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Old 31-03-2009, 03:23   #1
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Keel Falls Off! USCG Rescues Two

A very interesting story of 2 experienced racers outside the Golden Gate of San Fransisco when their keel falls off. Preparation and a cool head prevails.

Latitude 38 - The West's Premier Sailing & Marine Magazine
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Old 31-03-2009, 05:07   #2
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Quite a story. A dropped keel is something no one prepares to deal with. The J80 is a pretty well built racer, but I wouldn't want to be in one in 14 foot seas and 40 knots. When I used to race a lot in a small boat (which I don't any more), whenever conditions were bad I would always clip my submersible VHF to my PFD. These guys were lucky to be able to dive for it and find it in the turtled boat.
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Old 31-03-2009, 16:29   #3
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Wow. What a story...
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Old 05-04-2009, 17:21   #4
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I just read on another site how an Austrailian builder was just found guilty of two counts of manslaughter when the keel of one of his boats fell off.
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Old 18-04-2009, 00:19   #5
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Here is a link to the manslaughter/keel story in Australia:
Excalibur builder guilty, mystery remains | theage.com.au
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Old 18-04-2009, 06:57   #6
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This is the second J-80 to lose a keel, the other one was about a year ago. Neither were keel bolt failure, both were the entire keel stub tearing off of the boat. Both boats were about 15 years old and there have been over 1000 J-80s made.

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Old 18-04-2009, 21:02   #7
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Yikes!!! That's a scary thought!!!
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Old 04-05-2009, 02:57   #8
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Yea I think a keel falling off is somthing you should be prepared for.. Like building a boat right .Kinda like checking the wing before you fly. I like the idea of manslaughter charges that will put a lot of boat builders out of bussness and that might not be such a bad idea . What with what I have seen in the boat shows latley!
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Old 04-05-2009, 06:31   #9
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Manslaughter charges for product failure? Are you kidding me? A keel failure could be caused by multiple groundings and the resulting stress. Now the designer or manufacturer is going to spend 20 years in jail because you died from your own (or the PO's) stupidity? Negligence is the highest law that should apply and the civil case should put them out of business, not in jail.
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Old 04-05-2009, 07:57   #10
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Your right perhaps manslauter is a little harsh. It was late and I was reading the blog . And for a second I thought abought the guy that has to go out in the middle of a storm leave his family his warm home and hang on the end of a wire drop into freezing water and save some sots that are out in a race boat trying to shave a second off thier forward speed using a method that has proved time and again to be flawed. Then I read that this is happened to two boats. Im sorry Im of the school a boat can take a grounding but hey im funny like that. I relize that inorder to advance the design we race. But what if you looked at it this way. your driving to work and a dragster passes you explosed and the wheels fly off! Do you think the society should bear the costs of that .I belive that designs that test the limit should bear the costs of their own rescue . Or limit the whole thing and that would be very bad. the sea is the last place to take risks but then you must bear the result.
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Old 04-05-2009, 08:23   #11
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Sailing off shore has it's risks that we all understand and accept. We are responsible for our own safety

I also cavedive for another passtime. If my regulators fail 2 miles back in a cave, it's not Scubapro's fault; it's mine. And I've trained to the point where both of my regulators failing would be nothing more than a major annoyance and force the turn of the dive.

I hope to be that well trained on my boat too.
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Old 04-05-2009, 08:32   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amytom View Post
Sailing off shore has it's risks that we all understand and accept. We are responsible for our own safety

I also cavedive for another passtime. If my regulators fail 2 miles back in a cave, it's not Scubapro's fault; it's mine. And I've trained to the point where both of my regulators failing would be nothing more than a major annoyance and force the turn of the dive.

I hope to be that well trained on my boat too.
As I said earlier, I wouldn't take a J80 into those seas. Having said that, a keel falling off is not equivalent to a regulator failing which, as you said, is nothing more than a major annoyance. A keel falling off is a real fricking issue, and something that should not happen on any boat regardless of the seas. In comparison a regulator failing would be something like, say, sails ripping or even a dismasting -- bad but gives you enough time to take some action or make some calls.
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