There are a number of section shapes that can be considered for a fabricated steel mast: Oval, Rectangular with radius corners, Multi-sided, and Round. All the sections are formed from sheet material and formed in a Press-brake with the exception of a Round section. All the hardware attached to the mast can be fabricated including: Mast Head, Spreaders, and Stay attachments to name a few.
These fabricated steel mast are formed from sheet material between 16 or 14 gauge Cold Rolled Steel. They are fabricated in half section with a center divider. The center divider serves no structural purpose, but does provide dimensional alignment and stability during fabrication.
The pictures below show a multi-sided (Octagon - Eight Sided) mast I built for my personal boat the 'Notion'. This mast stood on the 'Notion' for twenty years, that I know of. The 'Notion' also crossed the Atlantic with it. That should stand for some testimony.
Rectangular with Radius Corners:
This configuration is detailed in my book 'Applied Metal Boatbuilding Methods - Sheetmetal Pattern Development'. The book details how to develop - layout patterns for sheet-metal parts such as the mast column. Using the sheet-metal methods in this book you would be able to determine the cut size and bend line locations for any part manufactured from sheet metal.
Oval sections are formed a little different from Multi-Sided and Rectangular sections. Multi-Sided and Rectangular section are formed from a single stroke of a Press-brake to bend the metal to the desired angle. Oval sections are shaped by 'bump' forming.
Round sections are formed exactly like Oval sections, the only difference is the outcome of shape.
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