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Sugar scoop transom safety in big seas

48593 Views 108 Replies 24 Participants Last post by  jzk
I have a question regarding sugar scoop transom safety in big following seas. It would seem like such a transom might be a liability if a big wave was to crash on it. Same with a transom mounted swim platform, that could possibly be ripped out from it's mounting by a crashing wave.
Any thoughts or experiences?
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Would add many boats now have the sugar scoop with open transom. When done with the typical absence of a bridge deck in front of the companionway unless the duck boards start high up and there is at least 6-8" of solid glass below them the risk of down flooding is high.
Admittedly its a PIA to have to pick up your feet to step into the companionway but this threshold keeps water out. Not only from a pooping but even the more common side boarding sea.
Its common to sail with the companionway open on nice days. Its common to open it for change of watch, crew going up or down even on lousy days. I've seen several good sized new boats where the combination of no threshold and a direct path for green boarding water makes them all too vulnerable to downflooding.
Although I have a threshold when offshore I place two duck boards that slide into slots closing off the aft section of the cockpit. They stop 6" above the cockpit sole so drainage is unaffected but cut down significantly on amount and force of any aft boarding sea.
Finally it is clearly preferable the sugar scoop be part of the original female mold not glassed in as an afterthought as it will be stronger.
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You fall off a wave. To not broach you head down and slow up in the trough. The wind wave not the swell hits you in the back. Don't think you're doing high double digits like the open boats nor surfing all the time.
The open boat have very,very solid houses and companion ways. They are not "production boats".
Although I have limited experience I have filled the cockpit several times on different boats. Usually on a broad reach as the storm/gale is just developing. Two wave trains. Sea boards from aft corner.
I agree with the concept of a open stern. I think is safer to not depend on scuppers. I have two scuppers in the front of my cockpit but the cockpit is open under the helm seat and only partially closed even with storm boards in.
I think there is nothing unsafe about a sugar scoop (I have one) nor a open stern.
The stern/cockpit of the open boats is not the design on the production boats you allude to in your other thread. I continue to believe those designs are unsafe. I think these boats are inherently unsafe well before two flags with black boxes go up. I think EU ocean rating is meaningless. Getting pooped is not the only setting for down flooding.
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Have a JSD, sugar scoop and open transom which can be nearly closed. That's my vote. Also have doors and duck boards with true seahood to close companionway. Figure hard Bimini may disappear but with good closure of boat and no aft facing glass on house nor hatches down flooding is not a concern.
I voted with my pocketbook and risk of my life. I will say again filling the cockpit is not that unusual. Even getting pooped is not the one in a million Smackdaddy suggests. I've limited experience and I've been pooped several times. ( not yet on current boat although have had seas board from aft on this boat. But not the slam pinning you to the wheel).
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