View Full Version : Wooden Mast Shattered

06-06-2006, 01:45 PM
I am the owner of a 1967 Sailmaster 22. Unfortunately, the wooden mast was shattered while the boat was on jackstands in the backyard. This was caused by a neighbor's tree falling on the mast.

The tree is on 2 neighbors' property line and neither is taking any action to rectify the situation. I may have to start a lawsuit and was wondering about how much the replacement cost of this mast would be. I really have no idea. Are their any craftsmen who make masts?

Any help is appreciated.


John Bell
06-06-2006, 01:54 PM
Sad story.

Around here, if a tree falls from inside my neighbor's property and damages my property he is not liable unless the tree was visibly dead or diseased. Otherwise it's my problem, unless he is feeling charitable towards my situation. (Not removing an obvious hazard that can cause damage to anothers property can be construed as negligence. The trick is in the proving something was an obvious hazard. Geven enough wind ALL trees are hazards!)

I doubt suing him is the best first step. Appeal to his sense of sympathy. Also, call your insurance agent.

06-06-2006, 02:18 PM
Ditto John's suggestions -- lawsuit won't wash, and will cost you more than you get out of it. Call your homeowner's insurance agent, and either they or you can get repair bids from chandleries or boatyards.

Michael s/v Sannyasin
06-06-2006, 02:21 PM
There is a guy named Charlie Jones that hangs out over on the CSBB:


He's had some posts where he shows the masts or bowsprits he's made for smaller boats. I think that he's located on the Gulf Coast in Texas. Unfortunately for you, they just took off for 4-5 weeks of sailing to Florida. But, go and search the archives, you might see some of his work, and I'll bet if you drop him an e-mail, he'll check at some point while he's gone.

06-06-2006, 02:43 PM
I'd also explore the possibility of an aluminum mast. It'll be lighter and improve the performance of he boat, and less costly than a professionally made spruce mast. If you can't tolerate the weight of a simple solid mast (tree) and the labor has a cost, and the boat isn't a fine little thing, wood masts are hard to justify.

If you'd let us know where you are, a vendor might be suggested.

Tom W.
06-06-2006, 04:20 PM
There are many articles in various WB mags about mast building, unless yours is especially complex it is usually not terribly difficult to make a mast, even with a slot for the luff. WB # 91 is a good one, for example.

06-06-2006, 04:30 PM
From a yahoo group that a quick google tured up:

Attached is a couple months research finding sources for solid timber
masts for my Golden Hind 34:

Elk Spars, Jim Elk, Bar Harbor, Maine, 207-288-9045

Pacific Western Timber, Peter Wagner, 360-674-2700

Eden Saw Woods, Port Townsend, Washington

Tabbs and Son, Tacoma, Washington

For aluminum masts similar to Freedom Sailboats contact:

Wico Poles in Canada

Paul Scheuer
06-06-2006, 06:40 PM
Are their any craftsmen who make masts?

The answer is yes, there are. It would help to know where you are.

Tom Lathrop
06-06-2006, 07:53 PM

There is a Sailmaster 22 wooden mast that is not doing anything near to me. All the hardware and rigging is also available. It is in excellent shape. As was said, it depends on where you are whether anything is doable or not.

If you email me, I can put you in touch with the owner of the mast.

Tom Lathrop
06-11-2006, 08:26 AM
You know, this kind of thing is a little irritating. I offered this guy much more than he had any right to expect and no response. What do you suppose he was really looking for?

Bruce Hooke
06-11-2006, 09:49 AM
Based on what he said in his original post, it sounds to me like he is, at thist point at least, more interested in the possibilities of a lawsuit than he is in replacing the mast. What he seemed to want to know was the value of the mast. That said, even if I am correct, it might be nice if he would explain why he is not interested in information about actually replacing the mast.

06-12-2006, 08:32 AM

My aplogies for not replying sooner, as I was away at the end of the week on business.

First of all, WOW, a lot of good replies here. I'll try too answer them all here.

Regarding the lawsuit, I agree that 1) we would have to show negligence and this is probably tough and 2) the odds on getting anything are slim.

The sad fact is that the boat is only worth 3-5K and having a mast made is not cheap.

An aluminum mast would be too depressing as what really makes this boat a head-turner is all of the wood.

I am located in Southern NJ and we normally sail the boat on the Delaware river near Philadelphia.

Tom - I'll send you a message ASAP regarding the wooden mast you spoke of.

I will also inquire regarding prices from the other sources provided.

Once again, thank you, and please feel free to comment further.


Tom Lathrop
06-12-2006, 11:53 AM
Dargo has written me and, hopefully, things are moving.