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Old 09-01-2013, 09:41   #316
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Re: Attempted Trip to Bermuda

ROTFL! Your candor is amazing, BO! You pull no punches at all. You really take it like a man, gotta give you that.

I know you aren't gonna feel right until you find that fin. You know it, too. LOL!

Rocketman is right. Generally, when heeled beyond a certain point, a boat will tend to ROUND UP (high tech sailor-speak for pointing up towards where the wind is coming from) and you get less drive from the sails. You may even lose way altogether. But as the rudder bites, if your wheel or tiller is still holding you off the wind, you might fall off enough and in time to start to boogie again. Else, you end up in a condition known as, "In Irons" which is embarrasking. With the wind anywhere on the beam, try just lashing your tiller or wheel amidships, or maybe with the rudder slightly off the wind. See if the boat doesn't steer itself, relative to the wind. You may have to adjust your sails a bit. You can ease your main slightly if she wants to point up too far. Ease the jib if she wants to fall off to far. Rudder should be trying to set you down off the wind slightly so with everything balanced properly, when you heel way over you get just the effect you noticed on your last outing. Wa-LAH! Your boat will now magically steer itself! Well, relative to the wind direction, varying with the wind force. This works best with the wind abeam, or slightly forward of the beam. If the wind changes, the boat changes course with the wind. Bad for keeping it going directly for a particular waypoint or destination, but good to keep the boat sailing, going somewhere, hopefully in at least the right general direction. This lets you concentrate on other things besides steering, like figuring out which way another vessel is moving and if you should steer to avoid him or if you should maintain course and let him move for you. (Start studying the Rules Of The Road! That's really, really important stuff! http://www.uscg.mil/directives/cim/1...m_16672_2d.pdf to download it for free. About 10MB) Gives you time to take a quick whizz or do some quick navigation chores or grab a brewski or eat some of last night's leftover pizza or maybe just call someone and tell them ha ha my boat is steering itself so neener neener neener. Mostly it just lets you relax a bit and de-stress while you just chill in the cockpit and keep a proper lookout.

BTW it is a good idea to have a hardcopy of the Rules on your boat. Skip back to the back pages and read a bit if you are having trouble falling asleep LOL! Seriously... do you have it down pat yet, who has to turn for who and why and when and where? Collisions are such a drag. If you AND the other guy know and follow the rules, there won't be a collision. If only you or only he knows the rules, you might have a problem. If neither of you know the rules, you got a big problem. Only good luck and serious prayer will keep you safe, then, and sometimes the Almighty just lets us mess up and pay the price when we seem determined to do so.

Anyway congratulations on the progress. Bermuda isn't looking so crazy or impossible any more, is it?
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Old 09-01-2013, 10:12   #317
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Re: Attempted Trip to Bermuda

Yeah, real shame about that flipper - I heard that it was a family heirloom that came over on the Mayflower But at least he has another one .


Another way to think about the heeling thing is to see your hull as the pivot point between keel and sails - as the winds pushes the sails it leans the mast down and the keel rises. the boat stays where it is - just it's the angle of the boat that changes!.....excess wind will spill off the sails as the angle increases.

Not a perfect description but close enough .

BTW more angle does not mean faster (and can often actually be slower!) - depends on the boat, on yours likely more angle than on a more modern beneteau / hunter etc but not 45 degrees!, and likely not even with the deck awash (apart from maybe an occassional wave).

If that Mainsail is as fooked as it sounds then you will discover the sailing experiance changes radically once replaced , especially once you get the hang of reefing it in conjunction with the foresail (a trial and error thing to discover the balance to set in different conditions (wind strength / wave conditions / boat heading) - after a bit of practice you will know own ballparks to quickly set (i.e. Force 5, one reef on the main and two rolls of the foresail or whatever etc etc) and thereafter only tweeks for each specific occassion.

