Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 15-04-2014, 18:18   #136
Registered User
 
Delancey's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Miami, FL
Boat: sunk by irma
Posts: 3,462
Re: The Evolution of Cruisers

Quote:
Originally Posted by sabray View Post
We used to go real slow in circles trying to find a floatie thing that was red or green and had a number on it. This could go on for hours. Once we saw a floaty we would look at a magnetic wiji board floating in a glass globe. Sometimes we put lights on the wiji globe so we could read the card even if it was dark. We had scrolls made of paper that we would unroll and prick it with pins. Kind of like a voodoo doll. Then we could move ancient parallel rules over the scroll. Mixed with sweat and curses we could ascertain our location.
Once we found a safe harbor we would go ashore and drink whatever even if it did not look like fresh water.
Sometimes we had clubs. Later these evolved to yacht clubs. they were heavy wood things that we would smash things with. Sometimes we smashed yachts. This evolved to yacht clubs. That were good at bashing yachts. We gave up the club and made up bars. They now have bars in the club and lawyer bars. The lawyers bars were heavy and beat all the wooden clubs. The guys with the bars made up rules. If you screw up with the rules you need someone at the bar. Before I sail I make sure some one in the bar knows me. I am trying not to be a prick.i just touch and tap now. My club is a friggin forum that thinks I am a pricker.
I am worried about my 0182 sentences. Did I punctuate proper like terminate the sequence. Confirm confirm are these glow lights talking to each other.
Good thing I have my club so I can beat this instruction manual to papyrus. Urghhh me like beaten tree pulp with colors and symbols.



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
You might enjoy reading The Wretched Stone by Chris Van Allsberg. It doesn't have very much reading but it has lots of pretty pictures.

The Wretched Stone - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	image.jpg
Views:	101
Size:	345.5 KB
ID:	79422  
__________________

__________________
Delancey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-04-2015, 02:05   #137
Registered User
 
Buzzman's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: New South Wales, Australia
Boat: Still building
Posts: 406
Re: The Evolution of Cruisers

I've read lots of books by 'older' cruisers - people like Bisschof, Hayter, Hiscock, even Ransome's Baltic voyages, and those of early cruisers like RE Groves, who was cruising the Hebrides at the turn of last Century, and others of that ilk.

Most were like 'modern' sailors in that they used whatever was the best available knowledge, and best available equipment. Hemp ropes, chronometers, lunars, tinned foodstuffs, whatever. TINS!! Very high-tech in the late 19th Century.

People like Robert Groves were sailing 1-1/2ton 'yachts' to the Hebrides - at a time when boats were heavy-built - so, being less than 30-ft and often less than 25-ft ... and being told by 'the authorities' and by 'the old salts' that they were crazy to be doing what they were doing.

Then there are the 'adventurers' like Frank Dye and Webb Chiles, who did some very crazy things in open boats, inspired by what Bligh was able to achieve in the 18th Century.

I agree that anyone setting off on an ocean passage should carry and know how to use a sextant, at least, and have general oceanic charts on paper, but how many modern voyagers actually do so?

Many seem to these days talk of 'redundencies' of GPS and electronic aids. Garmin/Simrad whatever as primary, iPad as a secondary (or vice versa in a lot of cases) and a portable waterproof GPS unit as 'back-up' or for the ditch bag, and an EPIRB as well.

In fact, the general consensus seems to be that one should not leave without - at least - an EPIRB, so if everything else fails you can call in the cavalry.

But did Cook do so when he holed Endeavour back in 1770? No, he fothered a sail and pumped the ship like crazy after chucking overboard everything he could to lighten the ship and thus reduce the pressure on the incoming water flow.

Bligh took a sextant and maps in the long boat and knew enough to get the boat to Timor. No waiting around for the next boat to come along, although, at that time, there weren't any other than the voyaging Polynesians. And the 'very' occasional Spaniard or Portugese or Dutchman, and even less often Frenchman....

And the Polynesians relied on star navigation, wind, wave, swell and birds to direct their course, as David Lewis learned and replicated in the early Sixties.

So, yes, of course cruising and cruisers have 'evolved'.

And yes, perhaps the ease of attainment of knowledge and skills (and the technology that shortens the learning period) of the modern age has made for a lot of less-skilled people taking to the oceans.

At least, less skilled than Bligh, Cook, Hiscock or Bisschof ....

