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Old 27-06-2011, 03:50   #1
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Sailing with a Real Parachute ?

Is anyone using a round parachute as in the december 2010 cruising helmsman article(Australia).Sailing Borneo,Sailing Philippines, Island Hopping, Yacht Charter,Boating Holiday, Diving,
I purchased a 28 foot chute for $150.Have only been for a short test up the river,seems ok.
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Old 27-06-2011, 04:33   #2
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Re: Sailing with a real parachute?

I find that spinnakers work better. They're a bit like parachutes, but custom designed for a proper fit and sleek efficiency. I gotta say though, that if tankers can save 20% of their energy by using them, then why aren't they law yet?
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Old 27-06-2011, 07:32   #3
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Re: Sailing with a real parachute?

From the blog article Ian linked to:

The beauty of this configuration is that the parachute pulls your boat and doesn’t push it like a spinnaker

Not sure about that and how about getting it down if a squall suddenly appears, still interesting idea.

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Old 27-06-2011, 07:39   #4
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Thumbs up Re: Sailing with a real parachute?

So Ian, as the forums subject matter expert on these how did you rig it and in comparison to say a main and genoa did the parachute offer any real advantage like speed and easy of use.

Promise us you will take the camera next time your out with the chute up.

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Old 27-06-2011, 08:50   #5
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Re: Sailing with a real parachute?

I would think you could have some problems in anything but a 100% down wind course. You could handle a little bit of heading up but it will load up the rudder quickly should the wind build. A spinnaker will provide a wider range of apparent wind sailing. With a 28 ft parachute you have quite a bit of sail area (615 sq ft) that would act a full bellied sail. While freighters are using chutes the relative mass of the ship and the area of sail is a lot lower ratio than a 28 ft parachute on a smaller sail boat. Winches on a 31 ft boat would not really be sized properly for a sail this large so control lines don't have a lot of room for adjustment. Leaving it up in a blow would be quite dangerous.

We have had posts about sails similar to a parasail that can be trimmed and would suppport a wider range of apparent wind and be stouter material. The chute will suffer UV damage quite quickly and rip easily.

In any case it clearly works and makes some nice pictures.
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Old 27-06-2011, 09:08   #6
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Re: Sailing with a real parachute?

I've thought about getting one for an emergency sail in the off chance of a dismasting. Might not get you into the harbor, but should get you close enough to get in under power..
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Old 27-06-2011, 09:34   #7
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Re: Sailing with a real parachute?

I'd dump the parachute and get a proper sail, unless planning to drop off from waterfalls.

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Old 27-06-2011, 10:10   #8
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Re: Sailing with a real parachute?

150 seems really inexpensive. I had never heard of this before seeing this thread. Interesting idea, and multi-functional if one needs to jump out of a plane.
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Old 27-06-2011, 10:36   #9
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Re: Sailing with a real parachute?

The difference between a circular parachute and a kite is that a kite can direct air towards a direction giving it thrust in a sense. This allows it to lift itself up and forward if you want this. A parachute you would have to run off the top of the mast in order to keep it from dropping down into the water. A kite can be tied to the deck and lift upwards.
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Old 27-06-2011, 11:22   #10
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Re: Sailing with a real parachute?

Kind of like this:
KiteShip - Innovation in Tethered Flight

but a few thousand dollars cheaper. Worth a try at $150 I should think.
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Old 27-06-2011, 11:29   #11
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Re: Sailing with a real parachute?

This is a better solution (kind of a paraglider sail) ... 1 line at the bow, 1 line at mast feet.

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Old 27-06-2011, 11:29   #12
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Re: Sailing with a real parachute?

Quote:
A parachute you would have to run off the top of the mast in order to keep it from dropping down into the water.
You really can't point load the top of the mast with a 28 ft chute You could guy it up a bit to keep it from hitting the water. That is how it looks in the pictures with the sheets run like a spinnaker.
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Old 27-06-2011, 11:31   #13
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Re: Sailing with a real parachute?

This is the one I find awesome: SkySails*-*Home
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Old 27-06-2011, 14:11   #14
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Re: Sailing with a real parachute?

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Originally Posted by Pblais View Post
You really can't point load the top of the mast with a 28 ft chute You could guy it up a bit to keep it from hitting the water. That is how it looks in the pictures with the sheets run like a spinnaker.
I was wondering if such a kite could be used to upright a capsized multihull ?
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Old 27-06-2011, 15:36   #15
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Re: Sailing with a real parachute?

Quote:
I was wondering if such a kite could be used to upright a capsized multihull ?
I don't think you could control the kite enough or be able to attach it where you might do significant help to right it. The power ne3eded would be a lot more than you could handle. Personally, I would go for a blimp as they have far more lifting ability. If you look at the sky sails video you can see how much power they can make.
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