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Old 08-08-2015, 18:32   #886
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Re: The criteria of "blue"

It's been a long time since I read "Ice Bird", but I seem to remember something about David Lewis' steel boat taking a spill off a wave and having some part of the superstructure split open. Mind you, even though he was an extremely tough sailor with tremendous determination, he endured conditions and got into scrapes he didn't really have to: for example lack of insulation. There were other simple things, the details escape me at the moment. I wonder if his crash & split could have also been due to an error in judgement. I wasn't there, haven't been there (and don't intend to go near ice), and am a double belt & three braces kind of guy, so don't let my skepticism of his approach to adventuring detract from his heroic achievements.

For all I know it was a bad weld, or a design fault with a stress riser; perhaps a JSD would have spared the spill in the first place and avoided the follow-on problems. The lessons for me from that are: watertight subdivision so a large breach doesn't soak everything; a simple and strong boat that I can handle; layers of redundancy; and gaming out every situation I can think of, and what I can learn from others, to exhaustion, so I don't have to make it up on the fly. Something I learned in the Army: a good soldier makes himself comfortable whenever possible (apart from artificially contrived training situations), because exhaustion and exposure will destroy you. It will make simple problems insurmountable, snowballing into calamity. Conditions can quickly get very bad on their own; planning on playing the macho hero will seem very foolish when there's no remedy and the thought "if only I'd...." comes too oft and ready to mind. Failing to prepare is planning to fail.

The boat is a system, and must fit the purpose. I'd rather suffer a 10% penalty in speed and a 5% penalty in effective pointing angle over the 85% of the time the weather isn't dramatic; so that in the other 10% I'm at my freshest in a boat built to survive without external dependency and as few built-in failure cascades as possible. The missing 5% is where real miracles are necessary anyway. The way things are going I intend to spend a lot of time away from "civilisation", not necessarily deep ocean but surely far from the madding crowds.

Epirbs and PLB's are all fine and dandy, but it takes time for someone to come; if they come, if they can find you. Not getting into that situation in the first place sounds much better to me. Dealing with it myself means I don't risk someone else's life for my worthless hide. What are the usual causes of small boat disasters? Dismasting, hatch or hull breach, fire, loss of steering, grounding....but mostly it's the crew that breaks first, because things were permitted to get out of hand, long in advance. Often the boat is found some time later and has to be sunk as a hazard.

I won't be carrying a liferaft...I'm already in it. If that can't hack it, then neither will a glorified wading pool. My voyaging system isn't one size fits none - off the rack, it wasn't built for monetary profit, or to show off, or for cheap thrills. Once upon a time I was a croupier; if you gamble long enough, you will lose. You can gamble longer if you reduce the house's advantage and don't play for high stakes.

It might seem paranoid to some to devote so much effort into measures that sacrifice some comfort and a lot of "prestige"; but becoming a statistic is even less cool. What is this "blue"? A voyaging system that can reasonably be expected to carry the crew to wherever they're going through a hostile environment for as long as necessary. Blue is a state of mind, it is principles, it is wisdom from lessons some other poor fellow learned, it is the courage to be different and independent, and the humility to criticise one ownself. That's blue for me...for others it may be different.
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Old 08-08-2015, 19:25   #887
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Re: The criteria of "blue"

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I'm also following the "sailboats with unstayed masts" thread: two posts yesterday got me thinking -
micah719 posted about 'whaleback' Chinese junks (deck is shaped like a whaleback, with wheelhouse set above, like a separate pod - if wheelhouse is wiped out in a storm then the hull below remains intact). In the same post he has a link to the most horrific storm photos I've ever seen, the waves continuing to rise to heights well over 20 meters once the hurricane force winds begin to abate. I hope I'm allowed to copy the link here:
'Here are some interesting pics I found on this site: (index) "The Storm" is an interesting collection of pictures...'

Makes me think again about the safety of pilothouse yachts. Though they rate highly in ultimate stability comparisons, if ever the pilothouse is breached (and it most certainly would be in a "storm" approaching anything like the ferocity portrayed in the photos) then survival chances would be negligible. Of course survival of any yacht in those conditions would seem unlikely but it's interesting that the ancient Chinese realized that those raised cabins or pilothouses are the most vulnerable.
Just looked. Yeh... Extremely scary. At times like that you would definitely be thankful for having a big German in the boat. - preferably acting as the diesel!
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Old 08-08-2015, 20:21   #888
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Re: The criteria of "blue"

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Originally Posted by micah719 View Post
It's been a long time since I read "Ice Bird", but I seem to remember something about David Lewis' steel boat taking a spill off a wave and having some part of the superstructure split open...
I don't recall reading about such an event with a steel hull but I'm fairly sure Tsu Hang's wooden cabin trunk was dislodged when pitchpoled (the first time) on voyage to Cape Horn, leaving a massive gash where deck and cabin should meet. I think this was not that uncommon during knock-downs of timber yachts.
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Old 09-08-2015, 04:34   #889
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Re: The criteria of "blue"

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it is the courage to be different and independent, and the humility to criticise one ownself. That's blue for me...for others it may be different.
I like this... Yet the magnetism of the herd can be so powerful in every walk of life. It has tried and tested wisdom in its favour but often an implication of conventional blind faith too.

Question everything including the questions...
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Old 13-08-2015, 11:41   #890
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Re: The criteria of "blue"

The new Discovery 48 - Blue cruising on a budget. ish..

This exciting new model will be available in two versions: the Ocean and Riviera.

