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Thread: DIY Wing Mast Questions

  1. #1

    Default DIY Wing Mast Questions

    Guys, I've been curious about wing masts for ages. Meaning building one myself for a mid-sized multihull (30'-45'). So I'm looking for information, designs, & building instructions & examples of said type of spars. Also I'm wondering what the more common methods for attaching stays & shrouds are any more? I know that on say PRB there are holes through the mast tube for Spectra (Dyneema) Loops, to which the stays are attached. And that on other boats there are stainless rotator hounds/beaks instead. Though I can't say as I know the particulars of either, nor how to build them. As well as what to avoid in terms of the design & building of such critical fittings/structures.

    So the basic question is, what's the most reliable method of attaching one's stays, including a furler for the jib? How often do various components need swapping out so that the mast doesn't suffer any failures & fall? Plus any other key questions I forgot to ask/need to know when seriously considering building one. Such as can the ("cap") shrouds be connected to a different point on the mast than the headstay or forestays? And what factors influence such things? Also, where might I look in order to gain a better understanding of how the mounting points for soft stay attachments are built into the rig's tube, when first putting it together/building it. As well as adding other, similar attachment points later on, should the need arise.

    Obviously the tech & options as to how to attach shrouds, stays, & other structural bits have advanced quite a bit in the last few years. With a plethora of options for soft attachments using Dyneema, & fittings akin to Ropeye & other soft padeyes. That said, please pretend that I know naught about what's available, & help me to get educated on this. Both self-educated, alone with the resources for same pleas. And also to get me schooled by wizened sailors & riggers who are familiar with wing spars.

    Plus, I'm curious to hear folks thoughts & feedback on the pro's & con's of Colligo Marine's soft furler.
    Extra Light Headsail Furling Sytem — Colligo Marine®
    And if you have one is it an improvement over standard furlers, & or structural furlers? Would you buy another one, & why or why not? Plus what are it's perks & weaknesses as compared to a standard furler, with a solid extrusion, over a wire headstay?

    Bottom line, what are the better routes to pursue if starting from scratch, to build a DIY wing mast for a cat or tri in the 30'-45' LOA range? And any & all links to relavent info pages, or hardware would be greatly welcomed. As would links to blogs or pages detailing the construction of any such spars by regular folk, outside of production facilities with autoclaves & such. Thanks!

    PS: I'm thinking of a wood/epoxy, or wood/epoxy spar with some carbon. But probably not a purely carbon mast. With halyards for a: mainsail, jib, solent/staysail, code 0/screecher, & a spinnaker. And structural furlers are an option to some degree. As are Park Avenue, or V-booms, for utility, as well as the cool factor

    Thank You!
    Last edited by UNCIVILIZED; 31st July 2017 at 04:28 PM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: DIY Wing Mast Questions

    West system people are the only people I know of for bigger masts Gueogean? brothers not sure if still available. Mike Waters from Small Tri Designs has plans for small winged ones and many articles some on Wing masts. You know aboat 'bendy ply? one thin layer in middle so it's easy to bend (one way). I think (not an engineer) need to 'glass inside as well as out, web gives more stiffness with much sheer force on inside joint. I have two (not flown) in Brisbane 7.2 m alloy and 10m bendy ply. Carbon specialist in Brisbane designs masts euopean name.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Too far north to be comfortable.

    Default Re: DIY Wing Mast Questions

    Kurt Hughes has a foam/carbon wingmast design. Schionning did at one time too, though in solid carbon, with a much shorter chord. More of a teardrop rotating mast.

    I tried to buy mast plans from gold Coast yachts in St Croix usvi. They weren't interested in selling them. Interesting 2:1 design.

    Cheers and good luck.

  4. #4

    Default Re: DIY Wing Mast Questions

    As far as I know, wings can be built a number of ways. 1.Joining long lengths of laminated partical board (as former only) girth width, to use as mould, then roll and glue,with web and or bolt rope to glue shut no fairing. 2. bendy ply, 'glassed (carboned) both sides. 3.Same with foam. peel ply (plastic film with holes to allow excess resin out),is poor man's vacuum bag. 2.25/2.5 x length / width is the best drag/weight ratio. 60/70% long fibres 15/20% double bias and hoop each. Note. inside compression side is often cause of failure, (as far as i know, not engineer).

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