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Thursday, July 07, 2011

July 6, 2011-Mast step, Backing Plates & Ball Bearings


wingssail images-fredrick roswold
In Readiness for the Mast

We installed the the new mast step, slathered in yellow barrier cream to prevent the corrosion which occurred on the last one, and the three new new keel backing plates (one visible in photo above) on Wednesday. Five other plates are in better shape, and in any case can be replaced with out removing the mast, so we left them alone.

It has been a struggle to get these parts back from the fabricators but now, finally, they are in and we are ready to install the mast.

wingssail images-fredrick roswold
More bad bearings

While we waited we took a look at the halyard turning blocks and found more bad bearings. This time it was the delrin ball side-load bearings which had failed, probably because of the side loading which results from our method of pulling up the sails by jumping the halyards at the mast, not the torlon rollers which had failed in the mast head sheaves.

I have plenty of spare bearings now so I rebuilt all the turning blocks.

wingssail images-judy jensen
Replacing delrin ball bearings

This, I find, is a very enjoyable activity. I can sit in my salon and carefully put new bearings into the sheave, one by one, around 100 bearings per sheave. It is calming work and the result is satisfying.

While I zen'd out with my delrin ball bearings Judy cleaned up all the aluminium peices, removing corrosion and dirt. Togther we make a good team.

Fred & Judy, SV Wings, Richards Bay, South Africa

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