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So i finally got my own boat and took her out today for the first time... enjoy the story.

alright so we get the boat out there all is good... get her in the water fine. push off the dock, motor out a little ways and raise the main and the jib. All is going good were pretty much just trial and error figuring the wind out. So we do this for like 3-4 hours find a nice little cove with a beach for next time and decide to head back in about 4 oclock. We've kinda just been runnin with the wind (away from the marina and boat ramp) and decide to be lazy and take the sails down and just motor her back in. We get the motor started but about 5 min later it dies for some reason. So we decide not to be lazy raise the jib back up and sail her in. Well we're not the best sailors yet. Next thing we know where slowly buy surely heading into the dam. Try the motor again still not turning over. So about 10 min later and a pretty decent impact my boat is getting thrashed againts a rock dam. There's not a boat in site to come help us and we have zero ideas. waters coming over the portside, lines are everywhere, stuffs breaking it was bad. We end up just getting out of the boat and chilling on the rocks as i watch my new toy get thrashed against the rocks. It'd be abotu an hour walk back to the marina so that's our last option. I got back on the boat to grab a shirt or something and try the motor again. It fired up! So as my brother and my freind are pushing me off i somehow get about 100 yards away from the dam under motor. What do you know the wooden part that connects the motor to the boat snaps and i grab the engine to save it from sinking to the bottom of the lake. so now i'm screwed... again. My brother and my friend are still on the damn. I'm in the middle of the lake. i drop anchor and ditch the boat and swim to my brother and friend. just as were about to hike it back to the marina we see our rescue boat on the horizon. i swim back out to my boat and hook up the towline to get towed in. The rudder had some damage while getting thrashed agianst the rocks so i'm litterally holding the rudder in the water (which is reaaally really hard) while were getting towed back to the marina. As i'm getting towed away i see a cop picking up my brother and friend. 30 min tow ride later were at the marina. we get the trailer ready. We had quite the time getting her back on the trailer because my truck hitch sits pretty high and i haven't gotten a drop down hitch yet so the back end of the trailer kept getting caught. About an hour later (and some help from some mroe expirienced boaters) we got her all hooked up and finally got her home. We finally got home around 9:00. We started heading in at 4:00. Haha. Some how we got outa this thing with no tickets which is a mircale casue she's not registered yet and all we had were 3 lifejackets.Overall it was a great day adn i still had a lot of fun.

Things that broke/need fixed:
Rudder
Motor Mount
2 Iphones
1 Blackberry
my pride haha
 

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Really? wow, I hope my first experience doen't go like yours did. Sounds like a CF to me. Glad you and your friends are ok. When you mentioned the dam I was thinking I'd need to youtube a clip from a helicopter showing your boat getting sucked into the spillway gate :eek:

So besides the boat repairs are you gonna replace your friend's phones?

Better sailing next time.

NM your a wildcat :p
 

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Sounds like some more preparation is in order before the next trip, starting with registering the boat ;)

Luckily no one was hurt or killed, but I respect you posting your experience so others can learn from it, as I'm sure you did.

So you don't feel alone with your experience in being unprepared, my first time out when I was 18 on a new to me runabout we ended the day with a ride in an Annapolis City Police car and a call from the Coast Guard.

Some of us learn the hard way and get lucky I guess...
 

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Wow! And you still consider it a great experience. You now know lots of things not to do. Like not getting close to dams or rocks, making sure your boat is properly registered, that you have appropriate safety gear (life jackets), that the engine is in working order and the mount for it is in good condition, a proper hitch for the trailer, etc. The SJ21 is a tough little boat and you'll have lots of fun with it, but treat it a bit better in the future. You shouldn't be breaking things...it gets expensive. If you haven't done so already, get a good book on sailing basics (leave the complicated stuff for later) and commit it to memory...it'll help things tremendously.

Finally, it is risky to swim to shore, even for good swimmers, because distance is hard to judge and if you misjudge, you might be in fatal trouble. I once rescued a swimmer mid river (1 1/2 miles wide at that point) at dusk in a river with lots of power boats zipping around. We just happened by luck to be more or less on a course to encounter him. I'm not sure whether he would have made it without us.

Thanks for your post....It should be helpful to lots of new sailors, and perhaps even to some experienced ones.
 

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Wow! And you still consider it a great experience. You now know lots of things not to do.
Well yeah, are not the things that don't kill you suppose to make you stronger? :rolleyes:

Travesty...I mean TravisT. (sorry, I sometimes can't help myself):D Isn't sailing a wonderful pass time...well up to the dam and rocks point? I must admit I don't agree with your learning methods(talk about a STEEP learning curve), but I do admire your attitude. I'm just glad everone was OK and the boat still floats. Ya got away with it this time with only a few bumps and bruises...to boat and your pride maybe.:eek:

I too would agree you should get some basics under your belt and have an experienced sailor/friend sail with you until you're comfortable with the boat. Taking other people out for that first sail with your level of expertise, as you now know, probably wasn't your best idea of the day. As a skipper, it's your responsibility to keep your crew safe. Until that happens, better to stick with someone experienced. Ya gotta start somewhere.

All that said, your not the only one capable of less than perfect ideas. When I first started out sailing my Laser, I'd push myself and the boat to our limits and past my endurance. On one such day I'd fallen out of the boat so many times I knew if I fell out again, I'd probably not have the strength to get back in. So after five hours of hard sailing, I called it a day. I sailed under the Melbourne (FL.) bridge on a plane when I experienced a total wind shift. I'm not sure what happened, but I can guess. The boom hit me in the jaw and the next thing I knew, I was under about three feet of water watching a shoe float by above...crap, that's MY shoe!

Everything turn out OK although I lost both shoes, a sailing glove, my favorite water bottle, both my regular eye and sunglasses (try de-rigging a Laser by memory and looking thru a little hole made by curling an index finger forming an "O"...try it, it works!) and one mighty fine ham and Swiss cheese sandwich on rye. Not counting the sandwich, I figure that 5 hours of great sailing came in at a little over $100.00 an hour. Two years later, I lost two teeth on the upper left side of my mouth due to fractured roots and they had become abscessed. Although being hit by a boom, my thoughts are still that it was one of my best days of sailing! :confused:

Things I did right:

Picked a great day for a sail.
Wore my PFD.
Had some good prior sailing instruction.

Some I did wrong:

Disregarded some of my good sailing instruction.
Pushed myself past my point of endurance.
I sailed under a causeway bridge distracted by Pelicans trying to poop on me. (IE, always pay attention to conditions around you)
Needed a PFD with more buoyancy or loose some weight.
Should have used shorter spectacle lanyards.
Failed to glue heels to the inside of my top-siders.
Found out that booms are NOT really considered good dental hygiene.
Didn't eat my damn sandwich FIRST.

Anyway, good luck with the repairs and SAIL ON! :D
 

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Well, as they say, every sail is an adventure!
 

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:eek: I think I'll just nail my new boat to the dock and use her for barbeques! Thanks for sharing your "experience!" I guess stay tuned for what happens when I get mine this weekend. :laugher
 
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