Exactly how long does it take to remove a mast from a sailboat? The answer is 27 minutes.
Of course, we're talking about deliberately removing your mast. Not having Mother Nature remove your mast for you, which happens in a horrifying instant, but probably feels like an eternity as you watch it topple over.
People remove their masts due to height restrictions on the water (like bridges or powerlines) or because they're going to transport their sailboat across the country. Some people even remove their masts each season when they store their boats.
Our friends on s/v Wild Blue had their mast removed because they're going to take their boat back up north on a truck. They're pros at this. They reckon this is the fifth time they've done this on this particular boat.
I came along for the show. And believe me, it's a show, especially when you have a large crane involved.
You really hope that the crane isn't going to hit anything else in the yard, like someone else's boat. It was impressive to watch the hand signals to the crane operator.
I watched it go higher and higher in the air.
Then the guys tied the mast onto the crane and the operator hoisted it off of the boat.
They lowered it carefully down to the ground.
Someone grabbed a line at the other end to pull it away from the boat.
Then they moved it over to the stands.
Down it goes.
At last, safely on the ground.
Do you like watching heavy equipment at work? Ever seen a mast removed?
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