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Old 10-11-2013, 15:16   #16
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Re: Salty Dog Rally Incidents

"The boat was in excellent condition, "
So, you know for a fact that it recently had a full rigging inspection, and the standing rig including all stainless turnbuckles and fittings was recently inspected and found to be free of cracks or signs of crevice corrosion?

Rigging can be very deceptive, if it is only inspected by the eyeball and has had a chance to age. Easy enough to lose the mast if part of the rigging lets go. If I had to take odds, I'd rashly guess it was something that simple.
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Old 10-11-2013, 15:40   #17
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For the dismasted part. Warning speculation. In 8 foot short frequency waves. If the mast was not tuned well it could start to work and shock load fittings. Doesn't mean the rigging was bad but possible it became out of tune and got some hard loads.
Fir confession I had one of my upper spreaders slip. It was noticed and moved back into place and clamped. Hard to see that it was lower then it should have been without getting in the dink and looking bow on. Something to look out for. Not saying that is what happened but something did cause the failure.
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Old 11-11-2013, 06:25   #18
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Re: Salty Dog Rally Incidents

I don't know for a fact the extent of their rigging inspection, only that they've been working on their boat for the last two years in preparation for this trip. I suspect that you are correct - that some bit had crevice corrosion or metal fatigue that lead to the failure (which I have experienced on my own boat after replacing standing rigging). I'm only speculating of course, but look forward to learning more.
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Old 11-11-2013, 06:45   #19
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Re: Salty Dog Rally Incidents

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, SamuelB
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Old 11-11-2013, 08:41   #20
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Re: Salty dog rally incidents

Quote:
Originally Posted by rebel heart View Post
I'd like to know the particulars on the Hans Christian dismast. If the rig was in good shape I find it really hard to believe that a properly canvased HC will lost its spar. The chainplate specs could tow a tank, the wires are typically doubled, one set of spreaders, and the earlier models had no furlers.
Reb: If you carry your spinnaker pole on deck, then, even if you are dismasted, you have something left to make a jury rig with. Many so called "dismastings" are only partial, anyway. I've seen the top third let go, various permutations, really. As you say, your rig is single spreader, so maybe vulnerable to losing the bit above the spreader.

We lost our single spreader rig due to the failure of a cotter pin (sort of like the horse shoe nail that led to the kingdom being lost.) Our spinny pole went with the rig, cause it was stowed up the mast for ease of deployment. Said cotter pin may have been removed by the stays'l sheet, or may have purely failed. We found the clevis pin rolling around on deck between the chain plate and the rail...and nothing broken, except the stick, of course. The mast was keel stepped, and broke about 8" above the deck, leaving a large hole, which we jammed a bucket over. We were within motoring distance of land, so did not have to make a jury rig.

I hope you find out something that makes you feel safer, but really, if your rig is new and you did all the inspections, what more can you do? besides go aloft before you head offshore, and have a good look at the top of that roller furling head stay, below the swage, as well as all the other bits and pieces, and you know you were going to do that, anyway, huh?

Ann
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Old 11-11-2013, 11:31   #21
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Re: Salty Dog Rally Incidents

I think we've all had the experience of the Mad Hatter (But it was the very best of butter!) or the somewhat more succinct phrase that sailors use, which isn't allowed on this forum.
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Old 11-11-2013, 11:45   #22
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Re: Salty Dog Rally Incidents

any boat as old as a HC38 is suceptible to chainplate failure.. even if the rest of the rig is new. My guess is, for most, chainplates that look massive just dont get removed to see if they are any good. it's right up there with bolt on keels. Just too much work to actually do... so the visual inspection suffices.
Not that we know what brought the HC rig down... but they are well rigged.
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Old 11-11-2013, 14:41   #23
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Re: Salty dog rally incidents

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Originally Posted by SamuelB View Post
Regarding the Hans Christian 38 dismasting, I know the boat and crew well. The boat was in excellent condition, well equipped and the crew is experienced and very capable. I can't imagine what caused the dismasting, but conditions had to be pretty rough. The last post from the crew (before the trouble started) stated that conditions were squally. Haven't heard from them since (except through the Coast Guard reports, and Salty Dawg organizers) but understand they are safe and motoring South.
Perfect shape boat with an experienced crew lost it's rig in squally conditions? I'm not trying to imply anything but it's got to be deeper than that. Hopefully they can chime in or someone who knows them can explain it a bit deeper. Totally possible it was just horrible turn of the luck of wheel where a pin snapped or something similar.

