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Old 02-05-2015, 12:55   #61
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Re: Cheeki Rafiki loss report

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Originally Posted by Polux View Post
Please can you guys be more careful regarding what you say that I said?

If I said this:


Obviously that you will have some difficulty in finding a surveyor that would no go with a hammer on the hull and would find it enough.

If you find a modern surveyor with the right equipment than it would not be a hard task for him. Find a surveyor with modern equipment probably is. I would be looking for surveyors that work directly with yacht brand's and I believe it is a lot easier in Europe than in the US. Those would be more familiarized with modern building techniques and the electronic equipment needed to make trough the hull readings.

It is not me that say that with the right equipment that is a normal task but surveyors that use those technologies:

"Bond line issues. Ultrasound can pick up the transition between skin coat and structural laminate. A clean line will transmit the signal, where a delamination or "never bond" will show a clear interuption on the waveform.
-Secondary bond damage. As noted above, UT can pick up delamination fairly quickly. There's no need to tent off and demolish the interior of the boat in order to determine the extent of damage."


Jonathan K Klopman Marine Surveyor


I really don't have the time to waste on this, but lest anyone actually believe this dreck, I would just like to state as someone who regularly uses NDT to inspect boat damage, this person has absolutely no idea what he's talking about. Ultrasound and thermal imaging are fairly common here in the US. They both have substantial limitations, and more to the point both can be quite time consuming and very expensive.
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Old 02-05-2015, 13:16   #62
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Re: Cheeki Rafiki loss report

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Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
Couple of years ago, GE was advertising about their radical new medical ultrasound devices, the size of an old Palm PDA and retailing for ten grand, a radical low price point.


So while you can use two fingers (or a tap hammer) to see if a reinforced hull goes "DINK" or "thump", there is in fact a way to literally SEE how the layers are bound together or whether they have separated. Ultrasound, off the shelf.


Now whether a surveyor wants to spend ten grand on a gizmo they'll use twice a year, and ignoring the fact that ultrasound technicians get a l o n g training period before they get licensed to work in the medical field...that's something else again.


But these kinds of joints and structures are NOT impossible to examine. The aviation industry, the oil pipeline and welding industries, they've been doing it long enough so they'll just laugh and point fingers at you if you suggest this is anything new, much less radical.
As I have said my surveyor has one of those devices, a prototype that is patented in Italy...and for now till all patents are done he maintains it quite secret. It has been used on my boat after the hull being rammed by a 55T motorboat at speed. We wanted to know if the core had delaminated and if there was any kind of non visible damage on the hull (the hull had a slight localized compression mark on the main impact point).

The images were the kind of ones you see on medical examinations and he thoroughly explained to me what they mean. I was quite impressed and no, there was no delamination on the core so a very expensive work was avoided. The examination (that was payed by the insurance company) was quite expensive (600 euros) so I believe the equipment is expensive.
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Old 02-05-2015, 13:27   #63
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Re: Cheeki Rafiki loss report

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. .. this person has absolutely no idea what he's talking about. ...
Humm, that person seems to me very qualified not to know what he is talking about:

"I've tried to take this approach to continuing education one step further. I'm on the masthead at Professional Boatbuilder magazine and research and write technical articles. I'm also active on the lecture circuit and am a regular speaker for the International Boatbuilder's Exposition as well as the American Boat and Yacht Council. I've helped pull together training seminars for the marine insurance industry and also taught marine surveying up at the Woodenboat School in Brooklin, Maine."

Certified Marine Surveyor, National Association of Marine Surveyors
Certified Marine Investigator, International Assocation of Marine Investigators

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Old 03-05-2015, 02:23   #64
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Re: Cheeki Rafiki loss report

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They mention in the report, the 40,7 keel cant survive without a fwd or aft keel bolt?

2 months ago a Waquiez arrive in the boatyard with 2 missing keel bolts and take one full day to hammer the keel off from the hull...

