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Old 01-05-2008, 18:54   #16
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Send a PM to fastcat435 as this has been talked about a lot on previous threads. He's got 300k miles under his belt delivering boats on 8000 mile routine deliveries starting around the horn of South Africa, which can match any seas anywhere for nasties. Also send a PM to Maxingout, as he's talked about his experience extensively too, but would probably be happy to answer any specifics. Once they write about how cats behave in storms from their first hand experience and the details of laying to a sea anchor, perhaps we can have it be a stick thread at the beginning of the group, as its something that comes up often.
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Old 01-05-2008, 19:24   #17
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capcook,only some rain .
Alan, Being a long time mono sailer that was my first on a multi. Now with both us and the boat better prepread. We hope to avoid situations like that,now I know that we can handle it. BTY On our trip 2000mi 22 at sea days less then 36hr of wind over 25kts.
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Old 01-05-2008, 19:28   #18
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schoonerdog or fastcat, How on about on a boat under 38ft.
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Old 01-05-2008, 19:29   #19
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Originally Posted by Alan Wheeler View Post
No that is pretty much a normal sail for us here. I am talking about at least a 25-30ft wave base line and the nasty stuff on top of that again. I mean, stability in any boat is only ever going to be in the extreme situations. A multi hull will handle the smaller stuff with ease. The danger is when you are in the hopefully once in a life time, and hopefully it is someone elses life time where you are in serious danger because of the size of the seas. When I had my nightmare trip, we had at least 18-20ft in every wave. It was the nasties that washed across the face of those monsters that then when two meet on the big swells face, they smashed together and crested and broke. It was the mess that then meet us crashing down the face that gave us the real scares.
I have a lot of experience in small beach cats, but I honestly don't know how I would have attempted to take on waves of that size with a large multi. The mono may have been uncomfortable, but she could handle it well. So I want to know can a multi handle that sort of stuff well too.
So you're saying 25 foot waves is a normal sail for you?
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Old 01-05-2008, 21:27   #20
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I used to 'think' about heavy weather offshore in a cat. then I heard the story of Ramtha in the Queen's Birthday Storm and saw a couple pictures. That she survived without a drogue (?), unmanned in that storm speaks volumes to me...
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Old 01-05-2008, 22:17   #21
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I agree with Wheeler that it seems few cat sailors have been in the once in a life time Storm. I watched Maxing Outs video and it really didn't scare me much. Lots of wind, fair amount of waves, but not much danger of total disaster. You would thing with cameras and video cams so common, someone would have documented a serious storm event.
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Old 01-05-2008, 23:07   #22
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Well the cats are out there, cruising, and circumnavigating. Some going round Cape Horn, many of them going round the cape of Good Hope on their delivery voyages.

Maybe it's because their passage times are faster that they don't seem to spend so much time getting battered by storms?
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Old 02-05-2008, 01:13   #23
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So you're saying 25 foot waves is a normal sail for you?
No sorry 44CC.
What I did try to say (maybe poorly) is that 2m seas certainly are.
I apologise to cnj as I did not read his post fully. I did not read that a 15ft swell was travelling in the opposite direction. That would indeed have been very uncomfortable and scary.
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Old 02-05-2008, 03:58   #24
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Thanks CNJ,

That's interesting... Was there much trouble keeping water out of the salon..e.g. the sliding doors etc...

Wow, 15hrs of getting knock around and your wife didn't divorce you... she's a keeper....

Cheers



Yes, I am a keeper (after 24 yars of marriage I hope so!). I wasn't as afraid as Joe was though, I have more of a belief in his skills then he does! We and the boat came through beautifully. We had no issues with water coming into the salon through the glass doors, we rarely had water comming up into the cockpit never mind enough to get into the salon. The only time I remember water getting into the salon on our trip was when I forgot to close one of the ports, but we never got any through the glass doors. Maybe it wasn't as big a storm as some have gone through, but for our first it was enough!

Alan, I hope I never get into 25 ft seas!
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Old 02-05-2008, 07:09   #25
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CNJ... Ha, Congrats Madame on 24yrs and appoligies for assuming only guys are posting Sailor stories here.... shows just what a novice I am...

All, thanks for sharing your POVs on this all very interesting... I would like to reach out to those folks who do the ferry business as they have probably seen some memorable waves...

I did find this bit of interesting info on deploying a sea anchor on a CAT.

Jordan Series Drogue

Here is another thread on this forum discusing the same topic:

OUTREMER CAPSIZE

Finally, I will share this link with the group...not much about the strategy they were employing and it doesn't sound like they had a sea anchor but the results were not good...

