festivus poles & Sunfish masts

so 12/23 is Festivus, a holiday tradition started on Seinfeld.

for the last several years, I’ve taken a Festivus pole in to work, complete with a home-made stand I made for it to keep it upright.  the Festivus pole is made from aluminum (favored for it’s strength-to-weight ratio), and it usually not decorated.  I had never really made a connection with the Festivus pole and sailing before, but I think that Mr Tillerman was hinting on The Twitter that there is something familiar about the Festivus pole.

I think he was hinting that it bares a striking resemblance to a Sunfish mast.  my particular Festivus pole came from another source (my father-in-law works at a shop that uses a lot of aluminum tubing to fabricate equipment), it is quite a bit shorter, and has a MUCH thicker wall thickness than the typical Sunfish mast.  I left it at work, but I would guess the diameters are fairly close.

I’ve heard stories of Sunfish sailors going sailing in conditions with extremely powerful winds and bending the mast on the Sunfish – maybe this thicker-walled Festivus pole would have made a good substitute.  well, more than likely, it’d probably just force the problem from the mast to the fiberglass and destroy the fiberglass mast step… so maybe the thin-walled Sunfish mast was thin by design, to make it the weakest link and avoid damaging the fiberglass.  then again, I’m probably putting too much thought into this.

anyway, enjoy the holiday of Festivus tomorrow, and the holiday season in general.  here’s a video montage from the Festivus episode if you haven’t already seen it, or just want to relive the fun.

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2 Responses to “festivus poles & Sunfish masts”


  1. 1 Tillerman December 22, 2011 at 11:43 pm

    I was indeed hinting that it looked a bit like a Sunfish mast. A Sunfish mast would actually make an excellent Festivus pole. Perhaps you should encourage all your Sunfish sailing friends to join the tradition.

    • 2 my2fish December 23, 2011 at 7:38 am

      indeed, a Sunfish mast would work great, although it might be a bit tall for most living room ceilings. cutting one in half would net 2 nice Festivus poles, but you’d lose your mast for sailing. at $175 plus shipping, that’s a high price for (2) Festivus poles. luckily for me, my FIL can get me them occasionally for free as a scrap piece from his work.


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