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1988 Laser Mast Step Repair Question

gibbs

New Member
Hi!
I've spent a fair amount of time reading through posts on this forum about reinforcing the mast step on my free 135xxx hull, and I've come to the conclusion that this should probably be done preventatively. Along with that, I'm going to have to do some extra work in regards to the base of the mast step. When I picked it up, it was obvious the mast had put a crack in the fiberglass in the bottom of the boat so I fibreglassed it with about 5 layers of biaxial weave matting. What should I do now to help prevent it from punching through again?

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Rob Hair

Active Member
One thing you certainly should do is install one of the stainless steel disks made for preventing that. It's not clear to me from the photos if you need additional material (glass) at the bottom of the tube before installing the disk. If you haven't done so I'd add an inspection port and reinforce the mast tube from the inside of the hull. And avoid sand! That applies to the mast and tube.
 

LaLi

Well-Known Member
What Rob said. Once you've built up the bottom of the step to the original level (if you can't measure that from another boat, you might turn to PSA again), get a protection disc and drop it into the step. (Its material is free, and I'm not sure if stainless would or wouldn't cause more problems there.) Take it out every now and then and rinse it and the step. Then stay away from sandy shores and extreme waves :confused:

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Rob Hair

Active Member
I recommend the stainless disk but it MUST be attached with some suitable adhesive to the bottom of the mast tube. That way there will be no wear on the fiberglass at the bottom of the tube. Wear is still possible on the sides of the tube, so if it hasn't been stressed enough, :), avoid sand.

I use a Teflon disk, too, but the SS prevents damage to the hull. Lali, I seem to recall reading that newer boats have a SS disk, is that right?

BTW, I tried some of the tape that's sold for application to the mast where it contacts the sides of the mast tube. For me it made matters worse, as I launch from a very sandy beach and I found it impossible to keep sand from becoming embedded in that tape. I would expect the tape to work fine in locations where sand isn't a problem.
 

LaLi

Well-Known Member
I seem to recall reading that newer boats have a SS disk, is that right?
Honestly, I don't know. It's been occasionally mentioned, but it could be a myth, too. Haven't looked down into other people's mast steps :D but might do that next time at the club...

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