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Platino report finally out


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Another way to think about this for any boat. The traveller is designed to take mainsheet loads. What other deck fitting would you attach a preventer to that you'd expect to be as strong?

Here is an example.

On the last day of the 2010 solo Tasman race, I was approaching mooloolaba, wind angle about 150 to 160 over the starboard quater. Windspeed mid 30s. Similar to platino. Wind against the E Australia current, so steep seas, some with breaking crests. I'd been at the helm most of the previous 20 hours, surfing where possible.

2 reefs in the main, part of a headsail.

I had to go to the loo. Set the AP to 150 deg, went below. While on the loo, boat surfs, broaches, crash gybes. Preventer on, so boat is knocked down, preventer breaks, she recovers. I'm back on deck asap (with life jacket, harness etc). Goose neck broken, kicker ripped out of mast base, other minor damage. The forces involved are huge. The kicker snapped a 13mm stainless rod, and this is only a 40ft boat.

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Very interesting debate. From the report, it has to be said that a lot of responsibility falls on the skipper, who was at the helm. I hear all the comments saying "You were not there" and I completely understand that, but it certainly does appear to be a "Rabbit in the headlights" situation.

 

It should have been very obvious that the AP was rooted. The course was becoming erratic for some time, so the first thing to do is disengage it and hand steer. What happened after that would be hard to comment on with the carnage on deck that would have put everyone in a state of shock. If the gybe shook the skipper up, then the following events would have really stuffed her up.

 

Pretty hard to understand why nothing went into the water for the MOB and why the MOB position was not recorded. Very tragic for all concerned, but I think the skipper was lucky to avoid a fair percentage of official blame and potentially prosecution.

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Obviously very easy to criticize from the distance and pointing to various issues, but the lesson for me (practically a novice) to avoid over-confidence. This is the main message for me, without new MNZ rules. I'll try to keep in mind.

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Does it say anywhere what make/model of autopilot it was? Sounds like there were just within the off-course limits.

 

Thinking about my Raymarine EV400 I dont think the off-course alarm can be changed :-(

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Would I have gone to sea on that boat with that captain? Absolutely not.

 

I interviewed quite a few captains before I crewed across the Pacific a few years ago. Most of them were crap.

 

I'd be enormously happy if MNZ insisted on better licensing for captains from powered dinghies up.

 

I'd be enormously happy if MNZ insisted on proper SOPs and briefing.

 

I insist my guests read my safety card and we go over it before setting sail (my life depends on it too).

https://kmccready.wordpress.com/2015/01/05/storm-fantasy-sailing-yacht-safety-card/

 

 

NZ safety culture is waaaaayyy behind the rest of the world.

Good grief! Are you one of those people that burn your lips on coffee and blame the barista for not warning you it’s hot?

 

I’m all about safety too, but not about some pointy head telling me whether or not I can drive my boat or relying on a check list to tell or others what to do. I’d much rather prepare well and rely on common sense and adaptability. Safety is mostly attitude, not regulations.

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I knew Nick Saull, I am still shocked at his loss. I am moved with Jans statement: Ms Saull said the family welcomes changes to the offshore Safety Regulations, "in the hope that the lessons learned from this tragedy will ensure others do not have to go through the horrific time that we and Steve's family have endured."
Newshub.

 

I learned that a preventor should be strong enough to withstand a crash gybe. I have never used one and thought they only needed to hold the boom back when surfing down waves. Makes sense that it is strong enough to hold the boom back in a crash gybe and  checked as part of cat 1, 2 and 3. In my opinion this will be easy, cheap and will prevent many accidents in future. 

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Would I have gone to sea on that boat with that captain? Absolutely not.

 

Why not?? Please be specific.

 

 

NZ safety culture is waaaaayyy behind the rest of the world.

 

Speaking of which, have you repaired your auxiliary yet so it doesn't over heat over 4-5 knots?

 

 

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Not so sure about totally preventing the boom from crossing during a crash gybe.

Better to rig a device that will control the speed and force like the Capt Don arrangement.

As BP stated earlier the force just gets transferred elsewhere and if the boom brake is attached say to the shroud base you had bloody well make sure they can cope with the subsequent side loads which in the case of that whopper cything boom on the Platino would have been massive and very destructive.

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In 40knts I would not lock my boom in any position. I would however have a drag device fitted to it so if we did crash gybe the boom would swap sides and not be held to windward potential causing all manner of grief.

