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Old 03-02-2018, 14:24   #91
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Re: Would you deliver her?

The first thing that would stop me is the inexperienced captain and the chain of command issue of you being the most experienced crew. If I could talk him into hiring Boatman and letting me bd first officer I would jump at the chance. If not I would wait for the next opportunity. Which you might miss if you are tied up with this one......
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Old 03-02-2018, 16:21   #92
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Re: Would you deliver her?

Hi everyone!

Thanks so much for all the replies and advices! You were all very helpful and contributed each one for my decision.

I'll walk you through my process, as i left out some details and discovered some others along the way.

So, this started out as an invitation from a friend of a friend to tag along a passage from Menorca to Lisboa, Portugal. I had met him before and knew he had a boat and sailed frequently. We had talked about sailing a couple times and setting up a crew for regattas. He would be the skipper. I assumed this was going to be a pretty simple and sweet deal. I would get some time off, slick sailing and experience points, cool.

I was super excited to go and made up time to get away for two weeks.
Then i had a meeting with a third crew...

He introduced himself as Team Leader, and said his job was to lead and organize the crew. He made it very clear he was in charge. He also said he didn't know much about sailing and that i would play a major part in this, as i was the most experienced. (I know...i know...but i really really wanted to go)

So i tried to figure out exactly what he meant by Team Leader...sometimes people don't know what they're talking about...He explained to me that he was a friend of the owner and that she had entrusted him with setting up and managing a crew to sail the boat. So i asked, isn't that the skipper´s job? (the other guy i already met) He replied, yes, well...i'll need you to skipper some parts of the passage. -Why on earth, i asked? -Oh it's no big deal, the skipper is more than qualified and skilled, he´s just very hard to deal with and it's your job to second him and substitute him if need be or i see fit. Also, that i was more experienced than him. (I know guys......but i really really wanted to go)

My first impression was that he knew absolutely nothing about sailing or seamanship. But he also knew nothing about the boat. So i assumed (dumbass) that he knew nothing at all, including being in charge.

After the meeting i stated that i would not skipper part of the passage, nor would i skipper all of it because my license doesn't allow for it. I would not substitute a skipper over criteria from someone that had no knowledge base to back it from. By the time i found myself explaining what a skipper was i gave up and i went to clear this out with the skipper.

Skipper kept cool, said i shouldn't listen to the other guy and that he knew what he was doing. Immediately i knew thay had issues between them. I asked about the boat and its specs and i got a link with the boat portfolio, but no specs. It was a brochure for sailing tours in Menorca, but the boat was remodeled couple years ago and from the pics i deduced it was a 40ft mono from say 1990. Looked preppy, bad painting job though.

So, i have a skipper that may know his stuff, a supposed Team Leader that knows no stuff, me, and a fourth crew i knew nothing about. Why is this feeling sooo itchy..?

From the (no) specs and the skipper i learned that the boat had no AIS or RADAR. So i got the whole picture and prepared my mindset for a sail with no batteries. This wouldn't be a dealbreaker for me, but it depended much more on the skipper's skill now and the time/weather window.

I don't like fog. Im used to regatta mode and some short-medium passages but i hate fog. Im Portuguese, we get fog. So i got stuck on the idea...Why no RADAR...?

I thought, hell i'd give it a go with a reasonably skilled sailor anyway...but here i got the idea that the hierarchy was not clear or sound. I was brought to attention to this being a serious issue on board on this thread and i definetely agree.

I set my mind to make it work. (I know...call me stuborn)
This thread kept bringing my attention to all the red flags i already noticed, and i was still sure i could make it if i could bring the crew together.

Long story short, and after a week of weird arguments and me explaining all about seamanship, over a crew whatsapp group...

I wake up one morning and read a message from the Team Leader that said "Luck favors the bold". I just snapped. I don´t snap easily, this was just the pinnacle over a ton of stupidity i endured. I tottaly lost my ****. I don't want to bother you guys with the details but it ended up with me calling him an ignorant and saying that he had no business in managing a sailboat crew and that he was the biggest risk factor. I said that i would not board a ship with someone in charge that could not make good decisions. I said he was a fool. And that this was a very bad idea. I wished them Good luck and fair winds and left the group.

