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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related) > Hurricane Irene advice
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Topic Review (Newest First)
08-30-2011 01:23 PM
billyruffn
Lesson learned

Glad to hear so many Sailnetters came through the storm so well.

Yesterday I went out to the boat and she was exactly where and how I left her. Aside from a coating of salt and a few bits of seaweed here and there, it was difficult to find any evidence that she'd been through 45-50 kt sustained winds for 6+ hours and higher gusts. Seas in the harbor were running 4-5 ft at times.

The mooring set up I used was three pendants to the ball: two 1" x 20 ft made up by Yale Cordage, and one 1" three strand nylon I made up a number of years ago. Each of these was set with about 12-18" of slack differnetial between them. As the "fail safe" device I shackled the boat's 1/2" anchor rode to the mooring top chain below the ball and swivel. I left the chain with about 5-6 ft of slack relative to the slackest of the pendants. I lashed them all to the bow rollers in much the same way shown in Bene505 pictures above.
All pendants had good chafeing gear.

The anchor rode with 5+ ft of slack was wrapped around the bollard and then wrapped completely around a cleat on the deck such that the chain was pretty well jammed and couldn't put any pressure on the windlass.

The only thing that was different when I stepped aboard the boat yesterday was that the chain was really jammed into the cleat. It took some doing to release it. That tells me that at some point the chain took a heavy load -- so much so that it chipped the paint below the cleat in several places. That means that the rodes (all 20-23 ft) stretched at least 5 ft and possibly more-- without breaking.

I reviewed all this with a salty old commercial fisherman who happened by and he had two suggestions on improvements for "next time":

1. He said I might consider shackleing the chain rode to the bottom chain rather than to the ball so that if the top chain parted I'd have the reduncancy I was looking for. Or as an alternative to that dropping an anchor a few feet away from the boat.

2. I should have used short snubbers on the chain rode even though it was the last line of defense and had a lot of slack in it. He suggested making up two snubbers of slightly different lengths and diameters, with the smaller diameter the longer of the two. That way the smaller of the two stretches first and farthest, but the larger takes a load as soon as the smaller of the snubbers has stretched 10-15% of its length. He recommended two snubbers for redundancy.

Both of these suggestions are on my to do list for the next storm, but first on the list for next time is getting the hell out of the water!

Three sailboats came up on the beach in Provincetown. None damaged seriously and all due to pendant chafe. All still had sails bent on, one with it's jib still on the furler partially shredded. Obvious lessons here are better chafe gear and removal of all canvas.

One more thing: I rigged an anchor with nylon rode and chain and laid it all out in the cockpit in case the boat went on the beach and an anchor was needed by anyone who might come to her rescue.

As it happened one of the three beached boats mentioned above was saved from going hard on the beach because we were able to find an anchor in the forward locker. Working in thigh deep water / surf at dead low tide, it took some doing to get it untangled and deployed, but we finally did get it set. That said it was a pretty light rode/anchor for a boat in a storm -- looked more like a lunch hook. As the tide rose and the boat started floating again the anchor held. On the first high tide after the storm the boat was towed to it's mooring without difficulty.

I would recommend to anyone who leaves a boat on a storm mooring to help out those who might help you by getting a good storm anchor and having it ready for rescuers to deploy quickly.
08-30-2011 12:29 PM
tweitz We were a little West of Bene505, in East Hampton, at our non floating dock in our pretty protected inlet. I stripped all sails and bimini, took off most everything else removable that created windage. We normally use mooring whips, which we kept in place, but supplemented with extra lines off the bow at about a 35 degree angle to keep the bow off, and an anchor off the stern to help ease the strain on the stern whip. We doubled all lines and things went very well. I don't know the peak wind speeds, but the winds were pretty strong, knocked down some trees, and lasted a long time, but fortunately all was well with our boat.
08-30-2011 11:34 AM
2d Wind Very excited to report that 2d Wind appears to have come through without a scratch (except for a bit of wood finish that came off with the tape I had put on a few cabinets). We moved up to Haverstraw on the Hudson from Sea Bright, NJ, where thankfully I think the storm was much weakened by the time it came through. We did take off the head sail and the dodger (frame and all), which might have ended up being more prep than was needed, but I'm still really glad we did it.
08-30-2011 09:06 AM
JimsCAL Nicely done Brad. Few problems here in Hempstead Harbor, even the boats on moorings that didn't even take the trouble to remove their sails and canvas. Actually the winds on the backside of the storm were worse than the storm landfall. Forty plus knots out of the NW (worst direction for us) from about 3PM Sunday until dark.
08-30-2011 01:25 AM
Bene505
Quote:
Originally Posted by CalebD View Post
That your boat survived speaks to the care you took to prepare for TS Irene. We survived on the Hudson as well.
My advice? More beer.
Thanks Caleb,

You were in my thoughts as the Hudson River expert, in case I needed to bug out to there. Glad it worked out, you were a lot closer to the eye than we were.

