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Old 10-05-2013, 07:11   #16
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Originally Posted by bobconnie View Post
Back in I believe 1964 I was delivering a 41 ft Tri from BC Canada, to Portland OR. anyway about an hour after I rounded The Cape, and started south the lite 10 knot breeze went away and a BUNCH of wind started. I reefed everything, and settled in for the ride. Well she blew and she blew! I was told a few days later over 100 mph at one time! Well to make a long story short, the Columbia bar was closed, so south I went a flyin, 4 days later when the wind died I was about 15 miles from Catalina ! Hell of a trip back with little wind and many days going back up hill to Portland. Just about the worse trip of my life ! But one of the best to !I hate solo sailin lol
Bob- that sounds like the Columbus Day storm! The wind definitely blew that day!
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Old 10-05-2013, 08:24   #17
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Re: What Is Your Most Memorable Mishap On A Boat?

Mine was at the very beginning of my boating experience sixty years ago. At a very young age with a 14 foot Thompson runabout, a 25HP Evinrude, a couple of my pals, and no experience, or instructions, we set about to teach ourselves how to water ski. The first thing I learned was that I could fall in the lake. And AFTER that it occurred to me that I should learn to swim!
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Old 10-05-2013, 14:29   #18
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Re: What Is Your Most Memorable Mishap On A Boat?

We had been cruising for about 5 yrs., most of it in third world places, when we found ourselves in Fame Cove, Port Stephens, New South Wales. For those of you who know the area, this is before the moorings went in and there was a 25 knot Southerly blowing.

Jim had just started supper and was chopping onions with his Chinese cleaver. Suddenly I hear some uncommonly bad words from the galley. He had diagonallty chopped off the tip of the third finger on his left hand. It bled well. We did the same as we would have done in Tonga or Vanuatu. I made a pressure bandage for the tip of his finger (couldn't find where it had gone). And we called it good at that point, much to the surprise of the locals the next day. This is the part of it that I think is funny: we never considered trying to find "help." We'd got used to taking care of ourselves. It was over 6 months before he could comfortably play the guitar.

And I found the finger tip later, a ways down the sink drain! Yuck! Ah, well, it was biodegradable. :sprint smiley:
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Old 10-05-2013, 15:31   #19
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Re: What Is Your Most Memorable Mishap On A Boat?

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Originally Posted by Ann T. Cate View Post

And I found the finger tip later, a ways down the sink drain! Yuck! Ah, well, it was biodegradable. :sprint smiley:

I guess preferable to finding it on your supper plate, or worse, you know, chewing on a gristly bit.
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Old 10-05-2013, 16:04   #20
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Re: What Is Your Most Memorable Mishap On A Boat?

In the genuinely bad category was when we were making a run offshore from Beaufort, NC, to St. Thomas and a cold front overtook us, luckily a bit after we had made it out of the Gulf Stream. The wind kept building and the seas got bigger, and pretty soon we were surfing down their faces pretty good in our 32-foot cat. We were doing about 8 knots under bare poles and I'll never forget the feeling of being perched on the top of one of those big waves and starting to sled downhill, faster and faster, and then turning the wheel, and turning the wheel, and turning the wheel---and nothing was happening! We slewed sideways and went down the rest of the way at right angles to the breakers. The steering cables had broken. Out came the parachute sea anchor, and after some fun and games we were riding to 400 feet of rode and a parachute with the occasional breaker sweeping across the entire boat. Managed to fix the steering cables in the midst of this, and eventually started sailing after 48 hours of riding it out. Then things got worse when the forestay broke...
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Old 10-05-2013, 16:14   #21
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Re: What Is Your Most Memorable Mishap On A Boat?

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Originally Posted by Kettlewell View Post
In the genuinely bad category was when we were making a run offshore from Beaufort, NC, to St. Thomas and a cold front overtook us, luckily a bit after we had made it out of the Gulf Stream. The wind kept building and the seas got bigger, and pretty soon we were surfing down their faces pretty good in our 32-foot cat. We were doing about 8 knots under bare poles and I'll never forget the feeling of being perched on the top of one of those big waves and starting to sled downhill, faster and faster, and then turning the wheel, and turning the wheel, and turning the wheel---and nothing was happening! We slewed sideways and went down the rest of the way at right angles to the breakers. The steering cables had broken. Out came the parachute sea anchor, and after some fun and games we were riding to 400 feet of rode and a parachute with the occasional breaker sweeping across the entire boat. Managed to fix the steering cables in the midst of this, and eventually started sailing after 48 hours of riding it out. Then things got worse when the forestay broke...
Yikes!
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Old 10-05-2013, 16:14   #22
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Re: What Is Your Most Memorable Mishap On A Boat?