But doesn't the act of asking the question in the first place imply there is a value judgement being made about those making the choice to cross oceans without the same sets of skills as their predecessors?

Would that we had access to a time-machine (perhaps in the future...??) and could go back in time and show Cook a GPS, a battery-powered modern timepiece, and electronic charting programs.....would he then still insist on using his tin clock and surveying staff?

Unanswerable question, I know, and thus hardly fair, but I suspect he might be astounded by our advances and wish to quickly get up to speed on the newer technology. Once we'd been able to explain 'lecky, that is.

It's like the RV-ers who still use caravans towed behind ordinary cars, rather than 'motorhomes' built on truck chassis, and decry the 'changing of the guard'.

They went with what they could afford, back then, and these days, thanks to rising living standards and proportionally lower prices of equipment, a motorhome is 'more affordable' and better made and better equipped.

Answer me this question - if you could have A/C in your home and lived in a hot climate, would you have it? And having installed it, would you voluntarily go back to living without it?

I know I wouldn't. And I suspect most people feel the same.

On the trailer boat chat rooms I frequent (ie: the poorer end of the cruising 'market') there is much talk about 'enabling' technologies such as iPads and iPhones and the Nav apps for them, and whether Android works better than Apple tech.....

But no-one wants to go back to the sextant, compass and paper charts...!!!

Perhaps there are sailors who insist on using 'old tech' - for the romance of it, for the low impact of it, whatever, but they certainly aren't on CF..!! Anyone met any?

Times change, tech improves, often this means people who might otherwise not have contemplated an activity find that they can now conceive of it.

Bet the WAGS who, in ages past, cooked on metho stoves happily ditched them for propane and the microwave as they became available. And while there are still those who cruise without refrigeration, mainly they do so for cost-cutting reasons and environmental ones - not having to spend money on fuel to run generators, not having to put up with the noise of same etc etc - but most people these days have at least a fridge, or freezer.

Even the T/S boaties take along an Esky with ice on a daysail, and many have installed solar panels so they can take along the 12VDC fridge from the 4WD when they go cruising for a weekend or more.

So perhaps it's more relevant to ask how many, proportionally, of the obviously increased total number of sailors, would choose to use the old tech and sail without the modern aids?

Or is it OK for those with 'greater' experience to belittle the lesser skill sets of those who find they are, indeed, enabled, by the availability and ease of use of modern boats and modern nav tech?

Or should those with those skills be making greater efforts to teach the desirability of possessing the 'old' skills, as well as the new tech, to those contemplating the cruising life?

I can't add up for ****, so would need a calculator even to contemplate using tables and sextant, so I'd be f****ed if the battery went flat or it got wet and died, even with the 'old tech' so for me, redundency of electronics is a given.

But before I ever set sail across an ocean, I'll make sure I have at least a paper chart, a compass, and some way of (and practice in) estimating dead reckoning.

Will that suffice? Or am I about to be flamed for my insoucient insolence?
__________________

__________________
Buzzman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-04-2015, 02:25   #138
Freelance Delivery Skipper..
 
boatman61's Avatar

Community Sponsor
Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: UK/Portugal
Posts: 20,212
Images: 2
Send a message via Skype™ to boatman61
pirate Re: The Evolution of Cruisers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Buzzman View Post
Perhaps there are sailors who insist on using 'old tech' - for the romance of it, for the low impact of it, whatever, but they certainly aren't on CF..!! Anyone met any?

Mirror, Mirror on the wall.. who's the jammiest sailor of them all..

So perhaps it's more relevant to ask how many, proportionally, of the obviously increased total number of sailors, would choose to use the old tech and sail without the modern aids?

Or is it OK for those with 'greater' experience to belittle the lesser skill sets of those who find they are, indeed, enabled, by the availability and ease of use of modern boats and modern nav tech?

Or should those with those skills be making greater efforts to teach the desirability of possessing the 'old' skills, as well as the new tech, to those contemplating the cruising life?

I can't add up for ****, so would need a calculator even to contemplate using tables and sextant, so I'd be f****ed if the battery went flat or it got wet and died, even with the 'old tech' so for me, redundency of electronics is a given.

But before I ever set sail across an ocean, I'll make sure I have at least a paper chart, a compass, and some way of (and practice in) estimating dead reckoning.