 

We lost it down the coast of Aussie and were left with a boom pointing at the sky with sail full of wind. The steering struggled big time to counter that wind filled mainsail. It wasn't until a knife was put thru the string holding the boom out did we get control of the boat back...and a fecking big crash as the boom swapped sides.

 

What I do is find a big shackle (I'll often take a large 16-20mm stainless bow just for it) and fix that to the top of the vang area. Tie a strong braid (I like a 12mm ish hi strength core type) to a chain plate take it up to the shackle, wind it around that a number of times** then down to the other chain plate +/-.

 

+/- means there abouts as long as it's strong.

** - the number of turns will dictate how fast that shackle will be allowed to slide along the rope. Not enough and it will come fast, too many and it may not come at all. Get it right and the boom will swap sides in a controlled to semi-controlled manner should you crash gybe.

 

I used the same system thru 65kts plus straight up the bum bringing a boat back from the Pac Islands. Mostly virgin crew and one did lose it in the early hours (manual steering due to AP failure), it was not pleasant but it wasn't a crew or boat braking experiance. The drag also made it quite safe to get the boom back on the right side, no more than a evil not braked gybe.

 

I even fitted the same set up to the 930 during a bit of a ruffy back from the Bay of Islands. Took 5 minutes and gave a bit of peace of mind.

 

Cheap, simple and with a little fiddling to get the turns right, highly effective.

There are a range of commercially made products that do the same thing.

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Yep, boom brakes are WAY safer. Heaps of cruisers use them. The best one, IMO is the Dutchman. I sell 2 or 3 of them a year, and I’ll have one myself before my next major voyage.

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Got a photo for those scratching their head IT?  I mention them a fair bit but most need a picture :)

 

Good to know you have them, I didn't know that so you will be handy to aim people at.

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There are many such boom brakes available but in my view costly and unnecessary.

Try out a simple system first as I mentioned and you can add a 2:1 purchase in the line with a tail that runs back to the cockpit for tension control.

A quick google will throw up examples.

The beauty of a simple system is that it can sit idle at the mast base until the boom requires taming.

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Got a photo for those scratching their head IT?  I mention them a fair bit but most need a picture :)

 

Good to know you have them, I didn't know that so you will be handy to aim people at.

Dutchman.jpg

 

There you go. The T handle adjusts resistance. There are models for rigid and soft vang/kicker vessels...

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Kevin I like your safety card, simple, straight forward, effective.

Yes Mean Streak safety is about attitude and ensuring the preparation done matches the planning required for the venture.

This sad chapter is a sobering reminder for us all to prepare for the worst case scenario collectively and individually.

I will be setting up a boom control system on my boat right after I upgrade the fittings it will rely on. I like your idea KM

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Knot-Me-Maybe, I like the sound of that. Is there a danger of overrides and jamming on the big shackle? I've used the easygibe and found it simple.

Not that I've seen but I do use the bigger shackles and observe generally the line will sort of spread out on it a bit to a point I don't see rope touching rope so no overrides. I have found a 'bow' shackle is better for that than a 'Dee'.

 

It was something I saw and tweaked in the early 80's when I started doing a fair few deliveries, there was no commercial option back then. Also I'm a typical kiwi yachtie so that tight I squeak as I walk :) and happy to stay with a cheap No8 like operation I know rather than buy a commercial version. Maybe if it was my boat I may but as most I take are OP's with nothing I can take a small $30 worth of gear and make a good useable system in 10 minutes.

 

If you are wanting something for your own boat for lost of use I'd suggest buying something, the Dutchmans do get lots of good comments. I don't know the EasyGybe but the pictures have it similar to the Dutchman. There is also a Wichard (I think) product which is a flasher version of my shackle arrangement. If it is Wichard it will sadly be priced at about 3 times bullshit high. Borrow one and take it to your local foundry, make 2 and I'll take one to help spread the cost ;)

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never used a boom brake but would be interested to see them in a really big crash -  mid boom so possible stress on boom there if much friction i guess and if not enough then still a crash?

 

off wind I usually run a heavy preventer from boom end to as near as poss to the bow.  If slack then shock loads could be savage, but if sheet and preventer winched in tight then the boom is well triangulated.  Post broach there`s a bit of work to do but better than a crash.

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Thanks Battgirl

 

Knot-Me-Maybe, I like the sound of that. Is there a danger of overrides and jamming on the big shackle? I've used the easygibe and found it simple.

 

For info: I think it's DutchmaR not DutchmaN.

Dutchmar is the company, dutchman is the product....
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