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Old 12-03-2016, 18:34   #46
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Re: When to motor the rest of the way?

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Originally Posted by Privleoplag View Post
squalls..after getting hit the last time with 50mph winds, from now on, if I can't sail around 'em, sails are coming down and engines are getting started. No more thinking all reefs in is enough. For squalls the seas usually stay about how they are as the short duration of a squall doesn't affect the waves so much so no need to even leave a spit of sail up. Plus, it's probably not quite the same on a cat.
So exactly what regrettable thing happened in the sudden 50 mph...um...43.5 kt winds that brings you to this extreme decision? Did you get knocked down? did you blow out a sail? Was a person or boat gear injured?
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Old 12-03-2016, 18:48   #47
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Re: When to motor the rest of the way?

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Why was putting away all your sails the thing you did? I'm not trying to be dense but I'm not really getting your point. We find it always more stable in big winds and seas to have SOME sail up. Even if motorsailing having that bit of sail up makes the boat more stable. Miserable to just motor with not a scrap of sail to stabilize the boat.

I do understand some people feel more comfortable motorsailing, yes. But more comfortable motoring with not a scrap of sail up is just not what I'd want to do, on our boat, in heavy weather or even in a brisk 20 kts. It makes no sense to me. Please explain.

Thanks,
Brenda
Brenda, I thanked you for your post and will do it again here. As a fan of the Pardays Id say you have it right. You might have a reefed main, a trysail, searoom, you might heave-to, you might have a lot but the thing you wont have is NO sails.

I dont have the experience of my childhood friend who spent seven years on a 55' motorsailor continuously circling the globe. We discuss Brenda's post all the time. They never once were without sails anytime they were not anchored, moored, docked, whatever. They and the boat survived everything including surfing giant waves, any storms and capsize too--WITH SAILS. The motor was for doldrums, marina work, only in emergencies. There was never a question of whether or not to use sails, the only question ever was 1) which sail 2) how much of it to present to the wind. Thats all, thats it.

Otherwise, on motorsailers on which i have crewed, the captain sometimes used the motor the last 1/4 mile or less, if that. Just....right at the very end of the journey or according to rules of a particular port.

Though I dont have the experience of most of you, IMHO forget there is a motor and learn to sail.
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Old 12-03-2016, 19:18   #48
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pirate Re: When to motor the rest of the way?

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Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
Has anyone read the original post?

He's after advice for 20 day passages and 3-5 day passages.

Its NOT whatever feels right!

Fuel calculations are vital.

Even without propulsion, using the engine to generate electricity uses fuel on a 20 day passage that will effect motoring time.

I am as interested as the OP in finding out how others calculate fuel/motoring etc on 20 day passages. I would like to know how others do it.
I calculate 1.5 times what the engine use's/hr.. been caught out by faulty gauges.. and count hours run.
If I've solar I tend to do a 1.5hr motor sail around 1am to get me through till the suns high enough to feed my helmsman..
Learnt on my first Transat don't go chasing the wind.. you'll run out of fuel
Also I'm not embarrassed strapping containers topside.. never know when a blockage whatever may happen so an alternate source of clean fuel to run direct is a huge bonus.
Regarding the guy and his wife.. I think it was the fact that twice they sat bobbing with the port they wanted just on the horizon.. La Coruna being one..
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Old 12-03-2016, 20:40   #49
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Re: When to motor the rest of the way?

What ever decision you make, make it early.
If you need to be at a certain location by a certain time, for a bar crossing, or daylight entry or whatever, theres no point having perservered for too long bobbing around waiting for wind, if your going to make a late decision which may mean having to push the engine hard or arriving after dark or too late for the tide anyway.
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Old 12-03-2016, 23:17   #50
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Re: When to motor the rest of the way?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
Has anyone read the original post?

He's after advice for 20 day passages and 3-5 day passages.

Its NOT whatever feels right!

Fuel calculations are vital.

Even without propulsion, using the engine to generate electricity uses fuel on a 20 day passage that will effect motoring time.

I am as interested as the OP in finding out how others calculate fuel/motoring etc on 20 day passages. I would like to know how others do it.
No, he specifically stated your close to land, you can see land. Thats what the OP said. Then he asked whether it makes a difference whether its after a 3 day hop or a 20 day hop. IMO it doesnt matter whether its at the end of a 3 day or a 20 day, safety should be first. Of course, after a 20 day hop your keeness may be a factor to hit land. If you can see land i cant see why you wouldnt motor in.
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Old 12-03-2016, 23:38   #51
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Re: When to motor the rest of the way?

Destination in sight after a 20 day passage?
Speed under 4 knots esp if 4 knots with wind aft of the beam.....
Motor most probably on if it means I can make the tide.
Can't make the tide or arrive in daylight? Just poke along under sail.
Too many variables..
Motored for the last 2 days or so on my last passage....ended up with 4 hours in hand for the tide... not motoring would have given an extra 24 plus hours at sea.... which I was a bit weary of..
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Old 12-03-2016, 23:59   #52
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Re: When to motor the rest of the way?

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Bloke I met in Gibraltar had sailed down from the UK with his wife.. only times he would use the engine was for entering marinas.

