire structure I mean:  The mast column, mast head, doublers, spreaders and so forth.

Continous Welding of the Mast Column:   When continuously welding any part of the mast, use a staggered weld sequence as follows:  Weld approximately two to three inches along the mast half= section seams, skip a space approximately twelve inches long before doing another two or three weld.  Do three to four before swithing to the other side of the mast Repeat this process somewhere else on the mast column.  Basicly skip side to side randomly, up and down until the entire mast column is welded.

Painting:   Should be a good quality primer and finish coat, be sure to follow the manufacturers recommendations. Interior halyards are not to be used.

Electrical wiring:   Is installed in accordance with "The Standards and Recommended Practices for Small Craft by the ABYC (American Boat and Yacht Council, Inc.)