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Old 03-12-2014, 12:29   #31
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Re: Boat Seven Sisters Found Capsized

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Originally Posted by Steady Hand View Post
I hope the sailor (crew) is found and safe! I truly do.
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I am surprised by the photos showing the boat (right side up).

I rarely say this, but that boat appears to me to be one of the most "unseaworthy" looking boats I have ever seen, just judging it by what I can see in a photo.

I like cats. I even admire some trimarans. I like pilot house boats. I like motor sailors. I like hydrofoils. I like ultralights.

But, that boat looks like it would be easy to capsize in ocean waves or high seas.

I read the article that was linked, where it says the owner sailed it in high winds off Kauai.

Still, that boat looks like something suitable for flat seas or bay conditions (low waves).

Am I alone in thinking this?
Just like some whitewater kayaks are designed so that the ends can catch in the current, thereby causing the boat to go vertical (fun!), Seven Sisters looks like it was designed to pitch-pole.

If I'm wrong, I sure would like an explanation of the amas design.
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Old 03-12-2014, 14:17   #32
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Re: Boat Seven Sisters Found Capsized

I believe its a low drag, wave penetrating design
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Old 03-12-2014, 15:38   #33
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Re: Boat Seven Sisters Found Capsized

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I believe its a low drag, wave penetrating design
Those skinny floaters sure but that motorboat center hull would pound like hell
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Old 03-12-2014, 15:55   #34
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Re: Boat Seven Sisters Found Capsized

The Turanor PlanetSolar is a cat (or is it a tri ?) with wave-piercing ama design.

It set records (first circumnavigation by solar powered boat).

And it is 100 feet long and 50 feet wide (and cost $10 Million USD).

Some similarities of design with Seven Sisters. But some big differences too.
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Ahoy All Sailors! Need experienced crew for a passage or delivery in Atlantic, Pacific, Caribbean, Med, PNW, ICW, coastal or across an ocean anytime in 2017? I am available on 24hr notice. See my CF Profile "About Me" page for details. Happy to lend a hand!
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Old 03-12-2014, 19:16   #35
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Re: Boat Seven Sisters Found Capsized

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Originally Posted by Steady Hand View Post
The Turanor PlanetSolar is a cat (or is it a tri ?) with wave-piercing ama design.

It set records (first circumnavigation by solar powered boat).

And it is 100 feet long and 50 feet wide (and cost $10 Million USD).

Some similarities of design with Seven Sisters. But some big differences too.
yes, it is also a monster...this one, also solar is much nicer (saw it at the Paris boat show some years ago):

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Old 03-12-2014, 19:41   #36
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Re: Boat Seven Sisters Found Capsized

"Why was he travelling 100 mile offshore,crossing the Tehuantepec?The wind is always 50kn. there.The rule is 1 foot on the beach or at least 300 mi. out."

That is a silly and factually inaccurate statement!

I have dozens of friends who have crossed the Tehuantepec straight across and had a fine, gentle sail. I know several who had to motor the entire way. I know at least two boats that did it south to north in a straight line with no problem.

And... I have two friends who did the "one foot on the beach" thing and experienced 50-knot sand blasts that stripped most of the paint off their boat.

The weather knowledge and experience to cross the T'Pec is well known, vast, and readily available.
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Old 04-12-2014, 23:40   #37
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Re: Boat Seven Sisters Found Capsized

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"Why was he travelling 100 mile offshore,crossing the Tehuantepec?The wind is always 50kn. there.The rule is 1 foot on the beach or at least 300 mi. out."

That is a silly and factually inaccurate statement!

I have dozens of friends who have crossed the Tehuantepec straight across and had a fine, gentle sail. I know several who had to motor the entire way. I know at least two boats that did it south to north in a straight line with no problem.

And... I have two friends who did the "one foot on the beach" thing and experienced 50-knot sand blasts that stripped most of the paint off their boat.

The weather knowledge and experience to cross the T'Pec is well known, vast, and readily available.
Not silly or inaccurate,you say yourself weather knowledge is well known,well this guy sailed right into some 'weather.'If you check the 180 hr gribs you can see it's never less than 25-35 kn. in that area,quite often it's 45.Not saying it can't be done.Don Anderson always advised taking the inshore route.
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Old 05-12-2014, 09:26   #38
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Re: Boat Seven Sisters Found Capsized

"If you check the 180 hr gribs you can see it's never less than 25-35 kn. in that area,quite often it's 45."

I was not commenting on the specific weather forecast the missing sailor may have had/heard/ignored. I agree that there are frequent week long gales in the Gulf of Tehuantepec but I was trying to make the point that there are many three and four day windows where a passage straight across the gulf is easy and safe. It is a fact that a lot of sailor and power folks I know have done the direct crossing with no problem.