Apparently they were becalmed for 4 days in the Biscay, and 3 days between San Vincente and Gibraltar and no matter the slopping about he refused to use the engine as sailors don't use an engine.. they wait patiently for the wind..

She flew home on the first flight available and started divorce proceedings.

Next time I saw him was Agua Dulce and the boat was For Sale.. on the hard as it was part of the settlement.

Common sense.. some have it.. many do not




This could have been my fate thru no fault of my own - had just a sniff of fuel left, sloppy sea with no wind all day. Wife flew out next morning.
She was tough enough to have another shot. Just lucky.


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Old 13-03-2016, 00:06   #53
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Re: When to motor the rest of the way?

How to save a marriage: bigger diesel, more tankage.
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Old 13-03-2016, 00:21   #54
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Re: When to motor the rest of the way?

Oh come on guys, your not going to loose a marriage because your becalmed for a few days

You may not get laid anytime soon, but divorce no way. Much more already going on.
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Old 13-03-2016, 00:44   #55
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Re: When to motor the rest of the way?

three examples for us
when we crossed the Caribbean from Panama to Jamaica we were 5 days sailing 42-45 deg to the wind - got within 20nm of Jamaica that off to our starboard and we could have tacked and tacked and tacked to get in we said screw it - pulled the sails and motored in


crossing the Atlantic we carried about 110 gal - we motored once in open ocean when we had a front moving ne on us and I wanted to go due east to try and miss it - so we motored/sailed for 8 hours and saw the storm behind us as it passed - then just out of horta we got no wind - so cranked up the engine and motored in - I think we used something like 20-25 gals for the entire crossing


third - we were headed down toward the cornith canal and wanted to stop in itea to go to Delphi - had great wind behind us and had the whisker out - had to pull the main as to much wind and we were doing over 8.8k - with whisker only doing mid 7s - had to turn to port and get into the harbor - as we pulled the whisker and motored a bit the winds came down off the hills and it got a bit brisk - so we motored tack to keep the big seas off our beam and make for a rolly ride -


we motor when we feel like it - but ALWAYS when entering a port - we do not take chances there
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Old 13-03-2016, 00:46   #56
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Re: When to motor the rest of the way?

There is becalmed in flat water and becalmed at sea..... with the latter I think I would most likely kill the skipper after three days...
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Old 13-03-2016, 04:49   #57
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Re: When to motor the rest of the way?

It's insane to take all your sails down when becalmed and drift with currents in a body of water such as Long Island Sound in southern NE. You have lots of recreational and commercial traffic, including strong currents which reverse 2x a day. If you are on a passage to a port... and the wind poops and the forecast is for not wind for X number of hrs... turning on the motor with the main up and making a harbor with decent light is a prudent thing to do! Heck you probably have to motor a channel to get to the anchorage or the dock.

In mid day when becalmed in the Sound we might drift a bit and have lunch...more pleasant than with the noise and order of the motor... wait for wind but if it remains calm... the motor goes on and we rhumb line it for the harbor. We might burn a gallon or fuel or two.

Wind very light and close to our heading we motor sail and tack back and forth. Getting there is definitely part of the deal... but being there is too.
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Old 13-03-2016, 05:20   #58
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pirate Re: When to motor the rest of the way?

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Originally Posted by Don C L View Post
How to save a marriage: bigger diesel, more tankage.
Bigger diesel..??
More tankage AND containers on deck.. definitely..
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Old 13-03-2016, 05:40   #59
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Re: When to motor the rest of the way?

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Its this common? I am new to sailing and have never been through any storms, so I am curious, is it best to furl the sails because the wind shifting? Is motoring easier than reefing?
You seem to not understand what folks were trying to suggest above, but let me say simply that, usually, you only furl the sails when the wind is too strong to have as much sail up as you previously had.

Or, if you decide to motor somewhere, you furl the sails (roll them up and so they are not in use) in order to keep them from luffing (flopping around in the wind), if you need to motor into the wind. If the wind is favorable, but light, you might actually want to keep the sails unfurled, and use the motor to gain a bit more speed. I'm sure other folks might take issue with that idea, however.

Reefing means partially furling the sails, motoring using your engine to power your boat. So, you seem to be trying to compare apples and oranges here.

Do a google search on "furling", "roller furling", "reefing" for more. Gotta learn the lingo.

G2L
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Old 13-03-2016, 06:34   #60
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Re: When to motor the rest of the way?

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No, he specifically stated your close to land, you can see land. Thats what the OP said. Then he asked whether it makes a difference whether its after a 3 day hop or a 20 day hop. IMO it doesnt matter whether its at the end of a 3 day or a 20 day, safety should be first. Of course, after a 20 day hop your keeness may be a factor to hit land. If you can see land i cant see why you wouldnt motor in.
Here's one possible reason you wouldn't motor in:

Moitessier Syndrome


And I'm actually not joking. I find that after a few days at sea, all the "keenness" to get back to land disappears, and the sight of land fills me with disappointment. I think it's like that for many sailors. I can very well imagine just really not wanting to put the motor on, in that situation.

Something like that might have been a factor in the divorce discussed above. Maybe she was desperate to get back to land, but he was desperate to avoid it.
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