Mast Crane Etiquette
1. Use of the service dock and mast crane is first come first served. If you see a boat at the service dock, ask if there is queue and if so, ask to be added to the queue. We shouldn't assume that when we see someone leaving the service dock, it's up for grabs to the first boat that gets there.
2. Make sure you will be ready to go when you get to the service dock.
A. You have all of the tools you will need to unstep your mast
B. Your sails have been removed
C. If necessary, your dodger, bimini and any other canvas has been removed
D. You have any containers for parts you require
E. Your helpers are ready
F. You have everything you need to prep your mast for placement on the mast racks
G. Your shrouds and stays have been loosened (how much depends on whether you are deck or mast stepped and the wind)
H. You have your club key, you will need it to remove the padlock from the winch switch.
3. If you see someone at the mast crane that could benefit from your help, it's a good idea to ask if you could lend a hand
before jumping in.
4. Don't forget to do a pump out if required.
5. Your top concern is always for the safety of anyone involved. Work as quickly as you can, but not at the expense of the safety. If you are new to unstepping don't be afraid to ask fellow members for advice or help.
6. Move your mast out of the way as soon as possible. If you can complete your prep while the next boat is unstepping, great but if not move it out of the way. If you are going to need overnight or more to do the prep, ensure you are not blocking the mast racks.
7. Prep your mast for storage as quickly as possible and move it to the mast rack. Choose the right place for your size mast. Smaller lighter masts to upper shelves, longer heavier masts on the bottom middle shelves.
8. Helping unstep masts can be thirsty work. It's tradition for the skipper to offer helpers sparkling water or other appropriate beverage when the mast is down.
The mast crane is for stepping and unstepping masts only. It is not for lifting outboards off boats on trailers or anything else that takes the angle more than a few feet from vertical. The crane is not designed to lift from the side. No one wants to be the person who is buying drinks for everyone and paying for other members stepping and unstepping of their masts at the marina because they damaged the mast crane through inappropriate use.