Just got first sailboat but.. - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 66 Old 01-10-2018 Thread Starter
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Just got first sailboat but..

She is grounded.
I think I've attached a picture I'm new to this forum.
I'm so excited that I'm this close to being able to start sailing but very frustrated as I've been trying to move her for a couple of weeks now. I'm about a mile north of Green Cove Springs marina on St John's River where she lost her hankering during a storm and blew in toward shore. The water has been very low ever since that storm. Local say just wait on the tide to get higher but nobody knows when that might be if it might be. Local cops have written me tickets for the boat being there and I really need to get out of here as soon as possible any advice on moving a grounded sailboat would be awesome. She is a Bristol 24 and draws 3 1/2 feet.
Calling seatow or tow boat us arenot options way to expensive. I have one oversized anchor and one maybe slightly under size anchor chain lines ratchet straps a comealong and cockpitwinches. All combinations I've been trying for weeks. I can and have moved her some but not towards the deeper water.
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Last edited by Joe.sea; 01-10-2018 at 01:48 AM. Reason: Typos
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post #2 of 66 Old 01-10-2018
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Re: Just got first sailboat but..

How far do you have to move it before it floats?

One option is to use a halyard to pull the boat over on it's side and haul here to deeper water.
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post #3 of 66 Old 01-10-2018
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Quote:
Originally Posted by knuterikt View Post

One option is to use a halyard to pull the boat over on it's side and haul here to deeper water.
Yes, someone posted a video on here some time ago of people moving a sailboat under a bridge by using the halyard line from the top of the mast to an extension ladder rigged from the side of the deck out to the side, like an outrigger and with someone sitting way out on the end of the extension ladder, hanging by the halyard, causing the boat to heel way over on the side pulling the keel over on its side and making the draft of the boat very shallow.

You could maybe run the halyard over to that deck and pull the sailboat way over on its side.
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post #4 of 66 Old 01-10-2018
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Re: Just got first sailboat but..

Have a look at this article https://www.cruisingworld.com/how/wh...aground#page-2
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post #5 of 66 Old 01-10-2018
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Re: Just got first sailboat but..

The next full moon on Jan. 31st should produce higher than normal tides. If the full moon doesn't float her, have a power boat standing by and tie off to a halyard/s, careen her over as needed.
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post #6 of 66 Old 01-10-2018
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Re: Just got first sailboat but..

umm...tide information is not a dark art. A quick google search should give you all of the tide times and heights for your location for the next year. Storm surges and winds are a factor but these are also pretty predictable 24-48 hours in advance. I would worry much more about hull damge currently hidden or caused by the attempts to float her.
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post #7 of 66 Old 01-10-2018
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Re: Just got first sailboat but..

Sorry about the jam you're in. Your next step is to buy tow insurance (TowboatUS or SeaTow), which runs about $150 per year. I don't think it will help for this recovery, but it's silly not to have it. You'd be floating free by now.

I hope that pic is from low tide, as it seems the water is a foot or two below the waterline. In your position, I know I would try to pull her over by the halyard, but I would reinforce the shrouds on the opposite side with a taught line to the mast head. Perhaps another halyard. Wait for full high tide and perhaps pull from that dock in the pic. Will she float at the dock?

I'm worried the keel has set into the seabed, given her weight is not buoyed at low tide. Your rudder is a bigger concern, especially as you pull her over. It's also possible you damage the mast and/or rigging, buy you're already in a bad place.

With all the lines run, I assume you've been aboard and secured every thru hull. Once free, you are going to have to haul her out of the water for a hull and rudder inspection. I hope the budget can take that on, it's nearly mandatory.

Good luck. Let us know how it goes.


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post #8 of 66 Old 01-10-2018
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Re: Just got first sailboat but..

Let me guess ... you got this boat for a really good price because the former owner couldn't get her floating again and knew he was going to start getting fined? I'm worried that you might have fallen for the "too good of a deal to pass up" trap.

Find some friends to help. A lot of brute force may be required in _additional_ to the techniques suggested.

I saw a video where the they did the "hang something off the side trick" by hanging empty plastic 55 gallon drums off the side, then using a small pump to fill them with water. It allows you to easily get a huge amount of weight on the side without needing a crane to set it up. Start heeling the boat well ahead of high tide. In fact, start right away to see how much weight you need to use to get her to really heel. With 3.5' draft, and estimating that you need to come up a foot before she'll float, you'll need to heel her about 35 degrees. I'm guessing from the picture that she's the size of boat that will have about 1000 pounds in the keel.

Get a halyard hung over the deep water side of the boat and start adding weight to it. Get some lines connected to something solid in the direction of deep water (pier, anchor, whatever you can find). Get the dragging lines connected to winches or cumalongs or anything that can give you mechanical advantage. Alternate between adding weight to heel her and ratcheting on the drag lines. If the bottom is rocky you're going to want to focus more on the heeling, as dragging her over rocks is going to damage the keel bottom. If the bottom is mud you may be able to drag her through the mud without much damage.

Good luck.
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post #9 of 66 Old 01-10-2018
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Re: Just got first sailboat but..

Hard to judge the depth...but any chance of simply wading out there with a shovel at low tide and attempting to dig out around the keel and rudder (especially rudder) a bit in order to aid efforts outline above? Maybe make sure it's not wedged in between underwater objects? My big worry is that the rudder is stuck in the mud (or worse) and when you start heeling the boat over from the masthead to free her, you'll damage/destroy the rudder. At least you'll relieve some of the levering stresses and have a better idea of what's happening if it's possible to get out there and feel around.

Or maybe the picture is deceptive and it's too deep.

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post #10 of 66 Old 01-10-2018
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Re: Just got first sailboat but..

Do you ever get offshore winds there?

If so, you could try setting sail and backing the jib with high tide. The wind put her up there, so maybe it can get it off too. Be patient. It's a 6000 lb boat stuck in the mud, it won't happen quick, but it's worth a try.
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