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Old 13-05-2014, 15:29   #211
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re: Call for Help/ This American Life (Merged)

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Considering what a robust vessel the Rebel Heart was, there is a great lesson to be learned here about the power of the ocean.
The lesson is to look at how the boat suffered damage, not just to summarise and say "the power of the ocean " because we all know that we are not on the top of the food chain at sea.

for example

(a) did the sail configuration contribute to the issues

(b) what was the wind and sea state

(c) Eric states the boom may have touched the water, but the mast didn't, that really isn't a knockdown. so where did the forces come from

(d) Was the damage on the wave side or the other side.

(e) 60-70 ( a day ) ( an hour) isn't a lot of water, the leak could have been small enough


but I think we have gone around a bit here and theres not much left but conjecture.

dave
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Old 13-05-2014, 15:31   #212
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re: Call for Help/ This American Life (Merged)

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Originally Posted by oldragbaggers View Post
I know this is interesting for all the old salts to kick around and apply what happened to what they thought they knew or understood. But I think it is also a great discussion for wannabes to read. Probably even more so for the wannabes because mostly the old salts already understand the forces at work "out there."

I think sometimes dreamers have an idealistic view of Pacific trade wind sailing (the Coconut Milk Run??) and conjure up images of languishing on deck in the sun with a book and a cool drink while the water shimmers like crystals and playful dolphins frolic at the bow, only rising to put on more sun screen or get another cool drink. So they commence to preparing their coastal racer/cruiser for the trip....not realizing that, while many of these said boats do make it (I would image MOST of them do), and even with inexperienced and unprepared crews (grace be to God and a lot of good luck) they need to prepare for the reality of what could possibly await them out there if they don't plan their trip and prepare their boat and themselves properly.

Considering what a robust vessel the Rebel Heart was, there is a great lesson to be learned here about the power of the ocean. It's not a lesson that can really be learned doing day sailing in protected waters or where a run back to shore is easy when things turn to sh!t. Hopefully others making important decisions about cruising, on which boat, where, when, and with or without children aboard, can take something away that will prevent them from having to learn a similar lesson the hard way.

We've all read it a thousand times, and I am sure it is true, that most well built production boats today can take far more than the crew can, but that doesn't negate the fact that there are still boat hulls littering the bottoms of waterways all over the world. We should all take heed, if for no other reason than to assure we have the proper respect for the forces we may encounter out there and prepare ourselves accordingly.
The substance of it only comes when you discuss the actual tactics. To get the nonsense out of the way, I don't pass any judgement on Eric for doing anything he did in taking this challenge on or deciding to cut it short to protect his family. I think his kids are lucky to have a father who made both decisions.

I asked a question last night about the sail set and Eric's interest in preserving his ability to heave-to because I have encountered a similar situation (passing front rising winds steep seas . . . wishing I could get main up to heave to but unable to with crew uncomfortable holding the bow to weather with me at the mast in 35+ and steep seas). I have questioned why I made a mistake in getting caught without any main up in that situation. Eric indicated that he was thinking along the same lines when he got in thrown onto his beam. I remain curious how others (those who don't see "heaving to" as heresy) view dropping the main in these circumstance. Does it equate to giving up the ability to head up and heave to or do you simply re-raise it?

-M
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Old 13-05-2014, 15:40   #213
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re: Call for Help/ This American Life (Merged)

I get all that about the sail set, the handling and all that. I really do. I understand what you are all saying that from a tactical standpoint maybe he could have done other things that would have changed the outcome. Got it. Horse is dead. Stop beating the poor bloody thing.

But this is part of the point. They had been getting the crap beat out of them by the seas for days. It took a toll on the boat (Erics log from his website), it took a toll on Charlotte and the kids (her own blog, not my speculation), it no doubt took a toll on Eric. Maybe it affected his decision making, maybe it didn't. I can't speak to that, and frankly, neither can anyone else. I was only making the point that the inexperienced should take it to heart that things can get darned nasty out there and when it does EVERYTHING becomes important; the condition of your boat, the condition and experience of the crew, and the decisions you make to deal with the situation.