Will that suffice? Or am I about to be flamed for my insoucient insolence?
Don't forget the Pilot Book/Chart.. you'll need that for the estimates of winds and speed/direction of the currents you'll be crossing..
__________________


Born To Be Wild
boatman61 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-04-2015, 05:17   #139
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Penobscot Bay, Maine
Boat: Tayana 47
Posts: 995
Re: The Evolution of Cruisers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Buzzman View Post

Most were like 'modern' sailors in that they used whatever was the best available knowledge, and best available equipment. Hemp ropes, chronometers, lunars, tinned foodstuffs, whatever. TINS!! Very high-tech in the late 19th Century.



I agree that anyone setting off on an ocean passage should carry and know how to use a sextant, at least, and have general oceanic charts on paper, but how many modern voyagers actually do so?



I can't add up for ****, so would need a calculator even to contemplate using tables and sextant, so I'd be f****ed if the battery went flat or it got wet and died, even with the 'old tech' so for me, redundency of electronics is a given.

But before I ever set sail across an ocean, I'll make sure I have at least a paper chart, a compass, and some way of (and practice in) estimating dead reckoning.

Will that suffice? Or am I about to be flamed for my insoucient insolence?
I'm not even sure what insoucient insolence is, but after reading your whole post, I note that at the beginning you seem to think a sextant is absolutely necessary for anyone setting out to cross an ocean, but by the time you finally got to the end, you seem to have evolved to the point where you recognize that you'd need another electronic device to make your sextant anything more than clutter aboard your boat anyway, so you'd put a paper chart, a compass, and an ability to dead reckon as the bare bones necessities.

I agree a lot more with your "evolved" self because planning to depend on a sextant, which requires some expertise and familiarity with geometry or at least basic math (and clear skies) to save you in the extremely, extremely unlikely event that the whole worldwide GPS system goes down seems a little pie in the sky to me. Who are these folks who have never depended on a sextant trying to fool? I do agree that knowing the basics of a compass and the ability to dead reckon is very useful. I think most of us modern sailors practice our dead reckoning fairly regularly by constantly asking ourselves where we expect to be and what we expect to see before we look at our GPS chartplotter. I know I do. If we had to turn off the GPS and rely entirely on DR and a paper chart, I think most of us would do better than some might suspect, at least if you're the type of person who is always asking themselves "why" are we pointing this way when our destination is over there. Unless someone has REALLY not been paying attention and instead has been mindlessly staring at their GPS charplotter, I think that if all the GPS's on our boats suddenly died, between using DR, our compass, our depth finder, our sense of smell and hearing, and where we see other boats going visually or on our radar, our VHF radio, with or without a paper chart on board, we'd manage to find our way to safety just fine. Of course a paper chart would be a nice luxury but realistically, who can carry one in enough detail to be useful that would that would cover all the landfalls we might make, depending on circumstances we can't even envision ahead of time? Besides, even if the whole GPS system goes down we can have the whole charted world on a laptop or tablet to reference, and with a printer onboard can print out a small paper chart with details of wherever we might end up.

Sextants were state of the art navigation in their day, and state of the art navigators did some amazing things with them, but that day was yesterday, now they're about as useful as anything else you might find at an antique store. That's not to say they're useless, but very nearly so for most of us who have never had to depend on them on a daily basis so our beyond rusty"skills" with them would make a master navigator of yesterday throw us and our sextant overboard in disgust. If GPS somehow failed, for most sailors of today, a sextant would probably be more of a distraction than a useful tool.

Earlier in the thread, someone commented about airliners using GPS. Most, but not all airliners do now have GPS, but those that do, mostly use it to update their inertial nav during extended periods over water where there are no VOR's. Usually, 3 inertial nav units, receiving info from 3 GPS's, send info to navigation computers that display the info to the pilot. These 3 independent sources of navigation information are constantly being compared and the pilot is automatically notified if any discrepancy beyond a preset value exists between them. I've crossed the Atlantic many times and the Pacific a few times in airliners that were not equipped with GPS, and once we could receive a VOR to get an accurate fix on the other side, the inertial usually had us within a mile or two of where we actually were. Not as good as GPS, but close enough so even without a VOR, we could see where we were and the radar controller could easily "find" us. But it's a lot easier to DR in airliners because currents are well plotted and known in advance and don't vary much throughout the duration of the flight or with the tide, and because the time period those currents act on you is measured in hours, not days and even weeks.
__________________
jtsailjt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-04-2015, 05:44   #140
Don't ask if you can't handle it
 
sailorboy1's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: On the boat somewhere
Boat: Hunter 410
Posts: 12,319
Re: The Evolution of Cruisers

