Mast Plug

Thread starter #1
I have recently purchased a 1990 Capri 14.2 and have finished 90% of what I need to launch her this weekend.

My question/concern is the plug in the top of the mast. Any suggestions as to how I might ensure this plug is sound and/or just incert a seal/plug myself so that I know it's secure?

I don't want to find out it lets water into the mast in the unlikely event that I tip her over. What can I use to plug this area and feel safe?

I hate to tell you this, but the plug on the end of the mast will not keep the water out of the mast if you go over. To keep water out out of the mast, you need to fill the ends of the mast with spray foam, and then make sure every fitting is made water tight with silicone.



rjsailnsd said:
I have an idea.... Take the shive out and push a semi soft rubber ball into the mast tube sealing the mast below the shive. Toy rubber ball a buck or 2?

The inside of the mast isn't perfectly round or even oval, due to the channel for the main sail. The spray in foam is the only tried and true method that I have heard of to seal the mast. DAP has a newer version that claims not to "over expand". I tried it and it worked well, and at less thwen $5.00, it was a pretty good bargin.
Thread starter #4
Thank you all for your ideas and comments. I checked the mast this weekend just prior to setting her up for a sail and the plug looks great. Couldn't see any gaps, holes, or areas for concern. Set her up, sailed most of Saturday and sat around that evening with a cold one to relax. What day.
Thanks again,
Just so I am not misunderstanding something, is there a plug under the main halyard block?

The opening for the block is where the water gets in, and that's why the cap doesn't stop the water. Unless, I'm missing something in my mast, the plug is only there to protect the end of the mast and the block.

Good luck and good sailing,
Ah, I see. I put a plug (cover) on top of the mast to protect the end of the mast, but my mast doesn't have a plug under the block. That's where the foam comes in. Is the plug on all masts, or just newer masts? (My Capri is a 1986 model.)
Ever the pessimist, I plugged the bottom of my mast as well. I don't know that the plug at the top prevents turtling with any certainty. If you do go over, I'd think you'd want to be sure the mast didn't fill up from the bottom. I've never heard of anyone else doing this (except those who fill the entire mast with foam) but I figured there was no harm in doing it while I was at it.



2004 Catalina 14.2 new owner comment on mast plug

My new 14.2 has some spongy material below mast block but whatever it is (which i will know soon and post) it did not prevent turtling. I did that in a 40F lake here in NH 2 days after ice out. bit cold. If you turtle use foot on boom to jump up and grab centerboard.

I agree with DAP guy, will be putting that in top soon. i have not been able to find confirmation of this working. Any one?

geoff fernald
I added foam to the top and bottom of the mast, as well as removed and resealed every piece of hardware with silicone, but I haven't tested yet.

I have had my boat on its side more than half a dozen times, and it has only turtled once, and that was because I landed in the sail on the way over. I was able to get the boat back on its side from turtle, but I couldn't pull it the rest of the way up. The main and jib had cleated and were filled with water, and the wind was blowing against the direction I was trying to pull the boat. Had I turned the boat and uncleated the sheets, I am sure that I could have righted it. I’ve done it many times before.

Fortunately, or not, my son and the boat, with me still hanging on to the centerboard, washed up on a beach at the lake. I was on the side of the boat opposite the shore, and until my son said, "dad, put your feet down", I didn’t even know we had "landed".
I'm glad that nobody had their video camera out at the time! I was literally hanging on the side of the boat, with my arms around the centerboard and my feet on the side of the boat, like an over-weight, middle-aged Spiderman.

I was going to try my new swim ladder and do a turtle test this past weekend, but I failed the "put in the drain plug" test.