Miss Maggie's Mast Cover & Jibsock
Here is Karen with Miss Maggie all decked out in her new mast cover. Miss Maggie is a 1998, P-19, #1010. The cover extends from the rear mast crutch foreword to just short of the bow pulpit. The cover is 18.5 feet long and 15 inches around.
The cover is made of Sunbrella material and has 2 zippers on the bottom side that extend the length of the cover. (Note: Max. available zipper size is 12 feet long). The cover provides great UV protection for the jib and lines as they sit on the boat in our driveway. Here is Rich laying the cover over the mast and furled headsail.
Notice the shrouds and backstay being zipped into the cover. When we first started trailering the boat, we disconnected the shrouds and zipped them into the cover. Alternatively, we can leave the shrouds attached and have them exit the cover at the small gap between the zippers and then bungee them to the mast over the cover. If we had considered this when we had the cover made, we would have made the aft zipper a bit shorter than the forward zipper, because the gap between the zippers on our cover is just above the lower shrouds, causing us to route the upper and lower shrouds in different directions to exit the cover.
At the forward end of the cover, if the shrouds and backstay were disconnected, they are looped back on themselves and tucked into the cover. The diameter of the loop seems large enough to prevent kinking of the rigging. We also tuck the coiled furling line into the end of the cover. Here we have used the topping lift to secure the end of the furler extrusion to the mast. Lately we just use a small bungee. The cover zips snug and also has a Velcro tab at the end and grommets to further tie it down, if desired.
We detach the forestay from the mast and slide it aft so that the sail is completely covered and the furling extrusion is resting on the bow pulpit. We slip an old sweat sock over the aft end of the forestay and furled sail, to protect it from rubbing on the forestay attachment bracket on the mast, which it lays next to when covered.
The cover is lined where the forestay attachment bracket is on the mast, to prevent it from rubbing through the cover. If you use the mast raising system and use baby stays, I'd line the area where they attach also. And I'd tuck them into the cover.
There are grommets and a Velcro closure on each end of the cover. We tie a small line through the grommets to secure the cover to the mast crutch.
The aft end of the cover also has a fiberglass batten (something from a snowmobile heated and shaped around a coffee can). The batten holds the end of the cover open so that it can be used as a jib sock. To use the cover as a jibsock, we attach the main halyard through the grommets with a bowline and hoist the cover up the furled headsail while zipping the cover closed. What we would do differently is to start the zipper at the aft end of the cover (where the batten is) and the second zipper where the first one ends and continue forward. That makes it easier to zip the shrouds in with the mast and easier to use it as a jibsock. Our cover has both zippers starting in the middle and zipping to each end. It would be easier to zip it in the direction the shrouds are laying. Also, we have to mess around with the cover to use it as a jibsock. We need to hoist it half way to start the zipper and then bring it down and bunch it up to zip it, and the hoist again. It doesn't take a lot of extra time; it would just be better if the whole cover zipped from back to front.
Here is the mast cover being used as a jibsock. Notice how it extends over the entire length of the headsail and ends just above the furling drum. Note that with this jibsock, the jib sheets are either removed or kept inside the jibsock. There are no holes for them to come out of the cover. The cover is very easy to hoist up the forestay using the main halyard. And it looks great!