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Catalac 8M / 9M Mast Lowering Instructions (Thanks to http://www.catamaransite.com ) Below is my 9M solution to lack of Stanchions.
The Catalac 8M and the 9M have a tabernacle designed to raise and lower the mast. Chainplates are mounted at the pivot point and the procedure is both simple and convenient. . Note the mast support wires in the drawing below. These are necessary.
Remove all Sails, The Boom and the Mainsheet ( rope & Blocks ). Slot your 50mm Mast Lowering Boom into the base of the mast.
Shackle the forward end of your main Halyard to one of the eye at Front of Pole, Then lifting the pole so that it is horizontal & secure, tie the other end of the halyard to a cleat on the lower part of the mast. For added security you can also connect the jib halyard in the same way.
Shackle the end of your mainsheet block and tackle that normally attaches to the cockpit cowling, to what is now the lower eye on the mast lowering pole. Shackle the other end of the mainsheet to the Anchor Cleat on the foredeck. (This reverses the normal orientation of the mainsheet. The idea is for you to use gravity to help you when it's time to lift the mast)
Make sure you are using good quality rope and Shackles ! Double up on these connections and make them strong & secure !
Shackle the s/s mast support wires (see drawing) from the top eye of the mast lowering boom to the forward lugs on the port & starboard cap shroud stanchions. This is what prevents the mast from twisting off on lift.
Tie up all unused halyards, insert crutches into transom fittings.
Tighten the mast support wires to prevent the mast from twisting on lifting or lowering.
Loosen off the tabernacle mast support Bolt / Nuts.
Slightly loosen the Cap Shrouds & the Lower Shrouds. Back Stays can be left alone. Loosen and Disconnect the Forestay & inner forestay.
If you have 3 persons position one on the mainsheet, to lower away and the other 2 at the port & starboard shrouds, to check sideways movement and tension.
The mast will need a bit of persuasion to get it started, but once underway Keep lowering nice and steady until in the crutches.
The mast can then be positioned & secured as required.
The reverse procedure can be used for lifting. The mainsheet can be led to a Winch to make the job easier.
The reverse procedure can be used for lifting. I discovered that if the mainsheet is installed upside down, it allowed for body weight being added to the lifting force necessary to raise the mast.
The mast lowering pole is steel, 2" in diameter thick wall tubing, 8 FEET long with a 6 inch stainless steel tip. It weighs around 25 lbs. I have had one fabricated in two parts which allows storage on the deck behind the mast.
Problem with single handed lowering on the 9M Mast-
Shackle the s/s mast support wires (see drawing) from the top eye of the mast lowering boom to the forward lugs on the port & starboard cap shroud stanchions. This is what prevents the mast from twisting off on lift. - Mine does not have shroud stanchions.
The 8M has stanchions to allow wires to be attached to the lowering pole -
I have been trying to work out a way to provide support to stop the mast “twisting off” and have fabricated the following stanchions that can be easily fitted when needed. When not needed there other attachment is to allow a shackle to be attached to allow the sail raising lines to be fed back to the cockpit. Whilst it is always better to have many hands available to lower the mast my intention is to be able to do it single handed with the assistance of Anne to keep a safety line on the winch to prevent the mast crashing down onto the coach roof!
I have fabricated new brackets in stainless steel to bolt through between the existing mast support brackets. When the lowering stanchions (Mild steel) are fitted the top hole on the stanchion is in line with the mast pivot bolt. From these holes I will fit steel wires to the loop on the end of the lowering pole to prevent sideways movement and “twisting off”. More pictures to follow once I get to fitting them!
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