So much advice - so little time .
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Old 09-01-2013, 19:30   #318
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Re: Attempted Trip to Bermuda

Thanks DOJ for your decriptive words on the heeling process. Just to let everyone know; When we were sailing BO's boat we were never even close to 45 degrees, maybe 20 to 30 at the most. We still had at least a foot to a foot and a half of clearance between the water and the gunnell. Not exactly washing the decks but I can remember the first time I was heeled over this much and more, it was certainly outside of my comfort range.
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Old 09-01-2013, 20:08   #319
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Re: Attempted Trip to Bermuda

Black Oak I love your writing style and look forward to the continuing saga. I have to say though, you are going about it all wrong. Those rags hanging on the mast are merely for conversation and mostly should be kept strapped to the boom or inside a bag or both. Real sailors run on the diesel about 99% of the time as near as I can tell.
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Old 09-01-2013, 20:30   #320
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Re: Attempted Trip to Bermuda

Hang in there BO. Stick with it and one day you'll be putting her rail in the water and her bow in the waves and laughing in delight. Obviously, from your last post, we don't want to do that just now. So no blue water yet.
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Old 09-01-2013, 21:19   #321
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Re: Attempted Trip to Bermuda

You're a rock star Rocketman! And respectful dialogue prevails.
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Old 09-01-2013, 21:36   #322
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Now that was a funny post. I was a commercial diver for a few years, hardhat, but all shallow work, nothing deep sea. What always shoved me out of my comfort zone were the creepy crawlies. In the winter especially the slimies and crawlies would gather around the warm headlamp, or the hot water leaking out of the wetsuit. Eels in the murky Hudson River would wrap themselves around the headlamp. Scared the living daylights out of me. I could shove myself into a pipeline like a bullet in a rifle, pump mud, hydroblast water intake racks - but the smallest water creature wriggling in the murk would drive me nuts.
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Old 09-01-2013, 22:25   #323
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Re: Attempted Trip to Bermuda

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Originally Posted by David_Old_Jersey View Post
Your comments in regard to the female half of the crew do not surprise me - my bet is that a lot of: "I just don't like boats - so I am staying ashore " is actually polite for: "I think you don't know what you are doing - and I have no confidence that you ever will, and am not willing to commit hari kari" .
That sounds familiar. My answer is "would you rather have me take up motorcycling?".
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Old 09-01-2013, 22:36   #324
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Re: Attempted Trip to Bermuda

I understand the trepidation of murky water. I have had it ever since being pinched by a crab when young. Every time I jump into water that is not crystal clear I resist touching bottom and heaven forbid if a piece of seaweed rubs against me! Yet still mind over matter or is that reason over phobia?
Just to give some thought. Read this although I guess the photo is of a small one. The Kraken is real. 'Kraken' awakes: Scientists capture first images of giant squid filmed in deep ocean off Japan - NY Daily News
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Old 09-01-2013, 22:52   #325
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Re: Attempted Trip to Bermuda

BlackOak: You should know that I just made a cruisersforum.com account JUST to join in on this thread, it's absolutely fantastic! Also, I found your thread while searching for Shelly. I actually used to keep my 28' Irwin at Pete's Pier and befriended her. For those who are so unlucky to have never met her, I have to second your opinion of her as a great captain and person full of charitable advise, storied past and strong character.

Anyway, I have moved my boat away from the marina to a mooring in the bay near Cracker's restaurant so I have lost touch with her. Do you know if she has already left for the Keys? Is she sailing alone or with Bill? (I saw their boats moored together the other day when I was out). Do you have her e-mail address? Would love to re-connect with her... even though she told me she doesn't go online often.
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Old 10-01-2013, 00:10   #326
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Re: Attempted Trip to Bermuda

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Originally Posted by jeanathon View Post
I understand the trepidation of murky water. I have had it ever since being pinched by a crab when young. Every time I jump into water that is not crystal clear I resist touching bottom and heaven forbid if a piece of seaweed rubs against me! Yet still mind over matter or is that reason over phobia?
Just to give some thought. Read this although I guess the photo is of a small one. The Kraken is real. 'Kraken' awakes: Scientists capture first images of giant squid filmed in deep ocean off Japan - NY Daily News
Its amazing how you senses develop in zero viz diving. You can literally see with your hands after a while.
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Old 10-01-2013, 02:10   #327
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Re: Attempted Trip to Bermuda

