Thanks for the comments. I am definately in the restoration camp, but I am also in the "publish all approaches to commonly shared problems" camp. A multiplicity of approaches is what keeps this site interesting. Fortunately Ariel owners tend to stay that way for awhile, so we can all check back in later to see how some of these innovative ideas and retrofit solutions work and whether or not they hold up over time. I am eager to see your boat splash down. You have incorporated a number of innovative features in your Ariel. I look forward to reading about your sea trials, etc.

Peeks are easy. Just come down to Santa Cruz for a sail. As for photos of the repair, I referred above to my Ariel Structural retrofit page:


There are photos aplenty there of this specific issue and other retrofit work I did in 2004. Most of what I did was restoration-oriented rather than redesign-oriented. One thing I didn't do that I would do if I had the mast off the boat again (and I am not eager to do that again) would be to put a tricolor LED light at the masthead. I didn't want the weight of a traditional tricolor light and weight of the requisite traditional wiring that high up the mast.

As to the hard work of building an integral void-less structural unit from my existing (undamaged) oak strong back, the deck, and the cabin liner beneath the mast step, the design and execution of that task was done under contract in my slip here in Santa Cruz by a professional who used vinyl ester resin and all sorts of modern glass fabric as described above to complete the job. So no polyester resin was used. Epoxy has its merits, and I have used it on other projects, but gelcoat doesn't stick to epoxy.

I was fortunate to have insurance coverage to cover the repair of the accident damage in this case and a skilled professional friend who was willing to take on the repair job on my little boat. This repair and new standing rigging were provided under contract. In the end I believe that my boat is now stronger than it was when it was built, and certainly it is stronger than it was before the accident. All other work on the restoration of my Ariel both in and out of water I did personally over the period 2001 to 2004.

And in the spirit of innovation, I have also documented my development of a sheet-to-tiller self-steering system for my Ariel on the following web page:


That page, completed in 2005, has full documentation of the concept, design and execution with many photos of the self-steering gears working under sail. The design and application of the self steering gears on that page are based on the pioneering work of John Letcher as documented in his book, Self Steering for Sailing Craft International Marine Publishing Company, 1974; and some sketches and suggestions included in Tony Heisel's book, A Manual of Single Handed Sailing Arco Publishing Inc., 1981. I also relied heavily on the on-line resources including the pages produced by John Ward and Al Gunther.

I single hand a lot, and the Ariel Self-steering gears that I developed have greatly increased my range and endurance under sail. Certainly they have increased my enjoyment and comfort.