14 mm aft keel bolt in the 40,7 sounds micky mouse enginering....

No keel is designed to survive having less than all bolts secure. That's how engineering works. You engineer to "this is correctly maintained."

I can't figure out what your second sentence has to do with this conversation. I said that the loose keel bolts probably wouldn't ever matter except in an F7 storm. Did the Waquiez arrive in the yard directly from a force 7 storm? No? So why does some random boat appearing in some random boatyard with two out of who knows how many bolts in whatever configuration matter at all? What ones that have anything to do with this topic?

Third sentence: I didn't engineer the keel. I haven't done the math on those bolts. You haven't either. But the the bolts failed because they were loose, not because they were 14mm and not because Mickey Mouse was on the engineering team. One keel failed--after "unknown repairs" and multiple grounding. 600 other keels didn't in the same class of boat. That's 99.83% successful engineering.

I want to be understood clearly: I'm not making fun of any language difference here. That would be petty. I'm making fun of your lack of rigorous thinking, cognitive biases, and misunderstanding of statistics.




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Old 03-05-2015, 04:15   #65
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Re: Cheeki Rafiki loss report

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No keel is designed to survive having less than all bolts secure. That's how engineering works. You engineer to "this is correctly maintained."

I can't figure out what your second sentence has to do with this conversation. I said that the loose keel bolts probably wouldn't ever matter except in an F7 storm. Did the Waquiez arrive in the yard directly from a force 7 storm? No? So why does some random boat appearing in some random boatyard with two out of who knows how many bolts in whatever configuration matter at all? What ones that have anything to do with this topic?

Third sentence: I didn't engineer the keel. I haven't done the math on those bolts. You haven't either. But the the bolts failed because they were loose, not because they were 14mm and not because Mickey Mouse was on the engineering team. One keel failed--after "unknown repairs" and multiple grounding. 600 other keels didn't in the same class of boat. That's 99.83% successful engineering.

I want to be understood clearly: I'm not making fun of any language difference here. That would be petty. I'm making fun of your lack of rigorous thinking, cognitive biases, and misunderstanding of statistics.
You have some wrong information here and it seems that it is my fault. I posted previously that the number of 40.7 built was 600 (sailboat data). But that is an incorrect number. After that I have heard repetitively much bigger numbers and the correct number seem to be well over 800 some say over a 1000.

Beneteau First 40 | Sail Magazine
Beneteau First 40.7

So your maths are wrong, even considering only 850 the percentage is 99.9%

Anyway that accident (that joins several orthers) raised some concerns regarding this type of keels and maintenance work/repairs specially in case of grounding that are very important.

The problem it is not particular of Beneteau but includes several other recent cases and some were very expensive low production quality boats like a Maxi Yacht and a Sweden yacht. To my knowledge all those accidents happened in boats that have been grounded and not repaired (since nothing seemed wrong) or improper repaired so it seems to be a relation between the two facts.

Further investigation regarding this seems appropriated to me and is in fact being carried on. It is very important for the industry to establish a proper way to access damage and establish the proper protocol regarding repairs.
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Old 03-05-2015, 06:12   #66
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Re: Cheeki Rafiki loss report

Given that it is never possible for an engineer to know exactly what conditions a structure will encounter in every case, margins are beefed up based on probabilities. That's fine as long as construction strictly adheres to the design and all margins are retained. In the case of aircraft the math is backed up by rigorous inspection. Do we have such systems in place for our boats? Not really. The risk is never quantified, never tracked and thus never mitigated. Boatman is right "sh**" happens. Minaret as well. You cannot mitigate a risk you cannot quantify. The failure mode of the design is catastrophic....its your risk, your life....your money. Just sayin.

By the way, we have an frp bolt on in the family now. Owned by a real engineer... and so it goes.
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Old 03-05-2015, 07:19   #67
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Re: Cheeki Rafiki loss report

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Originally Posted by mstrebe View Post
No keel is designed to survive having less than all bolts secure. That's how engineering works. You engineer to "this is correctly maintained."