Wait.... The skipper asked me if my decision was final. I am a bold sailor. But i looked at myself and, if i was to go, i was going against a lot of sage advice, just like the ignorant Team Leader. Besides fog, i just hate "I told you so".

There was no way now, because i would never board a boat with that man, there would be no chance of understanding, and tried really hard to talk some sense into his head. Seriously, he's the kind of crew you fear, because he does not listen, nor learns. And definetely should not be in command. Overall, i don't like him. And that's bad.

I could not be useful to a crew that depended on my experience but i had no control over. And if i had control, i would never come up with such a crew.
I told him i would help out in anyway i could with planning. I would send him the awesome tips you guys left me (i need to remember to tell him to join the cruisers forum) but in these conditions it's going to be a pass for me, sorry skipper.
I wished him goodluck and fair winds.

He said he understood perfectly and that he was sorry that he was so busy with his Coastal License. He had passed and had more time to study the passage now.

I'm going to give him PHIL's number tomorrow. (Got your site Boatman61)


Thank you all so much for your contribution. I think it was actually a good thread, although im sorry it evolved kinda randomly due to lack of info (!) it contains so much good stuff|!
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Old 03-02-2018, 16:56   #93
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pirate Re: Would you deliver her?

I'd rather you give him my e-mail address..
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Old 03-02-2018, 17:00   #94
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Re: Would you deliver her?

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I'd rather you give him my e-mail address..


Just shoot phil!

But i would like you to take me on a delivery one of these days in return! think i coild learn a lot from you.
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Old 03-02-2018, 17:31   #95
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To be honest.. I'll pass.. team leaders..???
I prefer picking my crew.
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Old 03-02-2018, 18:02   #96
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Re: Would you deliver her?

I salute you, Where-is-Mike :-)! Absolutely the right decision. Tho' it took you some time to get there ;-0).

Here is a little gem, a truism, that speaks to situations such as this one: "The surest way to destroy a man is to promote him before he is ready for it!"

I think the thread developed in a most satisfactory way, not just because it helped you to make the right decision, about which I'm sure we are all very happy, but also, very importantly, because there are newbies and lurkers here that we never get to know about, and those people will now have learned some very important things serendipitously. And you can take the credit for that :-)!

All the best

TP
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Old 03-02-2018, 18:21   #97
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Re: Would you deliver her?

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I salute you, Where-is-Mike :-)! Absolutely the right decision. Tho' it took you some time to get there ;-0).

Here is a little gem, a truism, that speaks to situations such as this one: "The surest way to destroy a man is to promote him before he is ready for it!"

I think the thread developed in a most satisfactory way, not just because it helped you to make the right decision, about which I'm sure we are all very happy, but also, very importantly, because there are newbies and lurkers here that we never get to know about, and those people will now have learned some very important things serendipitously. And you can take the credit for that :-)!

All the best

TP


Well...you’re right. I was overly positive about the outcome from start. But had every bad sign. You know how it is...i really wanted to go sailing, had been anticipating it for a while and its hard to say no to adventure.

It’s cool you say that because i learned tons from reading the forum!!

Many thanks
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Old 03-02-2018, 19:16   #98
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Re: Would you deliver her?

Let's see, Mike,

Winter in the Atlantic
Ego clashes
Unclear chain of command
Possible unreadiness of boat
Unknown, low experienced crew, with the positive and negatives pertaining to lack of experience

Mmmm. Yes, you chose sensibly, and I'll beat my drum again here, your gut was right!

Ann

PS. One of the reasons we've never taken on crew is that I am scared to have the responsibility of the welfare of some unknown quantity, especially if I am seasick at the time.
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Old 03-02-2018, 19:56   #99
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Re: Would you deliver her?

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Let's see, Mike,

Winter in the Atlantic
Ego clashes
Unclear chain of command
Possible unreadiness of boat
Unknown, low experienced crew, with the positive and negatives pertaining to lack of experience

Mmmm. Yes, you chose sensibly, and I'll beat my drum again here, your gut was right!

Ann

PS. One of the reasons we've never taken on crew is that I am scared to have the responsibility of the welfare of some unknown quantity, especially if I am seasick at the time.


Yes, all the no no’s were there...

You and Jim also pointed mal de mer out and that also helped put in perspective the little things that can turn a situation into complete chaos rapidly.

