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post #1 of 5 Old 08-25-2004 Thread Starter
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MOB procedure with Spinnaker up?

Would like to hear some thoughts on the procedure one might follow if a man overboard emergency occurs while flying the Spinnaker. Especially if undercrewed ie. only one person left on the boat.

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post #2 of 5 Old 08-25-2004
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MOB procedure with Spinnaker up?

There really is no great procedure. My current practice is to require wearing an inflatable harness whenever the chute is up and there are less than three people on board. My current thinking would be to bear away, blow the sheet, ease the pole to the forestay, jibe, and then continue on until the boat is head to wind near the POB (person overboard). If stopped short of the person, I would check for lines over the side and then crank the engine for a short burst thier direction. Frankly that is a poor proceedure and there is a high likelihood of damaging the chute but it is the best that I could think of.

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post #3 of 5 Old 08-25-2004 Thread Starter
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MOB procedure with Spinnaker up?

Thanks Jeff.

That''s pretty much what I envisioned as well and was not very happy with it.
Do you think blowing the halyard once the boat is close to head to wind would be a good idea? The chute might just hang up in the rigging anyway but if it did come down somewhat on the deck the boat might be sailed back to the POB with the mainsail. I suppose if the chute ends up in the water the boat would be unmaneuverable though.

Has anyone out there tried this or something similar?
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post #4 of 5 Old 08-26-2004
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MOB procedure with Spinnaker up?

Ugh! This scenario gives me the willies.

One thing it makes me think is that when short-handed there should always be some provision for autosteering, at least a tiller-tamer.

Jeff: I''m curious--why bear away and then jibe? When I saw the subject line of this thread, I thought it through myself first, and came up with this (just maneuvering--other stuff like maintaining visual contact, GPS MOB function etc not covered):
1. blow sheet
2. head up to close reach
3. put on tiller tender & drop/secure kite if possible
5. tack to close reach
6. approach cob, & luff main to slow to stop just upwind
7. set tiller tender & main appoximate heave-to
8. recover cob.

Disclaimer: I''m a rookie--I present the above for dissection by the pros.

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post #5 of 5 Old 08-26-2004
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MOB procedure with Spinnaker up?

A couple of years back at a Storm Trysail Club session on MOB procedures we learned about quick-stop as an alternative to the slow turn or reach/return type methods. Essentially, the idea is to not let the boat get far from the MOB. Someone goes over, you tack. All standing. Even with the chute up. When you get way on, you turn back to the MOB, either by tacking or gybing -- whaever works for you in the particular situation you''re in to get you back to the victim asap. Available crew work to douse and/or trim what they can, obviously. I was amazed at the results.
With the spinnaker up in 15-18knots of wind, it plastered itself against the shrouds, forestay and mast, and then pretty much collapsed to leeward of the main when we gybed. We were fully crewed, so it dissapeared below shortly after that.
Most importantly, however, we were back at the cushion I had tossed overboard in about 45 seconds. Without crew it would have been messy, and possibly a windfall for our sailmaker, but the timing would have been about the same. The main problem we had was slowing or stopping the boat at the victim, so as to not rip his arms off if we caught them as we passed. I am a full convert. It worked with the chute up, with the working jib, the 150, and any combination of them on any heading -- even in the middle of spinnaker gybes. We must have done a dozen or more practice stops that day. Backing our sails goes against everything we''ve been taught as Marconi rigged sailors, but, like heaving to, it works. All you have to do is try it.
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