Stepping the Spar

The spar is stepped in the deck mounted tabernacle.

The spar should first be laid out on the bow pulpit and the cockpit crutches or on two or more saw horses and checked carefully. Spreaders should have the pins in place and all standing rigging should be affixed to the spar. Main upper shrouds should be positioned in spreader ends and locked. Halyards must run freely and sheaves turn easily. Install and check running,. rigging. Examine halyards for wear and replace if necessary. Steaming, mast head and spreader lights, plus any mast head and spreader lights, plus any mast head wind instruments should be checked.

Tie all running rigging together and secure tightly to the spar with light line at a point that will be just above the tabernacle when the spar is stepped. The mast must be supported aft while being pinned at the tabernacle. The mast raising option includes a crutch. This or a similar support must be utilized to support the mast as you move it aft on the boat until the top hole of the two holes just above the base is aligned with the top hole in the tabernacle. Insert the bolt through the tabernacle and mast. Secure it snugly with the lock nut. Do not tighten at this time.

Ensure all shrouds are secured to the spar at their upper ends with the Gibb T-ball hooks. Once the Gibb T-ball hook is installed, a piece of -tape over the opening above the hook will prevent it from coming out during the stepping procedure. Once stepped, this is not of concern - the Gibb T-ball hooks cannot come out. Attach the main and lower shroud turnbuckles to their chainplates. Back off the turnbuckles several turns to ensure easy stepping. Count the turns so you can return to the original position and "tune".

Attach the backstay and slack it off to its maximum. Also ensure that the twinstay is free and clear.

After the mast is positioned for stepping, unfold the mast stepping A-frame and attach the toggles at the end of each leg to the deck brackets provided. Laying it on the foredeck, attach a jib halyard shackle to the upper eye at the junction of the A-frame legs. A snatch block should then be attached to the lower eye at the junction of the A-frame legs. Attach a second snatch block to the diamond base eye plate located on deck aft of the forestay chain plate. Secure one end of tie spinnaker sheet or the self tacking jib sheet to a bow mooring eye located on the foredeck. Lead the remaining end of the sheet through the block located on the A-frame assembly and down through the block attached to the pad eye on the foredeck. This sheet should then run to the winch located on the starboard cabin roof. Do not secure the sheet to the winch at this time. This two part tackle will be adequate to assist you in raising the spar.

Return to the attached jib halyard and start hoisting it. The A-frame will pivot up into the air. Continue to raise the A-frame until it becomes perpendicular to the spar, e.g. pointed straight up in the air. This jib halyard should now be secured through the triple halyard stopper located on the coach roof forward of the main companionway hatch.


The person working the winch and the tailer should stand to starboard. No one should be under the spar during raising. Assistants should be on deck to support the mast athwartships as it is raised by keeping the upper shrouds as tight as possible. Someone should be ready to attach the twinstay as soon as the mast has reached the up position.

Start cranking the winch carefully, checking lines to ensure they are holding. The greatest forces are at this initial point of raising. Crank the mast up slowly and steadily until it reaches the full up position. Care should be taken to ensure that the mast remains aligned with the boat's centerline as it is raised. Do not allow it to swing off to either side. Assistants on the cabin top are essential in this phase of the operation.

Secure the line that was used to raise the mast and leave it secured until all standing rigging has been attached and checked. Install second bolt in tabernacle and tighten after tuning.

Remove A-frame and stow below or ashore.

To unstep the spar, reverse the procedure.