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Old 23-06-2009, 12:38   #76
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Thanks for the history lessons, guys, but you're way off topic in this particular thread. Can ya give it a rest, please?
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Old 22-07-2009, 17:25   #77
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Interesting thread that is touching on some issues that have been on my mind...

Himself and I have just acquired a neat little Cal28. I have a goodly amount of general boating experience and fair amount of sailing time. Himself has time as ballast and is learning this all from the ground up. Good news is he is a quick study!

Currently, even as rusty as my skills are, I know way more about what's going on onboard than he does. Consequently I am making the more technical decisions and acting as Captain in alot of ways. Himself is something of a caveman and I fully expect Him to take charge in the future. Not because I "can't" run the boat, but because He can. I have to say I have my doubts that He will ever be the pilot however ; -) berthing is my specialty!

I do wonder in the mean time how that transition of control will work... I am thinking that I like the idea of retaining the Admirals slot for myself. His common sense will never match mine! Perhaps for now the 'Helm as Captain' idea will suffice and in an emergency whom ever knows the most about the issue at hand will step up to the plate and take charge... He's pretty good about jumping too when I get 'that' tone in my voice ; -)
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Old 22-07-2009, 20:16   #78
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Sara,

Things work best when you both understand how things work. Old friends that have sailed 30 years together sort it out a whole lot different than you might think it would and it works. When you know more technical details than he does it creates more unknown in his mind and that leads to unpredictable things. It's not at all a man / woman thing much as it's a I don't know what is happening thing. Being afraid of the unknown is a human and you want as little of that as possible so he needs to know and understand.

The point where it settles out may or may not happen quickly or maybe too quickly. I will tell you single handing a boat with a passenger is a whole lot harder than when you have good crew. You can build good crew. You may start out being the teacher and end up learning more than you thought could ever know. Teaching someone else forces what you think to match what you can show so someone else can do it too. It means you can snooze once in a while too.

As they say you can give a man a fish and he eats one day or you can teach a man to fish and clean fish the rest of your life It's OK if things on the water work different than on land.
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Old 22-07-2009, 20:31   #79
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You may have a point Paul. I think I may take the fishing pole off the *get list* however...

; -)
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Old 22-07-2009, 21:12   #80
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I think I may take the fishing pole off the *get list*
Most wounds are self inflicted. Being premptive can be construed as proactive. It just depends on who is making the list!

It'd be Ok if you don't like fish guts. As I tell all the fishing boat captains hawking deep sea fishing trips. I'm a fish eater - not a fish catcher. Shuts them down every time. Show respect for the product!
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Old 02-10-2009, 10:52   #81
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Update, one year later! I'd like to thank you all for your replies and varied opinions, good stuff.

As planned, we are now liveaboards and have had a year of sailing to figure this question out. Turns out it didn't require much thought, instead we just let it flow in the way that our relationship naturally does where we give or take authority when it's needed. Generally speaking, we swap the captain and first mate roles depending on who's on watch and we make any difficult or stressful decisions together if possible. If something has to happen in an instant, either of us can make that known and the other will jump to help. We haven't had any real disagreements on how to handle the boat.

At the same time, respectful communication is KEY. I've gotten myself in trouble a couple of times when I barked at her about a mistake, then made that same mistake later. It all comes around. Besides, I don't WANT to be captain all the time. I love to cook, play with the kids, nap and drink too. Also, she's good at pushing my sissy ass to take some chances, like flying the chute. It was great, but I probably wouldn't have broken it out without her insistence.

At the end of the day, it seems to me that your roles and attitude on the boat should parallel those in your relationship, assuming you're both happy with the way things stand. Why reinvent the wheel?

BTW, if any of you are hesitant to move your kids onto a boat, take the plunge and do it! For two months away from the dock our kids (6 & 7) didn't have regular showers, TV, much space or familiar people close at hand yet they had the best summer of their lives, romping outside as kids were meant to. We were just hoping they wouldn't hate it but they came back saying they never wanted to live anywhere but on Coqui. Pure magic!
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Old 02-10-2009, 12:09   #82
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Congradulations on the kids. It truly is where they belong. They can excercise, and explore. Not to mention they do this many times with their parents.

If you have equal knowledge then it's shared. If there isn't equal knowledge then the person holding the most should be in charge. That doesn't mean to go about, and refusing input. I am sure it has been a rewarding year with less hassles than you previously thought!.......i2f
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Old 03-10-2009, 17:14   #83
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We find we get more relaxed making decisions jointly as time goes on. We have found that in many foreign countries when checking in you are asked to rank those aboard as Master - crew - or passengers. We routinely put down MASTER for each of our names. No one has ever challenged it.
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Old 03-10-2009, 20:06   #84
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On a yacht, its fine to have as many captains as you want. Its fun to switch off and share playing that role.