Quote:
Originally Posted by jtsailjt View Post
I'm not even sure what insoucient insolence is, but after reading your whole post, I note that at the beginning you seem to think a sextant is absolutely necessary for anyone setting out to cross an ocean, but by the time you finally got to the end, you seem to have evolved to the point where you recognize that you'd need another electronic device to make your sextant anything more than clutter aboard your boat anyway, so you'd put a paper chart, a compass, and an ability to dead reckon as the bare bones necessities.
.
Well that's the evolution of cruisers
__________________
jobless, houseless, clueless, living on a boat and cruising around somewhere
sailorboy1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-04-2015, 22:15   #141
Registered User
 
Buzzman's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: New South Wales, Australia
Boat: Still building
Posts: 406
Re: The Evolution of Cruisers

LOL...yeah it looks like I evolved in the post, but the disclaimer was the dead calculator....
Even with a sextant, if my calculator died I'd be screwed, being unable to do more than add 2+2 to =5.
So DR, compass and paper chart would be the best bet for me, should all the redundant lecky aids fail also.
For example, in the flood after a knockdown, it's feasible that all lecky aids might be kaput.

But my broader point was that evolution 'happens'.

We no longer sail leaky wooden boats (ok, most of us don't) - or at least, not the barrel-hulled, square-rigged, ex-colliers like Cook was forced to use.

Plastic and steel as hull materials have been game-changers as much as the 'evolution' of direction-finding apparatus. Who on here remembers the electronic 'safety' devices used on the early OSTARS? Anyone keen to go back to annual caulkings, as well as annual careenings?

Modern GPS devices make those early electronics look like paper charts by comparison, yet the even more modern GPS-based nav systems make paper charts look like 'maps' scrawled on a sandy beach with a sharp stick back in the Paleolithic.

Yet, as I noted, even the Polynesians (and no doubt the Greeks and Vikings before them) navigated using the stars, DR and ages-acquired knowledge of currents and wind.

There used to be sailors in the Channel who could tell exactly where they were based on the residue stuck to the tallow in the bottom of a well-slung sounding lead, which is why the composition of the bottom is often inscribed on charts.

These days thay all use GPS devices because navigation has evolved. And fishfinders to find the fish there grandsires could find with their eyes closed, in a fog, at night, in the rain. And they don't wanna go back there!

The OP was inquiring as to whether or not these 'evolutions' had created some sort of (possibly negative?) evolution among the cruisers themselves.

And perhaps this is true, given the enabling nature of the technology today available for very few dollars, really, compared to the cost of paper charts and the boats themselves. I can buy charts of the entire world on a thumb drive for the cost of 10 local paper charts, and the device to utilise them for the cost of 20 more.

But my question was whether or not the asking of the question implied a judgement call on those 'evolved' cruisers by those comfortable with the older tech.

Hence the analogies to other tech we *all* might not choose to do without.

Hell, this conversation could not have happened prior to the invention of the internet, unless we all went, simultaneously, to a public meeting and debated the issue - or swapped snail mail addresses and did so via the postal service, as such debates used to be conducted in days of old.

Wanna do without the internet as well?

Has the mere existence of the internet also changed the way sailing is evolving?

Bet your seaboots it has!

Look at the amount, the extent, and the variety of information now so readily available at the click of a button.

Perhaps it would be relevant to ask how many non-sailors have decided to take up sailing, or cruising, as a result of 'discovering' the possibility of being able to do so on the internet?

Now there's a question!
__________________
Buzzman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-04-2015, 22:50   #142
Registered User
 
Island Time O25's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 2,019
Re: The Evolution of Cruisers

Speaking of the internet. My first feeble attempts at boat ownership were back in the 90s, when internet was very rudimentary compared to its state today. So inevitably it was mostly calling to brokers or answering FSBO ads in paper publications or shleping to the library for boat design info, books, etc. Not very productive or encouraging. Fast forward to the early 2000s and not only everything went online but finding parts, advice, the "boatyard guy" as well as the boat itself became much easier and faster. And with wireless internet coming in a few years later we could be online AND be on the boat at the same time. A win-win.

