See Fred and Mary’s blog from Galveston, TX on installing Mastmate.
I used the 27′ mast mate last weekend.
I had a couple of difficulties.
It was only just long enough – had to position it very carefully to be able to get to the first step from standing on the mast winches, and having the top step high enough for removing the backstay. I think I’ll add a couple of folding steps at the bottom.
Although I could raise my foot enough for each successive step I had some difficulty getting my foot far enough back to not push the step up with my toe. Once I had raised the step this way I had to go down a couple of steps to push it down and try again. I had to lean back somewhat to get my toe to clear the step, and that was a little scary. My inseam is not particularly short, I could certainly be more flexible.
I thought that the clips holding the webbing to the mast slides seemed a little flimsy, and I shall probably whip them on.
I discovered that light shoes (rather than boots) and shorts (rather than jeans) helped, and I finally succeeded in getting to the top and removing the backstay.
All in all I am very pleased with the Mast Mate.
The Workbelt was marvellous. Being able to use 2 hands for work and still be secure was great.
Yesterday I broke out my Mast Mate for the first time. I have been up the mast many times using ascender climbing devices, the ATN Mast Climber, and having someone hoist me up on a bosun’s chair. Of all the methods I prefer the Mast Mate to the others and here’s why: using ascenders are just too dangerous, the ATN Mast Climber requires too much exertion, and I would rather rely on myself than others to get up the mast. Besides, I am frequently alone when I have to ascend. Yesterday, I made three trips to repair my wind sensor; the cups on the anemometer required replacement. I thought I could replace the cups in place on the mast head, but no, I needed to bring the entire sensor down, and make a trip to West Marine. I would never have been able to make three trips with the ATN. I am just too old. I could have climbed the Mast Mate at least one more time.
Got the Mast Mate a couple weeks ago and finally put it to work.
We added a Cradle Cover from Doyle Sails to our boat and I had to go to the 2nd set of spreaders to put pad eyes and blocks in for the lazy jacks. While I wasn’t at the very top or waving, this was the pic my wife took. Very comfortable working up there. The harness and pouch worked well, holding me and a portable drill securely.
We were still on the hard in the marina. People would walk by and shake their heads. Cathy told me they were shaking them because they said THEY WOULDN’T be up there. One guy asked about it and I said it was safer and more comfortable than a bosn’s chair and you don’t need help. We had a couple chairs in the past and always had to recruit deck apes to hoist me up. I had sent my daughter up once and wished I had an assistant ape!
Great product. Quality built. Well worth the money. Cathy said it paid for itself already.
A bad day on the boat, is better than a good day at work!
It took a while to get a picture of me climbing the mast. I’ve been up now at least 10 times and it is a breeze. Your Mast Mate made my wife’s life and mine so much easier. We are sailing our Spencer 48 double / single handed.
Thank you so much! Marco
Here are the pictures you asked for. Your product did it’s job great! Even though there were 13 to 18 knot winds that day the climb was easy and I felt secure the whole time. Thanks again and I am sure you will have continued success with this product.
The mastmate arrived and I put it to use Sunday. It worked great, I am very happy with my decision to purchase.