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Smack,
Do you want to keep to check lists or do you want to morph over to "damage control"? From a DC point of view, bolt cutters are practically useless - they will just chew on cable and not make a swift cut. You want cable cutters (they have a notched cutting face) and on the boat you're considering, you want a pair with three foot handles. Cable cutters are much more effective if the cable is under tension (not always the case if the rig is down). You then need to resort to a carbide bladed hacksaw. Better still, pull the clevis pins. A pair of long handled radiator pliers works great as long as you don't bend the ends of your cotter pins into curly "Q"s. A big pair of diagonal cutters is helpful here too. Better still is using a single piece of monel or SS welding wire to "clip" the two turnbuckle bolts together. Much faster to pull a "clip" than a pair of cotters. I personally never have lost a rig (but I have broken a shroud and a stay before) and the above is from a good friend of mine who was on board a Santa Cruz 52 and an old IOR boat when they lost their rigs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Good point George. Not something you'll be doing on your shakedown - unless of course you're completely screwed anyway. At that point, as you're cutting away your downed mast, the actual "real" cruise won't matter much.

Rig cutting nuked from the list.
 

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Smack,
O.K., next question: Are you looking for a "test plan" of thinks to do/look out for on the shakedown sail or a check list of equipment/modifications? The later can be quite extensive and specific to your aspirations/risk tolerance/pocket book. The checklist I use is from the NORCAL OYRA and is pretty comprehensive. Is that what you are looking for? If folks are interested, I can try to repost it here.

<O:pThis is the testing we did in preparation for the Pacific Cup: A 400NM and 700NM test of the SSB and also tested the Sailmail connection by downloading GRIB files. We did "hose tests" on all the hatches as well as a "bucket test" on the engine access hatch. We measured all electrical loads and constructed an energy management plan to forecast recharging schedules. We deployed the emergency tiller as well as deploying the emergency rudder in under 5 minutes and executed a 360 turn in under two minutes. We simulated a life raft deployment in under 90 seconds (it was a valise that we carried in the cabin). All helmsmen had to do two successful COB pickups under sail (one from windward and the other from a spinnaker run). Three quarters of us held current safety at sea and first aid certificates. We deployed the Jordan Drogue, storm jib (on a removable inner forestay) and a storm trysail. The boat had sailed down from <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com
Seattle </st1:City>
after a Biron Toss rigging makeover so we knew that the rig design was sound. We did have Hansen rigging recheck everything as well as do a tune and Kame from Pineapple Sails inspected our sail inventory (one main, four spinnakers, four headsails and two storm sails.)<O:p
 

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Someone posted to test the various types of sea sickness pills to see which one works the best on each person in the crew. And that this should be done on land well ahead of time. I guess that's shaking down the pills, but still might be good to have on the list. No sense taking something for the fisrt time underway and finding out it affects you to an extraordinary degree -- making you very sleepy, for instance.
 

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Smack,

Just roll the dice, man. The future is already written. Besides, the sheep on your boat will sing an opera if you're not doing something right. Just ask Jags.
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
George - definitely a test PLAN. This list is assuming that you've already passed the bonehead test on equipment, and already have all the stuff you're supposed to have on the boat. And it's all charged up, current and ready to rock.

That's why your rig snip point made sense. This is the final shakedown. It's not an exercise in what to PUT on the boat - there's plenty of lists for that - it's a list of items to push and how to push them so that you're comfortable that everything you have is sound and seaworthy.

It's kind of a subtle difference - and one that I've not seen much info on. So, your write up works great. (BTW - the last part got cut. Don't leave me hanging brew!)

Bene - you're on the list, dude. Nice touch with the puke prevention.

Pain - I'm still trying to get my head around that one. It is pretty freakin' funny. And that dude is definitely willing to roll the dice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
You're in RD. First, because you make a good point. Second, and most importantly, because you live in Weird City. Rock on, dude!
 

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Discussion Starter · #31 ·
I have this strange feeling that someone wants to add something to the list.

All teed up and ready to rock.
 

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I am really surprised that I only learned of this thread this very evening.
Although I usually check the current posts everyday, somehow this thread eluded me.

Smack, I truly don't think there is any possible way to define a checklist that would be applicable to everyone.

Some of us won't drive our car for longer than a week without checking the tire pressure and oil level. Some of us will go for months. Some of us don't think about it at all. And if it's wasn't for the fact that we had periodic scheduled maintenance, our cars would stop running someday and leave us stranded on the side of the road.

And then there are those instances where the most diligent and conscientious person imaginable is driving down the road and a huge fuc&ing boulder falls on them and crushes them to pulp.

I guess what I'm saying is that while the theories abound about whether it's better to have a fast boat in order to outrun the nasty stuff or a slow strong boat that can withstand a beating. Or whether a particular item or piece of gear that you hope you will never need is better than another piece of gear that you hope you will never need. Or whether or not to crimp or solder a piece of wire or to do both. Whether to use 5200 or silicone to caulk your ports.
While it's all well and good to debate these and all the other endless fine points of proper seamanship. When the Shi# hits the fan, it's whether or not you can keep a cool head and whether or not you can suck it up and figure out a way to jury rig a rudder. Or repair a gooseneck fitting with a bunch of spare crap that you find in long forgotten cupboards.
The very nature of an emergency is the the fact that often you aren't prepared for it.

My best advice is that one should be adventurous. One should be prudent. One should be realistic. But most importantly, one should be responsible.
That doesn't mean that one shouldn't be willing to take chances or to push the envelope. It just means that one should always be prepared to take responsibility for one's choices and decisions. No excuses, no whining or bitching and no blaming anybody else for one's own shortcomings.

