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Old 02-08-2009, 09:08   #1
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Escape Hatches: One Opened While Sailing, the Other Leaking

we, 4 sailing friends on Curacao, delivered an FP Venezia42 from Curacao to Aruba v.v. ...
we knew, the ride back would be a tough one ...

my TR + pics here :

http://redhibiscus.talkspot.com/aspx/templates/tuleSunset.aspx/msgid/545625


after some ppl read my TR, there was a nice discussion on the L&A board about escape hatches on Cats ...

http://www.seafaring.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=14854


this cat was rather neglected, hadn't sailed for some time, was kind of "dirty", but she HAD to leave Curacao July 20th, to get permission after returning Curacao to stay another 6 months ...
Aruba is "abroad" so Aruba clearing stamps will do ...

the owner is in either Belgium or in Sierra Leone ...
we were asked by him to do the "chore" for him ...

I guess we were lucky to made it home safely ...
22 hrs on motor (2 x 28HP), while checking the escape hatches each and every 5 minutes ...


my daughter Merel replied, after reading my TR:
her quote:
I guess you guys just always break everything yourself, so you can call it an adventure ...hahahaha ...
she's a funny girl, but it was FAR beside the truth ...
the boat was NOT at its best ...


now let's see what the Cat sailors here have to tell us about those hatches ...

greetz,
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Old 02-08-2009, 09:15   #2
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Underwater hatches seem like a very bad idea to me.

However, I'd love to read how many of those hatches have failed. As well as how many people have ever been seriously trapped in a capsized multi-hull. I have a hard time believing that there are many cruisers who would be unable go under water long enough to get under a bulkhead or go the short distance necessary to get outside.

Some real data would be helpful.
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Old 02-08-2009, 09:41   #3
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ps: forgot to tell, all 4 of are sailors, but we never sailed a Cat before ...
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Old 02-08-2009, 09:42   #4
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Underwater hatches are terrific.... on submarines. Murphy's Law hasn't been repealed yet. What's the worst thing that can happen, anyway? Oh, yeah, I forgot. Hatches very near the waterline make the same (non)sense. I've never capsized, but I know friends who have, one who has done it several times in different boats, all of them big and going fast. Sometimes it's better to consider a sacrificial panel to chop out rather than a nice looking piece of glass and metal technology. Multihulls, in the inverted position, still float quite well despite the inconveniences of a topsy-turvy orientation.
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Old 02-08-2009, 09:58   #5
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Pardon my ignorance but If you turn turtle and have an underhull hatch, arnt you more likely to add to the sinking problem by opening it and releasing trapped air?
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Old 02-08-2009, 10:03   #6
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I think you have an excellent point anjou. I am visualizing the hull sinking down until the hatch is submerged and at that point the air stops leaking out. With a capsized cat, I think I would rather have a little more reserve buoyancy than a little less.
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Old 02-08-2009, 10:07   #7
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On the other hand, the hatch would have to be rather substantial to contain the trapped air which would be under a lot of pressure.

People spend time and money to design pilot house windows to withstand pounding waves, so surely a body sized under hull hatch has to be strong too?
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Old 02-08-2009, 10:21   #8
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Muss I Denn..



Anya I enjoyed your blog and the pics.. would have loved to hear that guy playing this on the dock, as i have good memories of singing it way back when I was studying German.

And here's Elvis doing a very inaccurately translated english version of the song:

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Old 02-08-2009, 10:51   #9
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I dunno a lot but I believe all those hatches are above the waterline.

I also believe the "rules" for them were created during the time that all thought the major risk while sailing a cat was that of capsize.................way back when.

I do think that they should be built sort of like a submarine hatch (really, really strong) because of all the pounding they will take under the bridge deck.
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Old 02-08-2009, 11:00   #10
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Quote:
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I dunno a lot but I believe all those hatches are above the waterline.

I also believe the "rules" for them were created during the time that all thought the major risk while sailing a cat was that of capsize.................way back when.

I do think that they should be built sort of like a submarine hatch (really, really strong) because of all the pounding they will take under the bridge deck.
If its above the waterline when the boat is rightside up, its sure to be under when the boat is under too. Cant have it both ways.
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Old 02-08-2009, 11:13   #11
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Quote:
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If its above the waterline when the boat is rightside up, its sure to be under when the boat is under too. Cant have it both ways.
Sorry to disagree with a neighbour but yes you can have it both ways in this instance.

My Privilege has two escape hatches at different levels in the boat. One is about two foot above the water - right way up - and the other 4. Inverted I think one will be just above the water and the other a couple of feet above.
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Old 02-08-2009, 11:41   #12
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Indeed, as per Therapy and Jeannius, the hatches are above the waterline, ours are about a foot above the WL.
And the other great thing about those low hatches is at anchor, they catch vast amounts of the cool air which get channeled between the hulls.
And as far as remaining afloat, most cats of a cored construction will remain afloat due the inherent bouyancy of the construction material especially with no lump of lead to drag down to Davey Jones Locker.
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Old 02-08-2009, 11:41   #13
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Sorry to disagree with a neighbour but yes you can have it both ways in this instance.

My Privilege has two escape hatches at different levels in the boat. One is about two foot above the water - right way up - and the other 4. Inverted I think one will be just above the water and the other a couple of feet above.
Neither are needed on the Severn
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Old 02-08-2009, 11:42   #14
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Arthur Piver, probably the first guy to get multihulls "in your face", reportedly had a trimaran fitted with replaceable panels in the bilge. When the issue of unsinkability arose, he would take an ax to the panels in the floats and main hull, flooding the boat. It continued to sail, albeit somewhat slowly, until the panels were replaced and the bilge pump activated. This would not be recommended for a conventional monohull. No lead ballast means that the remaining materials in the boat are probably near the surface when opened to all possible ingress of seawater. Some think that beats the options, even though uncomfortably damp and not too efficient.
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Old 02-08-2009, 11:52   #15
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Hi , Neeli, about the cored construction this is BS , a lagoon 380 example is cored like many monohulls, and a cat full of water sunk no matter of cored in the laminated, cats just float inverted if there is air inside , i remember a ETAP builder monohull in the 1992 sunk in bahamas and the builder claim unsinkable!!lol. And scape hachtes found in many catas are the same found in many decks !!! Cheers
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