You’re looking at a 60-meter-high (197-foot-high) mast that will be installed on the sailing yacht Athos, which is under construction at Holland Jachtbouw (HJB). It’s hard to tell in the photo, since you can’t see the very tip, but it extends essentially from one end of the construction area to the other.
The mast – one of two going aboard Athos – isn’t at HJB, however, it’s at Rondal, located several miles to the northeast in Holland. Why? For the past three decades, Rondal has been specializing in designing and making custom masts as well as other deck equipment for the megayacht market.
Similar to other super-size sailing yachts these days, particularly ones participating in the growing number of regattas around the world, Athos’ rig will be highly automated in terms of push-button operation, with furling booms, carbon spars and captive winches on sheets and halyards. In fact, Rondal is contributing two carbon fiber rollaway booms, with one measuring 23.5 meters (77 feet), the largest the company has ever made.
The mast pictured as well as the other one, which measures 54 meters (177 feet), are made of high modulus fiber (a more refined carbon fiber), to reduce weight. On a side note, it’s worth mentioning that the “al” in Rondal’s name reflects the original material it used, this being aluminum. (As for the other half of the name, “Ron” stands for Ronduite, the town of its origin.)
Rondal is additionally manufacturing a duplex steel bowsprit, boomvangs, backstay cylinders, a crow’s nest, and various hatches for Athos, which will be delivered this summer.