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Old 01-10-2009, 12:58   #1
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'Heaving To' in a Trimaran

Hey folks,

I've just purchased and watched the video version of Lin and Larry Pardey's 'Storm Tactics' - available for digital download here for $13! TheSailingChannel

(off topic, I'm so pleased to see people finally offering digital downloads for cheaper than DVD sales, this is sooooo much more useful to me.)

Anyhow, I was wondering if any of you folks had any tips or comments on the teachings of this book/video as they apply to, say, a 37-foot Searunner tri. The video shows techniques for cutters and sloops and even gaff-rigged vessels, but doesn't at any point mention multihulls...?
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Old 02-10-2009, 13:34   #2
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58 views, no comments. Ok, I guess that my post *does* read a bit like an ad. Sorry, that was unintentional; the result of a cup of coffee consumed too quickly.

How about more specific, then. In my Searunner:

- if I am to attach a bridle to a para-anchor, would it be better to attach the forward end to the bow of the center hull, or to the bow of an ama?

- the other end of the bridle, should it attach to the middle of the ama, or the stern?

- I do not have a trysail (yet). Would a backed staysail suffice?

Basically, before I spend days experimenting, I was wondering if any Searunner (or tri in general) folks here might have some tips on what got their vessels to heave-to. Anything work particularly well in crazy weather?
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Old 02-10-2009, 16:59   #3
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Hey Drew,
I have hove to in 30 kts. and a real lousy sea, short steep chop. A Searunner will do great with a staysail backwinded and the wheel full lock upwind. The staysail will push the bow off a bit and as the boat picks up (very little) speed, the rudder will steer it back upwind to the stall point. Next time out sailing, just hold the sheets ythe same place and crank the wheel. The boat will come through the wind and sit there like a duck. I do it a lot. To show those onboard how to get me back if I fall off. They do not need to know how to sail, just crank the wheel. Try tossing a float over, you can (I have) actually drift sideways right back over the float.
I have also "jogged" a big boat in big stuff. The idea is to kill the fwd. motion, and take the seas about 45 degrees or so on the bow. It is the fwd. motion that will get you.
this guy has a lot of good stuff on storm management. I like his idea of "disconnect" from the energy.
http://www.maxingout.com/

I have a chute and all the gear in my lower bilge, I want to get it out and practice.
Jim Brown always hung on a chute from the stern on an angle to the seas. He said he was always dry and the motion was very livable. We can do that with a center cockpit. I want to try both bows and stern.
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Old 02-10-2009, 18:35   #4
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When I'm trolling offshore under sail, and an unfortunate fish commits suicide (unintentionally, of course), the easiest thing to do is to tack without releasing the headsail. Suddenly, everything stops still, except for the fish dashing off. The motion is quiet, there is no distracting slatting of sail, and the boat is stable, allowing me to work the fish in to its ultimate demise and to allow it to feed me in noble sacrifice.

The boat is going nowhere, but is under control. Nothing is being inordinately stressed. I can even clean the fish, go below and cook it and serve it, all while quietly sailing nowhere. Then, I simply let go the sheet and move to the new tack. I love heaving to.
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Old 02-10-2009, 19:38   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jmolan View Post
Jim Brown always hung on a chute from the stern on an angle to the seas. He said he was always dry and the motion was very livable. We can do that with a center cockpit. I want to try both bows and stern.
OHHH interesting point! The movie mentions one reason for not using a chute from the stern is because following waves will enter the cockpit... but like you say, center cockpit, not an issue!

I wonder though, they say the second reason is that you don't create a wide enough 'slick' that way; as you slip laterally you come out of the strip of smooth water and back into the chop. I notice that when I'm out sailing, the slick of smooth water I'm leaving behind me is one wide swath instead of three like I'd expect...
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Old 02-10-2009, 19:53   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drew23 View Post
- if I am to attach a bridle to a para-anchor, would it be better to attach the forward end to the bow of the center hull, or to the bow of an ama?

- the other end of the bridle, should it attach to the middle of the ama, or the stern?