While coming in to the dock at Angel Island, San Francisco Bay in our old Ingrid 38 with my ex driving in her bikini, I jumped off the bow with the bow line in my hand only to find the line I was holding was about 2 feet too short to reach the dock. Pulled up short in mid air, splashed into the drink only to surface with my then wife doubled over with laughter along with the rest of the folks on the dock and the beach. One of lifes' more embarrassing moments! Phil
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Old 12-05-2013, 09:30   #23
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Re: What Is Your Most Memorable Mishap On A Boat?

my friend and i went out on his 25' powerboat. as always he does not leave home without his 98gram 18K gold bracelet. well we came into the dock, he jumped off, slid off the dock and when he came up it was gone. it was hanging 1/2 way off the dock, barely clinging to the edge. he nearly lost $4500 because he drank a 12 pack.
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Old 12-05-2013, 09:54   #24
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Re: What Is Your Most Memorable Mishap On A Boat?

24hrs after departing Fremantle on the start of my singlehanded voyage to Phuket, Wind blowing 35kts on the qtr, autopilot packed in so detoured to Geraldton 40 miles away. I balanced the rudder (52ft fin keel race boat) to go below and turn on nav lights as it was dark now. Yacht chinese gybed as I was stepping back over the traveller and ripped my shin open down to the bone.
Picked myself up and continued on to port, having a great sail, 11kts with just the double reefed main, lots of green water coming aboard. I knew I had to get to a hospital soon so I sailed straight over the top of African reef and was knocked twice to about 70 degrees, tied up and got a flash light out, 1/4" of blood on the cockpit sole so ran to hospital where upon checkiing my BP it was 70-40 that was when i passed out.
Learnt a lot that day and havnt had an incident since, I now have 3 autopilots, 2 hooked up and a back up and a good medical kit I know how to use.
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Old 02-09-2013, 13:38   #25
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Re: What Is Your Most Memorable Mishap On A Boat?

micro burst hits us and as we begin to furl the genoa, .. and our crappy furler at the time drops the line off the spool, now unfurling a full 155 genoa and seizing the line around the forestay below. pinned down for 3 minutes while bobbing through waves at the bow we finally freed the line and stowed the sail. .. we saw it coming and thankfully had then main down before all hell broke loose. .. one small blunder we still talk about.
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Old 19-10-2013, 13:36   #26
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Re: What Is Your Most Memorable Mishap On A Boat?

Wow, ya'll got some good mishaps, so I don't feel bad sharing my best.

I was sailing south with my friend Tom on the intracoastal approaching a draw bridge in New Smyrna Beach. We had the wind at our back and the current was with us. That had never happened before and my little 23 foot Venture of Newport was really boogieing.

I didn't have a VHF, so I used the air horn to signal the bridge and started the outboard, leaving it in neutral in case I had to do circles. I've had a few encounters with tardy bridges in the past, but not with such unfortunately favorable conditions. There was no way that I could have spun that boat around this time. You can probably guess what was about to happen.

The bridge started to lift, but it was obvious to me that we were going to hit. I thought briefly about gybing, running her aground on the sandy area to starboard, but even that seemed like a lost cause, so I did the only thing that seemed rational at the time: I told Tom that I didn't want to watch this, gave him the helm, and went below to drink some whiskey and pray.

Ironically, I had Stan Rogers' song "Giant" on the CD player and the following lyrics were playing:

So crash the glass down! move with the tide!
Young friends and old whiskey are burning inside.
Crash the glass down! Fingal will rise
With the moon.


I had downed about three shots, crashing the glass down after each one, when inevitable occurred. I felt a bump and the bow began to rise, then all heck broke loose. It was like we were in a pinball machine as we bounced off the bridge's fenders. Then it was calm.

I climbed topside to inspect the rigging. We still had a mast. Yay! That was really nice. The forestay was rather slack. Luckily, this was a cutter rig. There was no major damage, so we sailed on with another story to tell. I'm sure the drivers of the cars on that bridge still tell their own stories.

Lesson learned: Always have a VHF and communicate with a bridge well in advance.
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Old 19-10-2013, 14:32   #27
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Re: What Is Your Most Memorable Mishap On A Boat?

