donderdag 4 juni 2009

Mast Step + Retaining Thingies

Still got to make some pieces. Below is the mold + glass for the four beam retaining brackets. I made the mold on the bandsaw (my advice: buy one if you haven't got one!) of some scrap pieces of mdf.
When cured I cut the mold + glass in four straight pieces on the table saw. I know it's not good for the sawblade, but for this kind of work I use a blade that's already damaged (hit some screws with it long time ago).
Below the finished brackets and the (almost) finished mast step.
Welding aluminium and making it good looking isn't easy. The mast step looks messy (+ I burned a hole in the top side of the tube) and sure won't be in the book 'This is pro welding". I'm not dissatiefied though; part of the fun of building for me is trying to acquire new skills and experience (like welding). Having a not so good looking mast step is the price I have to pay for that choise.
Although the mast step is not good looking (looking from close range), I'm sure it's strong enough.
I have to do one more weld in the low corner and cut off + isolate the bolts and then have to decide on the finish. Camouflage paint might be the best option.
I'll probably just prime it with epoxy primer and then paint it. The mast foot in the mast will also have to be treated, as well as the mast support and the (still to weld) mast raising pole.
I would actually rather leave all those pieces untreated, as painting will probably look messy and anodizing is a lot of trouble and not always possible (can't anodize the mast foot as it is welded in the mast). What will happen if I leave all the pieces as they are? My boat will mostly be sailed on fresh water. Anyone with good advice?

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