Sporting all the hallmarks that make the Discovery range unique, the 48 will retain the hugely practical raised saloon and navigation area, the fast passage making hull and the quality bespoke British craftsmanship. As with all our yachts, the new Discovery 48 has been specifically designed for safe and easy short-handed sailing together with the luxury of home-from-home, onboard living.







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Old 13-08-2015, 13:28   #891
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Re: The criteria of "blue"

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The new Discovery 48 - Blue cruising on a budget. ish..
So, I was right? You are a yacht salesman??
Blue cruising on a budget ... means a Tom Thumb 28, Contessa 32; "New" and "48ft" ain't budget. I hope you've incorporated all of the blue features from this thread - plenty of handholds, high AVS, STIX, bulletproof pilothouse..... I don't see those dorade vents, or handholds.
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Old 13-08-2015, 14:21   #892
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Re: The criteria of "blue"

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So, I was right? You are a yacht salesman??
Blue cruising on a budget ... means a Tom Thumb 28, Contessa 32; "New" and "48ft" ain't budget. I hope you've incorporated all of the blue features from this thread - plenty of handholds, high AVS, STIX, bulletproof pilothouse..... I don't see those dorade vents, or handholds.
There is a version called the "Kiwi" just for you. It has a 5 inch steel hull and a periscope but no dorade vents. I did not think you would need them.

I would imagine you could have what ever you wanted by way of accessories if you bought this boat. I like the way they have clearly defined the centre cockpit version as "ocean" and I think they do the best job of any yacht company I have seen with their raised nav station.

It is a nicely compromised boat with distinctive build options for either ocean crossing or coastal cruising and is of course British so comes with a quality stamp others can only dream of. Probably...
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Old 13-08-2015, 14:41   #893
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Re: The criteria of "blue"

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The new Discovery 48 - Blue cruising on a budget. ish.. This exciting new model will be available in two versions
Ah, now I understand budget-ish - compared to the 50, 55 and 67 versions!
Nice
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Old 20-08-2015, 11:26   #894
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Re: The criteria of "blue"

Hello, I just wanted to point out that Olin's last name is spelled Stephens. I think that some of the confusion as to the spelling might come from the Stevens 47 which was designed by Rod Stephens. Stevens (whom the Stevens 47 is named after) needed boats for his charter fleet but was not a part of S&S. More info about Olin is located here, he was quite a guy: Sailboat designs of *Sparkman & Stephens by year

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Hi Sandy, We are all entitled to our blue water opinions and some carry more popular weight than others. However, "design" is the conceptual part whereas "build and execution" is the reality that all boat owners have to live and perhaps die with.


Olin Stevens had the benefit of a much more conservative client as predicting and avoiding weather systems in his early days was limited to the skills of the crew. The owner wanted a boat that would survive anything thrown at it.

Today, satellite tracking and weather services convinces the client that he can "manage" the weather.
So design priorities have evolved from safety to comfort and speed.

Modern designers also benefit from the large database to keep the more demanding and often unrealistic client signing those checks.

So as design concepts evolve and customers mindsets go from surviving the mostly unknown weather systems they would experience to managing a more known environment..... the only constant is the quality of the build.... To me that trumps design these days.
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Old 19-11-2015, 14:54   #895
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Re: The criteria of "blue"

Blue is a primary colour and should never even figure into boat conversation as a measure of what is seaworthy because the opinions that get tossed around are often equal to the substance in your grey water tanks.

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Old 19-11-2015, 17:06   #896
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Re: The criteria of "blue"

Nortonscove seems to say we shouldn't discuss 'seaworthy' because we may be talking sh*t, if I understand him correctly.

Well, I'd rather hear a dozen different viewpoints on any given vessel than have no one speak out, for fear of venturing an opinion that someone else may disagree with.

What a pickle we would be in if no one dared venture an opinion - on engines, sails, keels, build materials, hull shape, stability - we'd be back in the stone age paddling dugout canoes.
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Old 20-11-2015, 07:40   #897
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Re: The criteria of "blue"

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What a pickle we would be in if no one dared venture an opinion - on engines, sails, keels, build materials, hull shape, stability - we'd be back in the stone age paddling dugout canoes.
Excuse me,
That's the multihull section of CF.
Right around the corner and look for the gentlemen crying at the "Gunboat" news...
:P
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Old 03-01-2016, 20:26   #898
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Re: The criteria of "blue"

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Nortonscove seems to say we shouldn't discuss 'seaworthy' because we may be talking sh*t, if I understand him correctly.

Well, I'd rather hear a dozen different viewpoints on any given vessel than have no one speak out, for fear of venturing an opinion that someone else may disagree with.

What a pickle we would be in if no one dared venture an opinion - on engines, sails, keels, build materials, hull shape, stability - we'd be back in the stone age paddling dugout canoes.
..and don't forget those bendy masts with no strings attached! Happy new year by the way to you and all.
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Old 03-01-2016, 21:14   #899
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Re: The criteria of "blue"

A dugout canoe wouldn't have the required handhold for most of the experts on these forums. It would however meet the needs of the most daring. I don't profess to be either but prefer to respect those that have the sea legs to forego the need for all those handholds. Have yet to find one on our 53 year old tugboat.
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Old 03-01-2016, 21:52   #900
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Re: The criteria of "blue"

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... I don't ... prefer to respect those that have the sea legs to forego the need for all those handholds. Have yet to find one on our 53 year old tugboat.
Yea, point taken, I once worked a Scottish fishing boat with a six inch bulwark - no rail, no handholds anywhere. A beautiful seaboat, certainly taught us to walk crablike across the deck, but I wouldn't recommend 'Misty Morn' for a solo round the Horn - not unless you don't intend to come back.
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