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just out of curiosity, is the mast on your boat deck stepped or keel stepped?
Deck.
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Old 11-11-2013, 14:46   #24
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Re: Salty Dog Rally Incidents

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Originally Posted by Ann T. Cate View Post
Reb: If you carry your spinnaker pole on deck, then, even if you are dismasted, you have something left to make a jury rig with. Many so called "dismastings" are only partial, anyway. I've seen the top third let go, various permutations, really. As you say, your rig is single spreader, so maybe vulnerable to losing the bit above the spreader.

We lost our single spreader rig due to the failure of a cotter pin (sort of like the horse shoe nail that led to the kingdom being lost.) Our spinny pole went with the rig, cause it was stowed up the mast for ease of deployment. Said cotter pin may have been removed by the stays'l sheet, or may have purely failed. We found the clevis pin rolling around on deck between the chain plate and the rail...and nothing broken, except the stick, of course. The mast was keel stepped, and broke about 8" above the deck, leaving a large hole, which we jammed a bucket over. We were within motoring distance of land, so did not have to make a jury rig.

I hope you find out something that makes you feel safer, but really, if your rig is new and you did all the inspections, what more can you do? besides go aloft before you head offshore, and have a good look at the top of that roller furling head stay, below the swage, as well as all the other bits and pieces, and you know you were going to do that, anyway, huh?

Ann


Quote:
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any boat as old as a HC38 is suceptible to chainplate failure.. even if the rest of the rig is new. My guess is, for most, chainplates that look massive just dont get removed to see if they are any good. it's right up there with bolt on keels. Just too much work to actually do... so the visual inspection suffices.
Not that we know what brought the HC rig down... but they are well rigged.
We replaced all the chainplates last year. They had basic levels of crevice corrosion but nothing too horrible, so they're just at a year of service at this point. The upper shrouds and fore/aft stays have been replaced as well within the last year, although i still need to replace the lowers.

I'm actually going to switch the chain plates out to external when I remove the teak decks because I'm getting tired of the constant leaks and want to make the deck *completely* waterproof, or as much as possible anyway.

I really don't want to finger point at the guy, like you said Ann all it takes is one tiny piece of hardware to work itself loose and there you go. We're leaving on a 3-4 day run to Puerto Vallarta (from La Paz) in a week so this is a good reminder for me to double check everything. Obviously I'll be paranoid and super-checking before we leave for the Pacific. Probably mouse everything as well.
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Old 11-11-2013, 14:50   #25
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Only one component has to fail, and if it was a short, steep seaway, it could have been a shock that brought it down.

It's a good point that those of us with what we think of as "overbuilt" boats might subject our boats to stresses that are best avoided. No speculation about these folks, more talking to myself out loud. Sometimes the shocks can be avoided, sometimes not so much. An accidental gybe in high winds, paired with a steep wave would do it, with a little crevice corrosion to facilitate. Good on them for carrying on. I might have pointed west just to avoid financial risk. Perhaps their insurance will get a new rig to them in the Caribbean?

Best of luck to them. Rally's are unappealing. Being independent to a fault, I don't like to follow in the car, much less out to sea, relying on others judgement solely. I guess I can see others attraction, but I'd rather just see you at the next port of call, although happy to provide assistance when called upon. Maybe ill try it out one day, at least the Bermuda 1-2 looks like good, clean fun.