As far as cruisers' "evolution" IMO it's more mental than anything else. Compared to the cruisers of old (at least from the 60s and 70s) today's cruisers are less about "leaving it all behind" but more about "keeping thethered" to their nonsailing world. They want "just like home" their fridges, TVs, electric this or electric that, keeping in constant contact with the world, etc. The whole underlying reasons for cruising seemed to have changed from "see the world on a shoestring budget while young" to "travel in comfort in your golden post-retirement years in a boat which costs more than a house". Even most people on CF, myself included, look forward to the time when the work will be done for good and real cruising life will begin instead of leaving it all behind and going "now".
__________________
Island Time O25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-04-2015, 23:15   #143
Registered User
 
Buzzman's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: New South Wales, Australia
Boat: Still building
Posts: 406
Re: The Evolution of Cruisers

Interesting POV, and not one I'd debate on the surface - it does appear that people want to have it all and sail a condomaran rather than a down-at-heel Folkboat.

But this is surely as much about the evolution of the world as it is about sailors themselves?

Isn't it true that rising incomes have enabled those in the developed world to travel more than at any time in history, and that competition for travel dollars has driven down the price of such travel in, let's say, the last 100 years at least?

In the 19thC, the 'grand tour' was something that could only be undertaken by the very wealthy. Sailing was slow, overland travel also slow, so to get to the Med from the UK, for example, could take weeks, and then once there, accommodation was not cheap, although food, drink and labour costs were proportionally lower than today.

Today, with increases in wages and living standards BUT with the volume of sales enabling lower travel prices, more people, and from lower socio-economic levels, can now travel some degree of the grand tour - whether it be in expensive Europe or less expensive South-East Asia.

The flip side of this enablement is that the tight time constraints on 'away time' from the source of the earnings necessary to enable the trip in the first place, means that the trip must necessarily be shorter.

Ergo, slowly sailing is not such an attractive option as jumping a Ryanair fight to Marbella or Mallorca, places one might once have sailed to.

I guess there must now be young people doing their 'gap year' thing on one of the relatively readily available 'cheap' sailboats, and going to places they might otherwise not have gone, in place of starting a career straight out of university, but the cost of a degree makes that option increasingly less attractive.

To make the decision to up stakes and sail away, at a young age, is perhaps an even more difficult decision for young people today, and thus why they are not flocking to the cruising lifestyle as perhaps there parents and grandparents generations did ... but .... thanks to the evolution of the internet and mobile video cameras, we can see that lots of them ARE in fact taking to cruising, some of them at least with similar aspirations as their parents generation who dropped out and homesteaded in the Sixties and Seventies.

So are we saying this is a bad thing, or a good thing?

And what, if anything, should the rest of us be doing about it?

If we don't agree with the way people are cruising today, or the attitudes some appear to be suggesting they are bringing to it, what if anything should we be doing about it, and does it really matter?

Sailing, like sailors, like the economy, like the world, is evolving. Is this necessarily a bad thing?

What bits are not so bad....??
__________________
Buzzman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-04-2015, 23:58   #144
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 120
Re: The Evolution of Cruisers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Buzzman View Post
Yet, as I noted, even the Polynesians (and no doubt the Greeks and Vikings before them) navigated using the stars, DR and ages-acquired knowledge of currents and wind.
I suspect the Polynesians may have beaten the Vikings (and probably the Greeks) to it by quite a little while!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Buzzman View Post

So are we saying this is a bad thing, or a good thing?

And what, if anything, should the rest of us be doing about it?

If we don't agree with the way people are cruising today, or the attitudes some appear to be suggesting they are bringing to it, what if anything should we be doing about it, and does it really matter?

Sailing, like sailors, like the economy, like the world, is evolving. Is this necessarily a bad thing?

What bits are not so bad....??
Why don't you give us your opinion on this? That would probably encourage others to give theirs.
__________________
Tensen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2015, 00:17   #145
Registered User
 
Buzzman's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: New South Wales, Australia
Boat: Still building
Posts: 406
Re: The Evolution of Cruisers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tensen View Post
I suspect the Polynesians may have beaten the Vikings (and probably the Greeks) to it by quite a little while!

Actually, I think the Greeks were around 800years BC, whereas the Vikings were sailing in the Middle Ages, around 800AD, while New Zealand, the last 'discovered' Pacific island was settled about 1000 years ago, so presumably their nav tech had been developing over the thousands of years the Pacific was being settled. So Greeks after Egyptians, then Vikings and Polynesians around the same time, with the Polynesians continuing up until the modern age.

