Spar Painting and New Rigging- Jim Johns Savannah #23

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We the spars and replaced all the rigging recently. So here a few things that are pertinent:

1. The mast tang for the headstay clevis pin was elongated so we needed to over drill and bush it with a 3/4″ o.d. stainless bushing. The toggle that was originally used was bass-akwards and it was gouging the sides of the mast tang so I had the rigger fit a toggle that articulated in all axis to correct the problem.

2. VHF antenna cable was chafed through where it exits the mast and the shielding was in contact with the mast so it was grounding out.  So we replaced the cable with the heavier type coax made for runs longer than 50′.

3. All the fittings mast and boom were pretty much corroded in place so it required drilling out and re-tapping several dozen fasteners.  Halyard plates, sheeve boxes, antenna mounts etc. I reassembled using Tefgel on all fasteners

4. I added a strobe on the spreader since we sail in fog a lot and there was a wire there from an unused security light.

5. The lenses on all the mast lights were crazed and hazed over so I replaced them and the bulbs to start fresh.

6. I added some monel wire just above the spreaders and parallel to them as a bird deterrent (so birds cant land on the spreaders)  I also removed the Glomex tv antenna since we don’t use it and it was a bird roost. Now the decks stay cleaner.

7. We switched to synthetic rigging for running backs, flag halyards and lazy jacks (main and Camberspar) that saved a bit of weight.

8. I replaced all the halyards while it was convenient to do so.

9. Added Selden turnbuckle boots to the sides.

10. Painted all the spars and spreaders with White Awlgrip (sprayed on, not rolled).  The job came out very nice.

I tried to do the best job and not economize so it was pretty pricey.  I would have to go back and try to piece it all together but all total guess it probably topped around $4,000 – $5000.  The paint job alone was around 2K as I remember. Then there was destepping and restepping the mast in the yard.  Standing and running rigging, fasteners fittings etc.

Big job but definitely worth it for peace of mind as well as appearance.








Stainless bushing in masthead tang



Primary VHF antenna



Back up VHF and FM radio antenna



Strobe light on port spreader



Bird deterrent wires above spreaders, click to enlarge for better viewing



Finished spars ready to step.