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Originally Posted by kthoennes View Post
Now that was a funny post. I was a commercial diver for a few years, hardhat, but all shallow work, nothing deep sea. What always shoved me out of my comfort zone were the creepy crawlies. In the winter especially the slimies and crawlies would gather around the warm headlamp, or the hot water leaking out of the wetsuit. Eels in the murky Hudson River would wrap themselves around the headlamp. Scared the living daylights out of me. I could shove myself into a pipeline like a bullet in a rifle, pump mud, hydroblast water intake racks - but the smallest water creature wriggling in the murk would drive me nuts.
LOL on creepy crawlies! When I bought my present boat it had not been hauled out or scraped or anything at all really, for several years. Maybe 10 years or more. PO didn't say much about that! He had bad hip, bad knees, etc and was getting up in years and I think he felt bad that the boat had been neglected because he used to love and race the boat.

Anyway, so there is this 1-1/2" thick layer of spongy biological grewlp (had to make up a word for it. Sort of outerspace rubberoid stuff) over the entire hull. The prop blades were just amorphous lumps of a slightly harder version and it was a wonder that they even propelled the boat at all. Anyway I anchored in shallow water... Lake Pontchartrain so no dependable tides... and proceeded with mask and snorkel and broadknife and scraper to skin my boat. Lots of freaky stuff swimming around me! It was like discovery channel. A whole biospherecosm kinda thing. I was most of the day getting it done, finding all my through-hulls, etc and when I climbed back on the boat, I noticed... I was wearing a longsleeve black knit shirt for protection from the sun and ...

it was swarming with literally millions of wierd multilegged larvae or something... about 3/8" long, all wiggly and squirmy and alien.

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHG!!!!!!! YOWWWWWW!!!!! GETTEMOFF GETTEMOFF GETTEMOFFGETTEMOFFGETTEMOFF!!!!!!! I literally tore off the shirt in pieces and the critters went scuttling and flipping and wriggling all over the cockpit. Wierd thing was, and this was SUCH a relief, they didn't like ME. None wanted to crawl on my actual skin. They LOVED my shirt, though! And... MY SHORTS! AAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!! They're down there, too! Shucked em quick and inspected myself, but none were clinging to anything and I didn't think any had crawled up inside the one thing I certainly didn't want anything crawling up inside of but I took a quick whizz just to sort of make sure.

My neighbor in the next slip was an oilpatch diver and I told him about it. "Brine shrimp. They like my suit, too. See em in shallow water a lot when you disturb marine growth on manmade objects, mostly. Perfectly harmless." Well they didn't look like any kind of shrimp to me. UGH!

Eels I guess I could handle except if they ever try to get too friendly with me, like they did you. I snorkeled in a shallow freshwater lake once to help a friend salvage a lost outboard, and as soon as I touched bottom, three of the biggest, fattest flattest leeches you ever seen suckered onto my mask. I got outta there quick. Again, strange thing... they didn't latch on to me. Didn't really give them time, actually. They sure loved my mask, though. YOU go down and find the motor. I'LL stay up here and watch the boat!

They should have some kind of creepycrawly-cide that you could dump a few gallons in the area you need to dive in, to kill them or drive them away. UGH! Your post brought back very unpleasant memories!
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Old 10-01-2013, 02:52   #328
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Old 12-01-2013, 11:21   #329
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Re: Attempted Trip to Bermuda

So, that's it?
There must be something worth sharing with us?
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Old 13-01-2013, 18:35   #330
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Re: Attempted Trip to Bermuda

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Ok, everybody, lets calm down alittle. I have spent the last two days with Blackoak, and I want to tell everyone, Blackoak is for real, he is not an imaginary person posting on this forum to get attention.

Lets get down to the facts. Blackoak had a goal when he started this voyage. He needed to get back to Bermuda so he could get his passport renewed. The story is long and twisted but Blackoak has spent most of his life in the USA, served in the Navy, worked as a truckdriver for 25+ years and still is not concidered a US citizen. Go Figer. So how do you get to Bermuda without a valid passport? Sail yourself? Maybe? How hard can it be? The rest of the srory is what you have here.

...
I think most people would figure out where the nearest consulate is (British consulate would probably handle Bermudian affairs?) and drive there instead of buying a boat and attempting an epic trip with no background knowledge of how to do it safely.

I've loved the candor and the writing style of Black Oak's posts, though. Especially nice that he's started using paragraphs!
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