Re: Over Powered in 30 knots?
My guess is you had Lee Helm with just the jib up. All good boats have a bit of weather helm (many have too much). This means that with the sheets pulled in, going upwind, if you release the tiller the boat will turn into the wind. This is a good thing, for example if the boat gets overpowered by a gust, it will "round up" into the wind even if you are so heeled over that the rudder is pushed out of the water.
It looks like, in this case with just the jib up, the wind was pushing your jib to lee, and with no main to counteract it and a strong wind/chop countering the effectiveness of your keel, you got a wicked case of lee helm. Pushing the rudder all the way over just slowed the boat, exascerbating the problem.
The only solution would have been getting the main up. A few ways to do that in these conditions that I have done (I'm sure someone will add some more techniques). First take down the jib. Then: either motor into the wind and raise the main, or else just raise the main (once you get a little of it up, it should weathercock into the wind enough to allow you to raise it, at least I can on my 25 footer in 20-25 knot winds).
8 HP should be enough to push a 26' boat, do you have a corroded prop or something?
Last edited by peterchech; 04-24-2012 at 11:32 AM.