(Maybe you could help me pilot Hells Gate this winter. Beer afterward.)

Regards,
Brad
08-30-2011 01:09 AM
CalebD That your boat survived speaks to the care you took to prepare for TS Irene. We survived on the Hudson as well.
My advice? More beer.
08-30-2011 12:26 AM
Bene505
Plan A worked

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bene505 View Post
My Plan A is to stay in Montauk if Irene makes landfall near Manhattan. That looks to be the case. (Plan B is a mooring off Greak Neck, Plan C is haul-out at Glen Cove. Both of those places look to be under the eye soon.) ...
We went with option A, to stay away from the projected path. Boat is fine. Our house 100 miles to the west is in a town with trees down all over and we have to duck under police tape to get to our house. There's a wire down in front of our neighbor's house.

A friend and I spent hours prepping the boat on Saturday. Here's a shot of the boat with all canvas down below. (Yes, I left the life raft in place. The canvas is on so tight, it will rip if I take it off.)



The boat was already up in the south corner of the lake, with little fetch to the SE, S and SW. We put 6 anchors off the bow rollers, like a Bahama mooring. Water is 10 feet deep, with the roller 5 feet off the water.

145' 1/2" chain, 44 pound CQR (to SW), snubbered pretty short with 7/8 line
150' 3/4" line, Danforth 90 H (to SE)
150' 5/8"? line, 2 x 100 pound Chinese, Danforth-copies (in tandem) (to South)
150' 7/8" line, 44 pound Bruce (to East)
300' 1/2" line, 30 pound Bruce (to NW, normal direction of fetch)

The 90H and Chain-CQR were already set as the only anchors, so I wasn't worried about having such a small anchor "up fetch". If it dragged, she'd be on the usual anchors.

Here's a shot of the anchors, Note the chafing gear around the lines and the angles off the bow.





And here's the final measure, to keep the lines inside the roller frame. This is the Anti-Anchorline-Jumping-Off-The-Roller-As-Depicted-In-Mainsail's-Videos technique. With such little fetch, this was probably overkill, but the hurricane could have swerved over us, right?





Lastly, here's a shot of the prep team. David (on the left) sailed his Catalina 38 to the USVI and back, a couple years ago. He's been chartering it all summer, see sailing montauk. David was a great help, with his ton of experience and eloquent words of wisdom. His boat got hit by lightning (150 feet from ours) only a week ago. She's totaled, at least he has insurance. If anyone knows of an inspected sailing vessel for a good price, let me know.



Note what sure else we could have done. If anyone has some suggestions, let me know.

Regards,
Brad
08-29-2011 10:27 PM
JonEisberg
Quote:
Originally Posted by casey1999 View Post
Fostering A Home | Slideshow (www.HometownAnnapolis.com - The Capital)

Above, a man with a plan. Note their are 13 slides to scan through.
Uhh, "a Man with a Plan" - NOT!

The key to sailing a boat without an engine, is thinking ahead... WAY ahead...

To be scrambling around Annapolis at the last minute as a hurricane is bearing down upon you, that's not the sort of guy who should be going engineless... Dude needs to have his head examined, if he really intended to ride out the passage of a hurricane in one of the outer slips at Horn Point Marina...
08-29-2011 05:29 PM
casey1999 Fostering A Home | Slideshow (www.HometownAnnapolis.com - The Capital)

Above, a man with a plan. Note their are 13 slides to scan through.
08-29-2011 02:07 PM
ChuckA Heart of Gold rode out the storm on her mooring in the Barrington River which is well protected. Most of the boats in the Barrington River were well prepared with sails and canvas removed. I didn't see any boats damaged in the River. We were lucky and dodged a bullet.

Here is the wind history from nearby Conimicuit light in upper Narragansett Bay. 50 Knots sustained for almost 4 hours with gusts to 70+ knots.


hurricane Irene wind data Conimicut Light Narragansett Bay Aug 27-28 2011 by chuckanastasia, on Flickr

Still have no power at home. Many downed trees and wires around the neighborhood. We are it will be expecting several days before power is restored throughout RI.
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