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71Irwin32 12-17-2010 02:06 PM

The sail back
 
The sail back to corpus from the boatyard in Rockport was no fun. I was getting ass ended by heavy chop on the way out of the harbor channel, making my outboard useless 80% of the time....and heading into the wind. I had to tack all the way at low tide between a narrow set of markers. I ran aground.

That was just the beginning of the trip......

My next visit will be to get the outboard off and isolate the wiring to the main engine.


Lots of videos of the work I did on the bottom

.

HDChopper 12-17-2010 06:04 PM

Nice , good to see somebody is makeing progress :)

71Irwin32 12-17-2010 06:53 PM

.

....after the boatyard came out and pulled me off the ground (hard to believe with 3.5 draft), they had turned me the wrong way and I had to go all the way back to the harbor to turn back around in the right direction and the chop was even worse at 4ft. into my stern (chop in the channel is a very short distance apart. Not like ocean swell It even comes at different intervals, a broken rythum). I was raising the mainsail a little at a time because their were work boats wanting the same space and I was having to stay on top of the steering in that chop, but I felt some tension in the main and it wasn't going up like it should. I got it 3/4s up and was tacking out as such.

I figured as busy as I was sharing the exit channel, I'd deal with the main when I turned South into the inter-coastal...and down wind. When I got there and did that I did notice that the bottom end of the reefing line had gotten wrapped around one of the cleats at the bottom of the mast, but there was another problem that I hadn't noticed. The other end of the reefing line somehow got rapped around the main and when I applied preasure with the winch....I tore out my lazy jacks et.al. so the main went and other line went everywhere. I might have been able to straighten all this out except of course, for all the freighters, barges and 3 to 4ft. chop...now hitting me at my rear quarter. "Rock and Roll".

Just very weird circumstance that every 30 seconds I'd get hit by several waves, 3 to 4', only about the same distance apart. I think 15' at 15 seconds would be easier...I used to work in heavier weather than that, but it was 150 miles out in the Gulf.

.

jrd22 12-17-2010 09:34 PM

Sounds like one of those "learning experiences" everyone talks about. Glad you made it OK.

CalebD 12-17-2010 10:36 PM

Yes, glad you made it ok.
I guess you experienced some of the reasons why an outboard is not the ideal auxiliary engine on a sailboat with pointy ends that will rock in any chop.
You should be able to find a used Atomic 4 for a lot less then a used diesel. We have an old A4 on our 27' Tartan that requires some TLC but gets us where we need to go in most conditions; the prop has never come out of the water except for haul outs (knocks wood).

71Irwin32 12-17-2010 11:18 PM

The A4 on my boat is virtually brand new removed and sent to Moyer Marine for rebuild and updating, but then the boat sat mostly unattended about 3 years allowing the teak to leak and eventually causing a major short in one of the main wiring loops. Originally I figured I rewire the whole boat and will eventually, but I can in the mean time, isolate just the engine wiring so I can get it running and charging the secondary batteries I installed....gas cleaned out and filter, oil change. That's all it needs. The compression showed 115 psi on all 4 cylinders and the spark is excellent. Maybe a carb rebuild, but I already have all that stuff sent from Moyer.

...but the outboard worked fine in chop up to nearly 3'.

PCP 12-18-2010 06:29 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 71Irwin32 (Post 678282)
.

....after the boatyard came out and pulled me off the ground (hard to believe with 3.5 draft), they had turned me the wrong way and I had to go all the way back to the harbor to turn back around in the right direction and the chop was even worse at 4ft. into my stern (chop in the channel is a very short distance apart. Not like ocean swell It even comes at different intervals, a broken rythum). I was raising the mainsail a little at a time because their were work boats wanting the same space and I was having to stay on top of the steering in that chop, but I felt some tension in the main and it wasn't going up like it should. I got it 3/4s up and was tacking out as such.

I figured as busy as I was sharing the exit channel, I'd deal with the main when I turned South into the inter-coastal...and down wind. When I got there and did that I did notice that the bottom end of the reefing line had gotten wrapped around one of the cleats at the bottom of the mast, but there was another problem that I hadn't noticed. The other end of the reefing line somehow got rapped around the main and when I applied preasure with the winch....I tore out my lazy jacks et.al. so the main went and other line went everywhere. I might have been able to straighten all this out except of course, for all the freighters, barges and 3 to 4ft. chop...now hitting me at my rear quarter. "Rock and Roll".

