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Old 07-05-2004
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Lightening strike

Are the places reserved, or is it festival seating? While the best remedy for seasickness -- sleeping under an apple tree -- can also be applied here, the tree may also get hit by lightning.

If you''re anywhere but in a cave, you could get hit by lightning. There isn''t much you can do about it, and lightning is such a powerful force that it can fry stuff that isn''t actually even wired together, but is justt nearby. There can be so much voltage that it actually seems to conduct through wooden masts, or it superheats the moisture and the steam blows things apart. Cruising World had a article on it a while ago, with some helpful ideas and suggestions, none of which was foolproof.

I remember reading at one point - perhaps in Woodenboat -- that to avoid radio interference, wires powering electronic components should be twisted in a loop to negate some field or another before they were connected. Apparently in a lightning strike, the current that comes through the wire is so inclredble that the loop turns into the equivalent of a starter coil, boosting the current and thouroughly frying everything before tthe wire vaporizes. Then the discussion expanded as to what the best shape for the dissapating plate on the outside of the hull was, and how heavy-gauge tthe connecttion should be.

If I have to be out in a thunderstrom, I try to not hang onto the stays or shrouds.
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