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Old 06-08-2010, 06:22   #136
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Originally Posted by Southern Star View Post
I am still convinced that a proper line clutch - one that slips (or more to the point, disengages) when a certain pressure is reached, would be ideal. Yes, there would be some false postives - instances where the sheets released in a gust insufficient to cause capsize. But surely that would be: 1. a good sign that one needs to reef NOW; and 2. nothing more than an inconvenience, if the boom were fitted with a boom brake, or a reverse jibe preventer.

Another possibility I have been thinking of is a line stopper which is, in effect, mounted on a small sled on a track. The sled is held in postion by a strong spring with adjustable tension. If the sled moves a predetermined amount (which not only could, but should be a very short distance), the release lever contacts a fixed bar, or pin and the sheet is released.

Again, any thoughts?

Brad
Leaving aside the mechanics of the system - I would not favour anything such as this being fully automatic given that a rapid de-power / crash stop is not without it's own risks of causing damage or loss of control. A price worth paying to actually avoid a capsize, less worthwhile if 10 times a day when she would not have flipped.........

Perhaps the early (actually late!) warning system could instead of releasing the sails etc simply sounded an alarm / flashing lights and the Skipper then manually presses the big red button to emergency de-power. or he decides no need.........

Although using a human in the middle has it's weaknesses, overall I would argue would be the best solution (accepting that no solution can ever be 110% bombproof).
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Old 06-08-2010, 06:24   #137
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Strange that there are many more sinkings of powerboats annually than of either monohulls or mutihulls, but no one is going after those members who have switched to powerboats as being delusional. It's also just strange that one set of sailors is suggesting that another set of sailors is delusional about their boats. Is that a normal practice on this forum?

Last time we cruised, we were on a ketch, but now we own a 23' monohull and a 37' catamaran, each with only one mast, so we will have to remain firmly on the side of the sailors of anything with a hull, I suppose. Hope that doesn't make anyone feel slighted; just to be on the safe side, we'll assert that masts are optional. Perhaps because we sold our ketch we should now be jingoistic about "one stick good, two sticks bad?"

Anyway, to answer an earlier request, sort of: all of the following are monohulls, incidentally. Not that it has special significance, as each accident has its own causes -- and they are not all pilot error, nor are all of them explained (in a couple of cases, the boat just "started sinking"):
Man rescued from sinking sailboat - Charleston SC - The Post and Courier - postandcourier.com
El Sobrante couple dies in sailboat accident - San Jose Mercury News
Bellevue man treated for hypothermia after his sailboat beached near Newport | OregonLive.com
Sailboat explodes into flames off Port Townsend | KOMO News - Breaking News, Sports, Traffic and Weather - Seattle, Washington | Local & Regional
Whale Lands on Sailboat; Sailboat Loses – IndyPosted
2 sailboat racers rescued after capsizing - SFGate
Tanit Yacht Freed from Pirates - UPDATED | YachtPals.com

Five rescued from sinking sailboat near Cape Lookout, N.C. | HamptonRoads.com | PilotOnline.com
Five Members of Aggie Crew Rescued; One Found Dead
Four missing during family sailing trip, Coast Guard says - Projo 7 to 7 News Blog | Rhode Island news | The Providence Journal
Five rescued from sinking sailboat near Cape Lookout, N.C. | HamptonRoads.com | PilotOnline.com
Coast Guard Removes Crew of Sinking Sailboat North of Morro Bay | Coast Guard News
Coast Guard Rescues 6 People From Sinking Sailboat | Coast Guard News
Old Nabble - Rhodes 22 - 1 dead, 2 rescued from sinking sailboat off NJ

I tried to retrieve boating accident data from the USCG site where the summaries are kept, but they seem to not break it down by type of sailboat.
Powerboaters? When I think of a powerboater, I start with a sailor and then take away reason and accountability. Seriously, except for the powerboaters I actually know.
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Old 06-08-2010, 06:49   #138
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DOJ, I hear you about the risks associated with a sudden release of the sheets. That being said, the design should not permit mulitple unintended releases a day, or a week, or even a year. The reaility is that I have never lifted a hull in my cat, even when being a bit foolhardy, and the forces that could lead to the boat doing so must be exceptionally high. I envision something that is, as I said, adjustable, and the idea would be to have the automatic release feature engage only in extreme circumstances.

Do I see it as a panacea, or a substitute for good seamanship? No. However, it would be far safer/easier to engineer than a rig designed to give way when the forces from the wind exceed a certain level. If you pushed the envelope a bit and found that it released too readily, then adjust/inrcease the tension of the spring.

