First storm in a sailboat; lessons learned, advice wanted. - Page 6 - SailNet Community

   Search Sailnet:

 forums  store  


Quick Menu
Forums           
Articles          
Galleries        
Boat Reviews  
Classifieds     
Search SailNet 
Boat Search (new)

Shop the
SailNet Store
Anchor Locker
Boatbuilding & Repair
Charts
Clothing
Electrical
Electronics
Engine
Hatches and Portlights
Interior And Galley
Maintenance
Marine Electronics
Navigation
Other Items
Plumbing and Pumps
Rigging
Safety
Sailing Hardware
Trailer & Watersports
Clearance Items

Advertise Here






Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Seamanship & Navigation
 Not a Member? 

Seamanship & Navigation Forum devoted to seamanship and navigation topics, including paper and electronic charting tools.


Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
  #51  
Old 06-11-2010
sailingdog's Avatar
Telstar 28
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: New England
Posts: 43,291
Thanks: 0
Thanked 11 Times in 11 Posts
Rep Power: 13
sailingdog is just really nice sailingdog is just really nice sailingdog is just really nice sailingdog is just really nice sailingdog is just really nice
No, it doesn't, but in very light winds, it can often be used to help the mainsail keep a full shape, by supporting the weight of the boom, and preventing the boom's weight from flattening out the mainsail and reducing the lift/drive it can generate.

Quote:
Originally Posted by smackdaddy View Post
Say fool, does the topping lift serve any significant purpose in sail trim?
__________________
Sailingdog

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Telstar 28
New England

You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

If you're new to the Sailnet Forums... please read this
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
.

Still—DON'T READ THAT POST AGAIN.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #52  
Old 06-11-2010
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 97
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 6
alanr77 is on a distinguished road
GeorgeB, here are some pictures of my setup. As you can see, its as simple as it gets. The Foot is attached by a shackle and the clew by a shackle and pigtail.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #53  
Old 06-12-2010
planet wanderer
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 7
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
seashine is on a distinguished road
Quote:
"If I even think about reducing sail in the future I will."
You said it all maccauley123! Trust your gut feeling - if you feel there's too much weather helm and it's time to reef, or maybe at anchor and the wind's getting up you think it's time to let out more chain (or head to a more sheltered location), or several hours into a gale you feel that it's time to heave to and rest for a while, then that's exactly the time to do it. Personally, I don't trust squalls/thunderheads/whatever you care to call them and if I was near shore I'd aim for searoom +++ There are absolute calms ("calm before the storm") which are deadly to a sailing vessel relying on wind for way, and you can never predict which direction the windshifts will take when the blast finally hits.
What I find most inspiring about this thread is the author's attitude: things felt like they were getting out of hand so what can I learn from this? I've been in some tricky situations both in well found ocean going yachts and in dinghies and even a sailing kayak: each time there was a plan A/plan B/plan C etc but the most useful tool for future sailing safety and enjoyment (and a safe boat is the only fun boat) was the "retroperspectoscope" which helps judge what worked, what didn't and what could be improved on. And hey, there's nothing like practical experience to weld the theory into place!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #54  
Old 06-13-2010
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Miami, Florida
Posts: 97
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 5
ulferlingsson is on a distinguished road
Interesting story. I had a similar experience, but on purpose. I wanted to know how seaworthy my Havsfidra (20' long-keeled) boat was before sailing around Scandinavia, so on a day in which I expected a thunderstorm in the Baltic Sea I readied the life raft, got me and my deck hand in survival suits, and we sailed out to wait. And wait. And wait. There was no wind, we actually anchored outside a beach and swam ashore to buy ice cream. Around 4 PM a breeze came, we sailed a bit with full main and genoa (the hard-wind one), thinking there would be no storm that day. We were on an open wind. And then, from behind, like being hit by an express train, hurricane force winds came and hit the mast to the water. There were no waves, the wind blew the water surface to a mix so we couldn't see where the atmosphere ended and the sea started. The roar was so loud we had to scream from the top of our lungs to communicate even though we were next to each other. We had not closed the companionway, but although the lee side of the boat was in the water (she was broaching with about 80 degree heel), no water entered the cabin. Good to know. The deck hand climbed to the forestay, literally hanging in the starboard lifeline as he moved. He undid the fall to the genoa but then had to pull it down against the wind. Once it was down the boat raised up a bit, I could steer again, so I let go of the mainsheet and steered to lee. The main was twisted over 90 degrees. The bottom third took the wind in backwards, the top third was twisted so it did not pull, but the middle third pulled, and boy did it pull. The log's scale ends at 10 knots, but the boat was going above 10 knots. On a long-keeled boat with about 18' waterline! The main did not get destroyed since it was sown in overly thick canvas and had full length battens (I had it made for extreme sailing).

