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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Seamanship & Navigation > Offshore Checklist
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Seamanship & Navigation Forum devoted to seamanship and navigation topics, including paper and electronic charting tools.


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Topic Review (Newest First)
07-12-2012 03:54 PM
blowinstink
Re: Offshore Checklist

Along the same lines as the hatch boards are cockpit locker lids. The issue is down-flooding and how to make sure the boat is tight. If you are inverted, or in a 90'+ knockdown, will you cockpit lockers open up and flood the boat? There are some books (one of John Vigor's books comes to mind) that have good discussions of modifications and (more importantly?) ways to think about preparing your boat for offshore conditions and risks.
07-12-2012 02:15 PM
smurphny
Re: Offshore Checklist--Companionway Drop Boards

Quote:
Originally Posted by svHyLyte View Post
Something I have not seen mentioned is the need to have a reliable manner of securing the companionway drop-boards in the event of a knock-down, or capsize/roll-over during bad weather. In the Fastnet ('79) a significant number of yachts that were knocked down or capsized lost unsecured drop-boards that "fell out" and allowed major flooding even though the boats quickly re-righted themselves. Our drop-boards are heavy 3/4" in. thick teak plywood. To secure them we use 1/2" shock cord that attaches to pad-eyes on either side of the base of the companionway and can be pulled over hooks on the interior sides of the boards. The cord is strong enough to prevent the boards from dropping out under their own weight, but not so tight that one cannot free them reasonably easily. When off-shore, we generally keep the lower drop board in place, and secured, against the possibility of an errant wave coming aboard, which has happened from time to time. In the night, we always have both boards in place, and secured, although the hatch cover, under the dodger, may be left open for air circulation.

FWIW...
I do the same, keeping the bottom of three drop boards in. Even if the cockpit area were to fill, it would keep most of the water from running into the boat. And, yes I have also had an occasional weird wave break into the cockpit. Never filled up to the boards, but it is definitely possible. The bungee idea seems like a good one. Might be worth mentioning that there is a much larger danger of losing them/it in boats with tapered drop boards which come right out as soon as they are lifted a couple of inches. If a boat has this type, it would be even more important to devise some way to assure it can't escape. One suggestion above is to have a second emergency hatch. It probably is a good idea to have backups for any hatch/portlight/dorade, etc. One thing I left off the original list is the dorade vent plugs.
I have pieces of plywood for all openings, including sidelights. They have long carriage bolts/wing nuts with wood blocks to span/catch on the back side, all pre-drilled and ready to go.
07-12-2012 10:31 AM
svHyLyte
Re: Offshore Checklist--Companionway Drop Boards

Something I have not seen mentioned is the need to have a reliable manner of securing the companionway drop-boards in the event of a knock-down, or capsize/roll-over during bad weather. In the Fastnet ('79) a significant number of yachts that were knocked down or capsized lost unsecured drop-boards that "fell out" and allowed major flooding even though the boats quickly re-righted themselves. Our drop-boards are heavy 3/4" in. thick teak plywood. To secure them we use 1/2" shock cord that attaches to pad-eyes on either side of the base of the companionway and can be pulled over hooks on the interior sides of the boards. The cord is strong enough to prevent the boards from dropping out under their own weight, but not so tight that one cannot free them reasonably easily. When off-shore, we generally keep the lower drop board in place, and secured, against the possibility of an errant wave coming aboard, which has happened from time to time. In the night, we always have both boards in place, and secured, although the hatch cover, under the dodger, may be left open for air circulation.

FWIW...
07-12-2012 12:33 AM
chall03
Re: Offshore Checklist

Quote:
Originally Posted by SimonV View Post
Not down Brizzy way, its to cold. At the moment we are at the Low Isles, Port Douglas.

I'm not jealous at all.
Sydney is cold, wet, dark and well Sydney.

Who would want to be anchored off a coral cay anyway.
07-11-2012 11:27 AM
SimonV
Re: Offshore Checklist

Quote:
Originally Posted by St Anna View Post
Well said, I could not agree more. [are you back in Moreton Bay ?]