I was stating there were lessons to be learned and that maybe one of those lessons would be to put aside any misconceptions an inexperienced cruiser might be harboring about it being all like a Jimmy Buffet song out there all the time, or thinking that if they just know when to reef and how to heave to they can take their Capri 18 and go. What the heck. Are you suggesting I was wrong about that?
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Old 13-05-2014, 15:55   #214
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re: Call for Help/ This American Life (Merged)

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I get all that about the sail set, the handling and all that. I really do. I understand what you are all saying that from a tactical standpoint maybe he could have done other things that would have changed the outcome. Got it. Horse is dead. Stop beating the poor bloody thing.
<<snipo>>>
What the heck. Are you suggesting I was wrong about that?
I think you're misreading what I wrote. I wasn't making a point at all. I was asking a freaking question.
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Old 13-05-2014, 16:00   #215
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re: Call for Help/ This American Life (Merged)

Getting back to the technical analysis of the leaking situation for a moment, Eric's revelation that the deck was NOT fibreglass, but teak over ply certainly changes how I envision the leak developing as a result of the wave strike (or whatever force was involved). As an amateur, that sort of hull to deck joint seems far more vulnerable to wrenching stresses (like from stanchions with solar panels mounted being struck) than the massive glass to glass joint described by Minaret. I would be interested to hear what he (Minaret) or any other knowledgeable person would say about that.

And Eric, if you have time and the interest, could you comment on whether the damage was on the windward or leeward side of the boat? I know that when we suffered a superficially similar knockdown/rolldown in our previous boat, the damage was all on the leeward side... the side that struck the water when we rolled down and "fell off" a wave face.

Finally, I'd be interested to know if other HC designs had that deck structure.

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 13-05-2014, 16:11   #216
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re: Call for Help/ This American Life (Merged)

Ive been reading about some of these far east boats, and older HCs, etc. I think i will stick to french boats !!!!.

dave
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Old 13-05-2014, 16:29   #217
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re: Call for Help/ This American Life (Merged)

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I don't know, I find it perplexing. I think eric had his hands full so perhaps he didn't investigate a lot.

The fact there was stanchion damage, and solar panel ripped , may have caused stanchions to work loose and provide a water path in.

I find it hard to accept that a bolted and glassed over hull joint leaked after a knockdown. One that Eric said DIDNT put the mast in the water.

I mean Ive been slammed off a wave into a trough twice in a biscay crossing, the second we had a mast beyond 90, as far as we could tell ( tiny furled main) , we came back up, very messed up below, but no hull damage. we had a damaged hatch due to the anchor somehow contacting it ( Sailing 101 stow anchors - doh)

and wait for it .... this was a 2000 jeanneaux Deck saloon. !!!! ( man...)

Its perplexing, had she existing damage somewhere. ?

furthermore I think its also to really difficult to appreciate what happened, it tends to be a blurr

I remember being hit by a massive breaking wave, all foam and jets of water, luckily hitting us square on the bow ( well not lucky , by design) . I saw the wave roll up the bow and remember thinking thats interesting, next nothing but foam, water, all over us, Im tall 6'5", so my head surfaced first, whole boats under the water, with the mast sticking up over the foam, Then she surfaces like a U-boat.!! . sorry reminiscing now. ( its a sign Im getting old !!)



None of the crew had the same story of what happened.!!

**** happens, stuff breaks.

Dave
I agree. There are several things that just don't line up. For example, if you're hove to and a monster wind gust lays you over, the prevented boom goes under and potentially scoops up a lot of water...hence the strain on the rigging. But this would mean too much sail up and/or very big winds.

Alternatively, if the variable winds RH mentions got around him and filled the opposite side of the prevented main with the wheel lashed and no one helming - I could see a pretty violent broach there which would also strain the rigging. But the prevented boom wouldn't be anywhere near the water - it would be on the high-side. So the forces don't make as much sense...unless the tops of the sails went under a wave and filled.