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Old 07-08-2010, 19:48   #139
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I am a great admirirer of CW's designs, and the ability of his boats. This was the Ferrari mentioned earlier. In CW's own words she was meant to be sailed fast. One thing I have not liked is the fact the sheets are in the forward cockpit. I can only imagine what a wonderful sail it would be upfront, or even in an anchorage.

I have always been concerned when sheet starts happening, and it starts getting ugly outside. Do I want to open that door forward? I have now got now over 13k miles on Imagine. She's no throughbred, and she's no condo, but there has been a number of times when a bow was picking up waves, and the waves washing over the front windows completely.

Did the helmsman hesitate, because of this? Did his hesitation give Mother Nature time to pick up speed? I love the forward cockpit concept, but let me handle the lines from the back of the boat. Give me a safer place to make things work. & lord give me a forward cockpit on my next boat for those perfect sailing days.......i2f
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Old 07-08-2010, 20:07   #140
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Originally Posted by David_Old_Jersey View Post
Leaving aside the mechanics of the system - I would not favour anything such as this being fully automatic given that a rapid de-power / crash stop is not without it's own risks of causing damage or loss of control. A price worth paying to actually avoid a capsize, less worthwhile if 10 times a day when she would not have flipped.........

Perhaps the early (actually late!) warning system could instead of releasing the sails etc simply sounded an alarm / flashing lights and the Skipper then manually presses the big red button to emergency de-power. or he decides no need.........

Although using a human in the middle has it's weaknesses, overall I would argue would be the best solution (accepting that no solution can ever be 110% bombproof).
The system Im outlining could not release prematurely...set to measure and fire on extreme heal angel only and a panic button...no springs no tension gadgets and no dangerous free running sheets or booms.

Its benefit is it is faster then the human brain can react and on duty 24/7
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Old 07-08-2010, 21:45   #141
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I have always been concerned when sheet starts happening, and it starts getting ugly outside. Do I want to open that door forward? I have now got now over 13k miles on Imagine. She's no throughbred, and she's no condo, but there has been a number of times when a bow was picking up waves, and the waves washing over the front windows completely.
I don't know what happened with Anna much less the state of mind the crew were in. But, I kind of doubt this was the issue since they have reported that the sea state was not very bad.

FWIW, I have sailed my A42 in unpleasant conditions to weather and getting out the door has not proven to be a problem for me. Off the wind of course it is safer than the aft cockpit. I know of a large cat that was pooped on a trip to NZ and the very experienced crew which included the designer were so concerned that they immediately chopped a big freeing port into the cockpit floor... Everything is a compromise. At any rate, yes we've had green water over the pilot house more times than I care for. For instance there was a trip from NZ to Honolulu where we beat through a crush zone created by a powerful stationary high with a low draped over it. Beating into winds of gale and near gale strength for an extended period is miserable. I doubt there any way to make it nice in a small boat. If I must deal with that kind of junk I prefer to foot off and slow way, way, way down... IMO there are times when life is far better at four knots than ten. The waves still break over the boat but they go at enough of an angle that getting out isn't a huge problem. When it get's particularly ugly or in places that are typically gusty (valleys, channels, &c) I like being in a cockpit where I can reach or even hold the sheets and traveler while hand steering, where I have great visibility and can feel changes in the wind, heat, rain and so on. I also like the easy and safe access to the mast and foredeck.

I am quite content to go far out of my way to avoid bad wx as much as possible. Sometimes zero is a good speed -- I've hove to to let wx pass me by -- Sometimes a turn of speed has gets you in ahead of the bad stuff. IMO, offshore short handed multihull cruisers are well advised to be super conservative. But, so far, when it gone all pear shaped I've found the center cockpit is a livable compromise.

Tom
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Old 08-08-2010, 03:41   #142
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The system Im outlining could not release prematurely...set to measure and fire on extreme heal angel only and a panic button...no springs no tension gadgets and no dangerous free running sheets or booms.

Its benefit is it is faster then the human brain can react and on duty 24/7
I don't think sensing heel angle is going to work on a cat.

Heeling over at 25 degrees is fine if you are on the slope of a wave with both hulls in the water.

Heeling over at 25 degrees in flat water, with one hull in the air, is not fine. You are probably beyond the point of no return as the wind will get underneath and you'll be gone.
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Old 08-08-2010, 09:38   #143
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I don't think sensing heel angle is going to work on a cat.

