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  Topic Review (Newest First)
07-28-2007 11:52 PM
wind_magic To the original poster. Did you try pouting ? That used to work on me sometimes, but not all the time. As a last resort you could cry. That always worked on me, well, most of the time. I mean like really cry though, you know, you have to say you give up that you don't know what to do that you've tried everything and all that stuff, and cry into a pillow really loud.
07-27-2007 04:58 PM
labatt We own a 22,000lb boat (plus water/fuel/people/stuff) and we'll be double reefed on the main and single reefed on the genny at 25kts. We'd rather be comfortable and slow than hard over and a bit faster. Actually, it depends on the time of day. In the morning, when we first leave, we don't want to be hard over. By the end of the day, we really don't care and just want our first drink

To answer the original poster's question, I think you were a bit overcautious by saying that you had to lower sails and get all hands on deck, but that's much better than undercautious (although a sailboat will handle better in almost all conditions with some mainsail up). On our boat, the kids wear life jackets when not below, but they can take them off below. For the grown ups, life jackets go on either when we put the first reef in or the seas are high enough (or confused enough). If the wind blows over 20 or in inclement weather, we usually string our jacklines out and clip in. When there's a lot of stuff going on (reefing, frequent tacks), if our kids don't want to be involved we have them go below. As others have mentioned, it's critical that you have a safe environment for them to hang out in. If it doesn't exist today, build it.

I think your skipper was a bit harsh on you, but it's a difference in experience. You're more nervous at higher winds whereas I'm assuming he has been in more and knows how the boat will act. On our old boat, I was great. On our new-to-us boat, I was nervous the first few times the wind blew over 20, and I'm still getting used to it as I learn what she will do and how long it will take for her to dig in.

Just persevere, and get more experience at the higher wind velocities. Put reefs in BEFORE 25kts of wind, learn how your traveler can reduce heel and weather helm, and learn how your boat will react to gusts.
07-26-2007 09:42 AM
Valiente Pigslo speaks the truth.
07-25-2007 11:23 PM
pigslo Being on my third wife, I can tell you that I recognize when a post is not about sailing. One must always anounce the intent to come about.
07-25-2007 11:47 AM
Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
Proper handholds and keeping in habit of using one-hand for yourself goes a long way to keeping you safe, and I'd encourage you to teach your child that.
One hand for the boat is my kid's mantra. If you have the social-activity pleasant/sailing activity stupid typical 12 foot wide saloon, you might wish to retrofit brass uprights and hip level handholds below. When the kid is down there, get vinyl-covered, velcro-secured pool noodles or other rigid foam-type substance (pipe insulation works) and put it up to her head height around those handholds and uprights. If she takes a tumble, she'll slam into a cushioned pole instead of, say, the corner of the nav station or the edge of the companionway steps. You could even put drawer pulls on the steps themselves (they don't have to hold your weight, but hers). When guests are aboard, remove the cushioning and stow it under a berth, if you care about appearances. It's easy to cover the "leading edges" of cabin cabinetry with split foam tubing, and it's not like you'll be taking on a lot of weight.

In a couple of years, and a couple of avoided trips to the face-stitching clinic, your kid should have the experience, the strength and the co-ordination to avoid most falls and can simply follow your own broken-rib avoidance scheme.

My kid' (five going on six) has already done a header down the companionway, which is why I have given this a fair bit of thought. I am a big believer in swinging around the boat like an ape, figuring that standing upright with hands at one's sides is strictly a dockside maneuver.
07-25-2007 10:39 AM
jackytdunaway I have a 5-year old daughter and we have the PFD above and no PFD below rule. When it comes to heeling aks her what her favorite thing about sailing is and she says the tipping over (heeling). I am very careful to call the tack before hand and during.
We have had no issues with this. As for rough weather i feel safer with her down below.
07-25-2007 10:05 AM
Pamlicotraveler Hon, is that you?

Seriously, she would be safe below without a lifevest as long as she knew when the boat tacks she needs to be in a protected area.
Why not let her stay in the Vberth?
07-25-2007 06:04 AM
sailingdog Rick-

I was going to go the multihull argument route about no-heeling, but decided not to since you had already played that card... It's true though... trimarans or cats... not much real danger of being tossed across the cabin in heavy weather, and a much lower tendency to broach.
07-24-2007 11:33 PM
Sailormann When we were kids - up until about 8 or 9 years old - we always wore lifejackets. We were good swimmers but the water is very cold. We whined, begged and tried to take them off but every time we did, the boat turned around and my father tied up for the day. No arguing, no discussion - sailing was over.

On the rare occasions that I have children aboard, same rule applies. As far as the down below versus in the cockpit issue goes - if the wind is up I'd sooner have the child up where I could see them with a lifeline firmly attached.

That said - sailing is not a democratic exercise and when you leave the dock the skipper's word is law. SO - you need to decide that you and the offspring are going sailing in winds up to say 15 knots or 20 or whatever your comfort level is. Just do it nicely, don't argue, don't be aggressive about it. Just let the other half know that you think it's better to stay home if you're not enjoying yourself. Things will probably change...
07-24-2007 11:32 PM
BarryL Hello,

My wife and I have 3 kids - girls ages 13 and 9, and a son, who is 6. WE have been sailing for 5 years now, starting on a 22', then a 28', and now a 35'. When we are under way, if the kids are on deck they need to wear a PFD. If they are below they don't.

When the wind picks up and the boat heels, I will notify them before we change tacks (or gybe). My wife is great about heeling, and doesn't complain until we heel more than 20 degree. To be honest, I don't much like heeling more than 20 degrees either.

When the boat is heeling, the kids will sit on the high side if they are on deck, and on the lower settee (or cabin sole) if they are below. Moving around below can be difficult, and they have, on occassion, fallen down. Fortunately, they have not been hurt. Yes, they could probably be safer somewhere else, but you know what? They have also fallen off bicycles, skateboards, and scooters and gotten a few bumps and bruises doing that too.

Personally, I don't care if they stay on deck or go below in rough weather. When it's stessful for me (docking in difficult conditions, lower sail on a windy day, etc.) I ask them to stay in one place and to not speak to me for a while. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't.

Good luck,
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