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Old 15-02-2015, 06:27   #451
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Re: GUNBOAT Dismasting

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Originally Posted by beiland View Post
Plus you have some hi-tech rigging that often is NOT that easy to just 'cut'.

And likely they were not carrying such good tools to do such a cutting job?
They managed to dispose of the rig in 15 minutes, which I find to be a remarkable feat... Sounds like they were prepared, and had whatever they needed to accomplish the task, and managed it in exemplary fashion...

My only point is that in the course of those 15 minutes, one of those 3 Gunboat pro crew who were aboard might have noticed something that gave an indication of what either did, or did not, fail... Did the rig come down in one piece, for example, or did it fold in half somewhere above deck level? That alone could give some indication as to whether it was the failure of a single component, or the failure of the spar itself, possibly as a result of the mast becoming inverted while carrying a triple reefed main... Perhaps I've missed it, but I've yet to hear any clarification on something even as fundamental as that, alone...
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Old 15-02-2015, 06:43   #452
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Re: GUNBOAT Dismasting

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Think about it for a bit and then answer your own questions. The boat is (supposedly) unsinkable - even when cut into bits. Many catamarans are, so I have no reason to doubt this claim. Opening the thruhulls would do nothing except sink it lower in the water and prevent it from ever being intentionally removed from the sea.

Now think about the fire thing. Do you really think it is reasonable, or even POSSIBLE, to start a fire on a boat from the water? A boat that is in the water, being covered with water. Where does one find all this convenient accelerant necessary to start and maintain a fire capable of burning a carbon composite boat? How does one safely even light it when treading water outside the boat? Even if you did start a fire, it would only burn to the water line and then the rest of the boat would still be floating.

Now let's think about the helicopter gun blowing things up part for a few seconds. A rescue helicopter needs all the fuel and lightness it can get. This one couldn't even make it back to its base and landed at the nearest point of land running on fumes. So let's put a couple of 50mm machine guns, a couple of air to ground missiles and the related mounts, ammo, etc for them. Yes, that makes sense…

I'm with 44CC here - this thread has gone nuts.

Mark
Aside from the near impossibility of scuttling a boat like RAINMAKER, I have little problem with it not being done in this instance...

First, the word 'miniscule' does not even come close to describing the odds of it presenting a real hazard to another cruising boat or small craft 200 miles off Hatteras, in February... ;-)

Second, it appears that there always was a legitimate plan by Gunboat to attempt to salvage the boat... There was a narrow window of opportunity shortly afterwards where, they might have been able to locate her and take her in tow... Even a week later, that seemed to be the plan... So, I think she was abandoned with the expectation, or at least hope, that they would be able to get her back...
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Old 15-02-2015, 07:24   #453
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Re: GUNBOAT Dismasting

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I doubt it would sink. Foam core.
Fire is the alternative, no excuses.
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Old 15-02-2015, 07:32   #454
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Re: GUNBOAT Dismasting

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Originally Posted by clockwork orange View Post
Fire is the alternative, no excuses.
Think about that and get back to us with how you would go about scuttling it by fire.

These things seem easy when one doesn't know what they are talking about.

Mark
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Old 15-02-2015, 07:40   #455
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Re: GUNBOAT Dismasting

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Originally Posted by Jon Eisberg View Post
Aside from the near impossibility of scuttling a boat like RAINMAKER, I have little problem with it not being done in this instance...

First, the word 'miniscule' does not even come close to describing the odds of it presenting a real hazard to another cruising boat or small craft 200 miles off Hatteras, in February... ;-)

Second, it appears that there always was a legitimate plan by Gunboat to attempt to salvage the boat... There was a narrow window of opportunity shortly afterwards where, they might have been able to locate her and take her in tow... Even a week later, that seemed to be the plan... So, I think she was abandoned with the expectation, or at least hope, that they would be able to get her back...
If it was believed to be salvageable then it wasn't sinking or coming apart so the crew could have stayed aboard, they had communications to call in a rescue so they could have directed a salvage vessel to them. My point is if you make the choice to get off it is incumbent on you to sink it by whatever method available to you, it would be very possible to design in the ability to flood buoyancy tanks but it still may remain awash due to the construction but it would burn very well. I realize that the risk to small craft is small but it is there and it is not worth it. Bottom line, if you want to save it stay aboard and give it a fighting chance. As I pointed out earlier responsible sailors such as Skip Allen and Eric with Rebel Heart and many others did the seamanlike thing when they got rescued even though the risk to others were small.

Steve.
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Old 15-02-2015, 07:46   #456
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Re: GUNBOAT Dismasting

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Originally Posted by colemj View Post
Think about that and get back to us with how you would go about scuttling it by fire.

These things seem easy when one doesn't know what they are talking about.

