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theartfuldodger 02-10-2008 11:17 AM

Knock Downs
Being that I experienced a knock down this pass season, was wondering if anyone else has had such an experience. I've always been fearful of such a think, as was told wasn't really experienced at sailing unless had been through one. Well for me it was a real rush once it was over, as didn't really realize the whole experience until it was over. It happened of Cape George in the Northumberland Sound.

Plumper 02-10-2008 11:40 AM

What happened?

tonic 02-10-2008 12:41 PM

As for not being an experience sailor unless you've been in a knock down, I find that comical. I think a good sailor always expects the unexpected and is as ready as he or she can be with a well thought out plan before it happens. Is that to say you need a plan for everything no, but you should have things on board to impliment them. Do you have to loose a rudder, tiller or a rig to be experienced, that's B.S. It's being able to execute a back up plan properly that makes a seasoned sailor. Do you have to go though the experience physically to be experienced no, I ll be it it would help for next time. hell I hope I'm never an experienced sailor.
How did you deal with it I've never had one. Liked to hear. PEACE

theartfuldodger 02-10-2008 12:50 PM

Late September I was sailing out of Charlottetown Harbour at about 2230 to arrive at Ballantynes Cove about 1000. There was a forcast for a shower around 0400 just in St Georges Bay at the entrance to Strait of Canso. With lighter wind then had been forcasted over night I arrived just of Cape George Pt. (45.57N-61.53W) at 1430 in a growing storm, winds off the bow of 50knots and gusting, with sea heights of about 25ft, with a larger one every 200 to 300 feet of about 40 feet plus. While sailing in this weather with just the main in its third reef, I was able to develop an approach which was manageable. After watching out for the large waves when they came, never expected to see back to back 40 plus waves. It was the second one which pushed me over and sinking the mast about two feet under water. The whole think happen so fast, that it was the mess in the boat that spoke of the act. It was at that moment that a new trust for my boat and a new bond that had developed. It took another hour to round the point and enter the harbour before I could clean up, which didn't take place until the next morning, because once my lines were tied I crashed completely worn out.

Valiente 02-10-2008 01:23 PM

Experienced at sailing is quite relative. Some pretty famous and much travelled sailors have never been in storms, or even in over 40 knots, partly as a function of where and when they've sailed, but mainly because they've deliberately tried to avoid such situations by using practiced observations, forecasts, charts, local knowledge and so on. My impression of the Canso/Strait area is that it's pretty tight and can build up very quickly if the wind is coming from the west or north east at certain speeds. May I ask if you were harnessed to the boat and did you downflood through hatches, or were you "battened down"?

A concern for me in situations where I've been well over (by which I mean 60 degrees or so, not knocked down) is the soundness of my motor mounts and whether I would pollute my fuel through a submerged vent. It's made me think I should put stopcocks at the fuel vents...but I'd have to remember to open them!

tonic 02-10-2008 01:34 PM

Glad it worked out any mast damage at all. What is you keel configuration. I know the 32 had a shoal or deep-keel model. Any damage to the boat it-self.

theartfuldodger 02-10-2008 01:40 PM

The boat got no water and the there were no internal spills, as have balls installed in lines to stop back flow if and when such a thing might happen. As for being harneessed in yes, at two points and trailing a floater line of about 70 feet behind the boat. As for avoiding storms here, its not always possible, as white squalls are a common thing. On my sail from Cape Breton to Newfoundland St John's harbour across the Grand Banks was a great sail took 2 days and 14 hours. This sail was also a good schooling as I used the weather fronts to help me, tucking in behind the lows to have them suck me along. The sail was made in very late October. The Grand banks were as flat as a table top when I arrived.

theartfuldodger 02-10-2008 01:44 PM

The boat has a shoal keel, I draw 3'10", but must say that she weights much more then made as I was directed by Charlie Morgan, and the weight is low. As for the mast it just got a wash, and no instruments on the top were damaged, speaking to Raymarine products and their durability.

tonic 02-10-2008 01:54 PM

There's no substitude for the actual physical experience, sounds like you handled it well. Two more questions, where you alone and would you have done anything different if anything. Bad weather is part of sailing and a challenge, I understand that you used it to your adavantage. Thanks for sharing PEACE

theartfuldodger 02-10-2008 02:03 PM

Yes was alone as my mate likes to arrive when I make harbour when on a long sail, and personally would sooner sail solo, as then wouldn't have to worry about anyone else, as I've read in most cases the boats usaully come out okay its the crew who bail first. But this year have made my mate captain and added more stuff to make sailing easier for her. Once I have some sort of comfort zone that she might be able to handle watches then we set sail, with a five year sail plan, I find the preparation very consuming and exciting, and this site is very informative for me.

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