This didn't happen at sea, but in the shed. While I was building my boat, a tropical cyclone (Hamish) was being forecast to hit us square on, at category 5.

I decided I'd probably have to let the shed go, and tie the boat down, possibly filling some lockers with water to stop her blowing away.

I was halfway through spray painting at the time. I decided I'd board up all the windows and portholes, so was running around the decks with sheets of plywood and screws. The deck hatch surrounds had already been sprayed, so they were all masked up and painted the same colours as the decks....

Predictably I stepped through one, gashing my leg just below the knee. I didn't look at it, just wrapped a rag round the gash to stop the blood from going everywhere.

Later, my wife had a look and decided I needed to go to the A/E department of the hospital, where they put 5 metal staples in.

So now comes the painful bit - a couple of days later, the cyclone having missed us, I'm back to spray painting. Using a 10 litre pressure pot, which I accidentally banged into the staples in my knee. That REALLY hurt! Saw nothing but white flashes for a few seconds....

Didn't want that happening again, so I grabbed a pair of pliers and pulled out the staples.
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Old 22-10-2013, 12:08   #28
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Re: What Is Your Most Memorable Mishap On A Boat?

Motoring down the Murray Canal towards Presqu'ile bay, dead into a 35kn wind. I go up on the foredeck to get the genoa ready to hoist when my girlfriend screams, "the boat wont turn!"

I look up to see us heading into the rocks at a 45 degree angle, and ran back to the cockpit. Outboard is going full ahead, I had the rudder hard over and then moved the motor tiller to match. No joy.

I jumped back up to the foredeck just in time for the bow to ride up on the rocks, grabbed the anchor in passing and dove off the bow on to the rocks. The boat slid back down and I tied her off, then scrambled back aboard to check for leaks.

Thankfully there was no damage. We spent 4hrs tied to that rock before the wind dropped enough to get underway again.

The cat going over the side when we finally did reach Presqu'ile was another story.
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Old 10-01-2015, 08:25   #29
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Re: What Is Your Most Memorable Mishap On A Boat?

We were delivering a newly built 90' motor yacht from St Marteen to Miami. About 26 hours short of our destination, we experienced a hull fracture beneath our fuel tanks. The boat basically cracked at weak point. The winds had come up 35 knots from the west against the westerly setting current. This caused a very short, steep 15 foot sea to develop. We were located in the Old Bahama Channel, south of the Bahama Bank and north of Cayo Coco, Cuba. We were a Canadian registered vessel with all Canadian crew. We contacted the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs. They contacted the Cuban government, and we were advised to limp in towards the Cuban coast as they were sending assistance. Well the help never materialized. We got to within 2 miles of the Coast when our last engine submerged. We dropped both our anchors in 100 feet of water at midnight. The yacht capsized underneath us at about 5 am. Thrown into the water we managed to board our tender, and head through the large and dangerous surf towards the only lights we could see. A Cuban resort called Sol Cayo Coco. My wife and I escaped with the clothes on our backs, our passports and the boat's papers, as our cabin was the first to flood. My 2 crew fared better and managed to grab most of their gear. On the beach we were met by armed military people. The interrogations started immediately. 3 hours after landing, while I was on the phone to the owner, we were arrested and taken to Havanna. We were accused of entering the country illegally. My crew was allowed to leave after a few days, my wife and I were held for about a month. While we were being held in Havanna, the Cuban govt salvaged the boat, stripped it, and then denied it. I have pictures of the salvage operation taken by a Canadian tourist staying at the resort.


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Old 10-01-2015, 09:47   #30
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Re: What Is Your Most Memorable Mishap On A Boat?

We bought an Alberg 35 last summer. I've mostly sailed 22 footers so this was a whole new world to me, especially the diesel engine. The PO had a zinc on a wire that ran over the side, down through a port and clipped to the engine shaft; I forgot about it the first time we went out on our own. Of course, the shaft wrapped that wire and it cut the dripless seal for the shaft. We motored around, sailed for a bit, decided to go back in, dropped the sails, started the engine, I went below to do something and that's when I saw the water over the floorboards. The water was getting deeper fast. Fortunately, we were close to our marina, and we limped in. By then there was 3 inches of water above the floorboards. The batteries are below them so of course they were flooded, which meant our electric bilge pump didn't work. We'd been pumping the manual one since noticing the flood. Fortunately, our PO and friend came to help, got everything pumped out, batteries cleared and cleaned. He was able to stop the leak and fix the seal and all was good. But it was a scary 30 minutes, I'd never been almost sinking.


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