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Old 22-12-2009, 21:27   #1
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Emergency Kite

I have heard of people sailing boats with kites rather than a mast. I was thinking that incase the mast were to fail, it might serve as a viable backup plan.

Is there a way to modify existing sails to do this? Different kites for different wind speeds?

If the line is long enough, would you be able to fly the kite at various heights to get different wind speeds and directions?

I imagine you can go downwind or on a broad reach, but what is the highest you can point with this method?

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Old 27-12-2011, 22:22   #2
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Re: Emergency Kite

I have heard of people sailing boats with kites rather than a mast. I was thinking that in case the mast were to fail, it might serve as a viable backup plan.

Geckosenator ? I hope you don’t mind me jumping onto your thread.

On a passage from Singapore to Phuket, I lost my Mast overboard 185Nm from my home port and 65Nm from any port. Conditions were difficult, short handed, a chop that came at me from every quarter, I had miles of sea room, I tied myself into cockpit and got my first sleep for 2 days.
As the dawn sun woke me and a hot cup of coco, I started to think how to get out of this mess, First, I was worried that the prop might be fouled, so went down to inspect, boat came down on my head, ripping off my mask, but, I had seen enough, the prop was clear, I dipped my fuel tank and I had about 130Nm range.
My recently re-commissioned engine was still not trustworthy and was using excessive amount of fuel.
I had a 2mt boat hook and a deck scrubber, a full Genoa and a storm jib; everything else had gone overboard with the mast!
My first thought was that the Genoa was too big and the storm Jib was too small, to help us get to a port, So I hanked the jib onto the bow, and propped it up with the boat hook, this gave me steerage (0.5-1Kt), checking on my GPS, from the chart the tide was setting us back about the same.
I started the engine, tick over we got to +2Knts, not satisfied, I hauled out an old cargo parachute, set it up and we were up to 3 Knts, the Jib had been knocked over so, that no longer helped, then, the engine cut out. Went below to bleed the lines AGAIN, used up ALL my electrical tape bandaging them, back on deck, to find that we are still moving at +3Knts and in the home port direction.
We got home,
NOW, I have to replace my; mast, booms rigging and sails . But, do I want to?
SAILKite needs more investigating. I have searched the Internet, read pages and pages of forums, there is a lot of talk from Cargo Ships to French ladies sailing the Pacific.
I have a supply exotic sail cloth that is 165gsm (that’s very light) because of what and how its made its Very Strong.
Is there someone in out there who can contribute in any constructive way?

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Old 27-12-2011, 22:39   #3
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Re: Emergency Kite

KiteShip - Pleasure Marine

These are the biggest makers of sailing kites. Check out the site. I'd like to have a kite for mine but just can't ju$tify it, yet!
Faithful are the Wounds of a Friend, but the Kisses of the Enemy are Deceitful!
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Old 27-12-2011, 22:42   #4
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pirate Re: Emergency Kite

Well.... tyhey won't keep you off that Lee Shore... gale or not...
I do not exist to impress the world.
I exist to live my life in a way that will make me happy.

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