Why don't you give us your opinion on this? That would probably encourage others to give theirs.
I don't really have an opinion on whether or not the evolution of sailors, sailing and sail tech is either a good or a bad thing.

I'm leaning towards 'good thing' - at least as far as tech stuff goes - but others appeared to be questioning the 'attitude' of cruisers, positing that this had changed negatively with the evolution of boats and nav tech.

I don't dispute that, but surely Cook and his sextant were themselves an evolution of Ug the Caveman and his coracle?

My question is "does it matter"? And if so, why, and which bits? Curious...
__________________
Buzzman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2015, 00:27   #146
Freelance Delivery Skipper..
 
boatman61's Avatar

Community Sponsor
Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: UK/Portugal
Posts: 20,212
Images: 2
Send a message via Skype™ to boatman61
pirate Re: The Evolution of Cruisers

I think where your post falls flat is the assumption that folk of yesteryear flocked to sea.. in reality it was a very small Percentage.. the bulk were banged over the head on a dark night and woke to find themselves press ganged into a life afloat. Today the desire to play on the water is just movie/TV fantasy living that lasts till the 1st storm and monstrous seas of 9-12ft..
__________________


Born To Be Wild
boatman61 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2015, 01:04   #147
Registered User
 
Buzzman's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: New South Wales, Australia
Boat: Still building
Posts: 406
Re: The Evolution of Cruisers

Not sure where I made the assumption that there used to be 'more' people sailing voluntarily, but if I gave that impression I retract it.

I agree - it's always been a small percentage - and one difficult to quantify.

Actually, we probably can more readily quantify how many were bumped on the head in the bad old days than we can deduce the (much smaller) numbers who went voluntarily under their own steam - ie: cruisers.

But I think it's fair to say that when sailors first began 'cruising' as a leisure activity - as opposed to sailing as a maritime business or for warfare or colonisation - was in the mid to latter half of the 19thC, and especially in the Edwardian period of the early 20thC.

Small numbers. Boats were relatively expensive, salaries - apart from those of businesspeople, authors, specialists and the gentry - were minimal. So those 'cruising' were generally the middle to upper classes (socio-economically) and even within those 'clases' few could afford it or choose it as a past time.

But those who did, being educated people, often wrote about their exploits, and had their logs or a summary of their logs published in the magazines of sailing clubs and yacht clubs.

I learned about RE Groves and Adrian Hayter from the online publication of some of those ancient logs and reports, such as the Albert Strange Association The Albert Strange Association | Celebrating the Yacht Designer, Artist, Sailor and Writer 1855-1917

I have since read many others from other early yacht clubs and organisations, and many books published by those who had these 'adventures'.

And it's clear from the literature that the written exploits of those early adventurers encouraged others to emulate them, and so down to today's adventurers who are encouraging people to get out there and go - the Pardey's and so on - and perhaps even, as I intimated, the bloggers and vloggers, many of whom are relatively younger.

Businesses devised 'gear' for those seeking to emulate their heroes - gimballed stoves, oil lamps, fuel stoves, different types of boats, different fittings and features, and different ways of navigating.

The relative ubiquity of UK Admiralty charts - by the end of the 19thC - could be said to stand in for the relative ubiquity of GPS software and maps today - yet we see long posts and debates about the vicarious merits or otherwise of different types of map software and devices.

No doubt there were different reference materials in the written pre-internet era that were debated around the bar of the yacht club, and different ideas about rigging and sailing debated just as fervently as they are today on the net, on forums like this one.

Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.
__________________
Buzzman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2015, 01:07   #148
Registered User
 
Island Time O25's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 2,019
Re: The Evolution of Cruisers

Of course there were far fewer cruisers 40-50 years ago than today. But we're talking about quality not quantity, right?

As far as Polynesian sailors are concerned we have to look waaay back as they really started about 8,000 years ago from Taiwan. And before that they had to get to Taiwan from the mainland. The ones who colonized NZ and Hawaii in the past 1,000 years were late comers as far as sea travel is concerned. There is now even a theory that the Australian aborigens got there by some sort of sea craft 40,000-50,000 years ago as even with all the land bridges during lower sea levels there were 50-100 mile gaps to be crossed.

