Mast step truss, inevitably:(

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Sanlen
Posts: 66
Joined: Tue Nov 26, 2013 1:41 pm
Location: Stockholm

Re: Mast step truss, inevitably:(

Post by Sanlen » Wed Apr 13, 2016 7:07 pm

Thanks for the replies :) . I believe what looks like rust-swell and leaching is just plain dirt ;)
I'll clean it up and take new pictures. Still I want to check the wishbone beam in some way. Maybe I can remove the bolts that secure the truss to the beam and check inside the holes? Maybe knock with a small hammer and listen for hollow sounding?
Or just drill some larger inspection holes through the FRP down to the steel beam?
Best regards,
Jan
#547 Sanlen
Owner since 1993

jocke76
Posts: 11
Joined: Tue Sep 20, 2016 4:37 pm
Location: Västerås, Sweden

Re: Mast step truss, inevitably:(

Post by jocke76 » Tue Sep 20, 2016 4:57 pm

Hi all

This is my first post here! I bought Albin Ballad 211 this saturday, 17 sept.

I've read about the boat almost non-stop both before and especially since saturday :D

So about this "Mast step truss" issue ...
I took some pictures from inside the hatch in the forepeak, on the floor outside the toilet, which I've read can give clues about the state of the mast step. I'm not sure if I should be happy or suspicious? It looks great.. but does it mean that someone has fixed the real issue or just fixed the "clue"?

Any ideas?
IMG_7840.jpg
Picture from inside the hatch in the forepeak.
IMG_7840.jpg (519.58 KiB) Viewed 11898 times
Albin Ballad 211, Västerås Sweden

MarkRyan1981
Posts: 158
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2012 7:47 am

Re: Mast step truss, inevitably:(

Post by MarkRyan1981 » Thu Sep 22, 2016 7:58 am

That's not original I would suggest. Looks like that has been done already which is great news! I would go sailing and not give it a second thought. Always try and keep that part of the bilge as dry as you can (flipping water runs down my old Seldon mast, which kippers me somewhat). Do I see the drain hole aft has been blocked up? Thats a sure fire sign its been done - curious they didn't put another drain in going aft.

jocke76
Posts: 11
Joined: Tue Sep 20, 2016 4:37 pm
Location: Västerås, Sweden

Re: Mast step truss, inevitably:(

Post by jocke76 » Thu Sep 22, 2016 12:17 pm

Hi

Thanks, sounds good! I'm going to lift the boat out of the water next weekend (1 oct) so then I can check on the keel.

About the "blocking" of the drain hole.
Actually the thing you see in this picture is removable. It was just some dirt which I removed after taking the picture.
ALTHOUGH, when I accidently poured to much fresh water in the tank, and the lid not being screwed on tight enough, I filled this compartment (?) and the water didn't go away..
I then found an pencil stuck in the hole, which I removed. The pencil had a lot of tape around it, to make it thicker, and was surely to keep water from passing the drain.

When I removed the pencil the water passed on to the bilge and could later be pumped and 'sponged out'.

But maybe I should put the pencil back?

Regards!
Albin Ballad 211, Västerås Sweden

Krystindee
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2016 2:07 am

Re: Mast step truss, inevitably:(

Post by Krystindee » Fri Dec 23, 2016 5:08 pm

Hi all - I've been reading up on this mast step / truss issue. It was something I was concerned with and a little suspect of when buying the boat recently (1973, #64 I believe). But she was a great deal and I really love the boat :) All signs point to this needing to be done this winter. There was apparently a patch on the front of the keel shortly before I bought the boat, and the area under the sole just aft the mast is all brown / rusty. When putting my fingers in the little slot above the resin, there is quite a bit of chunky, wet, rusty stuff there. I appear to be hitting some steel (poking around with a long screw driver), but no idea how much is actually still there. I can't see much through the peep hole or slot, but I'm seeing enough warning signs to be concerned.

If one had to guess on a cost to have this done professionally, what would be a range I might be looking at ? Any ideas ?
If the cost was too high to do it all, then I'd look at alternatives... I have a yard that will let me haul out for any length of time, they un-step the mast too for a "nominal" fee $150-ish. I think I'm up to the challenge of cutting into the sole and digging the resin and old truss out (just might take me a few more hours than some of you). I have a fabricator that could build a new truss. It's the fix-it (right) part that concerns me though.
Just trying to get a handle on what I'm really in for here.

Thanks

Krystin

MarkRyan1981
Posts: 158
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2012 7:47 am

Re: Mast step truss, inevitably:(

Post by MarkRyan1981 » Fri Dec 23, 2016 5:14 pm

Hello Krystindee!

Congratulations on your purchase, they are great boats that won't let you down. Practical Boat Owner published my article on the mast truss and repairs.

