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Old 08-01-2012, 19:56   #16
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Originally Posted by Andrei123
I am just curious, on a longer trip ... week or so do you use the engine a lot or mostly sails ?
Ive been reading stories of atlantic crossings and down south (Caribean) trips. I am from Canada fyi. Sounds to me a lot of the people in these stories dont have problems running the engine for a good hundred some miles. Large 120L of fuel, the reason im asking this is because im kind of scared of running up the bill with large amounts of fuel.
My long term plan ~5years or so is running from Canada to the Bermuda's even perhaps somewhere further south. At a quick calculation 120L or so of fuel would roughly translate in a lot mof $$$.

Guess the question is, is this a preference thing ? A necessity ? I understand the need for engines, my belief was they are mostly used for short distance and manuvering.

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If you plan a 7 day 350 mile coastal trip you will be motoring a lot. If you plan a 7 day 150 mile trip you can sail.
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Old 08-01-2012, 20:00   #17
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Re: On long trips Diesel or wind ??

120 L of fuel is about 32 gallons, which runs about 4 or 5 USD at the fuel dock. So around 150 USD total.
On the other hand, I was out 36 days in my boat last year and used 25 gallons of diesel.
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Old 08-01-2012, 20:36   #18
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Re: On long trips Diesel or wind ??

On our Privilege 39 catamaran, I have two 28 hp Yanmar diesels. I carry enough diesel offshore to do about 1400 miles. I don't motor unless it is necessary, but when the speed drops below 4 knots and the sails are flopping around, I will turn on one engine.

I know of many folks who just sat around waiting for wind, and then got clobbered when the next low pressure area came through their patch of ocean. I know of one yacht who lost their mast doing just that thing.

The cost of getting to a destination is more than diesel fuel. Motoring may be much less expensive in comparison to the cost of replacing broken gear and damaged sails in a storm that would have been avoidable if you had used the engine.

The cost of a new engine on my catamaran is about the same as a fancy new mainsail. Wind may be free, but sails, battens, batcars, masts, and rigging are not free. My number one goal while offshore is storm avoidance because storms are expensive and dangerous. My engine and diesel fuel make storm avoidance much easier.
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Old 08-01-2012, 20:47   #19
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Well said Maxingout. For us it seems when we have no timeline the wind is always with us. Having said that we motor or motor sail about 60% of the time......
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Old 08-01-2012, 20:52   #20
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Re: On long trips Diesel or wind ??

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrei123 View Post
mmmmm yah batteries ... forgot about those.

I was mostly fearing its need in a storm like situation to get out of trouble.

. . .
I think we missed this statement - if you think your engine is there to get you out of trouble during a storm - think again. It will be your sailing skills and sail handling skills that will get you out of trouble. And better yet, your weather forecasting/handling skills to keep you out of storms in the first place (as much as possible).

IMHO, sailboats make lousy motorboats and motorboats make lousy sailboats.
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Old 08-01-2012, 21:38   #21
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So what makes a good motorboat? Something that runs 30knots and burns 20gph?
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Old 08-01-2012, 22:48   #22
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Re: On long trips Diesel or wind ??

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Originally Posted by osirissail View Post
I think we missed this statement - if you think your engine is there to get you out of trouble during a storm - think again. It will be your sailing skills and sail handling skills that will get you out of trouble. And better yet, your weather forecasting/handling skills to keep you out of storms in the first place (as much as possible).

IMHO, sailboats make lousy motorboats and motorboats make lousy sailboats.
Hi orissail…
Good point about using an engine during a storm to get you out of trouble.... (it is too late),

However, I think your opinion about motor-sailors may be skewered a bit by your previous assessment and experience of your Gulfstar.

They are not all the same. SG has sailed around the world and from my experience with her in storm conditions…she could do it again.

Having a dry and easily driven hull, she is wind efficient but would not win any races.

You can have an efficient motor-sailor but not the best of both.

I am happy with that as I don't race.
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Old 09-01-2012, 00:40   #23
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Re: On long trips Diesel or wind ??

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Originally Posted by Andrei123 View Post
I am just curious, on a longer trip ... week or so do you use the engine a lot or mostly sails ?
If you mean a single passage of a week, then, as with everything in the world, it depends

If I'm stuck in the middle of a big high then the motor will get turned on to try and find some wind. Otherwise no huge rush, wait half a day and the wind usually comes back. What's the rush. Weatherfax helps.
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Old 09-01-2012, 01:46   #24
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Re: On long trips Diesel or wind ??

Sailing from the Columbia River north to the Straight of Juan De Fucia it's better to motor as fast as you can when there's no wind because there's some current coming south and the swells and waves are usually out of the north west so it's up hill crusing for the full 150 miles that takes about 30 hours non stop when the weather is really calm but going back south no problem sailing. Trying to sail north west out the Straight of Juan De Fucia into the prevailing wind and waves and swells makes it almost a necessity to motor while riding the tudes.
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Old 09-01-2012, 04:46   #25
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Re: On long trips Diesel or wind ??

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Originally Posted by webejammin View Post
Sailing from the Columbia River north to the Straight of Juan De Fucia it's better to motor as fast as you can when there's no wind because there's some current coming south and the swells and waves are usually out of the north west so it's up hill crusing for the full 150 miles that takes about 30 hours non stop when the weather is really calm but going back south no problem sailing. Trying to sail north west out the Straight of Juan De Fucia into the prevailing wind and waves and swells makes it almost a necessity to motor while riding the tudes.
A good point. You don't dare let your boat speed drop off if you are trying to make way against an adverse tide. The lower your speed through the water the greater the adverse effect of a foul tide.

