Some people around here dont seem to appreciate the DANGER
El Chupacabra represents, so let me put this in plain ENGLISH
Sure, you are all brave, sitting behind your computers
, calling me "full of crap" and stuff, but if the SUCKGOAT were sitting next you, and removing your kidneys, would you be so brave?
I think not.
As far as using an outboard
Yes - it works. Ive bashed into 20 knot
winds and steep 6 to 8 foot breaking chop with a 7 or 8 second period at 5 knots under double reefed, flat sheeted main. The trick is to take the waves at an angle, and slalom around the crests.
Its wet and uncomfortable becuase the apparent wind
is pushing 25 knots (near gale) and because you are bashing like a damned idiot into it, it throws huge amounts of spray over the boat.
I've only done it a few times, and only to see where the performance envelope was. Yes, you can point higher like this, but the higher you point, the worse it gets. Still, I suppose its an ace in the hole - just dont count on it to save your ass when the chips are down, because when you go to play that ace, its probably gonna turn out to be a Joker.
....and not only that, you can "thrust vector" with an outboard
, which is sometimes useful, and it can be used as emergency steering
I'm considering shipping
a Minkota Riptide as a backup motor
- how many of you Suckgoat heritics - hell, how many of you cattle mutilation heritics for that matter - carry a spare deisel engine
Yea, that's what I thought.
Now, about parachute anchors:
There is a lot of controversy about them, and about heaving-to in heavy weather
from what I gather. From what I can tell, it all depends on the particular boat, and rigging
an adjustable bridle
according to the Pardey's is essential to getting the boat angled and riding correctly.
Since I have never encountered the sort of ultimate conditions that would require deployment of a sea-anchor, I cant speak with any authority about how a Flicka would handle under such a rig.
But there are a few clues:
Nomad absolutely HATES to keep her bow pointed into the wind
, and likes to lie beam to. She sails
around a lot, veering one way then the other before fetching up and heading off the other way. A double reefed main sheeted flat amidships calms her down considerably, but what she really likes is to lie STERN TO.
And i've anchored in 18 knots 1/4 mile off a lee shore (Dockwiler State Beach) just outside the surf like like this, and she is quite stable - especially with a small jib
up and sheeted flat amidships.
The only issue was getting pooped ocassionaly, but hey, my hatch
boards are 1" thick solid teak
, the cockpit
bulkhead 2" of plywood
, so, whatever.
Flickas will not heave-to with any sort of jib
up, backed or not, and when winds are more than 15 knots and seas start building, it gets progressively harder to sheet and trim the main to keep her head
up - and even if you are successful, she will solowly forereach, trailing the Pardey's savior slick astern and to windward, which offers little protection from breaking waves.
So you are better off SAILING under reduced canvas
, even when it gets really ugly, than trying to park a Flicka if your destination
or safety lies upwind.
Strike the main (duh!) and sheet a small jib (80% or less of the foretriangle so it doesnt foul the mast
of spreaders) FLAT amidships, and your happy girl will sail herself dead downwind with the helm
lashed, for hours if need be.
If you are really anal, you can put her under autopilot
, but its not neccesary.
This is a distinct advantage of a "downwind" boat like a flicka - the windage (mast, proud bow, headsail on a sprit) is well forward, and thus she tends to weather-cock downwind quite happily.
That flat headsail up front immediately puts the kibosh on any round-ups - or round downs, and dampens the rolling to a considerable degree as well.
So, after much considereration, sea trials, and research
, I ordered a Jordan Series drouge from Ace Sailmakers.
Jordan was an aeronautical engineer
, and he spent years developing his drouge. His theories are solid, and he had the CG test it in on the Columbia
rivermouth bar in big breaking waves - with great sucess, wheras the paraanchor fouled and failed repeately.
From what I gather, no boat has ever been rolled while riding to a series drouge, or been lost
, and anecdotally they make riding out a major storm - even a hurricane
- relatively easy.
the biggest problem is recovery, but I have a solution to that - bend short warps onto the damed thing with rolling hitches, and reeeeel it in by using alternating sheet winches 6 or 7 feet at a time.
This is how I recovered over 200 feet of nylon and 225 feet of chain from 80 feet of water
when my windlass fleming
jamed and hopelessly fouled it.
It was a grind, but I was able to get over 200 lbs of equipment
back without incident.
....And the final determining factor was the fact that the Jordan drouge slows the boat to around 1.5 knots or less - same as a para-anchor, but much more reliably.