It wasn't as tall as the one I was looking at, and was a bit rough in a couple spots, but is was free! I figured I could try it out, and if I really liked it maybe I would buy the same thing, but taller. To start, they were right about the end being busted up. The fiberglass on the top was split, but only about 3 inches down. My miter saw made quick work of that, so even though it was now 3" shorter, I had a good solid top. I also noticed that the bottom section had a largish hole drilled in it for some reason (you can see that in the picture above). I figured I would think up something to do about that along the way.
My Buddipole stuff does have an adapter to mount it's parts onto a painters pole, so I decided to try to re-purpose this, and make it so that this would be on the top of my mast, and then maybe I could give myself options - this to thread stuff onto, an eye bolt or 2 in order to hold it and also act as accessory places to hook wires or guys to, etc. With that thought in mind I quickly chopped the top 18" or so off this handle, so that I had the business end available.
What I needed was some way to hold this pole centered inside the top of the mast, while I figured out some way to permanently attach it so that it wouldn't move. Step 1, center the handle in the mast, with just the thread sticking out the top. That problem was easily solved with several wraps of electrical tape - just enough to make the fit snug:
With the pole then inside, and the threads sticking out, I could see that I was getting somewhere:
To start filling the gap, I grabbed two tubes of this stuff (Loctite Epoxy), and figured I could use it to fill the void, which would help to lock the handle in place and make the top part stiffer, giving me the option to clamp things around the mast as well, without fear of crushing the fiberglass:
The thought is that once the epoxy cures, I would drill through the fiberglass mast, epoxy, and handle in 2 spots, and put eye bolts through. I haven't gotten that done yet because it turns out that two tubes wasn't enough to completely fill the gap, so i'll need to grab more. The thought here is that this will give me 2 spots to hook things too, and will also prevent the handle inside the mast from rotating.
So what comes next? Well, I need to attach the PVC, and finish filling in the top at a minimum. Before I do that though, I'd like to make a couple guy rings to attach guy ropes to. The bottom one I want to slide on before I attach the PVC, as it will end up floating between the top of the PVC and the bottom of the first clamp. The second one I plan on putting on the top section, so that it floats between the top clamp, and the eye hooks. I had some HDPE flying around here from other projects, which would have been a perfect material to cut these out of, but apparently I used it all up, so here's my next request universe.....I could really use a couple old beat-up plastic cutting boards......