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Hello Phil,
Couldn’t attempt the whole description but try this extract from the WIC site from Canada (worth browsing all the uncle Al stuff) for a quick idea of the horizontal “chocking”.


I confess I don’t do this myself.

Then try the complex one, i.e. placing chocks in front of the mast. This one describes the reasons for it in detail. The content is also in the Wayfarer book – highly recommended.


The mast chocking bit is about 2/3rds of the way down. I read about this several times and was still a little unsure how it worked. However, if in doubt try the following:

Rig boat, leave kicker loose and note the degree of bend at the mast head, and particularly the width of gap in front of the mast at deck level. Now heave the kicker on hard. You will note from your observations that you are bending the mast like a longbow, particularly if you have a strong kicker. The mast bows forwards at deck level reducing the gap in front. The “T” shaped chocks go into that gap to limit this, preventing overbending as per the linked article.

The only other bit of “chocking I can think of is the possible need to shim under the mast to take the vertical strain off the pin. I don’t do this because the mast (just) sits on its foot within the track – no shims required.

Hope this helps