Posted by: powellpjc | June 7, 2009

Life in a Boatyard

 

 

Masts are important to sailing folk and some masts are expensive. A truck arrived yesterday in the yard with a stack of long poles on its trailer. Came from the east coast. The cargo was unloaded and unwrapped and it was a wondrous sight.

The spar looks like wood but that is just the paint. It is shiny carbon fibre, light and expensive.

The mast and its electrical innards.

The mast and its electrical innards.

A lot of wires poke out the bottom for the various lights and radio antennae that bristle from this beauty. The shiny brush on the top is the business end of a lightning rod system.

Top of the mast with its lightning rod bristle brush.

Top of the mast with its lightning rod bristle brush.

I spoke to one of the builders—the guy who is in charge of the electrics—and he said it was the latest and greatest but also admitted that sometimes nothing works with lightning strikes. This confirms my belief that no one really understands that voodoo science of electricity. The scary black magic lurks around every corner. It waits to kill us.

The mast belongs to a 72-footer that arrived this morning without its stick but with a story. Seems the owner and his family were aboard the night before departure, from Portland to the San Juan Islands, and as they were sleeping some punks came along and untied the yacht. Down the river she went, quiet as a mouse until one of the Columbia River bridges got in the way. Broke the mast and bashed in some woodwork. A very unpleasant issue to waken to.

The other mast on the truck was also a work of art. This one REALLY looks like wood because it was airbrushed by an artist to look like wood. It is also carbon fibre and worth a bundle.

Carbon fibre mast painted to look like wood.

Carbon fibre mast painted to look like wood.

A work of art. Don't try and carve your name in it.

A work of art. Don't try and carve your name in it.

Interesting stories in a boat yard.

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Responses

  1. A brighter report today. Had no idea about the inner workings of a boat. More than a little now fabric on the cushions and painting the name on the side. Try a drop of libation. DR


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