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Old 18-09-2022, 08:16   #46
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Re: Crash Gybe!

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Originally Posted by wingssail View Post
I agree with jipco about keeping the decks clear. We think that there should be nothing carried on decks which might get entangled with lines or impede your progress if you need to go forward to say nothing about blocking your vision and, in heavy weather, risk getting knocked adrift by seas. The same for stuff lashed outside of the lifelines.

I recall a woman who arrived in port after a very difficult crossing who reported in a shaky voice, "Bill almost got killed trying to get the kayak back on board."
Well we area 40 foot boat. We had an inflatable dinghy but replaced it with a hard dinghy when we sailed out into the pacific. Inflatable and coral reefs and beaching on sand and rocks are a bad combination.

Our jerry cans and dinghy are lashed down hard - we have an agreement that we will not make any attempts of "save" anything if it comes loose - cut it away and replace it.

This was my mistake in not wanting more lines to potentially trip over if I had to go up on deck to gybe the poled out genua.

Live and learn.

Our other mistake was not dumping the main when the winds got over 25-25 knots. We could easily have run just on the genua and have done so many times. Indeed we have frequently run on a reefed genua.

Live and learn.

As I noted in my OP, we have made virtually every mistake during the past 6 years at sea that anyone can think of and probably a few that no one has thought of.

Live and learn.
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Old 18-09-2022, 12:19   #47
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Re: Crash Gybe!

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Well we area 40 foot boat. We had an inflatable dinghy but replaced it with a hard dinghy when we sailed out into the pacific. Inflatable and coral reefs and sand and rocks are a bad combination...
In support of "inflatable dingies": In 38 years we've had two. They have seen every type of beach and shoreline around the world but the bottoms stayed perfect. The tubes and floors, exposed to the sun and human abuse, show wear but the bottom on our 13 year old PVC Zodiac looks brand new. So, with care, beaching on coral reefs and sand and rocks does not have to kill the dingy.

I agree that a rigid or RIB makes for a better boat, far better, and we really get tired of the inflation/deflation routine, but the ability to put it away is the primary consideration for us.

When a crash jibe has happened and there is clean up to be done, I want freedom of movement on the foredeck

People get rid of air floor inflatables because they get tired of inflating it, and with trying to drive around in a half inflated rubber boat; there is little worse than an underinflated, non-RIB, dingy. But concerns about their durability should not be the reason to get rid of it.

For us, the only worse place to put a dingy than on deck is on davits on the back.
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Old 18-09-2022, 15:02   #48
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Re: Crash Gybe!

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Originally Posted by wingssail View Post
In support of "inflatable dingies": In 38 years we've had two. They have seen every type of beach and shoreline around the world but the bottoms stayed perfect. The tubes and floors, exposed to the sun and human abuse, show wear but the bottom on our 13 year old PVC Zodiac looks brand new. So, with care, beaching on coral reefs and sand and rocks does not have to kill the dingy.

I agree that a rigid or RIB makes for a better boat, far better, and we really get tired of the inflation/deflation routine, but the ability to put it away is the primary consideration for us.

When a crash jibe has happened and there is clean up to be done, I want freedom of movement on the foredeck

People get rid of air floor inflatables because they get tired of inflating it, and with trying to drive around in a half inflated rubber boat; there is little worse than an underinflated, non-RIB, dingy. But concerns about their durability should not be the reason to get rid of it.

For us, the only worse place to put a dingy than on deck is on davits on the back.
Couldn’t agree more about sailing with the dinghy on davits unless they are more than heavy duty an few are

Generally our dinghy is fine on deck but as I noted the foredeck gets wuite crowded with dinghy and 10 jerry cans
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Old 18-09-2022, 15:19   #49
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Re: Crash Gybe!

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Couldn’t agree more about sailing with the dinghy on davits unless they are more than heavy duty an few are....

Not true, at least not among multihulls. The dinghy is safe between the hulls, out of the way, out of the wind, and out of the waves. Few would dismount the dinghy even to cross an ocean--they don't need to. Even in a gale towing a drogue the dinghy was never struck. The only excuse for weak davits is poor engineering, so fix it.


If I can't use davits, then I would prefer a kayak. Lugging the boat, inflation, and lugging motor ... just not worth the work unless I'm paid. And in fact with my F-24, that is what I do.