Heeling over at 25 degrees is fine if you are on the slope of a wave with both hulls in the water.

Heeling over at 25 degrees in flat water, with one hull in the air, is not fine. You are probably beyond the point of no return as the wind will get underneath and you'll be gone.
It could be turned off in those conditions...just like radar we don't need it on all the time either, but its nice to have one when you do want it...
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Old 08-08-2010, 10:34   #144
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I don't think sensing heel angle is going to work on a cat.

Heeling over at 25 degrees is fine if you are on the slope of a wave with both hulls in the water.
I think a clinometer would work as long as it had a little damping. I have a couple of 10..0..10 ones on my boat and in most conditions they record what a sailor would perceive as heel angle. I'm not sure how difficult the frame of reference problem would be in practice for the gyro though suspect it could be tuned to work in quite a lot of conditions.

Would it be worth it to move this discussion up into its own thread?

Tom
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Old 08-08-2010, 23:22   #145
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I am looking into a purchase of an Outremer 55 standard in the next year or so, quite a different cat than the one I have now. Touchy beasties when the wind picks up suddenly. Sobering to hear of stories like this. Can't wait to get more information on what happened. A multi owners nightmare. I think I will need to play with these capsize formula's more.
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Old 09-08-2010, 00:15   #146
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When it get's particularly ugly or in places that are typically gusty (valleys, channels, &c) I like being in a cockpit where I can reach or even hold the sheets and traveler while hand steering, where I have great visibility and can feel changes in the wind, heat, rain and so on. I also like the easy and safe access to the mast and foredeck.
I think most cats, and mono's deliver good to great access to their sheets and traveler from the cockpit. Mine doesn't while hand steering which is a fair point. But what I can't get over the the pile of rope hanging in Anna's cockpit. It would be no wonder someone would be confused in an emergency situation trying to release the main. I2F has a valid point about standing watch in the middle of the boat vs standing it behind the bulkhead. Your much more likely to be outside on a conventional cat, IMO.

As far as a device to automatically release the sheet in an emergency, am I missing something in suggesting a knife? Or an extra crew manning the main winch?
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Old 09-08-2010, 00:33   #147
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I'm biased by my boat - BUT - it was designed this way to sail the world. Loss rate has been very low. Design features are:-
Rear Mast, Long Aspect Ratio keels, centre nacelle, 2/3rds beam to length, conservative rig, marginal rudder area, good freeboard.
The combination produces some significant features:-
1. In a gust it will round up as the rudders are overpowered by side load and stall (regardless of auto pilot input).
2. If a hull lifts the lateral resistance is halved, then falls further as the keel angle allows a side slip to develop.

The downside is the genoa is huge, but a tripping device (I like the idea of a self relieving winch) would be very effective in saving the boat in a side gust without crew intervention. The main is more of a problem when running before but it is relatively small.
It is a heavy build, but does have floatation compartments also doubling as crash boxes on all four corners. In spite of it's weight it is fast enough to avoid the direct path of storms or divert before seas make safe harbours unapproachable.
Perhaps some of these things have been lost in the drive for 'better' modern boats and certainly don't apply to high performance boats where it is expected that the crew, training and skipper are up to the level demanded by the boat. But for cruising these things are still largely relevant. The two week rental boat however does need to meet timetables and is a big market for new boats. Many of us are tempted by performance when choosing our next boat, it's attractive but it has a downside.

Southern Star says (Post 135)
Another possibility I have been thinking of is a line stopper which is, in effect, mounted on a small sled on a track. The sled is held in postion by a strong spring with adjustable tension. If the sled moves a predetermined amount (which not only could, but should be a very short distance), the release lever contacts a fixed bar, or pin and the sheet is released.

This does sound like a good idea, simple, fixable, non-electronic and an alternative to self-relieving winches. I'll look into it, I like the idea.
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Old 10-08-2010, 06:08   #148
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Thread Hijacking!!!!!!!!!

Can you guys get back on the topic of the cat flipping in the south pacific??? Does anyone have any more detailed info on it? Take your repair thread to another posting please.
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Old 10-08-2010, 11:06   #149
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I do believe the repair part of the thread was in direct relations with the cat flipping, and a way to prevent flipping.......i2f
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Old 10-08-2010, 14:05   #150
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It is also why many of us are here, to learn from mistakes, errors and straight bad luck, in the hope we are at worst prepared if not practised.
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