One other thing you mentioned was how much it depended on luck. I don’t mind depending on a bit of luck sometimes, but not too much luck, and not at sea if i can avoid it!

My grandfather was a great captain and my family had a 55ft ketch we used to sail together through the summer.

I think you can learn how to sail even on youtube to be fair, the principle is quite simple. Seamanship i think you learn by being at sea under skippers that get their boats to safe port. its hard to explain to someone that hasn’t been around boats much too.

Thanks so much once again Ann!!
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Old 03-02-2018, 22:18   #100
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Re: Would you deliver her?

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Originally Posted by TrentePieds View Post
I salute you, Where-is-Mike :-)! Absolutely the right decision. Tho' it took you some time to get there ;-0).

Here is a little gem, a truism, that speaks to situations such as this one: "The surest way to destroy a man is to promote him before he is ready for it!"

I think the thread developed in a most satisfactory way, not just because it helped you to make the right decision, about which I'm sure we are all very happy, but also, very importantly, because there are newbies and lurkers here that we never get to know about, and those people will now have learned some very important things serendipitously. And you can take the credit for that :-)!

All the best

TP
I think a lot of us feel relieved rather than happy! Wise choice, WIM. There’ll be plenty of other opportunities, good ones. Nothing lost.
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Old 04-02-2018, 06:38   #101
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Re: Would you deliver her?

Good decision!

I don't think you need all that much to sail safely and with pleasure.

You don't need a highly skilled crew.

You don't need a highly skilled captain.

You don't need all of the latest electronics.

You just need a seaworthy vessel, well prepared and well equipped (spares and tools and provisions!).

You just one decent captain and one decent seaman -- not necessarily the same person.

You need absolutely clear lines of authority and responsibility.

And the crew needs to be cooperative and non-sociopaths.

In my opinion, that's ALL you need.

Inexperienced crew are often easier and better than experienced crew -- they are a blank slate and don't bring their own ways of doing things. I love to sail with people who are in the middle of a yachtmaster course and have a bit of theory but little experience. A good skipper can deal with just about whatever material he gets in the form of the crew. I also love to sail with highly experienced sailors who have their own boats, and who are good skippers in their own right. That kind of person almost always makes great crew because they understand the roles from experience on both sides.

A good captain might not even know all that much about sailing, but he's a good organizer and manager and makes sure that all necessary skills and knowledge are on board somewhere. He knows how to get the best out of everyone no matter what their skill level is.

It's actually not rocket science. But this voyage lacked a few essential deal-breaking elements, so you did right to bail. Better luck next time!
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Old 05-02-2018, 18:00   #102
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Re: Would you deliver her?

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I think a lot more information is needed. I have done deliveries in both direction a number of times.

Details of the boat, basic safety gear, time of year of the trip and the size and capabilities of the crew.

Are you confident in the abilities of the skipper? If not walk away now.

Break your dilemma down into rational segments, are there difficulties in the command structure, skipper, owner etc. Are sufficient supplies and, more importantly spares on board. Have safe havens been identified, is weather information available - conditions in the western Mediterranean can change fast. How will watch keeping work, is sea sickness a problem, the list goes on.

As skipper, I like to choose my crew. The only time I was given a crew, by a sailing school, it was less than satisfactory!

Good luck!
You dont sound confident and that is no good for the boat, crew or you going forward. Take a delivery more suited to your level of experience
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Old 05-02-2018, 20:05   #103
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Re: Would you deliver her?

damn, was looking forward to some good gopro footy!
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Old 06-02-2018, 07:34   #104
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Re: Would you deliver her?

Hey WIM,

Good on ya for the pass.

This one was a real stinker and the forum could smell it many miles away.

Wait for it....thats right, the next opportunity or two will be awesome.

You live to sail another day!

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Old 14-02-2018, 17:27   #105
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Re: Would you deliver her?

Where I live, the fishermen have a say :

You can have a good boat, a good crew and a bad skipper, you will not have a good fishing...

You can have a good boat, a bad crew and a good skipper, you will not have a good fishing...

You can have a bad boat, a good crew and a good skipper, you will not have a good fishing...

You can sail safely without electronics, this is not the most important, but a good sound boat and, good crew and a good skipper are paramount.
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