That leaves a wave strike like Charlotte mentioned, leading to a knockdown. I could definitely see the rigging damage in this scenario, but this would be a pretty violent motion, and they don't mention anything like that being inside the boat.

I suppose I'm going with scenario 1 and throwing in a bad chainplate and/or knee. You can see the area in this photo of a Union 36's chainplate openings and imagine what RH is talking about in terms of the damage ripping up around that:



Were RH's chainplates external or internal? Here are a couple post of his talking about it...

http://www.therebelheart.com/blog/20...esnt-rust.html

And this one which sounds a bit scary in hindsight...

http://www.therebelheart.com/blog/20...omment18816538

As you say, perplexing.
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Old 13-05-2014, 16:40   #218
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re: Call for Help/ This American Life (Merged)

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Originally Posted by SV THIRD DAY View Post
I think Eric has said it now several times...but people just keep glossing over it for what ever reason I can't figure out.
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I get all that about the sail set, the handling and all that. I really do. I understand what you are all saying that from a tactical standpoint maybe he could have done other things that would have changed the outcome. Got it. Horse is dead. Stop beating the poor bloody thing.
You know, you guys really don't have to keep reading along if it makes you uncomfortable.

GoBoat is right - it's a valid, worthy discussion. The only horse I see is in your posts.
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Old 13-05-2014, 16:41   #219
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re: Call for Help/ This American Life (Merged)

It was neither a Union Polaris nor a chainplate.
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Old 13-05-2014, 16:58   #220
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re: Call for Help/ This American Life (Merged)

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You know, you guys really don't have to keep reading along if it makes you uncomfortable.

GoBoat is right - it's a valid, worthy discussion. The only horse I see is in your posts.
Uncomfortable...no.
Laugh...yes.
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Old 13-05-2014, 16:59   #221
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re: Call for Help/ This American Life (Merged)

Okay - HC36. I'd heard it was a Union (essentially the same boat according to the history). Here's RH's post on the matter:

http://www.therebelheart.com/blog/20...istian-36.html

Take it up with him.

In any case, how do you know it wasn't a chainplate and/or knee?
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Old 13-05-2014, 17:18   #222
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re: Call for Help/ This American Life (Merged)

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Originally Posted by smackdaddy View Post
You know, you guys really don't have to keep reading along if it makes you uncomfortable.

GoBoat is right - it's a valid, worthy discussion. The only horse I see is in your posts.
I'm enjoying the thread and learning a lot, so if it's all the same to you, I'll continue to read. I was just a little taken aback by the immediate negative response to my post. I am not taking issue with anyone else's viewpoint, just didn't understand why a contribution that took the conversation away from the tactical for just a moment was dismissed so out of hand as irrelevant.
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Old 13-05-2014, 17:28   #223
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re: Call for Help/ This American Life (Merged)

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It was neither a Union Polaris nor a chainplate.


Exactly. The link I posted early on to a practical sailor review of the Union 36 is correct as to construction. If this boat had all ply decks and house, it was not a Union 36, but one of the many knock offs. This is essentially a half timber boat, and a whole different animal as to construction. Since almost no one appears to have used the link, here it is again with an excerpt some may find enlightening.



Union 36 Boat Review - Practical Sailor Article




"According to naval architect Robert Perry, the basis of the Union 36 design was conceived in the early 1970s by Hans Christian Yachts founder John Edwards, a former high school teacher from Long Beach, Calif. Edwards commissioned Perry to design a 34-footer to be built at the Union Ship Co. in Taipei, Taiwan, and marketed in the United States as the Hans Christian 34. Although Perry is now well known for double-ended cruising boats like his ground-breaking Valiant 40, he was just beginning to earn his reputation at that time.

Before the first HC34 was launched, however, Perry said, he learned that Edwards had the yard build a second set of molds, adding about a foot in the center and aft of the cockpit, in order to stretch the design to a 36-footer (the Hans Christian 36). Hans Christian informed Perry that he would not receive royalties for the new 36-footer, but the company continued to associate him with the design, Perry said.

