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Thread: What's your biggest bonehead move sailing? Reply to Thread
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1 Day Ago 09:03 PM
Re: What's your biggest bonehead move sailing?

Originally Posted by sterilecuckoo58 View Post
I am sorry, you are not the only one who can flip a boat in a dead calm. I can do it too, and without the advantage of the open seas or river. At the Community Boating pavilion in Boston milady was going through the drill lessons the first time, there was no wind and I was preparing to rig one of those aforementioned Mercurys at the dock and demonstrate that I could (recertification process). They are sandwiched in like sardines tied so they don't rub, but that's about it. Rudders, sails and centerboards are stored in the shed so I had these items with me. I stepped on the boat, over she went, and I had a refreshing swim with centerboard, rudder and sail went in too; just love that muddy water.
Don't feel too bad, I did the same thing at the same place. It is the only time I have capsized something other than a pram or sailboard. I managed to drop the gear into the boat on my way over, but had to face the crowd at the dock having been dragged from the water by a teenaged girl half my size.
1 Day Ago 08:59 PM
Another pair of goofups

I was lowering my mast of my Siren 17 while talking to one of the homeless men who hang out at Dinner Key Marina ramps. He said something and I turned to look, losing control of the fore stay and dropping my mast through my cabin top.

I got a lot of practice with fiberglass repair after that goof up.

Then there's the time I left the paper charts on top of the car. By the time we realized what had happened, my wife had driven away. My buddy and I completed our three-day journey from Chatham to Boston without proper charts. We had some printed-out excerpts from a cruising guide and some iPad charts. Those only covered our expected route and did not include our unscheduled but necessary stop at Oak Bluffs. Did I mention we arrived at night, with a nearly dead spotlight, and jury rigged clamp-on running lights? Oh, and this was the first time I'd ever sailed this new-to-me boat. That story is full of bone-headed mistakes. I could fill a page with posts just from that trip.
1 Day Ago 08:58 PM
Two stories, two fingers busted.

If you have dropped your centerboard for maintenance, and leaned it on a stick to keep it roughly vertical for scraping, do take the time to pick it up and reposition it when you go to scrape the other side.

I did not.

As soon as I applied pressure to the "down" side, the stick was unloaded and fell down. The board then fell towards my hand and broke my finger.

Another time, I was stupidly wearing gloves while working with anchor chain. My father was at the wheel of our old full-keeled ketch. I had cleated off the chain for the stuck anchor and had my hands lightly resting on the chain while he used the engine to try to break the anchor free. Instead, the chain broke free of the cleat, snagged my gloves, and pulled me towards the pulpit. I ended up with a longitudinally split finger tip and a trip to the Miami Hand Institute (They have great care there!).

If I hadn't been freed from the glove by my finger coming apart, I would have been dragged through a pair of stainless steel tubes just under shoulder width apart. Laying on the bottom with two broken shoulders while the keel attempted to part my hair would have been much worse than the finger damage.
1 Week Ago 06:57 PM
Re: What's your biggest bonehead move sailing?

I just accidentally clicked on the first page of this thread and had to laugh while I cringed when I read the OP.
1 Week Ago 06:44 PM
Re: What's your biggest bonehead move sailing?

Originally Posted by scratchee View Post
Not exactly "while sailing," but I have nowhere else to confess.............To reach better I moved around to the side instead of coming in from the stern. And I found the prop with my hand. And discovered that I could scrub it just fine without even putting my head in the water at all.
Now THAT's funny! Especially since I was cringing while reading the story, anticipating it was going to end with a trip to the ER and stitches!
Unfortunately, I think you will need to get your head wet to scrub the rest of the hull, which will slow the boat down as well. If you find a way to avoid that (besides hiring a diver) please post!
1 Week Ago 11:08 PM
Re: What's your biggest bonehead move sailing?

Not exactly "while sailing," but I have nowhere else to confess.

I'm on my fourth season with my sailboat, and have dived to scrape growth off the prop at least twice per season. At first I just used a mask, and held my breath for repeated dives as needed. This didn't seem too efficient, so I dug out my old scuba gear and had it overhauled, and also bought a small scuba tank. Using this rig to clean the prop was downright luxurious! For all of these dives I would enter the water by the swim ladder and make my way past the rudder to the prop, working with the prop right in front of my face.

Today the engine was really struggling and I suspected more prop fouling. Rather than forfeit a day on the water, I decided to anchor and scrape the prop, but unfortunately I didn't even have a mask with me. So I figured I'd just hold my breath and go by feel. But since this was the first dive where I wouldn't be able to see the prop as I approached it, I decided to locate it with my feet and/or hands before putting my head under. To reach better I moved around to the side instead of coming in from the stern. And I found the prop with my hand. And discovered that I could scrub it just fine without even putting my head in the water at all.
2 Weeks Ago 09:09 PM
Re: What's your biggest bonehead move sailing?

Work buddy tells me he wants to learn to sail... Perfect day, but light air. First I go over all the safety stuff and teach him the names of some lines, etc.

Then I raise the main to sail off the mooring... something I have done thousands of times. As there is an current pushing us forward I start the engine just in case.

Well, the current is pushing us forward so I calmly show him how to back the main.

The breeze is to light and the current must be running stronger than i guessed as we keep moving forward.

Calmly I put her in reverse and throttle up.

Calmly he says he doesn't think we are gonna make it.

Calmly I give it more throttle and reassure him.

Calmly the dinghy painter wraps around the prop.

Calmly I explain that in 20 years of sailing and a lifetime of boating I have never done that as I calmlyl go down below and get the mask, snorkel and knife.

2 Weeks Ago 02:56 PM
Re: What's your biggest bonehead move sailing?

Originally Posted by MedSailor View Post
Originally Posted by oldlaxer1 View Post
Backing out of the slip on the first trip with my wife in our new to us Tartan 30....I had backed about as far as I could in the narrow fairway and had shifted into forward to pivot the boat before shifting back into reverse...
On the Atomic 4 controls, the throttle will advance if you push the handle forward or backward....guess which handle I reached down without looking and pushed all the way guessed it, not the shift handle, but the throttle. So instead of going backwards at a slow pace, we are wide open throttle heading back into the pier....

She still sails with me.

Head injury?
2 Weeks Ago 10:56 AM
Capt Len
Re: What's your biggest bonehead move sailing?

What can I say, Classic, I'm smarter now than I used to be. Had only just installed the engine.
2 Weeks Ago 01:23 AM
Re: What's your biggest bonehead move sailing?

Originally Posted by Capt Len View Post
Crossing over to Port Townsend I checked the engine room Noticed the little nut that holds a handle on the fuel manifold valve had come off.alowing the handle to fall off Thought it had gone in the bilge, no biggie , fix that later. Well ,it was sitting on the Velvetdrive tranny where it prevented the shift lever to find reverse.Made a grand entry into Point Hudson for the !st wooden boat show and a well executed turn and pull up to a big classic power yacht.Elaine took a line onto the vessel along side and made it fast. Realizing something was amiss ,I took a firm grip on the mizzen shroud and grabbed for the hand rail next door. The line came taut and 22 tons of stillmoving enertia tried to turn hard right. Slow motion event .pulled apart like a drawing/quartering demonstration.,feet dangling 4' off the water. Today this would be on the net as science of stupid but fortunately no one noticed and I regained my composure as the greatest captain ever
Len, you of all people should know by now that reverse is over-rated.

I think the old quote goes something like: "Only ever approach the dock at the speed you'd like to hit it".. or something like that.

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