I don't think any keel should be in danger if 1 or 2 bolts are loose. I also don't think any boat is designed that way. At least not a recreational cruiser. Racing keels are now massively over designed. Look at pictures of the VW grounding. The keel held even when the rudders and aft section broke up.

Keels must have a high margin of safety. And historically they have.

FWIW, Neil and Minaret know as much as anyone about boat repair and build quality. We can all learn something from them.
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Old 03-05-2015, 08:16   #68
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Re: Cheeki Rafiki loss report

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FWIW, Neil and Minaret know as much as anyone about boat repair and build quality. We can all learn something from them.
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Old 03-05-2015, 08:24   #69

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Re: Cheeki Rafiki loss report

"You cannot mitigate a risk you cannot quantify. "
Actually, you can.
You may have heard of NYC's "59th Street Bridge" aka the Queensboro Bridge? It was built using Bessemer steel, at that time a new product with unknown strengths. In the 1970's New York did some hasty bridge surveys after a street sweeper fell through one upstate. And they found that the Queensboro Bridge could have, and would have, actually collapsed as well. Except that the engineers who designed it didn't know how strong the Bessemer steel would be, so they overbuilt it by a factor of five.
You don't have to know exactly when something is going to fail, to know that building it "stronger" will mitigate the chances of that failure, no matter what the failure point actually will be.


Of course these days, engineers have no say in the matter. Those keel bolts will be whatever the accountants say they will be. An accountant who probably never actually sailed on a boat, said "this is enough" and that's the way it goes. And has gone for a long time now.
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Old 03-05-2015, 08:40   #70
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Re: Cheeki Rafiki loss report

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"You cannot mitigate a risk you cannot quantify. "
Actually, you can.
You may have heard of NYC's "59th Street Bridge" aka the Queensboro Bridge? It was built using Bessemer steel, at that time a new product with unknown strengths. In the 1970's New York did some hasty bridge surveys after a street sweeper fell through one upstate. And they found that the Queensboro Bridge could have, and would have, actually collapsed as well. Except that the engineers who designed it didn't know how strong the Bessemer steel would be, so they overbuilt it by a factor of five.
You don't have to know exactly when something is going to fail, to know that building it "stronger" will mitigate the chances of that failure, no matter what the failure point actually will be.


Of course these days, engineers have no say in the matter. Those keel bolts will be whatever the accountants say they will be. An accountant who probably never actually sailed on a boat, said "this is enough" and that's the way it goes. And has gone for a long time now.
Excellent post. Exactly. And thanks.
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Old 03-05-2015, 09:17   #71
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Re: Cheeki Rafiki loss report

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I am not defending anything. That boat was not coded category 0 but RCD class A and what I said it is that it clearly meets class A criteria.
Your repeated assertion that you are not defending anything is, I am afraid, rather strange. I don't even know why you are making it. As to the Cat "0" cert, it is mentioned in the report that such boats could achieve it. I do not believe that they can or should, within the spirit of that certification, or the Class A criteria, if the findings of this very report are to be taken properly into consideration. A boat whose fundamental structures weaken significantly and insidiously by either grounding, light or otherwise, or pounding in a heavy seaway must not be considered to be fully seaworthy in a capacity of unrestricted Ocean service. If it is the case that post this report such craft continue to be so certified, then quite simply the regulations are insufficient and not fit for purpose.

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The keels don't need to be checked all the time, a bonding does not fail in a sudden way, what I said it was that on this type of boats the bond should be checked regularly (each 5 years or so at first and when the boat is older on a more regularly basis, like the rudder or rig). You don't need to carry with you an electronic device to do that.