And for what it's worth, people would be amazed at what one can accomplish with a hacksaw and a whole lot of adrenalin. :eek:

And finally, when we finally get to the point where we realize that it's all beyond our control, a strong prayer life is of more comfort than the best epirb. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #33 · (Edited)
Wow Knot - that is seriously the best post....ever! No doubt. Definitely the definitive word on the sailing mindset as far as I'm concerned.

I'm printing it and 5200ing it to my bulkhead. Others should as well.

Added to the SSL under "Rigging" - but really is the entire philosophy of sailing IMRWO.
 

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A lot of good advice here, but some of it goes a bit far. Whoever suggested sending out the fuel tanks for steam cleaning has a very different boat from any I would take on this trip. Tanks don't just come out and get sent out.

Most of the items suggested are good. There is also a general philosophy about testing and fixing that should be kept in mind. Some kinds of tests have diminishing returns -- if you make a major change, there is also the risk that the change itself will introduce new problems. After you change the standing rigging, it needs a stress test to make sure the new installation was done right.

Even minor tests require thinking through the process. For example, a test of the inflatable PFD will use it; you then have to put in a new CO2 cartridge. You can't test the new one without using it up. So make sure you understand how to install the new one right.

Speaking of which, I don't recall anyone saying you should make sure everyone knows where the PFDs are, how they are fitted, how they work (especially if inflatable), how they fit, and are they comfortable enough to wear. I would also add to the preflight checklist consideration of jerry cans. If you plan to use them, either for fuel or water, try out the installation first. Make sure they are really secure and not in the way of something vital. And you know how you will be able to use them in adverse circumstances.

I also did not see anyone mention MOB gear. Test how you would recover an MOB, especially how to bring one aboard.
 

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Discussion Starter · #35 ·
Tweitz - awesome post dude. You are now all over the page 1 list.

As for the COB, I had already covered the crew side of testing what you have (life sling, etc.) on the page 1 list. Not that I'm bragging of course - it's just that I do A LOT of COB recoveries on my boat due to my sailing prowess and lovable personality.

Thanks again.
 

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Don Radcliffe
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Sorry, but almost all of the posters just don't get it. A shakedown sail is to test the boat and the crew, and you don't sit around thinking about what ifs, you GO SAILING!

Your shakedown program should build up gradually, but as a minimum, it should include:

1. A minumum 30 miles dead to weather in the open ocean with winds 20 knots or more. That will find the leaks far better than a hose, and will give you a chance to sort out seasick meds, reefing systems, motor cooling, tankage/vent leaks, and velocity made good under various sail/motor combinations. It would be best to beat all night long, but then the admiral would probably mutiny....

2. Reaching or running in winds over 30 knot and seas to match, to test the autopilot and sailplan for those conditions.

3. Anchoring out for at least 5 nights, to test anchoring systems/technique, electrical draw, refrigeration/cooking, heaters or cooling fans, bunks, etc.

4. A minimum passage of 2 full nights, which will let you check out the electrical system, night lighting, navigation, weather forecasting, communications, crew fatigue, AIS/radar/visual traffic avoidance, and a whole host of other critical factors.

It may be hard to meet the first two tests in your area, but if you can the boat is ready for over 98% of the conditions you will experience while cruising. The last test is the most important, and it is critical that you do that shakedown with the crew that you will be with. That is the time to find out how personalities (including yours) can cope with with stress, fatigue and the inevitable breakdown of all those new fancy systems you installed. It is also really important to try to fix things yourself as there won't be any shiprights/riggers/mechanics/electronic techs out there where you are. Spend your time on the shakedowns reading the manuals and operating all the systems AT SEA.
 

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Smack,

You have to check your through-hulls, too. Head offshore for at least 12 hours, open all of the through-hulls and let them run clean for about 4 hours. Then inspect them REAL close.

While you're doing that, you should test your radio and batteries to verify their flood ratings. Let them both be submerged in seawater for at least 3 hours during the through-hull test. It's important to find out if they'll work in a real "situation".
 

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Discussion Starter · #38 ·
don - you made the list. Pain - you sunk my boat you bastard. But the batteries were good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #40 ·
When I run across great articles - and great examples of the kind of stuff that fascinates me about sailing, I, of course, can't help but spew them ALL OVER THE FREAKIN' FORUM. It's just what I do...

To that end, here's a GREAT article about a TransPac voyage gone haywire aboard a Catalina 36, with great analyis on what went wrong:

How about upgrade everything? Here's a story about a coastal cruiser going bluewater, does it sound like fun? They got about 200 miles.

EQUIPPED TO SURVIVE (tm) - Lessons Learned: Sailing to Hawaii...The First Attempt by Arnold Rowe
The quote from the analysis that is applicable to this thread, and in my opinion to many, many others I like to haunt (BFS, etc.) is this:

"Some failures, such as the port jib sheet catching and lifting up the bathroom deck hatch even when it was dogged down tight, should have been discovered during a shakedown cruise. All too often such cruises are little more than fair weather sails of limited duration. That's not unexpected, it's human nature at work. It's the rare person who goes looking for poor weather in which to go to sea. Unfortunately, fair weather and short trips won't reveal problems that will only occur under worse conditions or extended cruises. The leaks as a result of water on deck are another example of this sort of problem that can be discovered and cured with a properly challenging shakedown. As Rowe noted, these were not conditions he'd ever experienced before with PANDA, but it is one that could almost be guaranteed on a trans-Pacific cruise, and one that often shows up such deficiencies. Rowe noted, "the obvious things such a leaky deck to hull joint, leaky ports, etc, ... should have been looked at much harder."

Right on.
 
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