52ft mast successfully repaired and re-stepped

Tue 7 November 2017

Following restoration work at Whittle Marine’s boatyard in Thorley, Isle of Wight, the 52-foot, wooden mainmast of the 1926 ketch Nomad II was stepped recently in Yarmouth Harbour.

Due to slick co-ordination between Whittle Marine, Mac’s Rigging of Cowes, Island Crane Hire and Yarmouth Harbour Commissioners, the hollow, Douglas Fir spar was fitted into the tabernacle on the deck of Nomad II in under 30 minutes.

The gleaming, ten-year-old mast had been at Whittle Marine undergoing the spar’s first ever maintenance check and service. The team at Whittle Marine stripped and varnished the mast; built and fitted new spreaders; manufactured new stainless steel straps for the spreader tips; replaced the main halyard wheel and repaired an area of rotten wood at the masthead.

In an unusual and imaginative piece of upcycling, the team at Whittle Marine made the mast’s spreaders of pine salvaged in 2011 from gym exercise wall bars following the closure of West Wight Middle School!

Preparing to lift the refurbished mast in Yarmouth Harbour

Taking the full weight

The new pine spreaders made from recycled gym equipment

Spreader detail

New main halyard wheel and masthead repair

Gently positioning the 52ft mast in the yacht's tabernacle

Mac of Mac's Rigging attaches the furling forestay

Putting tension in the turnbuckles

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