Mark
Ive been a boatbuilder for over 40 years so I know a bit more of what im talking about than most boatowners. I would suggest that anyone who could not figure out how to set a boat on fire probably cant tie their own shoelaces.

Steve.
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Old 15-02-2015, 09:25   #457
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Re: GUNBOAT Dismasting

We could go in circles debating whether or not they knew why the rig failed. It's possible they did, quite likely they didn't. We'd know what they knew if they told us, but they're on mute. I guess they'll open up at some point about that.

It's interesting if it was a failure resulting from rig design (eg lack of lower sufficient support when reefed deep), less interesting if it's a terminal failure from some manufacturing defect. We may never know.

But let's assume for the moment that they don't know why the rig failed (the point that CC44 keeps coming back to). There remain a suite of really valid questions that they must know the answer to (and that aren't answered by saying "ropes around the props"). The thread isn't nuts for pointing this out, and pointing out the contrast between the information deluge from GB in the past and the running for the hills now. Was the openness of the past their culture, or just crafty marketing? Was the 55 all the marketing and magazine reviewers said, or did it have all the vulnerabilities to heavy weather etc that it seemed to have on a quick glance? Why so slow with the pro crew? etc. etc.

Good questions. There could be good answers. Right now there are no answers.

I haven't gone back to check, but my recollection is that when Chris White's design flipped, he was quick to engage and write about the issues, I thought pretty openly. A more recent contrast I keep coming back to is the Vestas team - so candid, so quickly, which would have been much harder given the humiliating nature of the error. I admired them for that. It's a model for the rest of us on how to behave when we make the mistakes we have made, and will make.

So if I was offered right now the choice of delivering a GB55 or, say, a multi50, I'd choose the 50 in a flash because I have some confidence that it will retain watertight integrity in the ****, it will be faster, doesn't seem to need 3 paid crew, and I'm guessing more enjoyable to helm. I'll forgo the GB55's glasshouse for the safety of the 50 (and save 9/10th of the price).

And if I was offered the choice of delivery crew, I'd hire the guys off Vestas - they showed they knew a mistake when they saw it, and will have leared from it. And for clarity, I fully agree that the RM crew may have made no mistakes at all. We just don't know because nobody will say what happened.

The circles of debate continue because of GB's approach to the issue.
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Old 15-02-2015, 09:58   #458
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Re: GUNBOAT Dismasting

Scuttling the boat by fire may not be viable. They were in squalls remember? Plus with the winds there could be a fair amount of spray so it may be pretty wet in there. Even if you could puncture the watertight bulkheads and fire it up it still may not sink. At least not all the way.

Comparing it with those other 2 monos doesn't work for me. They will sink (did sink) and both had a much lower financial value. I think they were further offshore so any salvage effort would have been cost prohibitive. This boat is potentially salvageable and worth repairing. I think they made the right call.
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Old 15-02-2015, 10:03   #459
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Re: GUNBOAT Dismasting

I've read through most of this thread, primarily because of the entertainment value. The one thing I will contribute is that my guess is that the folks at Gunboat are chomping at the bit to defend their brand. However, I think it is likely that they have a team of attorney's that are strongly advising them to keep their mouths shut for now. I'm assuming the boat was insured and I doubt the insurance company really wants to simply write a check for $2.5 million and call it good. Where do you think the insurance company is going turn to once they pay out their claim? My guess is either the company that manufactured the boat and/or the professional crew that was on the boat at the time of the incident. With so much on the line can you really blame Gunboat and the crew for not offering any information at this point? Furthermore, I am sure that Gunboat has their own liability insurance, in which case the lawyers from their own insurance company are surely demanding they they stay tight lipped about the incident.

Maybe I'm way off base here, but I suspect our top notch US legal system may have something to do with the lack of information flow.
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Old 15-02-2015, 10:04   #460
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Re: GUNBOAT Dismasting

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Originally Posted by clockwork orange View Post
Ive been a boatbuilder for over 40 years so I know a bit more of what im talking about than most boatowners. I would suggest that anyone who could not figure out how to set a boat on fire probably cant tie their own shoelaces.
It certainly seems like you have no experience with multihulls, and I bet no experience lighting them on fire. Being a boat builder has absolutely no relation to this issue, or to using your thinking cap about it. It appears some mere boat owners are better at the latter.

One would need to light several fires in each hull, as well as the bridgedeck, if they expected to burn most of the structure. To do this would take a considerable amount of accelerant burning at a high temperature. I suppose flooding the hulls with diesel and lighting flares into them may do it. However, it is very difficult to get diesel out of a tank at any good rate, let alone have enough to flood two 55' hulls.