However, the APPROPRIATE thing to do in a boat such as the Catalina 22 (or my present boat, an Ensenada 20) with much less stability, and much less strong rig, is to take in one or two reefs in the main when the Cumulonimbus appeared. Thunderstorm clouds are DANGEROUS. There are freak winds with hurricane force in front of them (downdrafts). Those can bring down jumbo-jets, you know. The genoa is rather quick to get down, but it is harder to reef the main once the storm gust has arrived. And you do need something to sail with, unless you have open sea in your lee.

Another thing, an anchor is a symbol of hope for a good reason. If you have land in your lee, and can't sail, you can only hope that your anchor can hold you from a stranding. An outboard engine is useless in waves. You need an anchor as an "emergency brake".

I think you learned the right lessons. Don't play with thunderstorm clouds. Practice reefing in good weather until you can do it WITH ONE HAND. In a storm you need the other to hold on for dear life with. If you can't do it with one hand, change reefing system (I changed from rolling to binding, the simpler the better).

I also put a reef in my genoa, and rigged the sheet so that I could just undo a "smuggler's knot" to reef. Much quicker than to change sail, and when you are alone, who is going to steer while you are on the foredeck?

Finally, remember that it is much more important to stay onboard than to float. A harness is better than a life jacket while you are sailing. But use it!

Last edited by ulferlingsson; 06-13-2010 at 11:23 AM. Reason: typos
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #55  
Old 06-13-2010
TommyD's Avatar
'74 C&C 33'
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Hopkinton, MA
Posts: 10
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
TommyD is on a distinguished road
2 cents worth..

1) Lifejackets!

2) a bigger boat only means you learn the same lesson in bigger storms, which are there to be had. With heavieer consequences.

3) Reefing a main is great when the winds build. Over 30 knots you want it DOWN. A small headsail will allow you to maintain headway.

4) Downwind out of control as you found out is very hard to get out of. Maintaining seaway into the wind controls boat speed & the impact of the waves as well.

5)..You've already figured all this out.

Oh, & by the way, be careful, if she ever talks to you again it may be over vows..
__________________
'Nora Mae Rose'
Portsmouth, RI
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #56  
Old 06-14-2010
GeorgeB's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Alameda, San Francisco Bay
Posts: 1,533
Thanks: 1
Thanked 39 Times in 38 Posts
Rep Power: 10
GeorgeB is on a distinguished road
Alanr77, thanks for posting the photos, it really helps a lot. You really have a blank canvas there. Give me a couple of days so I can craft a proper response. Sorry for not getting with you sooner but I’ve been at the boat for the past three days.

Can I ask a couple more questions and offer a couple of comments in the meantime? What are your long range plans for the boat and how much do you want to reasonably spend on making improvements? This will dictate on how we want to proceed. The C22 is a great boat, but the type of improvements we will be making will not raise the boat’s value on a one to one basis. If you plan on keeping her a few years, we can “upgrade” the improvements a bit. I, personally, would go the “upgrade” route rather than “bare bones” if I was going to keep her for a few years or more (They make a great trailer sailor and the owner’s association is a lot of fun with lots of activities and events

A couple of observations: You want to check your standing rigging. Your port lower shroud is “kinked” at the lower machine swaged fitting. This needs to be replaced. My 22 had a “kinked” stay which broke under load and I was very lucky that I didn’t loose the entire rig that day. You filled a drill hole on the coach roof with caulk. This should be cleaned out and re-filled with epoxy. Your life lines terminate too abruptly (too sharp of an angle from the last stanchion to the deck. They offer little safety to the crew in the cockpit. Consider getting longer L.L. cables and terminating them closer to the transom. The outboard motor gas tank should be strapped to cockpit deck. Mast and boom are showing their age. The white powder and “bubbles” on the castings and around the S.S. screws is galvanic corrosion. You need to back out the screws and fittings and apply something like Teff Gel or Lanocote to the threads/mating surfaces to galvanic ally isolate the different metals. My mast and boom looked like yours and I primed with aluminum primer and used white marine enamel paint applied with a brush which turned out surprisingly well and looked great for the thirteen years I owned the boat.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #57  
Old 06-18-2010
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Milwaukee
Posts: 13
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
mkeChris is on a distinguished road
First storm in a sailboat; lessons learned, advice wanted