The fact that the authors consider that the continued use of the boat on very heavy conditions can lead to the weakening of the bond does not mean that it happens. It is just a possibility that should lead to regular inspections of the bond.
The bonding quite obviously DOES and CAN fail in a sudden way. I would consider de bonding due to grounding followed by the keel falling off pretty freaking sudden. And by the way, any OCEAN boat should expect to be grounded, and grounded HARD on more than one occasion during your typical circumnavigation (and for that matter and more to the point of my next post, your typical charter!), and whatever your disdain for the profession of surveyors, there are none to be found out in the wilds of the world. None at all. A boat that cannot be relied on to be significantly grounded and then get you home safely through THOUSANDS of miles of rough passagemaking cannot be reasonably considered to be a decent Ocean boat. Rather, it is a sneaky and insidious timebomb. And if you think that every owner of such a craft will conduct a combined thermal imaging and ultrasound of the whole matrix to hull bond after each "light" grounding you are living on planet Polux.

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There is out there about 600 First 40.7 and over 800 First 36.7 and from there two boats lost the keel. Both were subjected to groundings, evidence shows that one had the keel bolts not tight and neither of them was subjected to regular proper keel inspections and matrix bond inspections.
I refer you to the above, however I have no idea why you are so fascinated by the number of these mass produced family sedans. Two out of 600 with the keel FALLING OFF is 2 TOO DAMN MANY. Don't understand that? I have no idea why. But just to make you a little more aware of how ridiculous this figure wagging is, within a month of the CR foundering, two other Beneteaus broke up and sank at sea as a result of nothing other than moderate weather! One in the Atlantic and one in the Pacific. They simply fell apart. And the Pacific one didn't make the news, just as many other vessels founder and disappear without making the news, or much of it, such as the Bene 50, brand spanking new, which foundered on its maiden voyage helmed by a delivery skipper in January of this year. Damn thing just sank right out from under him. And what of the one which foundered South of the Samoas the previous year, with the family aboard fortunately rescued by an intrepid interisland (female) ferry skipper in the nick of time? Or the one which bumped a rock and lost its keel without the charterers even noticing off Southern England a year or two ago? And these are just the ones I can pull off the top of my head. These are not isolated incidents. During the investigation of this incident the team turned up a dozen or so with major structural issues of the type which is implicated in this FATAL accident. A DOZEN. You know that the greatest annual (so per person/year, and consider how much time is actually spent at sea in these boats in a given year...) homicide rate in the most murderous country in the world is significantly less than 100 per 100,000. This design has had two catastrophic keel faliures with four dead in, so you say, 600 boats. Do the mathematics on that if you please. And frankly the overwhelming majority of these craft are used by small coastal charter operations in clement weather destinations and rarely see any truly testing conditions, thankfully. As more of their owners/skippers buy into the type of guff you are spouting, and go on more and longer offshore passages, prepare for more such incidents involving fatalities.

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I don't know why but you are vastly exaggerating the situation. All that is needed is a regular control of the bonding on boats with a bonded matrix the same way that it is needed a regular control of the laminated when they are laminated to the hull. A good bond can be stronger than a laminate and the situation would not be different if that matrix was laminated to the hull. On a laminate it is more easy to see damage. It all depends on the quality of the bond or on the quality of the laminate. Very expensive boats are using bonding agents to, to fix a matrix to the hull.

Some insist to call a matrix liners. A matrix is a structural reinforcement that is bonded or laminated to the hull (or both things together), a kind of grid that distributes the keel efforts by the hull and that is used practically by all brands on modern boat building.

