Originally Posted by Hurricane5.9
How do you retrieve a man overboard in a cat and how do you right a cat?
I used to sail a Prindle 16 on Chesapeake Bay. I once was sailing with a friend who went overboard at the mouth of the Severn river. I turned the boat around and headed toward him and as I got near him aimed the boat right into the wind and stopped so that he could climb (and me drag him aboard). It was a little dicey.
I would sail the boat alone and on ocasion flip it over. The key is to have a righting line that is tied to the base of the mast and long enough that you can toss it over the upper hull (the mast lying horozontal), then hike out while pulling the righting line to put the boat over (righting line should be very large diameter say 3/4 inch and with knots so you can grip. It will help to have the bows pointed into the wind so that the wind helps to lift the sail/mast (wing effect) and once you get the boat up, the sails will be luffing (before righting the boat uncleat the main and jib so the boat will not sail off without you). It is quite a handfull to upright a hobie or prindle 16 alone and if it is windy very difficult. If the boat goes turtle, you will not be able to right it (that is why it is criticall to right the boat ASAP sot that the mast does no go below water, I have seen some mast tips have a float to prevent this). Also, once water gets on the sail, it becomes difficult to right.
Couple things to keep in mind, when righting the boat, you may need to dive under the water to prevent getting hit on the head by the falling pontoon. Also, at times once righted in heavy wind and sea, with no one on the boat can easily flip again, you need to jump immediately back on the boat, and hold onto the boat so it does not sail off with out you.
I once was windsufing in 25k and saw a guy sailing a hobbie 16, he had turned over. I helped him get the boat upright, but soon after he flipped again, the boat went turtle and he had to be towed by marine police.