Just very weird circumstance that every 30 seconds I'd get hit by several waves, 3 to 4', only about the same distance apart. I think 15' at 15 seconds would be easier...I used to work in heavier weather than that, but it was 150 miles out in the Gulf.

.

In this agitated and fast life we live we sometimes forget about some pretty simple things: It’s the sea and wind that dictate the rules on a sailingboat. If you were getting trouble, you should have waited for better conditions. Don't take me wrong, I have done the same...30 years ago:

I was out on my old traditional wooden boat and after some days of sailing I was making to port. No radio, no telephone, just some chats and a compass. I had also an old outboard diesel engine that I used rarely. The friend that was with me was desperate to make a phone call (I can no remember why) and we were going very slowly with very weak winds on a very choppy sea. He wanted me to put the engine on to make to land as fast as we can and finally, tired from hearing him complaining I had done so....Of course, on that agitated sea, the engine was in and out of water all the time and finally it broke. We have taken 8 hours to make it to port...going up and down on the strong river tide (I was entering the Tejo estuary).

I got my lesson that day and to make it permanent, I sailed the rest of my vacations without an engine;).

Regards

Paulo

71Irwin32 12-18-2010 07:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by PCP (Post 678382)

In this agitated and fast life we live we sometimes forget about some pretty simple things: It’s the sea and wind that dictate the rules on a sailingboat. If you were getting trouble, you should have waited for better conditions. Don't take me wrong, I have done the same...30 years ago:

Paulo

Just because you've got 30? years doesn't mean everybody else is stupid. I picked the best conditions possible for the whole month, according to all of the forecasts, and I would've had to wait the season out to do better. It's December.....and I'd already checked with the boatyard about leaving my boat there for the season. They said no because they are over crowded.

Maybe you might think of adding something positive instead of presenting the "high and mighty" attitude.

I got the only day for two weeks forecast for medium winds out of the North, otherwise I would've been fighting headwinds, and needing to tack the whole way South in the intercoastal. I got the boat home and the only damage was just the lazyjack lines, the main is fine, and that chop dissipated at about noon.

Yes, I should've check the sail, but I left at dawn for a reason and it worked out as the boat is in its slip and I'm 600 miles away back at work.

Allanbc 12-18-2010 07:56 AM

Glad you finally made it. The bays can be much worse than the Gulf at times. That water gets awfully skinny outside the channels. My boat draws 4.5 feet and I always wonder about going aground around the bays.

71Irwin32 12-18-2010 08:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Allanbc (Post 678395)
Glad you finally made it. The bays can be much worse than the Gulf at times. That water gets awfully skinny outside the channels. My boat draws 4.5 feet and I always wonder about going aground around the bays.

Good post, Corpus Christi bay is very shallow, averaging 7 or 8' and because it is quite large the tides effect the channels in the area very strongly.

I was heading down wind when I got into the intercoastal, but the winds were shifting just enough to send the boom to the opposite side. I discovered a real problem.

Originally this boat was manufactured with a tiller and someone later installed the steering wheel, but they placed it behind the gas tank instead in front and it put it so close (1') to the boom block and traveller so that you've got to jump around the wheel to operated it (the boom block). It's really in a bad position and my new boom end I installed saved my beacon. I'm going to remove the wheel and go back to the tiller until I decide if I'll reinstall it (the wheel) further forward.

This is why I eventually dropped the main and continued only with the jib, continuing to use the outboard to compensate a bit. In the main channel and on the bay I was still only getting 3 mph according to my GPS. With out the lazy jacks, the main is made to utilize that system, so when I did bring it down, it was really all over the place. I'd be steering away from the traffic and then jump up forward, gather up some sail around the boom and bungy it. Then steer again and go back up to the boom and do another section of it....and so on. This boom is 14' long and so is the bottom of the main, so it took 5 trips forward (in between the barge and freighter traffic) to gather up the whole sail in order to see where I was going.

Modern boats have comparatively shorter booms.

...all of this took more fuel, and made running out of gas a real possibility.


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