Its just would not work on a commercial or a military vessel. These vessels only work by having a command structure similar to a dictatorship. A smart captain is always open to advice from those under him, but always keeps the final decision for himself. Some things just don't work well being run like a democracy partially because of the much greater time element involved in democratic choices. Another reason is the necessity of having one person as holding ultimate responsibility. A third reason is so that there is only one person left with the final decision. No two people agree on everything.

For yachts though, there is nothing wrong with having a co-captain. Yachts are managed more like a marriage where the couple must learn to work out compromises between the two of them.
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Old 03-10-2009, 20:30   #85
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I've been on racing yachts where the husband and wife were "co-skippers" - It doesn't freakin' work and pisses off the crew.

I have been on racing yachts where the tactician and the skipper were sharing the duties of delivering orders. Doesn't freakin' work and pisses off the crew.

The skipper is the skipper. You wanna have a democracy with 2 people, go ahead. With any more than 2 you need a command structure.

Skipper is overall decision maker. He delegates tactics to the tactician. He delegates operations to the crew leaders. There is a back of the boat leader, usually the trimmer. There is a front of the boat leader, usually the bowman.

I have had, skipper, wife, tactician and the prime trimmer all shouting conflicting advice at me at teh same time. No one operates long in that environment.

2 up cruising boats - totally different
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Old 03-10-2009, 20:33   #86
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For racing, definitely what Dan says. For cruising where you have two co-skippers and two people onboard, no problem.
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Old 03-10-2009, 22:13   #87
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ex-Calif View Post
I have had, skipper, wife, tactician and the prime trimmer all shouting conflicting advice at me at teh same time. No one operates long in that environment.

2 up cruising boats - totally different
And never invite a cruising skipper on to your racing yacht for a race:

Dan: "HUAL ON THE SHEET!"
Mark: "Beer, please"
Dan: "TELL THAT A$$ WE'RE ON STARBOARD!"
Mark: "Beer, please. Anything will do, as long as its cold"
Dan: "OVERLAP!!! CAN'T YOU SEE ITS AN OVERLAPPPPPPPPP!"
Mark: "Just gimme a BEER"
Dan: "BUOY WATER!!!!!!!!!!!"
Mark: "BEEER"
Dan: "BUOY WATER! STARBOARD!!!!!!!!!!! BEACH! ROCKS!!!!!!!!!"
Mark: "BEER BEER BEER!!!!!!! PALM TREE!"





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Old 03-10-2009, 23:32   #88
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And never invite a cruising skipper on to your racing yacht for a race:

Dan: "HUAL ON THE SHEET!"
Mark: "Beer, please"
Dan: "TELL THAT A$$ WE'RE ON STARBOARD!"
Mark: "Beer, please. Anything will do, as long as its cold"
Dan: "OVERLAP!!! CAN'T YOU SEE ITS AN OVERLAPPPPPPPPP!"
Mark: "Just gimme a BEER"
Dan: "BUOY WATER!!!!!!!!!!!"
Mark: "BEEER"
Dan: "BUOY WATER! STARBOARD!!!!!!!!!!! BEACH! ROCKS!!!!!!!!!"
Mark: "BEER BEER BEER!!!!!!! PALM TREE!"
Mark: YOU DO REALIZE WE ARE IN LAST PLACE, RIGHT?
Dan: "SH*T. SKIPPER NEEDS A BEER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
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Old 04-10-2009, 05:59   #89
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My husband and I have the same sailing experience and we have found it natural from the beginning that the person on the helm is the captain. Whatever works best for those involved. I don't think there is a wrong way if both are comfortable with it.
As a couple we've been living aboard cruisers since 1972 and we find that Sailor.mo's definition of who is the captain is the obvious outcome by default. When a critical decision must be made at a moment it's made by whoever has their hands on the helm.
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Old 04-10-2009, 06:09   #90
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"You do realize we're in last place don't you?"

I guess I have to concur on the comment that you cannot invite a cruiser to race. I must have been born to cruise, & not to race.

When we used to have races on our lake back in Iowa I had been known to light up the BBQ grill in lighter winds and put some hors d'oeuvres on. Crew liked them and the beer, but we were always last! I think Eileen Quinn has one of her songs about that!

We have now cruised down to Bonaire, with two masters aboard - one in command at a time - and will just watch the races during Regatta Week.
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