Stepping a Sock Sail Mast

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Don Snell ready to step his sock sail rig

Load the mainsail onto the tube mast, insert the top batten into the batten tip holder that has been built onto the mast tube and tension the batten to your liking.  Attach the downhaul and tension lightly.
Attach the side stays to the boat and attach small forestay(8-9″ long) to the side stays(at the mast end) with a suitable shackle.  Lay the stays to the forward end of the boat with stays laying over the bow tube.   Take the clew end of the mainsail and bring it towards the mast enough to overlap the mainsail over the mast tube.
Pick up the mast and folded mainsail and place  the mast base end of the mast between the  hulls below the main beam and above the bow tube and the stays.  You should be able to insert the mast  in this space so that around 8-10 feet will protrude  beyond the bow tube.  Attach the  side stays and short forestay to the mast tang.
Release the highfield levers on the side stays.  Attach the jibe to the small forestay and the bridle.  You are now ready to step the mast.  Lift the mast so that the base is now on the ground and the mast is up in the air.  Check that you have attached the wires correctly.

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Sock sail boats ready to go

You can now lift the mast up and place it on the base.  This is easier than you think.  First of all the tube mast is lighter than the typical halyard mast.  Secondly the stays will keep the mast from laying over when you lift it onto the mast base.  Try it.  You will be amazed how easy it goes up.  Reset the side stay highfield levers.  You do not need a separate forestay as the luff wire in the jib will now serve as the forestay.

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