Yes there is a problem with surveyors, most of them have nor accompanied the evolution of materials and boat construction techniques and are not technological equipped to deal with them. It will be a question of time before they will respond to that. There is a new generation of surveyors that is making a wide use of electronic information devices. They are not only needed on this situation but also very useful in what regards cored hulls and possible delamination of core.
As you can see from the above, I am in no way vastly exaggerating anything, rather it is you who are determinedly obfuscating and dramatically underestimating a very serious issue. I will further address the scale of the problem in reply to another message from you. But just so we get one thing straight here: FOUR HUMAN BEINGS DIED in this accident. They died in horrible, agonising, terrifying circumstances substantially because of the design features of this boat. And others are also at risk. What would you say to the relatives of these men? Are we exaggerating the problem?
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Old 03-05-2015, 10:06   #72
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Re: Cheeki Rafiki loss report

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Another disagreement is that you see boats as being built to last 30 or 40 years and don't see a 20 year old boat as an old one. Maybe that's a cultural difference giving the huge number of old boats around on US but the fact is that here boats are looked like cars are looked now and a 20 year old car is an old one.
What planet are you living on? I am European and a commercial skipper (though sail globally) and you appear not to have noticed the vast numbers of "old" boats located in marinas and harbours throughout Europe. And for whom are you speaking? Certainly not for the majority of boat owners I encounter. And that is many. But your analogy to cars is telling, perhaps. I have long considered those who think of boats like the family car (and indeed the cruiser/racer family sedan with a spoiler group out there are rather like that in some ways) to be typically poor seamen. They buy the boat, expect it to just continue functioning like the car they know on land, think that because it is new or newer they will not have problems, like the family car, and rarely get their hands dirty in maintenance. I have met a few (not many but an increasing quotient) who have tried to sail the world in this fashion. Most either give up or lose their boats in one way or another. I am not suggesting you are yourself, but your analogy calls this to mind.

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Boats are being built now with a life expectancy that relates with design obsolescence and materials are used according with that. I don't believe that production boats are built now to last more than 30 years and I believe that one with more then 15 years should be subjected with a lot more care in what regards maintenance and inspections.
This rather contradicts your reply subsequently to another poster, and is right on the money. They are being so built. Cheaply and with view to high turnover and low life expectancy. But the latter equates precisely to low overall resilience and, while maybe fine in a lightly used coastal cruiser, may well, and indeed has (else we would not be here discussing this) prove fatal if used in the mode of a resilient fully ocean capable boat.

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You see all this as a big problem and that leads you to say that old boats were a lot better built, as if it being designed to last more years would be the only factor. I see lightness, stability, power and adequate strength as the main factors for a better built boat and I am not the only one.
Lightness and stability are opposite ends of a tense spectrum and are antagonists. Just watch a lightly built cruiser racer's behaviour at anchor by comparison to a modified keel medium displacement sea boat.

And it is simply a truism that being built to last more years EQUATES TO being better built if the purpose is Ocean service, since the tolerances for such service must far exceed the margins. A boat so constructed will by default and in any case last more years, and to deny this is to be somewhere between the state of wishful thinking and fantasyland.

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Most Europeans (that's the ones that buy more new sailboats) are interested in having a good performance, low maintenance sailboat at a reduced cost. They are not interested in maintaining it for 20 or 30 years, when the maintenance will be costly and the performance low (compared with new boats).

Most Europeans that buy new boats change of sailboat with about the same frequency as they chance cars and that is about each 3 to 5 years so that is what the shipyards are aiming at: maintaining a high level of innovation and boat design development at the better price.

The resale value of a boat is an important factor too so shipyards have to built boats that after 5 years have still a very good value and that means a solid building, good materials and low maintenance but regarding the value of a 20 or 30 year old boat? They cannot care less and I bet that in 20 years most 30 year old boats will have only a residual value and many will be ditched.
Ok this last lot is just absolute nonsense. On what basis do you even have the audacity to claim to know what "most Europeans" think concerning this? And I mean, even given your bizarre and cherry picking for the sake of argument qualification that your cohort is confined to those who "buy new boats"? Seems to me you are just making this up or perhaps speaking from the anecdote of personal experience, in which case you have zero grounds to generalise. Or can you refer me to the study you have conducted on the matter and its associated data?