The Keel crack is in PBO 598 (April 2016), the full mast truss repair is in PBO 608 (January 2017), the current issue!

http://www.pbo.co.uk/publication/pbo/january-2017

You can order back issues. Its lots of graft, the article will give the boat yard an idea of whats involved - its not too onerous. I went for a composite truss not the stainless option.

Let us know how you get on!

Best (Festive) regards,

Mark

Bob McGovern
Posts: 281
Joined: Fri Oct 26, 2012 3:08 am
Location: Wyoming, USA

Re: Mast step truss, inevitably:(

Post by Bob McGovern » Fri Dec 23, 2016 11:16 pm

Krystindee wrote:Hi all - I've been reading up on this mast step / truss issue. It was something I was concerned with and a little suspect of when buying the boat recently (1973, #64 I believe). But she was a great deal and I really love the boat :) All signs point to this needing to be done this winter. There was apparently a patch on the front of the keel shortly before I bought the boat, and the area under the sole just aft the mast is all brown / rusty. When putting my fingers in the little slot above the resin, there is quite a bit of chunky, wet, rusty stuff there. I appear to be hitting some steel (poking around with a long screw driver), but no idea how much is actually still there. I can't see much through the peep hole or slot, but I'm seeing enough warning signs to be concerned.

If one had to guess on a cost to have this done professionally, what would be a range I might be looking at ? Any ideas ?
If the cost was too high to do it all, then I'd look at alternatives... I have a yard that will let me haul out for any length of time, they un-step the mast too for a "nominal" fee $150-ish. I think I'm up to the challenge of cutting into the sole and digging the resin and old truss out (just might take me a few more hours than some of you). I have a fabricator that could build a new truss. It's the fix-it (right) part that concerns me though.
Just trying to get a handle on what I'm really in for here.

Thanks

Krystin
If you dug out the old truss yourself and had a fabricated replacement ready to go in, I'd guess 4-5 hours of a boatyard's time @ roughly $90USD/hour. Depends how much glassing/fairing the front of your keel requires. This thread & Mark's article cover the wide range of (perfectly acceptable) approaches to this repair, from a wood-composite fix like Mark's, to a welded metal truss like ours, to (only half-joking) pouring the recess fulla concrete & calling it Bristol. ;) It's not a nuanced or difficult engineering problem, really -- the forces are moderate & almost purely in column. All ya need is a way to move about 5000# of compression down to the keel structure.

I also wasn't kidding when I wrote that many Westsails -- boats with far greater rig loads than the Ballad will ever see -- use mast steps made of paving bricks & wooden wedges. The bulk of this thread consists of Ballad owners (esp. me!) faffing about during the offseason over which of ~seven equally sufficient truss replacements has the most appeal. It's actually a hard repair to do wrong! If you fab a solid truss, bolt/epoxy it in place, and maybe wedge it a little to keep the thing vertical, then make sure the cavity drains any water ... you have fixed your boat.:)

mikkel holm
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Jan 28, 2017 1:22 pm

Re: Mast step truss, inevitably:(

Post by mikkel holm » Sat Jan 28, 2017 1:58 pm

hey all can u help me spot if i have the mast step problem? i am the owner of ballad 1157 and i am omw to prepare it for some long distance crusing i have removed all the old bottom paint and i found a small crack in the front off the keel! but there have never ben any rusty water in the bilge and the bolts in the forward bilge looks good but what do you guys think?
Attachments
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bolts in bilge
16244423_1201804966601896_816142462_n.jpg (390.87 KiB) Viewed 11696 times
crack.jpg
crack in the front of keel
crack.jpg (539.19 KiB) Viewed 11696 times

MarkRyan1981
Posts: 158
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2012 7:47 am

Re: Mast step truss, inevitably:(

Post by MarkRyan1981 » Sat Jan 28, 2017 10:42 pm

Curious. On the later Ballads they fully encapsulated the truss meaning the top two inches that could collapse on the older Ballads was no longer a problem. If I was going long distance cruising I would feel the need to investigate that crack by opening it up. I have a keel crack repair guide on my website for when I did exactly that job if you do choose to tackle it. Do you have any more photos of the mast foot, the sole in the forecabin and the sole in the main saloon? Do you know if the truss has ever been replaced in the past?

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prjacobs
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Re: Mast step truss, inevitably:(

Post by prjacobs » Mon Jan 30, 2017 5:00 pm

Mikkel, I am no expert, but that looks like something caused by an impact from running aground, or hitting some other hard object. It almost looks like it's only the gel-coat that's damaged.
That said, I would certainly grind back around the crack and see if it goes deeper, then proceed from there. Keep us posted.

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