I had a very similar experience last year. I was out in a Pearson Ensign with no motor. Gorgeous day. We headed out of the harbor with full sails. 20 minutes in I looked back at the city and saw a huge storm cell came up out of nowhere. I turned and headed for the harbor under full sail. Wind was directly out of the West so we had to tack through the gap and just as we were parallel to the seawall the front of the squall hit and laid us down on our side. I had one chance to tack before we hit the wall but as soon as I tried to come about it pushed the bow back and right into the wall. The furling unit got damaged so we couldn't reduce the headsail from the cockpit so I dropped the main. I managed to undo the sheets and manually wrap the headsail around the forestay, reattached the sheets and got off the wall with about 6 sq feet of jib up.

Scary experience! I know how you feel. I think you'll find that the next time you go through it, you'll be much more prepared and confident. You know your boat's not going to sink and the rest is up to you. I bought a Bristol 29 which is a big heavy displacement solid cruiser. She handles waves better than smaller boats, but is just as susceptible to getting out of control as any boat with too much sail up. Reefing early is the answer to both our experiences I think... Good thread - thanks for sharing!
__________________
Chris
S/V Winsum Wind
1970 Bristol 29

Visit
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
for milwaukee and local sailing resources
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #58  
Old 06-21-2010
DulceSuerna's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Pasco FL
Posts: 98
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 5
DulceSuerna is on a distinguished road
This raises some questions for me. We recently had an experience coming down the lee side of a causeway. We were on a nice broad reach going somewhat slowly in light wind. Suddenly a big gust hit and almost knocked us completly down. The boat was very quick to head up or turn into the wind and she leveled herself out.
1. Shes a 31 bombay clipper, is this normal in a large gust or knockdown that most larger boats will automatically head up and right themselfs?
2. There was no way to see the gust or predict it and it was gone as soon as it hit. What should I have done differently?
3. I read the "reef the main as it builds, but drop the main at 30 or above"
I have two reef points, the boat seems to really come alive in 15-20 should I just drop if it is gusting higher or was the prior statement really for a smaller boat?
4. I understand you can furl the jib to use as a storm sail, I also understand this puts considerable force on the furling system and hardware etc. At what point do you Not want to use the Jib even furled deeply.
I have sailed small boats and cats for years but this is our first "Bigger Boat"
We are doing fairly well and my wife is awesome crew. Any advice is well taken. and sorry to hijack this great thread.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #59  
Old 06-21-2010
smackdaddy's Avatar
Last Man Standing
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 13,387
Thanks: 92
Thanked 92 Times in 86 Posts
Rep Power: 9
smackdaddy is a jewel in the rough smackdaddy is a jewel in the rough smackdaddy is a jewel in the rough
Dude, I'll provide some guesses to your questions below based on what I've seen in the short time I've sailed in what are typically pretty gusty conditions. Hopefully you'll get some real answers soon from some actual sailors.

Take the following with a pound of salt...

Quote:
Originally Posted by DulceSuerna View Post
This raises some questions for me. We recently had an experience coming down the lee side of a causeway. We were on a nice broad reach going somewhat slowly in light wind. Suddenly a big gust hit and almost knocked us completly down. The boat was very quick to head up or turn into the wind and she leveled herself out.
1. Shes a 31 bombay clipper, is this normal in a large gust or knockdown that most larger boats will automatically head up and right themselfs?

My C27 is great about rounding up in a gust....which is way better than the opposite. I think it all depends on the design and sail plan of the boat as to what you'll get in a gust - but lee helm can be really bad (think really bad gybe, whacked rigging, falling masts, that kind of thing). So you're in good shape on the heading up I think.

2. There was no way to see the gust or predict it and it was gone as soon as it hit. What should I have done differently?

Actually, if there's enough water around you, you can see the gusts coming and actually time it very accurately. We just read the surface to see the gusts coming in. And we've gotten pretty good about being able to tell the intensity of the gust by the "texture" of that surface. With your situation in a causeway, you may not have had enough water around you to see anything. Was that the problem?