Sail World: Atlantic Capsize – First Hand Account


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Old 02-05-2008, 10:06   #26
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Regarding the last account, if you look at any ocean going supertanker, the plimsoll lines indicate the worlds most dangerous oceans, and the lowest is WNA, winter in the north atlantic. Double hulled supertankers don't go through it. There aren't many written accounts because people can pick up those charts and see that the oceans are murderous. The specific place they went through has average winds of Force 6. You go out in a boat where the water is cold enough that to kill, to an area of the ocean a supertanker wouldn't go, where the average winds are force 6, the average wave height is going to be huge, and you expect something good? This is the pilot chart http://www.nga.mil/MSISiteContent/St...106/106feb.pdf. The waves they encountered were in the mid 40s in terms of height and breaking down upon the boat. I've seen cruise liners get tossed like toy boats in such conditions. It also took a very long time for them to get rescued because there were no large ocean going vessels that were near them or could make it to them.

Regarding Outremers in item two, they are one of the fastest and lightest built boats with the largest sail areas and sail area to displacement ratio of any production catamaran. They have incredibly tiny tankage and very small hull accomodations because they are meant to go fast, fast fast. They aren't a cruiser, or a racer/cruiser, they are a racer. Flipping one would be orders of magnitude easier than heavier cruisers. Here's a comparison of cats which one person has made
Chasing the Catamaran Dream. I'm not saying that it's not a safe boat, but you'd have to be very careful not to push it.

All cats can flip or sink in the worst of conditions, but in many ways it's like saying cars are dangerous because a Porche wipe out with a drunken driver.

I have talked with the owner of paratech sea anchors about deploying a sea anchor on catamarans. He was the one who mentioned that he thought that cats lied better to sea anchors than monohulls. He also mentioned that the one recorded instance that he knew of where the paratech didn't work on a catamaran someone deployed it off the side of the boat instead of the bow and thus held their boat into the waves at the worst possible angle.
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Old 02-05-2008, 11:19   #27
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To put the last instance in perspective, this is a 540 ft cruise ship caught in 30ft waves and is obviously fighting for it's life. The boat described above Bermuda stated that they were in 45ft waves.
Cruise Ship Caught In Cyclone*Video.
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Old 02-05-2008, 11:55   #28
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To put the last instance in perspective, this is a 540 ft cruise ship caught in 30ft waves and is obviously fighting for it's life. The boat described above Bermuda stated that they were in 45ft waves.
Cruise Ship Caught In Cyclone*Video.
Amazing!

Can you imagine how many broken dishes there were???

Also, she seems to be a bit starboard heavy in her roll motion. I wonder why?

It's funny... you think a big boat would be best for that, but when you see how violently the decks are pitching (up and down several stories in moments), a small boat doesn't seem as bad.

Also, all I can pitcture is one little leak or split and nobody being able to figure out where it is. Again, small boats.

Not proposing small boats would be better than that boat, but there are some differences I hadn't thought of when following the "there is no replacement for displacement" theory.
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Old 02-05-2008, 12:23   #29
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I just watched the video...that's something. The poor passengers were probably scared for their lives and puking everywhere. Half the crew was probably sick and it was probably seabiscuits, Bonine and water served for lunch...yummm. Not exactly the Love Boat.

Hey Sean,
When the wave period of ocean swells match the length of the vessel, this is the worse situation. This ship was pretty close to that. The ship was listing to starboard, not withstanding it having too much weight to starboard, but because of the ships windage. Passenger ships intentionally have smaller metacentric heights because this will cause them to roll slower, which makes it easier on the passengers stomachs. There is a formula that estimates roll period with metacentric height. The downside is passenger ships have less overall stability (surface area under the stability curve). Ships like this with lots of windage and less reserve stability are going to "heel" more with winds across one side. This one had its wind on its port bow. The master was probably trying to compromise between keeping the ship into the seas and keeping the ship head to wind...it appeared to be mostly head into the seas though. I would not want to second guess that he may have been a little better off with his bow a little more into the wind though. Don't know, wasn't there.

It looks worse than it really was. I never saw the bow get stuffed really good into a swell. I have been on ships where the bow is nothing but green water at times. This was not too bad actually. Out there in a sailboat?...hell no. Not without a sea anchor and bare poles.

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Old 02-05-2008, 12:33   #30
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from what I've read regarding the conditions the ship lost two of it's four engines and steering briefly. I also heard they had several injuries onboard, but none life threatening. Oddly, I think a boat riding to a sea anchor wouldn't have been suffering as much as this one was. But trying to make way as the catamaran was, at night, without being able to see the waves would be a very different story.
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