Eating a bunch of rich food and getting wasted before putting out to sea just doesn't excite me. Don't these rally's have big shove-off banquets? Not that I'm above the experience, and I can always learn something from someone, but seems like a false sense of security for inexperienced crews. What is one inexperienced crew going to do for another at sea in heavy weather? Who assisted all these boats in the end. USCG, right? The idea of having others close by to help make decisions or problem solve as a routine approach does little to develop self reliance and good problem solving skills.

Anyway, no new ideas in this post, and I'm generalizing about something that's prolly true for some participants. What does the increased participation in the salty dawg say, ostensibly with less safety requirements than the 1500? Better marketing? Cheaper fees? More newb friendly with nobody to judge the boats with one reef and one roller furling genoa?
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Old 11-11-2013, 16:27   #26
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Re: Salty dog rally incidents

Quote:
Originally Posted by rebel heart View Post
Perfect shape boat with an experienced crew lost it's rig in squally conditions? I'm not trying to imply anything but it's got to be deeper than that. Hopefully they can chime in or someone who knows them can explain it a bit deeper. Totally possible it was just horrible turn of the luck of wheel where a pin snapped or something similar.
I'll know more tomorrow and will report back. I never said "perfect" but I'm pretty sure the rigging was new, though I don't know anything about the chainplates, mast fittings, or tuning of the rig. In any event I'll let you know when/what I find out.
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Old 11-11-2013, 18:18   #27
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Re: Salty Dog Rally Incidents

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheechako View Post
any boat as old as a HC38 is suceptible to chainplate failure.. even if the rest of the rig is new. My guess is, for most, chainplates that look massive just dont get removed to see if they are any good. it's right up there with bolt on keels. Just too much work to actually do... so the visual inspection suffices.
Not that we know what brought the HC rig down... but they are well rigged.
We certainly are all just speculating. My experience on our Camper Nicholson 1984 ketch was that the plates all looked OK. I had the headliner down to address a wet balsa-core deck and had the chain plates exposed. I'd read enough to be suspicious especially for the boat's age and popped the stbd side plates off. Tea stains as you you would expect but I polished the plates with my D-A sander and found a microscopic "tear on the dotted line" crack on both sides of each one at the deck interface. Ordinary visual inspection would NEVER have detected this. The short of it is We made new Titanium replacements for all four. 1/2 inch X 3-1/2 inch X 24. Fortunately, I work in a machine shop so the cost was 804$ plus the case of beer to the machinist. I have photos of this repair - follow my pictures. Member Galleries - Cruisers & Sailing Photo Gallery
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Old 11-11-2013, 18:21   #28
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Re: Salty Dog Rally Incidents

another thing -

I like the idea of ralleys but I am warry of commiting to a departure schedule. My expeience is that lots of bad stuff happens on boats decause you tried to keep a schedule.
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Old 12-11-2013, 09:36   #29
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Re: Salty Dog Rally Incidents

I too have a love hate feeling towards rallies. My love is the resource of info from many boats going the same direction. My hate is the vessels all going my direction, more chance of collision, crowded anchorages, the "herd" mentality feeling. I like a nice wide open feeling when going offshore, knowing there are a couple hundred boats out there with us, well, kinda puts me on edge, shrug.
But, you meet lots of folks, and I'm sure can be fun if things go well
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Old 12-11-2013, 15:52   #30
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Re: Salty dog rally incidents

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Perfect shape boat with an experienced crew lost it's rig in squally conditions? I'm not trying to imply anything but it's got to be deeper than that. Hopefully they can chime in or someone who knows them can explain it a bit deeper. Totally possible it was just horrible turn of the luck of wheel where a pin snapped or something similar.
A little more insight... As I understand it, the seas were steep, frequent, and coming from multiple directions. The motion was described as violent. Apparently the mast fractured but not sure what led to that. The rigging was brand new. After a difficult trip the crew is safe, exhausted, and re-grouping.
I wish them the best.
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