While this isn't a bad design, it's easy to see how after hundreds of trips up and down, the metal would grind away at that plastic ring, causing some parts to stick, others to never get tight, etc. Here's what tightens each section on my old mast:
Technically, there is also now a longer mast available from Buddipole that extends to 18', which I really contemplated. If you've seen how I pack my bags however, you could see that the longer mast doesn't fit my packing arrangement. For trips where I am driving however, (which are actually more often than the trips where I fly.) It would be nice to have a longer mast.