Prepping spars for the big crab claw main

The evening started with Thomas and I having a hoot bouncing Liam and Cora around on his big “bread loaf” — a paint ball barrier we may some day use to lift Tiki hulls with shop vac or exhaust pressure.  2/3 full the thing may be the ultimate backyard bouncy house, or fully inflated it may be one seriously fun log rolling device in Lake Washington this summer!

With the kids in bed, we quickly rigged up the sail and spars and got a sense for how much lateral stress might be put on the upper spar by the halyard.  The sail is definitely bigger than the old main and had a life of it’s own even in the light breeze.

Soon Mike showed up, we concurred that about 2 meters of basalt sock centered on the halyard attachment point would be a simple way to guarantee the upper spar wouldn’t fold.  Thomas helped cut the sock and slid it on with Mike as Scott hemmed and hawed about placement.  Centered on the point 3.10 meters from the upper spar’s tack-end, the sock got saturated with epoxy glue and then coated with fairing epoxy.  As it cured up later, Scott trimmed the ends with a box cutter.

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Mike and Scott also used some tarred twine to whip some of the bigger splits in the bamboo spars after dribbling in some epoxy glue.  That worked well and looked pretty ethnic and bomber as well.  The hope is that with another coat of epoxy the rain won’t get inside the spars and cause internal rot or weakening.

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