My PDQ catamaran. Often I carried two kayaks on top of the davits. Very, very strong, They passed through the transom and were fastened into the inner transom. Part of the structure of the boat.
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Old 19-09-2022, 05:39   #50
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Re: Crash Gybe!

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Not true, at least not among multihulls. The dinghy is safe between the hulls, out of the way, out of the wind, and out of the waves. Few would dismount the dinghy even to cross an ocean--they don't need to. Even in a gale towing a drogue the dinghy was never struck. The only excuse for weak davits is poor engineering, so fix it.


If I can't use davits, then I would prefer a kayak. Lugging the boat, inflation, and lugging motor ... just not worth the work unless I'm paid. And in fact with my F-24, that is what I do.


My PDQ catamaran. Often I carried two kayaks on top of the davits. Very, very strong, They passed through the transom and were fastened into the inner transom. Part of the structure of the boat.
Yours obviously are heavy duty. Then it isn’t a problem. We have a targa bar for our solar and radar. We do have davits and we have sailed day sails or inter islandwith tve dinghy hoisted there but we won’t do it on passage or if the weather is foul.
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Old 22-09-2022, 03:21   #51
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Re: Crash Gybe!

You know, the more experience I get, the more I realize I am better off sticking to my small 10m boat.. where a preventer from the end of the boom to a cleat amidships has thus far served me well.. I think my upgrade plans will be put on ice for a couple of years until I have made some more mistakes :-)

On that note, this thread focuses a lot on what went wrong with the boom brake, etc but I am not sure if the strategic decision that lead to the opportunity for the crash gybe to happen in the first place has been discussed. I see folks talking about running deep downwind with the main up or sailing with a barn doors setup. I learned early on to drop the main on a broad reach or deeper when the wind gets to even as little as 20kts apparent. It is not as one needs the power. Why take the risk? is any extra directional stability DDW truly worth it? What do folks think?
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Old 22-09-2022, 05:57   #52
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Re: Crash Gybe!

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Originally Posted by crankysailor View Post
You know, the more experience I get, the more I realize I am better off sticking to my small 10m boat.. where a preventer from the end of the boom to a cleat amidships has thus far served me well.. I think my upgrade plans will be put on ice for a couple of years until I have made some more mistakes :-)

On that note, this thread focuses a lot on what went wrong with the boom brake, etc but I am not sure if the strategic decision that lead to the opportunity for the crash gybe to happen in the first place has been discussed. I see folks talking about running deep downwind with the main up or sailing with a barn doors setup. I learned early on to drop the main on a broad reach or deeper when the wind gets to even as little as 20kts apparent. It is not as one needs the power. Why take the risk? is any extra directional stability DDW truly worth it? What do folks think?
Cranky,

Of course you are right. I believe I said in my OP that we made a mistake in leaving our main up in that weather, even though we were in the 3rd reef.

We should have dropped the main before that.

After loosing the traveler, we limped the rest of the way into San Francisco only on a pole out jib - a reefed on at that and made 6+ knots

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Old 22-09-2022, 06:57   #53
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Re: Crash Gybe!

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Originally Posted by crankysailor View Post
You know, the more experience I get, the more I realize I am better off sticking to my small 10m boat.. where a preventer from the end of the boom to a cleat amidships has thus far served me well.. I think my upgrade plans will be put on ice for a couple of years until I have made some more mistakes :-)

On that note, this thread focuses a lot on what went wrong with the boom brake, etc but I am not sure if the strategic decision that lead to the opportunity for the crash gybe to happen in the first place has been discussed. I see folks talking about running deep downwind with the main up or sailing with a barn doors setup. I learned early on to drop the main on a broad reach or deeper when the wind gets to even as little as 20kts apparent. It is not as one needs the power. Why take the risk? is any extra directional stability DDW truly worth it? What do folks think?
Maybe my years of racing has twisted my thinking but we have never even considered taking down the mainsail and continuing without it. If we are sailing, the mainsail is up. Period. (And if there is wind, we ARE sailing. Period.)

Further, we have never felt that keeping the mainsail up is putting ourselves at risk. Not once.

Maybe we are lucky that we have a good rudder but directional stability is not a problem.

