Give me a break: Techniques for Heaving-To - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 45 Old 11-14-2012 Thread Starter
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Give me a break: Techniques for Heaving-To

I recently blogged about our techniques for heaving to in this post.

What about you? Do you practice heaving-to? Does your boat heave-to easily? Do you consider it a viable storm tactic?
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post #2 of 45 Old 11-14-2012
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Re: Give me a break: Techniques for Heaving-To

Thanks for the write-up Kev. I haven't practiced heaving-to in anything but mild conditions. I am not following why you winch the genoa onto the windward side b/f tacking in windier conditions. If the tack is done slowly, does the genoa pop full of air as violently? (when heaving-to I usually coast in irons for a few seconds to kill most of my forward momentum, then complete the tack).

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post #3 of 45 Old 11-14-2012
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Re: Give me a break: Techniques for Heaving-To

Yes, in my opinion when all hell is braking loose, its comforting to know you can heave-to and do it while you still can. It is the best tactic if a) you do or can come about safely and b) have practiced and know how your boat behaves and the sail combinations - my boat only requires a triple reefed main and some high-freeboard boats don't need a foresail.
Its also important to choose the proper tack, so not to put the boat in danger or loose too much ground due to drift...
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post #4 of 45 Old 11-14-2012
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Re: Give me a break: Techniques for Heaving-To

Have heaved to a number of times but with a storm jib hanked on to my inner fore stay - which I added to my old boat. Worked like a charm, longest was for 28 hours.

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post #5 of 45 Old 11-14-2012
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Re: Give me a break: Techniques for Heaving-To

Yep, hove to through a nasty storm about 30 miles from the St Augustine inlet this summer. My son thought I was a pretty good sailor when we calmly went below drank a diet coke and watched it blow all around us. When it was clear we sailed to the inlet and headed for an anchorage, no excitement.

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post #6 of 45 Old 11-14-2012
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Re: Give me a break: Techniques for Heaving-To

Absolutely. My XO can only take so much excitement and heaving to is a chance to recouperate and wait for things to settle down. I've only done it on the Hudson River and Long Island Sound, and then only for an hour or two when a strong wind against a strong tide turned a fun afternoon not so fun with rough whitecaps. Both times I knew the conditions would rapidly improve towards evening and they did. Amazing how things calm down and seem serene where a minute before she was frightened for our lives. Not so calm that we ate dinner, but calm enough that we had a drink and smiled.

Your write up is great - well written. Thanks for sharing.
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post #7 of 45 Old 11-14-2012
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Re: Give me a break: Techniques for Heaving-To

Agreed. Very well written and informative.
Everyone should know how their boat performs when hove-to.
Ever heard of fore reaching? Drop or furl the jib and cheat upwind as much as you can without getting in irons. Requires much more attention then heaving-to.
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post #8 of 45 Old 11-14-2012 Thread Starter
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Re: Give me a break: Techniques for Heaving-To

Quote:
Originally Posted by Barquito View Post
I am not following why you winch the genoa onto the windward side b/f tacking in windier conditions. If the tack is done slowly, does the genoa pop full of air as violently? (when heaving-to I usually coast in irons for a few seconds to kill most of my forward momentum, then complete the tack).
Sometimes we find it tricky to do a slow, controled tack in windy/wavy conditions, so winching the reefed foresail over keeps things settled and prevents a slamming tack. The sail can flop madly while in irons during these conditions too, and so pulling the sail over also saves some wear. In reality, we rarely need this method and find a simple tack without releasing the genny sheet is just fine in good weather.
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Last edited by kwaltersmi; 11-15-2012 at 10:14 AM.
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post #9 of 45 Old 11-14-2012
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Re: Give me a break: Techniques for Heaving-To

Kevin:
I heave to at the end of the day when its time to drop the outboard to motor into the slip. It provides a stable platform to go forward on deck to drop the jib. At that point my wife controls the tiller so we don't tack and I drop and flake the mainsail.
I find the Helms 25 doesn't stop completely and I have experimented with different sail and tiller settings. I should try different centerboard settings next time to see if I can stop all forward movement.

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post #10 of 45 Old 11-14-2012
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Re: Give me a break: Techniques for Heaving-To

Mine takes a bit of work to heave to, no furling on the genoa, fin keel etc, but it does work. Only thing to add to your discussion really is to try and hove to on a starboard tack if possible to at least put you one higher in the stand-on vessel pecking order.
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