Some older Waterats, Hamlins, and Lindsays were built with a mast gate that does not allow for the amount of mast rake that is required by modern tuning grids. One solution to this is to move the mast base forward, but then you begin to stray from the tuning grid which typically calls for 10′-0″ from transom plane to aft face of the mast.

According to Larry Tuttle, the latest built Waterats should have the following dimensions for the back edge of the past gate:

  • bow to aft inside – 81″
  • transom to aft inside – 119″

If you are limited by the mast gate and cannot rake to the extreme aft positions (<24′-8″), it is a good idea to extend your mast gate aft. Below is a series of articles from the Fleet 13 Website on how we did this on JB Turney’s Waterat:

Part 1

Today we began some spring projects on JB’s Waterat 7611. With 7346 pretty much ready to go for the season, JB and I are working together to swiftly make some key upgrades to his boat. Here is the work list:

  1. Fit out 2 new booms for 7346 and 7611 – lots of sub projects here, wont begin until late April when the carbon sections arrive.
  2. Fit HA board to trunk, add reinforcements to CB trunk, drill new hole in correct location
  3. Add backing plate under pole launcher on deck
  4. Cut out and extend back of mast gate, bond in new piece, remount compass, measure/move mast step
  5. Remove and repair aft-autobailer
  6. Remove old shroud and forestay cascades and install new system
  7. Better transom flaps
  8. Repair small dings in bottom

As you can see we got a pretty good start on this stuff already. We will take pictures and post them here as we continue the work. Everything is pretty straight forward, but we hope our experiences can be of help to others. These are typical upgrades any older Waterat will need to bring it up to modern spec.

Part 2

The projects continued today. Prep work for the centerboard reinforcements is essentially complete. Those will be bonded in to the boat tomorrow. The back end of the mast gate was bonded into the boat today. Here is a photo sequence of what was done.

First the area was sanded down to the glass to create a good bonding surface.

Next a piece of 1/2 inch mahogany was cut to fit the angles of the diagonal bulkheads. We made a cardboard template that fit so we could make the angles correct on the wood piece. The cuts were done on the table saw. The edges were rounded over at the router table with a 1/4″ radius round-over bit. The piece was then sanded and prepped for bonding.

Finally, the piece was bonded into the boat. Epoxy and colloidal silica was mixed to a peanut butter consistency for the bonding. The front edges(inside the mast gate) and the side edges(where the wood piece meets the diagonal bulkheads) were filleted using the same epoxy mixture. The block was then secured with line as shown in the picture below:

Next, we will glass over the fillets for strength, seal with 2 coats of West System 105/207, cosmetic fairing and spot painting with two-part polyurethane paint. More updates to come.

Part 3

Glassed in and sealed with 6 oz. s-glass and West System 105/207:

First light cosmetic fairing using West System 105/205 and 410 microlight fairing filler.