Under Edwards’ Taiwan arrangement, Hans Christian "owned" the designs and controlled distributorship. But after a falling out with the Union Ship Co. in the mid-1970s (at which point Edwards relocated his business to another Taiwan yard), Edwards learned that Union held ownership of the molds and would continue to build the boat and market it as the Union 36.

After building a few 36s, Union Ship Co. changed its name to Union Yacht Co. and entered into various distributor arrangements on the West Coast, where the boat was marketed under names chosen by the importer, among them the Mariner Polaris 36.

In a blog by the late Terry Bingham, a Union 36 owner, Perry is quoted as saying that "the yard went on to continue building the boat, but they marketed it under whatever name the individual broker wanted, so that’s why you find the same boat with so many names ... Hans Christian 36, Mariner Polaris 36, Union 36, EO 36—all the same boat. The Mao Ta 36 is a variation on the same hull but built by a different yard. [The Union 36] is a very good boat and in every way very similar to most of my early double-enders. It’s a bastard child of mine, and I will continue to feel like the father."

Union 36s can be identified by a hull number beginning with USC or UYC, and their production run reportedly was about 160 after Edwards’ departure, with the last being sold in 1988."




If I had to, I would guess that RH was much more likely of the Mao Ta family of Hans Christians than the Union.
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Old 13-05-2014, 17:42   #224
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re: Call for Help/ This American Life (Merged)

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Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
Getting back to the technical analysis of the leaking situation for a moment, Eric's revelation that the deck was NOT fibreglass, but teak over ply certainly changes how I envision the leak developing as a result of the wave strike (or whatever force was involved). As an amateur, that sort of hull to deck joint seems far more vulnerable to wrenching stresses (like from stanchions with solar panels mounted being struck) than the massive glass to glass joint described by Minaret. I would be interested to hear what he (Minaret) or any other knowledgeable person would say about that.

And Eric, if you have time and the interest, could you comment on whether the damage was on the windward or leeward side of the boat? I know that when we suffered a superficially similar knockdown/rolldown in our previous boat, the damage was all on the leeward side... the side that struck the water when we rolled down and "fell off" a wave face.

Finally, I'd be interested to know if other HC designs had that deck structure.

Cheers,

Jim


Just to make construction details clear:

The hull/deck joint on the Union is solid glass. As described in the link, the deck is ply core with 3/8" of glass on either side. However, the ply core is not carried all the way out to the deck flange. It stops short of the flange, and the two 3/8" skins meet to form a solid 3/4" deck flange. The same is true of the hull, except it is over 1" at the joint. This is standard procedure in cored fiberglass construction. It isolates the core from the through bolt penetrations, and also provides a very strong joint which cannot fail due to rot. This is why this is the least likely failure point in the boat, most of the rest of it is cored with organic material and therefore subject to failure due to rot. Not so the hull/deck joint. Unless, of course, one side of this joint is built of ply which has been trapped under teak planking for forty years....
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Old 13-05-2014, 18:05   #225
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re: Call for Help/ This American Life (Merged)

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And Eric, if you have time and the interest, could you comment on whether the damage was on the windward or leeward side of the boat? I know that when we suffered a superficially similar knockdown/rolldown in our previous boat, the damage was all on the leeward side... the side that struck the water when we rolled down and "fell off" a wave face.
Jim
Yep, leeward side. We were on a port tack, broad reaching. Damage was on the starboard quarter.

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Originally Posted by smackdaddy View Post
Were RH's chainplates external or internal? Here are a couple post of his talking about it...

Rebel Heart - Eric's Blog - stainless steel doesn't¬*rust

And this one which sounds a bit scary in hindsight...

Rebel Heart - Eric's Blog - i still can't believe this is¬*happening

As you say, perplexing.
Internal, replaced in 2012. No obvious problems in the ones I removed but I replaced them, and their fasteners, for good measure. The "bit scary" part of bringing some spare chainplate material and fasteners doesn't sound scary to me at all. Unless you're planning on bring full replacements for every chainplate onboard it seems rather straight forward to bring a strip of stainless with a hole in the top, and the ability to drill holes and make up a temporary (but pretty damn strong) chainplate.
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