We're talking about risk of gybes here, right? We can get tossed around by waves like any boat. We can get pushed by the lee and we try to avoid that by avoiding deep downwind sailing in those conditions. But if we are going dead downwind or even close to it (which we avoid), the steering brings us back on course and a good preventer keeps the gybe from occurring. Unless I've done something really stupid, which I have, unexpected or uncontrolled gybes just don't have to happen. I don't consider them a risk any more than running into an island is a risk.

As for the main? We certainly reduce sail when it is needed. We reef the main, or 2nd, or third, and we reduce or remove the headsail. But the main stays up.

Why? Aside from not thinking that we are putting ourselves at risk by having it up, with the mainsail we still have all of our sailing options. We can deal with any conditions by sailing much better with the main than trying with any choice or size of jib alone. We can beat off of a lee shore, if needed, with a deeply reefed main, but I can't imagine that with just a storm jib.

And with a main we can heave to.

For us, the main goes up when we leave port and it comes down when we return. We prevent crash jibes with steering and preventer.

Photo: The forecast was south winds, 10-15, but when the Aus-Met folks got done with their morning coffee and paper and looked out the window, the forecast got changed to S25-35. By then we already knew that. Our jib was down and we were sailing under reefed main alone, on the windvane, with a preventer rigged.
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Old 22-09-2022, 07:05   #54
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Re: Crash Gybe!

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Maybe my years of racing has twisted my thinking but we have never even considered taking down the mainsail and continuing without it. If we are sailing, the mainsail is up. Period. (And if there is wind, we ARE sailing. Period.)

Further, we have never felt that keeping the mainsail up is putting ourselves at risk. Not once.

Maybe we are lucky that we have a good rudder but directional stability is not a problem.

We're talking about risk of gybes here, right? We can get tossed around by waves like any boat. We can get pushed by the lee and we try to avoid that by avoiding deep downwind sailing in those conditions. But if we are going dead downwind or even close to it (which we avoid), the steering brings us back on course and a good preventer keeps the gybe from occurring. Unless I've done something really stupid, which I have, unexpected or uncontrolled gybes just don't have to happen. I don't consider them a risk any more than running into an island is a risk.

As for the main? We certainly reduce sail when it is needed. We reef the main, or 2nd, or third, and we reduce or remove the headsail. But the main stays up.

Why? Aside from not thinking that we are putting ourselves at risk by having it up, with the mainsail we still have all of our sailing options. We can deal with any conditions by sailing much better with the main than trying with any choice or size of jib alone. We can beat off of a lee shore, if needed, with a deeply reefed main, but I can't imagine that with just a storm jib.

And with a main we can heave to.

For us, the main goes up when we leave port and it comes down when we return. We prevent crash jibes with steering and preventer.

Photo: The forecast was south winds, 10-15, but when the Aus-Met folks got done with their morning coffee and paper and looked out the window, the forecast got changed to S25-35. By then we already knew that. Our jib was down and we were sailing under reefed main alone, on the windvane, with a preventer rigged.
I think it depends on the boat. Some boats sail well downwind (or even reach) with just the jib if there's enough wind. Others are more mainsail-dependent (and would be better off main-only than jib-only in many cases). Plus, even if you drop the main while running downwind, there's nothing that says you can't just put it back up if you need to move to a different point of sail.
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Old 22-09-2022, 09:50   #55
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Re: Crash Gybe!

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Plus, even if you drop the main while running downwind, there's nothing that says you can't just put it back up if you need to move to a different point of sail.
What if you can't head up into the wind cause you lost your motor? In some recent threads folks have also suggested that this (raising the main) is doable.. I have never even tried and I am not sure how that should work...
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Old 22-09-2022, 09:56   #56
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Re: Crash Gybe!

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What if you can't head up into the wind cause you lost your motor? In some recent threads folks have also suggested that this (raising the main) is doable.. I have never even tried and I am not sure how that should work...
Knowing what wind angles will/won't allow you to raise the main, etc. is all going to be boat dependent. And also a matter of knowing what the boat can't do and avoiding falling into any traps because of it.
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Old 22-09-2022, 10:52   #57
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Re: Crash Gybe!