My 2c are to really learn to know your boat, minimalise clutter and obtain the 'mind set' of looking after yourself and your boat first, second and third.
Not down Brizzy way, its to cold. At the moment we are at the Low Isles, Port Douglas.
07-11-2012 08:15 AM
SVAuspicious
Re: Offshore Checklist

I agree with smurphny. Disagreement and civil discourse can go well together. That is quite different from those who choose to argue for the sake of argument itself.
07-10-2012 06:25 PM
smurphny
Re: Offshore Checklist

Thanks Chiquita. I start these things in order to get a discussion going that will help others and myself by combining the collective experience of people on this board. There is a ton of knowledge here and many people willing to add to the knowledge base. Disagreement leads to a dialogue. When people respond negatively just to start an argument, it is usually detected by this group for what it is. It's really all about learning more about sailing with a good dose of entertainment thrown in and often some good humor.
07-10-2012 06:11 PM
St Anna
Re: Offshore Checklist

Quote:
Originally Posted by SimonV View Post
Smurphny, please do not take my comments as disparagement, Single handers tend to do thing a little different to others. My main comments were directed to your apparent need to surround yourself with unneeded items, just in case. Where I would take the opposite tack and clear the decks of just about everything, except the bucket and fishing gear. My longest single handed non stop trip was 23 days and some hours, this would have been impossible without a good wind vane auto pilot. In fact I do very little hand steering, setting the wind vane as soon as I am out of the leads and sometimes sooner. I work on the theory that everything has its place and it should not be moved to a new location, as when the excrement hits the proverbial and you need get that item right now you will automatically go for said item where it was normally stored.
Well said, I could not agree more. [are you back in Moreton Bay ?]

My 2c are to really learn to know your boat, minimalise clutter and obtain the 'mind set' of looking after yourself and your boat first, second and third.
07-10-2012 11:24 AM
SimonV
Re: Offshore Checklist

Quote:
Originally Posted by smurphny View Post
Since I sail single-handed almost all the time, having things in the cockpit is the only option. Often there is no way to get below to retrieve anything until/if I can get the windvane set. You can imagine why the bucket is on deck:-) The anchor would only be stowed below if doing a major crossing. I think getting it out of the way is a good idea so that there is no possibility of it breaking loose and to clear the foredeck to use the sea anchor if necessary. Great idea about the bungee cords on hatches! Think I will do that instead of using the screws. You're absolutely right about it not being the best idea to cut off quick access to the bilge. It has always bothered me to screw them down but I have so much stuff down there that keeping it from getting out and flying around in a knockdown has been the priority. Items on the list can surely be adjusted depending on how far "offshore." I guess my idea of offshore is anywhere out of sight of land where you will be out over night(s). Killarney_sailor, if you use a SSB/Pactor/Sailmail, would be interested to know how your reception and transmission has been way out in the Pacific.
Smurphny, please do not take my comments as disparagement, Single handers tend to do thing a little different to others. My main comments were directed to your apparent need to surround yourself with unneeded items, just in case. Where I would take the opposite tack and clear the decks of just about everything, except the bucket and fishing gear. My longest single handed non stop trip was 23 days and some hours, this would have been impossible without a good wind vane auto pilot. In fact I do very little hand steering, setting the wind vane as soon as I am out of the leads and sometimes sooner. I work on the theory that everything has its place and it should not be moved to a new location, as when the excrement hits the proverbial and you need get that item right now you will automatically go for said item where it was normally stored.
07-10-2012 10:02 AM
blowinstink
Re: Offshore Checklist

Quote:
Originally Posted by smurphny View Post

Keeping a lot of stuff on deck IS a PITA but singlehanded, it really is impossible to go looking for stuff sometimes. Looking at that PBJ sitting down there just out of reach when you need to keep both hands on the wheel in a following sea is a real TRAGEDY:-) I have one of those milkbox-type containers that keeps it in one place.
Needing to keep both hands on the wheel and unable to go down below even to grab a sandwich suggests a problem with self steering systems. Either windvane or an AP that can handle significant following seas would be a must, IMO.
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