If we suspect gusts, we'll just keep a hand on the traveler lines and the main-sheet. If you're quick, you can dump a lot of wind really fast and stay on your feet.


3. I read the "reef the main as it builds, but drop the main at 30 or above"
I have two reef points, the boat seems to really come alive in 15-20 should I just drop if it is gusting higher or was the prior statement really for a smaller boat?

I'm like you. My C27 really starts to have fun in 15-20 with full canvass. But it needs a reef in the main at 20+. Also, I only have a hank-on 150 genny right now, so it's a lot of sail.

Again, it depends on the gusts. I can carry the genny and single-reefed main almost to 30, but it's a lot of work. Maybe it will help when I get my new 110.

It definitely never hurts to have too little sail in big wind. But it can hurt real bad to have too much. So it's a call you have to make for your own boat based on what it likes.


4. I understand you can furl the jib to use as a storm sail, I also understand this puts considerable force on the furling system and hardware etc. At what point do you Not want to use the Jib even furled deeply.
I have sailed small boats and cats for years but this is our first "Bigger Boat"
We are doing fairly well and my wife is awesome crew. Any advice is well taken. and sorry to hijack this great thread.

Can't help you there. But there are plenty of dudes on here who can.
Have fun!
__________________

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

S/V Dawn Treader - 1989 Hunter Legend 40
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #60  
Old 06-21-2010
eherlihy's Avatar
Learning the HARD way...
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Boston Area
Posts: 3,563
Thanks: 115
Thanked 64 Times in 63 Posts
Rep Power: 8
eherlihy will become famous soon enough
I just stumbled across this GREAT thread. Thank you for sharing!

A Lot of things went well, and a couple could have been improved on;

Good decisions:
  • Improvements to the rigging - although I agree that there is at least one shroud that is kinked, and should be replaced.
  • You put the hatch boards in place, and secured hatches.
  • Your THOUGHT to reduce sail - you've already read that when you think that it's time to reduce sail, IT IS.
  • Maintaining searoom.
  • Wearing your PFD
  • Starting the motor - good to have a backup means of maintaining (or attempting) steerage.
Decisions that could have been better:
  • Running with the storm. Others may disagree, but I believe that you are better reaching into it. You are less likely to get pooped, or forced into an unintentional gybe; which under these circumstances, could take down your mast.
  • Dropping the head sail - this goes with the above, Heading into the storm, you want the head sail up.
  • You NEED a smaller head sail. 150% is way too much for your only jib.
  • Having to go forward to drop your head sail. Roller furling is a wonderful thing, if you can justify it.
  • Inability to reef - You HAVE to be able to reduce sail for reasons already explained (lowering and moving the CE forward)
  • You made no mention of hearing a weather alert. You can get this on a $100 VHF. There is no valid reason for an ocean sailor NOT to have a VHF with weather alert.
  • No mention of increasing your visibility - You should have had your running lights on.

Overall I think that you did GREAT and the above list is meant to be constructive. I hope that it is received that way.

I also HOPE to learn more about your sailing adventures!
__________________

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

USCG Licensed OUPV Captain, ASA 101/103/104/105 Certified Instructor - Also certified in Recreational Marine Electrical Systems
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

By choosing to post the reply above you agree to the rules you agreed to when joining Sailnet.
Click Here to view those rules.

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the SailNet Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
Please note: After entering 3 characters a list of Usernames already in use will appear and the list will disappear once a valid Username is entered.
User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

 
Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may post attachments
You may edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Looking for first sailboat advice edtolman Announcements and Suggestions Box 0 07-12-2006 02:05 AM
Need help and advice, buying first time sailboat ashley_nathan Boat Review and Purchase Forum 6 12-28-2004 12:57 PM
Mid -sized sailboat wanted hrmacdonald2000 Boat Review and Purchase Forum 4 11-02-2004 01:08 PM
Wanted: Crew to join Southbound cruising sailboat ambermoon Crew Wanted/Available 8 09-16-2004 07:07 AM
Sailboat Wanted Indonesia Ersmajones Crew Wanted/Available 2 02-26-2002 05:39 AM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 09:17 PM.

Add to My Yahoo!         
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.1
(c) Marine.com LLC 2000-2012

The SailNet.com store is owned and operated by a company independent of the SailNet.com forum. You are now leaving the SailNet forum. Click OK to continue or Cancel to return to the SailNet forum.