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I think it depends on the boat. Some boats sail well downwind (or even reach) with just the jib if there's enough wind. Others are more mainsail-dependent (and would be better off main-only than jib-only in many cases). Plus, even if you drop the main while running downwind, there's nothing that says you can't just put it back up if you need to move to a different point of sail.
Well that can be problematic. Let's say you've dropped the main it's blowing 30's and you're running off with a mostly rolled up jib. Now the wind increases and you realize you're headed for a lee shore. It might be miles away but you don't want to go that way any more.

So here you are, it's howling out there, and you need to come up to raise the main. Do you leave the jib up and then you're really overpowered? Or do you roll it up and you have no control until you get the main up, but how do you get into the wind? Use your motor? Bad answer. Then you have nothing in reserve, zero. And we saw how that turned out for OP.

My answer is: with only main up (reefed assumably) we come into the wind. Put in another reef if you have to, and sail under main alone as close to the wind as you can go and still keep way on, and wait it out. Do not take down the main.
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Old 22-09-2022, 14:48   #58
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Re: Crash Gybe!

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Well that can be problematic. Let's say you've dropped the main it's blowing 30's and you're running off with a mostly rolled up jib. Now the wind increases and you realize you're headed for a lee shore. It might be miles away but you don't want to go that way any more.

So here you are, it's howling out there, and you need to come up to raise the main. Do you leave the jib up and then you're really overpowered? Or do you roll it up and you have no control until you get the main up, but how do you get into the wind? Use your motor? Bad answer. Then you have nothing in reserve, zero. And we saw how that turned out for OP.

My answer is: with only main up (reefed assumably) we come into the wind. Put in another reef if you have to, and sail under main alone as close to the wind as you can go and still keep way on, and wait it out. Do not take down the main.

Agree.

Whatever the merits of sailing without a main (and we do so occasionally if we’re feeling lazy and aren’t very far from our destination), getting a mainsail hoisted from all the way down requires turning to at least a close reaching course where it will fly clear of the rig. In some conditions this can be a very dangerous (for the boat) and difficult to do.

On any passage from overnight to longer the mainsail stays up. Deeply reefed if necessary, but up.

We haven’t had the pleasure of a long trade wind downwind passage yet, but even then if we were sailing under our symmetric spinnaker, or wing and wing, we’d still keep our main up, albeit deeply reefed to keep it from flogging.
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Old 22-09-2022, 15:29   #59
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Re: Crash Gybe!

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Agree.

Whatever the merits of sailing without a main (and we do so occasionally if we’re feeling lazy and aren’t very far from our destination), getting a mainsail hoisted from all the way down requires turning to at least a close reaching course where it will fly clear of the rig. In some conditions this can be a very dangerous (for the boat) and difficult to do.

On any passage from overnight to longer the mainsail stays up. Deeply reefed if necessary, but up.

We haven’t had the pleasure of a long trade wind downwind passage yet, but even then if we were sailing under our symmetric spinnaker, or wing and wing, we’d still keep our main up, albeit deeply reefed to keep it from flogging.
The longest heavy air tradewind passage was 19 days, crossing the Indian Ocean. We left Sumatra on Oct 1, hit the trades on Oct 9, and arrived in Mauritius on Oct 20. Steady winds in 20's to 28. We were mostly full main (with preventer) and poled out jib, riding the wind vane, for the last 11 days. Never even dawned on us to take down the main.
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Old 22-09-2022, 18:05   #60
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Re: Crash Gybe!

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The longest heavy air tradewind passage was 19 days, crossing the Indian Ocean. We left Sumatra on Oct 1, hit the trades on Oct 9, and arrived in Mauritius on Oct 20. Steady winds in 20's to 28. We were mostly full main (with preventer) and poled out jib, riding the wind vane, for the last 11 days. Never even dawned on us to take down the main.

Beautiful photo.

In those conditions and near dead downwind if we were seeing true wind peaks above the mid-20s (which would be low teens apparent wind speed) we would be considering putting in the first reef. This is because on our cat we want to maintain a healthy squall buffer with our sail plan - the single reef would not result in any decrease in our average boat speed with true wind speed above 20 knots and would give us an extra 15 knots of gust resistance.

Cats have worse consequences than a knockdown in the case of strong wind, unlike a monohull that can simply pick itself up and carry on. Hence why it’s nice to have an easily driven cat and not needing lots of sail area to continue moving at speed.
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