It is also interesting reading "The Last Navigator" to realize how quickly any society can lose its skills at some endeavor. In less than 4 generations most of the Pacific islander sailors went from being able to cross hundreds of miles to fetch something or someone to patiently waiting for a cargo ship to arrive once or twice a year. And in the post-WWIII "Mad Max" world will the ones who still cling to their paper charts and sextants will be kings and princes among the helpless masses?
__________________
Island Time O25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2015, 01:21   #149
Registered User
 
Buzzman's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: New South Wales, Australia
Boat: Still building
Posts: 406
Re: The Evolution of Cruisers

Sorry, I didn't really respond to your claim that today it's a TV fantasy that lasts only until the first 12ft wave etc...

And this is perhaps true. Perhaps those old hands glossed over the boredom and the butt-puckering fear in their logs? Or in the reports of their cruises?

I suspect not. More it was a case that the availability of 'yachting' as a recreation timed perfectly with the growth (evolution?) of societies available choices, and thus more began to take it on than previously.

And no doubt the adventures of the Tommy Sopwith's of the world and the widely reported happenings at Cowes and off Rhode Island added to the 'romance' and the 'adventure' of cruising.

And no doubt some who went out didn't like it after a while, and so passed their boats on to others.

But I know the fifties and even to a lesser extent the thirties lead to a drop in the availability of the boats, as their constant upkeep was previously performed by lower paid labourers, that were increasingly harder to find - at the 'right' price - than they had been prior to WW! and definitely after WWII.

Without 'paid hands' it was difficult even for wealthy sailors to take off sailing, as they could no longer afford the yard rates for maintenance and the day labour rates for assistance, so it could be argued that the influx of steel and then fibreglass hulls, requiring far less maintenance than the old carvel or lapstrake hulls, had a much greater impact on sailing numbers.

And this can probably be seen in the numbers of boats built in the sixties and seventies, as opposed to the numbers built today, as again, labour has forced the prices up to the point where sailing is once again the purview of the wealthy - at least on new boats.

And perhaps I should point out - the 'relatively' wealthy - as any professional person ought to be able to buy a boat if they don't choose to live also in a mansion.

I suspect what you appear to be saying is that the evolution of nav tech to enable people with little or no previous experience to go sailing is resulting in the apparently significant number of abandoned boats, or abandoned RTW journeys, as the reality of life at sea strikes home.

But is this a good or a bad thing, per se?

Is the reliance on 'the cavalry' to come running whenever the EPIRB button is pressed purely a bad thing, for sailing, or for society?

Surely the reciprocal argument, that such rescues would not even be possible were it not for the outlay - sponsored by societies' taxes paid to the military for the development of GPS - that enabled the 'possibility' of such rescue?

So society's own evolution enabled the evolution of the type of person able to go crusiing - or at least, to make the attempt.

So is it a bad thing, this evolution? Do we seek to encorage or discourage noobs?

Remember we were once ALL noobs....
__________________
Buzzman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2015, 01:22   #150
Registered User
 
Island Time O25's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 2,019
Re: The Evolution of Cruisers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Buzzman View Post
I don't really have an opinion on whether or not the evolution of sailors, sailing and sail tech is either a good or a bad thing.

I'm leaning towards 'good thing' - at least as far as tech stuff goes - but others appeared to be questioning the 'attitude' of cruisers, positing that this had changed negatively with the evolution of boats and nav tech.

I don't dispute that, but surely Cook and his sextant were themselves an evolution of Ug the Caveman and his coracle?

My question is "does it matter"? And if so, why, and which bits? Curious...
Actually between Ug the Caveman and Cook there were many fine sailors by anyone's standard. Some probably much better than Cook, considering their lack of chronometers, etc. One named Magellan comes to mind.

To me Cook's greatness lies not so much in his seamanship as in his scientific accomplishments and in the fact that he represents a change in mentality from purely commercial goals to mostly scientific ones, although of course he was secretly charged with all kind of spying and comm'l missions by the Crown. And Darwin's Beagle expedition was really an extension of the exploration started by Cook.
__________________

__________________
Island Time O25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
cruise, cruiser

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
380: evolution of the 380 / 380 S2 dominiccc Lagoon Catamarans 4 25-04-2012 13:56
Mahe 36: Mahe36 vs. Evolution jbinbi Fountaine Pajot 1 31-05-2011 07:12
Mahe 36: Mahe 36 Evolution BIRDDOG Fountaine Pajot 12 06-02-2011 13:21
For Sale: Mahe 36 Evolution Jan Iversen Classifieds Archive 2 17-11-2010 07:09
Evolution 25 bitman Monohull Sailboats 0 02-11-2009 05:35



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 10:32.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.