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Old 08-06-2015, 01:24   #166
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Re: What Is The Big Deal About Single Handling?

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Originally Posted by Rustic Charm View Post
Re your last comment. Does anyone intentionally head out in strong weather? Being unprepared is one thing but do you really propose that to gain experience one should intentionally head out in bad weather? What are you calling 'strong' by the way?
Yes, all the time. It may be strange to US sailors, but it is common here and I bet Down Under, where conditions are similar, the practice is also similar. Of course, you guys down there might not call Force 8 "strong weather" -- question of terminology For you, that might mean F10, and no, I would never head out into that intentionally (shudder!), although I have been in F10 a couple of times.

When it kicks up to a F8, the Solent fills up with boats with orange storm sails. They are practicing sailing in (what we call) strong weather. The Solent is a great place to do that, because you get the wind without the sea state -- great for practicing sail handling etc.

Last month, I headed out on a North Sea crossing in what was supposed to be a Southerly F8. Intentionally. Not for practice, but because the gale was supposed to back to Easterly and blow for a week. That would have meant sailing right into the teeth of it after turning the corner at Terschelling Bank, which would have been impossible. So leaving when we did was our last chance to get across before losing my crew.

Because I have sailed thousands of miles in F8's (English Channel; no choice ), I knew that I and my boat can handle it -- as long as the wind is not ahead of the beam it's not even really uncomfortable. I discussed the decision to sail with the (excellent, highly skilled) crew and we had a solid consensus that everyone wanted to go and no one had any reservations -- I would have aborted if anyone had been against.

In the event, we got not a F8, but a F9, and it was hairy at times. It was a good thing that we were well crewed (four highly qualified sailors), because it was intense, exhausting. But "hairy" did not mean it was actually dangerous -- we were in control. Just took a lot of concentration and effort. But thousands of miles in F8's is just what you need, to handle a F9, and if you sail long distances in these latitudes (I'm over 60N at the moment), you will inevitably encounter such conditions.

Sailing is just like this -- you have to push the envelope from time to time, at least to some extent, or you'll never learn anything. It can't be done without taking some risks; the thing is that they should be very carefully evaluated and thoroughly prepared for. If all risk-taking is "foolish", then sailing is not for you.
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Old 08-06-2015, 01:33   #167
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Re: What Is The Big Deal About Single Handling?

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Originally Posted by Rustic Charm View Post
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Originally Posted by Jon Eisberg
Literally dozens vanish annually, no doubt... No one even knows they've gone missing, because of course solo sailors have no friends... And, what's the point of a singlehander carrying an EPIRB anyway, when he or she can't think of anyone to list as a contact on the registration form?


Indeed, hardly a month goes by without some merchant vessel puling into port with a some solo sailor's rig dangling from the ship's anchor...

Or, so I've heard... :-)
I'm a bit slow on the humour side Jon. Are you being humerous
Well, I'd say Sarcasm is probably a closer approximation of what I was aiming for...

:-)
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Old 08-06-2015, 01:39   #168
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Re: What Is The Big Deal About Single Handling?

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Originally Posted by Rustic Charm View Post
Re your last comment. Does anyone intentionally head out in strong weather? Being unprepared is one thing but do you really propose that to gain experience one should intentionally head out in bad weather? What are you calling 'strong' by the way?
On Bass Strait SOP for me was to sail on the back of fronts... if you didn't do that there was a good chance of being glassed out before you got to where you were going.
But into bad wx for the sake of sailing in bad weather... nope... well not often... honest...
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Old 08-06-2015, 01:53   #169
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Re: What Is The Big Deal About Single Handling?

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Well, I'd say Sarcasm is probably a closer approximation of what I was aiming for...

:-)
You succeeded. Approximately.
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Old 08-06-2015, 02:13   #170
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Re: What Is The Big Deal About Single Handling?

When I think back to my youf- we would go out fishing in bad weather. OK.... we chose our places to do it so as to be able to head to shelter if it got too bad, but the lure of good fishing was too much. At least 3 boats would be out there to buddy and to learn. It was estuary fishing but man, would it ever blow up. 3 cuddy boats with 40hp bobbing like corks.

We learned a lot. Mainly that it was not fun after the first hour and not to eat before going out. We did get some good fish though. Getting the boat on the trailer when finished was interesting as well.

Stabilisers are amazing things.

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Old 08-06-2015, 03:06   #171
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Re: What Is The Big Deal About Single Handling?

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No worries, mate!

Oh BTW, have you noticed that a lot of posters here are pilots... and seem to mention it frequently? What's the big deal... I don't get it (just kidding, despite the true observation).

And true confession time: despite the single handing history related above, I have never had the urge to cruise solo. Have done so a couple of times when required, but I too prefer amenable company with whom to share the joys of the cruising life. Fortunately I have Ann...

Jim
So Amelia Earhart must have been a bragging Dick......
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Old 08-06-2015, 03:22   #172
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Re: What Is The Big Deal About Single Handling?

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So Amelia Earhart must have been a bragging Dick......
Yer anatomy is a bit off there mate.

I like sailing alone. I live alone. I travel to work alone, I fly alone. Sometimes I have company. Its fun but not essential. I like flying. I go to fly. I like driving, so I drive. I like sailing and so.............