The contrary situation is when you have a fair tide -- then you don't mind bobbing around a bit in light winds -- anyway you are making miles towards your destination. A fair tide makes you point higher too -- over ground, that is. A fair tide gives you super powers.
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Old 09-01-2012, 08:27   #26
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Re: On long trips Diesel or wind ??

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Originally Posted by Pelagic View Post
. . . However, I think your opinion about motor-sailors may be skewered a bit by your previous assessment and experience of your Gulfstar.

They are not all the same. SG has sailed around the world and from my experience with her in storm conditions…she could do it again. . . .
I wasn't talking about any specific boat within the world of sailboats or motorboats but generically. The basic design of a sailboat is towards propulsion by sails and the hull and stability characteristics are designed for sailing. Having an engine, even a large engine (motor-sailor) doesn't change the basic design, only gives you some more options underway. Take your (pure or motor-sailor) sailboat designed hull out into the ocean without sails up and most likely you will be hanging on for dear life.

Motor-boats (trawlers, power-yachts, whatever) have different hull forms and are designed to get their stability underway from the engine(s). And if you can afford them (active stabilizers). Stick a mast and sails on a trawler (engine off) and you generally get a boat that goes downwind no matter which way you point it.

I have seen some motor yachts that have converted their boat with an upper deck mounted mast to take a small sail and boom. The owners I have talked to said the primary reason was to try to minimize the rolling underway when beam to the wind. Kind of a stabilizer when you cannot afford the active hull stabilizers.

There are companies like Gulfstar (their trawler hull motor-sailor line) and Choey Lee and others who have tried to combine both sailboat and motoryacht designs together in a sort of hybrid boat. Wonderful wide cabins and accomodations, but lousy sailing performance when compared to well designed pure auxiliary sailboats.
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Old 09-01-2012, 08:48   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barnakiel
If there is no wind, we will use the engine.

The only exception is when we head offshore, then we use the engine only once a day or once every second, third day - to make some electricity and to make sure the beast is still alive.

But inshore, if the destination can be reached powering, if it is dead flat and we expect it to remain so, we will power.

b.
I second this position. If we have a 4000 mile passage we will make different decisions than if we have a 400 mile passage.

Use of the engine is lifestyle, preference, time, boat performance, crew skill, and safety based. There are many variables that dictate use of an engine.

If you aint got any money you wont use the engine any more than you need to, but if you have money in the kitty and diesel in the tank and you want to motor through a calm or into an anchorage, most will.
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Old 09-01-2012, 09:01   #28
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Re: On long trips Diesel or wind ??

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It's not just a matter of preference. One of the questions is how well a boat and its crew can perform in light air. Some boats will start motoring when it gets light because they can't move effectively otherwise. This can be the weak spot for the classic heavy cruiser. For some boats, five knots of wind from abaft the beam means "Let's turn on the motor so that we're not just wallowing here." For other boats, five knots of wind from abaft the beam means, "Let's put up the spinnaker and boogie!"
That would be me, the motor guy.
Mostly because we just started this and it's a lot easier for somebody with only a few hours of spinnaker experience to start the engine. It's very uncomfortable here in California this time of year to bounce around in a 10' swell with no appreciable forward motion.
I look forward to flying the spinnaker more soon.
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Old 16-01-2012, 22:06   #29
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Re: On long trips Diesel or wind ??

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Originally Posted by maxingout View Post
On our Privilege 39 catamaran, I have two 28 hp Yanmar diesels. I carry enough diesel offshore to do about 1400 miles. I don't motor unless it is necessary, but when the speed drops below 4 knots and the sails are flopping around, I will turn on one engine.

I know of many folks who just sat around waiting for wind, and then got clobbered when the next low pressure area came through their patch of ocean. I know of one yacht who lost their mast doing just that thing.

The cost of getting to a destination is more than diesel fuel. Motoring may be much less expensive in comparison to the cost of replacing broken gear and damaged sails in a storm that would have been avoidable if you had used the engine.

The cost of a new engine on my catamaran is about the same as a fancy new mainsail. Wind may be free, but sails, battens, batcars, masts, and rigging are not free. My number one goal while offshore is storm avoidance because storms are expensive and dangerous. My engine and diesel fuel make storm avoidance much easier.
When vessel speed drops below 4 knots it's a safety issue? Come on man. Sail around the south west (and basically all the way down to Chile) and you'll be dealing with crummy winds the entire time. If I threw the engine on every time I dipped below 4 knots I'd hardly ever go sailing.

The wind right now is variable ~5 knots with a long frequency swell. Perfect conditions for sailing with a drifter. The next low pressure system is a week off and will hardly be dismasting anyone.
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Old 16-01-2012, 22:10   #30
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Re: On long trips Diesel or wind ??

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When vessel speed drops below 4 knots it's a safety issue? Come on man. Sail around the south west (and basically all the way down to Chile) and you'll be dealing with crummy winds the entire time. If I threw the engine on every time I dipped below 4 knots I'd hardly ever go sailing.

The wind right now is variable ~5 knots with a long frequency swell. Perfect conditions for sailing with a drifter. The next low pressure system is a week off and will hardly be dismasting anyone.
Ahmen to that. Most people buy storm sails before they buy light wind sails but most of your time on a boat will be spent getting the mule to gideyup! If you know what I mean.
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