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Discussion Starter · #1 ·

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This article has an update at the end. Very unfortunate.

“UPDATE: As Max Delannoy was taking the helm for his night shift, the boom violently hit him in the head. Philippe Anglade, who was in the cockpit, was able to hold him back from falling into the water, but he died suddenly.”

 

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not sure if this is the boat model in question
the boom seems relatively low?
this is a tragedy and a remainder.
just heartbreaking
 

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Photo shows boom is broken. Unclear when that happened. Mayday was sent around midnight on the 26/27 NOV. Conditions apparently Force 8, with seas 4-5 m high. Cruise ship arrived evening of 27th, with wind increasing to 40kts around 21h30 during attempted rescue. They then decided to wait for daylight - 28NOV before taking crew off. It appears that the vessel involved, Agecanonix, is an X 4.3
 

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I wonder what percent of cruising deaths are boom/head wack related?
We have a boom brake fitted and generally keep it pretty tight.
 

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I'm guessing an accidental jib caused the boom to break which then hit him in the head. The boom on that boat seems to be plenty high enough. RIP
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
When we came across the Atlantic from France to the Caribbean this year we had the Autopilot click off. We were dead down wind and did a gybe in about 35 knots (true). It broke every block on the mainsheet and the traveler. It's just went BANG and there was confetti of metal.
As it's a cruising boat the boom is high. But if it had connected with someone 😕

The force in an accidental gybe is tremendous.
 

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When we came across the Atlantic from France to the Caribbean this year we had the Autopilot click off. We were dead down wind and did a gybe in about 35 knots (true). It broke every block on the mainsheet and the traveler. It's just went BANG and there was confetti of metal.
As it's a cruising boat the boom is high. But if it had connected with someone 😕

The force in an accidental gybe is tremendous.
Did you have a jib preventer or break of some sort that failed?
 

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hmmmm DDW is tricky and with swept back spreader the main (boom) is cannot go all the way out and is MORE subject to jibes and getting back winded. Rig a jibe preventer or use a brake.

I try not to sail DDW in stronger than 15 True... 10 or so apparent. If I would go below I would head up a bit to provide more jib insurance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Did you have a jib preventer or break of some sort that failed?

Yes, the gybe preventer blew into 1,000 pieces of fluff like a ticker tape parade.
I have it set for about 600 kgs so its designed to break without pinning the boat in a knock-down when the crew is below. But that stayed intact, the preventer line itself broke. :(
Yes, it would have been impossible to have a crew member on deck at that wind speed whilst DDW. I would have brought it up to a safe wind angle before going forward.
One of the problems with short handed / Solo is that a squall/wind shift at night can easily put 150 degree wind angle to 190 in about 2 seconds whilst the wind speed is doubling.

Mark
 

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I have rigged preventers a couple of times now and none I feel were going to save me or the rig. The last time I got into long term conditions that were likely to cause a violent gybe I spend 3 days NOT going the real direction I wanted to reduce the cause of it happening (it still did a few times). That was just winds into the 30s and seas of 10-15'. It scares the poop out of me to think about conditions worst and I was 110% an idiot for getting into those conditions.
 

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DDW in 35 kn. Do you really need a mainsail? Wouldn't a reefed headsail suffice, maybe adjust the course to a deep broad reach? I'm Just trying to understand the thought process. I once did 30 + hours with only a handkerchief of a jib in pretty decent seas in < 35 kn. I don't think I'd have gotten there faster had I raised the main.
 

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Sometimes it may be about how safely you can drop the main. Lots of decisions don't hold up to hindsight.
 

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It may make sense as wind pipes up and you're facing hrs of wind on the stern to drop the main and use the roller furling genny.... which you can reef by rolling in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
DDW in 35 kn. Do you really need a mainsail? Wouldn't a reefed headsail suffice, maybe adjust the course to a deep broad reach?
OK, I don't want to hp into the details of my minor problem in a thread about a tragedy.
But.
We were we were nit actually DDW before I went off watch.
It was as close the DDW as you can safely go in those conditions. There's a point in my boat where all the sails are full, about 150 degrees.
When I went down to my bunny rug leaving Marjorie on watch 2 things happened, the wind picked up greatly. (it was not a tropical squall, but a normal subtropical 15 minute blast.
It helped, or alone, the AP stopped, the boat slewed and we gybed.
 

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I have been there for that type of thing in two separate ways. I have been on a course of 135-140 degrees and got hit with a forceful gust that was roughly also a 60 degree windshift which jibed the main instantaneously. As the boom started to go, I reversed the wheel but the sheet caught Barbara who was sitting on the the former windward side of the cockpit. The spun wheel didn't prevent the jibe, but it reduced the force a lot.

But the other way that has happened is in a large quartering sea under autopilot. In that case the boat was solidly broad reached in some big wind and waves. A bigger wave at an odd angle caught the stern and spun the boat into a jibe. This was a full keel boat and even with killing the autopilot and spinning the wheel we could not reverse what was essentially a death roll until we cut the preventer.

Jeff
 

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I have been there for that type of thing in two separate ways. I have been on a course of 135-140 degrees and got hit with a forceful gust that was roughly also a 60 degree windshift which jibed the main instantaneously. As the boom started to go, I reversed the wheel but the sheet caught Barbara who was sitting on the the former windward side of the cockpit. The spun wheel didn't prevent the jibe, but it reduced the force a lot.

But the other way that has happened is in a large quartering sea under autopilot. In that case the boat was solidly broad reached in some big wind and waves. A bigger wave at an odd angle caught the stern and spun the boat into a jibe. This was a full keel boat and even with killing the autopilot and spinning the wheel we could not reverse what was essentially a death roll until we cut the preventer.

Jeff
Those large quartering seas are hard on an AP which really can't turn the helm the amount required.... at least my below decks Alpha 3000. The AP makes relatively small corrections. Mine probably can move the rudder post at most 15 degrees either way (guess). I pretty much hand steer in large quartering seas. My experience was that the AP led by the wave rounded up to a beam reach... way over powered.. and the AP simply could not hold the broad reach.
 

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But you shouldn't need much of a main for that purpose. I have a fractional and the main is huge... with swept back spreaders it tends to misbehave. And when those huge quartering waves drives the boat... rudder is not terribly effective to begin with.
 
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