You wanna come along? Sure, but its my timetable and my choices unless today is all about you, and its your day to choose. It would be nice to share with someone, yet so hard to find a woman who loves sailing-there was Baabs for a while but she didnt like Spanish food.

Circumstances change like the seasons and people come and go in our lives, yet the sailing lives on with or without others.
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Old 08-06-2015, 03:28   #173
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pirate Re: What Is The Big Deal About Single Handling?

A few points that need clearing up..
Harley Davidson's cannot do FAST...
Coastal sailing is way more dodgy than Ocean sailing.. so many hard bits..
Sleeping while solo sailing is only a problem coz you make it one.. only ever been rammed once.. not by another solo but by a boat with 4 crew.. so take your 'Irresponsible' and shove it where the sun don' t shine..
Some of us started sailing long before all these aids like CP's/GPS/AIS etc were dreamed of.. so life without is normal.. though it seems not to you Johnny Come Latelys..
Improvisation is the key to successful passage making.. that's why I'll be selling this boat and reverting back to a tiller 31ftr Longbow with the proceeds.
Sailor boy.. Your problem is not universal to solo sailors..
Hydraulic wheel steering.. SUCKS..
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Old 08-06-2015, 03:39   #174
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Re: What Is The Big Deal About Single Handling?

I have not noticed on CF (or in real life!) the attitude that OP refers to.

Most single handers seem to have simply made a pragmatic decision to not wait for crew (not easy to find folk, let alone a special one, who has same ideas and plans)...rather than for any purist reasons.

Plus many passages are defacto made singlehanded even when crew are onboard (or at least shorthanded) so the topic is a relevant one wider than the singlehander.

Having said that, plenty of folks (especially newbies to boats) do turn up on CF with Solo dreams that seem to be in part generated by becoming solo on land! Whether the dream is about seizing the opportunity or running away being a moot point.
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Old 08-06-2015, 03:43   #175
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Re: What Is The Big Deal About Single Handling?

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Originally Posted by Jon Eisberg View Post
Well, I'd say Sarcasm is probably a closer approximation of what I was aiming for...

:-)
ok, I got that. Well, at least that's what I was hoping it was.
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Old 08-06-2015, 03:54   #176
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Re: What Is The Big Deal About Single Handling?

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So Amelia Earhart must have been a bragging Dick......
Whilst Ms Earhart had a lot to brag about, and so she should, her longest solo was 15 hrs I think. So, not quite the same thing at all.
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Old 08-06-2015, 04:06   #177
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Re: What Is The Big Deal About Single Handling?

Yes, Rustic Charm, some of us suggest that one should intentionally go out in bad weather for a bit, to learn stuff like, where does the storm jib sheet lead work best for heaving to, that kind of thing. Then, when you have learned what you set out to learn, go the heck back to where you can have a hot shower, a good meal, and think about it all.

Where Dockhead sails, there are fiercer conditions routinely than, say, in Southern Calif. Tassie's fiercest conditions usually seem to me to happen when there's a squash zone between an incoming high and a slow departing low, but can also happen sometimes when it is the low coming in against the high. Strongest winds we've ever seen, actually, 98 knots sustained. At Con dock in Hobart.

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Old 08-06-2015, 04:14   #178
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Re: What Is The Big Deal About Single Handling?

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A few points that need clearing up..

Harley Davidson's cannot do FAST...
It depends on the definition of fast.




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Old 08-06-2015, 04:21   #179
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Re: What Is The Big Deal About Single Handling?

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I have found out recently that it isn't always the case.

Sorry, such is life. I would prefer not to know. If I read between the lines correctly,
We are still hanging tough. (my son is battling brain cancer but is as active as you and I) He is stable, off treatment, working out, and trying to gain back the 30 lbs he lost. He may be one of the lucky ones

He has taught me that life should be lived every day. There is no time for negativity. I'm trying to learn.

As far as the single hand thing, it's how I almost always sail and after visiting my Mom in the nursing home last year I don't feel it's a dangerous thing to do as someone mentioned earlier.

That's how I got on this tangent. Single handing may be a bit risky, but if you know what you are doing it can be most enjoyable for the type right person.

I'm hoping when I'm in my late 70's/early 80's I can continue to single hand sail and enjoy what time I have rather than sitting in front of the TV or computer constantly.

Single hand sailing can be a pita but at the same time it gives your body quite the workout when the wind is up and you have an old boat where you have to go forward to the mast to do most anything as far as sail adjustment (reefing/raising) Plus you get the sun high or I do when I spend a lot of time in the sun like when sailing.

I identify sailing with my son a lot because he raced with me for years since he was around 10-11 years old. Sometimes he called the tacks in critical situations which allowed us to win races when he was 14-15. He's an artist and has a better overall view that I to do as an engineer/tech type. Team work ...........

Happiness in the middle of treatment?! Here after two 6 plus hour brain surgeries, 6 weeks radiation (he had hair before and does again now) and chemo, and before 6 more months chemo. Unrehearsed, impromptu, October 2014:

Btw, he has handled much of this "singlehanded" as I am 1100 miles away and working. (even driving himself to get chemo, monthly checkups etc)

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Old 08-06-2015, 05:05   #180
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Re: What Is The Big Deal About Single Handling?

Except for day sailors I bet most singlehanding sailors aren't really "alone". They probably have an autopilot and that is worth way more than lots of carbon based biobag units (people) whose only pluses are that they have eyeballs.
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