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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Learning to Sail
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  #21  
Old 09-03-2007
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Maybe I'm nervous or too careful; I have both of my engines idling when I think I am about to get in to "trouble".

I maintain them to a very high degree, and I would be able to depend on them at any given moment because I know the tanks are not full of poo to clog or wet the filters or lines.

I've thought about powering through the turn, but I think that time could be better spent sorting out a turning tactic than playing with the engines.

However, a thought did just come to mind - in the past when I ran out of rudder I've used the outboard to gain some side thrust by tillering it over... that could be helpful too.
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  #22  
Old 09-03-2007
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Just curious...what kind of sailboat, other than a catamaran, has two engines?? Or are you a lurking powerboater?
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Maybe I'm nervous or too careful; I have both of my engines idling when I think I am about to get in to "trouble".

I maintain them to a very high degree, and I would be able to depend on them at any given moment because I know the tanks are not full of poo to clog or wet the filters or lines.

I've thought about powering through the turn, but I think that time could be better spent sorting out a turning tactic than playing with the engines.

However, a thought did just come to mind - in the past when I ran out of rudder I've used the outboard to gain some side thrust by tillering it over... that could be helpful too.
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  #23  
Old 09-03-2007
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I have a 15hp inboard / saildrive thing, and a 25hp merc on the back for a bit of backup if I need it.
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I have a 15hp inboard / saildrive thing, and a 25hp merc on the back for a bit of backup if I need it.
Ah... that's one way to do it.
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Why is the engine a help here? I'm a total noob and I don't understand what we're using it for?
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Why is the engine a help here? I'm a total noob and I don't understand what we're using it for?
Some will use the engine to turn head to wind, so they can lower or reef the mainsail.
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Sailingdog,

I apologize for being so dense.

If your speed is too great to turn the boat under sail, why would the engine help this circumstance? Is it because the prop is putting some pressure on the rudder helping the boat to turn?

I really am a total noob!

Mike
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  #28  
Old 09-03-2007
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As we are talking about sailing, we should be able to do this with out an engine assist. You need to slow the boat some, this is accomplished by trimming the main towards the center line while maintaining the Dead Down wind point of sail. This gives less area for the wind to push on you. After you have slowed down start turning up as you simultaneously start to let the sail out again so it doesn't create excessive heal. Be sure that your vang is off as it will cause extra heal if it is on. You will have to deal with some excelleration and heal as you head up. If things are timed right, it should give you the results you need.

(This is very similar to racing and being on the outside at a leeward mark and you want to turn up inside a boat that has the inside position on you.)

It would be prudent for any sailor to have practiced this in a more controllable situation before hand. You should know how your boat behaves to different trims and angles to the wind so you can handle the extremes that could be placed on you. I would always want to know how to handle this with out turning on the engine as it is not always reliable, and sometimes a sudden squall may not make it possible to get to as well.

Jeff
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The engine is unlikely to be effective in any event. The prop on most sailboats is too far ahead of the rudder to throw meaningful amounts of water over the rudder; you're most likely to gain speed with little turning moment generated. A rotating saildrive might do much better. An outboard might work to some effect although the prospect of sail handling, steering, and operating of the outboard simultaneously would seem daunting.

We got into this mess sailing and some form of sailing is surely the best way to get out of it.
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Old 09-03-2007
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I would tend to agree that the engine isn't going to help much other than to distract the skipper from doing what he should be doing at a time like that - watch where he's going!

The issue at hand often isn't just the wind - it's the waves. Turning up wind with the main centered has to be timed so that you don't get broached by the wave just off your quarter, remembering that once you've slowed, the waves are probably going faster than you are.

Maybe aim upwind just enough to turn on the back of a large one? Dunno..

The large-transom boats they make nowadays tend to get pushed around more by a following wind/sea than canoe-stern type boats. IIRC, Eric Hiscock suggested trailing one or more longish ropes over the side (the sheets?) to add drag (making sure they're cleated first) to help steady the boat before you try the turn.

Hope this helps.
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