Even then, it would burn to the waterline at best before extinguishing itself. I doubt it would do even this. This would leave it just as much a hazard to others than if it stayed completely afloat. Actually, it would make it a worse hazard because it could neither be seen, nor recovered then.

And how do you propose they go about burning it? Just get all of those big hot fires going and jump in the stormy waters and wait for rescue? Wait until the helicopter is hovering overhead and light it all up? Does any of this sound safe, or even reasonable, to you?

I'll bet you a dollar even the Coast Guard would tell you this is the worse idea one could think of.

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Old 15-02-2015, 10:21   #461
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Re: GUNBOAT Dismasting

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I've read through most of this thread, primarily because of the entertainment value. The one thing I will contribute is that my guess is that the folks at Gunboat are chomping at the bit to defend their brand. However, I think it is likely that they have a team of attorney's that are strongly advising them to keep their mouths shut for now. I'm assuming the boat was insured and I doubt the insurance company really wants to simply write a check for $2.5 million and call it good. Where do you think the insurance company is going turn to once they pay out their claim? My guess is either the company that manufactured the boat and/or the professional crew that was on the boat at the time of the incident. With so much on the line can you really blame Gunboat and the crew for not offering any information at this point? Furthermore, I am sure that Gunboat has their own liability insurance, in which case the lawyers from their own insurance company are surely demanding they they stay tight lipped about the incident.

Maybe I'm way off base here, but I suspect our top notch US legal system may have something to do with the lack of information flow.
Yes, of course. That will be a factor, maybe the main factor, for at least some of the players. And GB may be worried about claims from other owners too if there's a fitness for purpose question. But there's a reputational and commercial price to be paid for listening to lawyers too much at times like this.

I doubt that anybody will spend much coin chasing the crew. Maybe there's a young delivery crew out there who is judgment worthy, but most won't be. But anyway, I suspect that when the dust settles this crew won't carry the blame. Assuming they said the sane things about the forecast, my pick is the problems were not caused by them and they did their best with the conditions and the boat that they had.

(Oh, and the "top notch US legal system" is probably advertised as such by the same guys who wrote the spin for the GB55.)
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Old 15-02-2015, 12:27   #462
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Re: GUNBOAT Dismasting

GB seem to be adhering to the old adage, "Better to remain silent and thought a fool than to speak up and remove all doubt." It is far better IMO to remain silent for a few days/weeks and gather the right information than it is to give out partial information. Or worse, give out wrong information and have to go back and recover from that. It has not even been a month since this happened and the hull has not been recovered. It isn't time yet to start screaming about cover ups and what not.
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Old 15-02-2015, 13:26   #463
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Re: GUNBOAT Dismasting

I know it's going way back in the thread, but at one point, someone posted that "the mast broke in half". That could mean it lost the top half or split longitudinally, sort of "unzipping". In the former case, there might be quite a bit that could be salvaged for some sort of jury rig, if it were safe enough to go out on deck. Does the GB have lifelines?

I do remember that after we were dismasted, and in rather benign weather by comparison, after everything was cut away, we just sat holding each other for about 10 min., and then did a very careful line check before starting the engine.

Such events may be traumatic for the participants. Imagine the disappointment and perhaps fear felt now that your glorious maiden voyage has come to grief with a major winter Atlantic storm bearing down on you!

We are pretty puny, the ocean is large, and weather doesn't care a whit about us.

Ann
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Old 15-02-2015, 14:13   #464
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Re: GUNBOAT Dismasting

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I know it's going way back in the thread, but at one point, someone posted that "the mast broke in half". That could mean it lost the top half or split longitudinally, sort of "unzipping". In the former case, there might be quite a bit that could be salvaged for some sort of jury rig, if it were safe enough to go out on deck. Does the GB have lifelines?

I do remember that after we were dismasted, and in rather benign weather by comparison, after everything was cut away, we just sat holding each other for about 10 min., and then did a very careful line check before starting the engine.

Such events may be traumatic for the participants. Imagine the disappointment and perhaps fear felt now that your glorious maiden voyage has come to grief with a major winter Atlantic storm bearing down on you!

We are pretty puny, the ocean is large, and weather doesn't care a whit about us.

Ann

Wow Ann I didn't know this. According to your husband Jim if you lose your mast your boat isn't a true cruiser as it hasn't taken care of its owners. Would you consider your boat to not be a true cruiser or was his statement just concerning catamarans?
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Old 15-02-2015, 14:38   #465
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Re: GUNBOAT Dismasting

I see I've been taking this thread the wrong way. I thought some of you were serious! Really I did. But now I read this silly stuff about setting the boat on fire, I realize you're taking the piss.


At least I REALLY hope so. It would be sad to think there were genuinely people so stupid out there.


Oh yeah, the insurers would love reading that on the claim form wouldn't they? "I deliberately set the boat on fire"
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