Mast work (part 4)

Now, with all the hardware and conduit installed, it was time to run the wires.

This was a royal pain in the arse.

First I removed all the old wire

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Then I laid out all the wires, there were 9 of them.

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Next, I ran the spreader ones first. This took around 4 hours, and I still hadn’t done two of them, and I didn’t think I could fit them all down the conduit I’d installed. Disaster!

To avoid thinking about it, I did the masthead ones, these all fit. I’ve kept this description short but it involved hours and hours of dicking around with fish wire and praying for death.

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The next day, I started thinking about the built in metal conduit behind the sail track. Only problem was, it was behind the metal plate that held the book up, and held by several stubborn screws, which included 4 slot screws (I HATE HATE HATE slow screws, they strip easily and cannot be used with an impact driver)

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What follows was two hours of heat, hammering, PB blaster and repeat. Eventually they all came out.

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Then I removed the sail track and ran the last two wires down it

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Then I jammed the sail track back on.

Lastly, I had to connect the pulled wires to the hardware. Not super hard, except the VHF connectors which turn out have to be SOLDERED.

So I went and bought a soldering iron, and the smell of the solder on firing it up catapulted me right back into high school. So much so that I accidentally attempted to solder my thumb to a rock after I forgot I had put the soldering iron down and put my hand on it. Ow ow ow.

Anyway, after literally 10 attempts (I’m glad I left a lot of slack in the cable!) I finally got it right for both VHF antenna

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Note the lovely soldering iron burn in the last picture.

With that, the only thing left to do was put the mast on the boat. Yay!

 

 

Matt

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