"Don Anderson always advised taking the inshore route.".

I just can't agree with that statement either. I worked fairly closely with Don for many years and visited him at home several times. He and I discussed the Tehuantepec crossing many times. IF one studied the flow of high/low pressure systems over the Central US and the timing of their passage thru South Texas then you could easily and safely time your passage.

And it is an unpleasant fact that several boats I know made the mistake of believing that "one foot on the beach" made it safe for them to ignore the T'Pec gale forecasts and suffered because of that decision.
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Old 05-12-2014, 10:00   #39
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Re: Boat Seven Sisters Found Capsized

And you're both arguing based on where the boat was found. Based on the photographic evidence the boat was inhabited for at least a short time while upside down, and then by birds for some period after that. Between the last communications and the photo evidence it would appear that the boat was drifting for somewhere between one and three weeks before being found in the middle of the T'Pec. Could be he did have one foot on the beach when flipped.
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Old 05-12-2014, 10:43   #40
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Re: Boat Seven Sisters Found Capsized

If he was crossing from El Salvador to Acapulco,was probably a ways out.Almost every blog on google about crossing the Tpec,sailors prefer the beach route,within 3 miles.I think there's a chance he may have tried to paddle back in,sad story.
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Old 05-12-2014, 11:29   #41
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Re: Boat Seven Sisters Found Capsized

Last reported postion was;N14 11' W95 33'.That's 90 miles out to sea.
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Old 09-12-2014, 17:30   #42
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Re: Boat Seven Sisters Found Capsized

'Kite Man of Berkeley' Believed Lost at Sea | Latitude38

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December 1, 2014 – Gulf of Tehuantepec, Mexico


Seven Sisters, flipped and with cracked amas, as found by the Coast Guard.
Notice the lines strapped across the bottom of the boat. The hole aft is for
the outboard. Photo Courtesy U.S. Coast Guard
© 2014 Latitude 38 Publishing, LLC

Nearly three weeks overdue on a passage from El Salvador to Acapulco, the unusual 40-ft 'hybrid wave-piercer' sloop Seven Sisters was recently found by the Coast Guard, upside-down 400 miles southwest of Acapulco. Thomas Kardos, the boat’s owner/inventor, aka ‘The Kite Man of Berkeley’, was nowhere to be found. There were indications that Kardos, described as being "in his mid-50s," may have tried to strap himself to the main hull of his overturned boat.

Seven Sisters was a very unusual design in that she had a main hull like a monohull, but little if any keel. She also had two wave-piercing amas, thus the ‘hybrid’ name, but wasn’t particularly beamy. She had no boom, and had an electric outboard for auxiliary power.


Seven Sisters as seen leaving El Salvador.
Photo Courtesy El Salvador Rally
© 2014 Latitude 38 Publishing, LLC

Her last reported position was at 14° 11' N, 095° 33' W, and Kardos was expected to make Acapulco by November 10. Her position put her about 90 miles from shore in the middle of the Gulf of Tehauntepec, notorious on the Pacific Coast for periods of extremely strong winds and big seas, conditions that often exist hundreds of miles out to sea. It’s also possible that she was affected by the seas of Vance, a late season hurricane in the general area about that time.

Kardos was as unusual as his boat. Flying a hang glider, he stunned the 76,000 spectators — and both teams on the field — during the second quarter of the 1979 Cal-USC football game at Berkeley’s Memorial Stadium by landing on the 10-yard line. He later described the stunt as follows: "I took off from the top of the ridge at Strawberry Canyon about a mile away and 1,000 feet higher than the stadium. I flew directly above the game at an altitude of several hundred feet, then turned south for an approach. I made a 180 turn and flew between two flagpoles at the south rim, then descended over the stands to burn off height. I slowed down just above ground effect along the diagonal — longest dimension — of the field. I’m sorry, but I had to touch down before the end zone to stop safely.”
A video of the unusual stunt can be seen here.

In another video by his daughter Lena, Kardos can be seen kiteboarding San Francisco Bay 36 years ago. As memory serves us, almost nobody was kiteboarding back then.

Before and during his cruise, Kardos posted a number of YouTube videos, the most recent having been off El Salvador on June 10, 2014.
- latitude / richard

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Old 22-12-2014, 09:18   #43
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Re: Boat Seven Sisters Found Capsized

Virtually keeless,
Topheavy,
Likely to Pitch-Pole,
Unseaworthy,

All terms that MIGHT well be reasonable IF the boat had just been launched recently and then foundered.

Yet that boat had been sailed many times and great distances and had been through sea trials.

He had sufficient solar panels to have GPS autologging equipment and video recording equipment aboard.
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