As to your eye popping assertion that "Most Europeans that buy new boats change of sailboat with about the same frequency as they chance cars and that is about each 3 to 5 years " not only is this likely to be groundless, but even if true refers only to a vanishingly small cohort of individuals. So why even say it? In fact self evidently the majority of these vessels are ordered and purchased to fulfil the needs of charter companies who buy en masse. They are THEN and only subsequent to your specified 5 years, sold on at knockdown prices to the overwhelming majority of people who dream of owning such boats, and whose reward is that they often get a boat that is not a deal, but rather is a nightmare, having been battered to hell and gone for your 5 years (pretty much exactly the number of years these "part ownership" or "deferred ownership" scams generally specify), when they hand the remains on to the excited but unsuspecting character who has financed the charter company's ability to run their sausage factory so cheaply. What he or she is too often left with is a boat which has been through 100 or more charters with "credit card captains" who smash the boat into everything they can't see and plenty they can, the damage all too often being hidden by your precious "liner", or "matrix" or whatever it is you insist on calling it. It is then, or often several years after this, that said soon to be or recent retiree decides that it might be a good idea to go on that "challenge" they'd always dream about, and point the bow out to the far horizon… THESE are the people I feel for and care for and consider at risk, not your 0.0001 percent, who have the luxury of buying the boats new and going through them like tissue paper. Is that really your particular group? It might explain why you seem to think that it is acceptable to have a boat designed such that only REGULAR and advanced, expensive whole hull surveys are a hardly to be mentioned trivial inconvenience, as opposed to a major design problem for a whole range of yachts, produced under the marketing gimmick of being "cruiser/racers". For most of the people that actually do own and sail these boats, they simply can't afford to do what is now becoming clear to be an essential maintenance ritual for the seaworthiness and integrity of their beloved and long dreamed for boat. This is the far more typical fate of such boats after 5 years. And they are not scrapped after 5 or 10 and will not be even after 20 years, but rather out there by the thousands, as you keep saying, owned by the smaller individuals for whom they represent their dreams. I consider this to be a cruel problem. This is not a good thing, it is a looming series of disasters, which arguing they are all safe and seaworthy, or worse, Oceanworthy only makes more and more likely.
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Old 03-05-2015, 11:19   #73
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Re: Cheeki Rafiki loss report

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You have some wrong information here and it seems that it is my fault. I posted previously that the number of 40.7 built was 600 (sailboat data). But that is an incorrect number. After that I have heard repetitively much bigger numbers and the correct number seem to be well over 800 some say over a 1000.

Beneteau First 40 | Sail Magazine
Beneteau First 40.7

So your maths are wrong, even considering only 850 the percentage is 99.9%
600 0r 6000 your risk assessment remains extremely flawed. See my post above. Also I replied in this post referring specifically to the 2 keel losses just among the 40.7 class.
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Old 03-05-2015, 12:00   #74
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Re: Cheeki Rafiki loss report

Thanks Muckle Flugga. I actually had given up reading Polux's posts so your analysis of them was rewarding.
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Old 03-05-2015, 14:54   #75
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Re: Cheeki Rafiki loss report

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....
The bonding quite obviously DOES and CAN fail in a sudden way. I would consider de bonding due to grounding followed by the keel falling off pretty freaking sudden. And by the way, any OCEAN boat should expect to be grounded, and grounded HARD on more than one occasion during your typical circumnavigation (and for that matter and more to the point of my next post, your typical charter!), and whatever your disdain for the profession of surveyors, there are none to be found out in the wilds of the world. None at all. .
You mean debonding suddenly after 5 different confirmed groundings over several years plus non tight keel bolts for an unknown period of time and some collisions with hull damage? Give me a break.

Regarding groundings It must be the sailor. It seems you are grounding your boat continuously I had done about 40 000 miles of coastal cruising on the Atlantic and Med, anchoring most of the days and touched the ground very lightly two or three times. I would not even call that a grounding.
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