- I do not have a trysail (yet). Would a backed staysail suffice?
We need to separate your questions into two parts.

Your first two questions relate to setting a para-anchor. The objective is to get the boat stopped in the water pointed 45 degrees off the wind/waves (so your longest diagonal axis is pointing at the biggest waves). The loads on these lines will be big - in large breaking waves the load can be roughly equal to the displacement of the vessel. So, you need strong attachment points (and they also need to be extremely chafe free). Because of this, usually on a tri its best to use the center hull bow as one attachment. The second attachment should be on a strong point on the ama - probably near a cross beam. The best way to determine the right length of these two bridle arms is to tie to a mooring ball (or anchor) in very windy conditions and adjust the two lengths until you are sitting about 45 degrees to the wind.

Your third question relates to heaving to. There are usually a couple ways to get a vessel to heave-to and it depends on your specific sail inventory which is best. If you have a strong mainsail with a very deep reef, using that is usually the best, with just a little helm locked in. On a tri, that will result more what is called 'fore reaching' than 'heaving too' but still be quite comfortable. My guess is that a backed staysail alone will result in you spending more time beam on to the waves than is desirable, but you would have to test that out.
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Old 02-10-2009, 22:52   #7
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Hi Drew23
hey i also have a searunner 37 and have experienced some situations with the boat. once crossing from new zealand to fiji getting caught in a 55 knot gale. just letting you know what i have on board. i have a drogue that is about a metre in diameter that is towed astern on a bridle system to the main winches and not too far out. Ideally sitting in the back of the wave. This works great if thats the direction you intend on travelling but if the wind exceeds over 55 knots i would opt for a parachute. also have one thats 17 feet in Diameter that hangs 120 metres in front of the boat. This is not attached to any winches but is attached to one point of the boat on the bow that is bloody strong.
I also have a backup with other ropes going from that point on the bow back to the two front places (of the 4)where jim browm cleverly design to lift the tri out by crane. This is a great back up cause the strain is bigger than you would ever want to know. Anyway keeping it simple from one point off the bow and not a bridle between the arma's i beleive is the answer cause sometimes deployment can be tricky.
Should be already set ready to go and all you gotta do is attach the parachute and bouys inside the cockpit before climbing out the windward side to drop it all in a line. Parachute bag needs to be packed correctly.
also the rope should be one that has no memory also packed in its bag.
my experience of heaving too worked a treat in 45 knots constant and big seas breaking. i had the wheel hard over one way tied and the main the other side. Fully reefed on the third points very small rag up..... main should be 8 onz at least.
Searunners are great boats but big waves smashing on the side hulls will crack and open and then your in real trouble. Plywood is breakable.
So in severe gales and storms you gotta hang from a parahute. Something that is so strong you would trust it with a sky hook... if there ever was one. I did hear from john Marples that the parachute is the way to go....though jim brown reckons to go with nature and tow a drogue.
Just thought you might be interested in another view.
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Old 03-10-2009, 16:44   #8
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Estarzander, you have a fine looking boat there. Look's like you have all the basses covered on a seaworthy vessel. Nice website!

Island Kid, that is great information. I gotta get down there someday. My daughter leaves this weekend for 6 months in Bethel's Beach NZ. Lucky girl!

I used to have Cassanova's book on rounding the horn in a Horstman Tri. I recently found it again and bought it. They were some of the original parachute people. I suspect others were onto it, but they wrote the book. They always used a bridle off the outside bows, with a long tether. I have never done it, but I want to try it soon.
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Old 05-10-2009, 15:44   #9
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estarzinger and islandkid, thanks for that, lots to think about!

I guess I'm going to have to wait for a really good wind and go play in the waves. Good thing it's fall...
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Old 05-10-2009, 16:44   #10
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At 55 knots you should be able to just sail instead of deploying parachutes!

cheers,
Nick.
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Old 05-10-2009, 18:29   #11
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Worth having

http://www.multihullbooks.com/


See excerpts here
https://www.oz-e.com.au/multihullbooks/seaman.html
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