Tall Ships
Left: The First Mate oversees the placement of the main gaff on its crutch as Steve nudges it into place and gets ready to block it up with wedges.

The process of moving the spars involved a solid knowledge of the working lines and tackle, and the First Mate was certainly up to the task.

Clearly, it was an operation that I was not comfortable getting too involved with for fear that a wrong move on my part would, at the least, hinder their efforts, and at worst, send a spar crashing to the deck in a dangerous (and embarrassing) manner.

I was content to 'run around smartly' taking pictures.

Right: Another view of the main gaff being eased forward. Its crutch is visible on the right with the forward boom and gaff already in place.

The black lining on the inside of the gaff's jaw is chaffing gear to help ease wear and tear on the mast. In addition, the masts are regularly 'slushed' with Vaseline.

"By the time we get done slushing the masts, there isn't a jar of Vaseline to be found in the town of Rockland.".

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