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Showing content with the highest reputation on 11/20/2018 in all areas

  1. 6 points
    I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to do a race with Pete Goss on his little 26' Firebird trimaran CORNISH MEADOW which he sailed single handed in the 1988 OSTAR. I was astounded that he was able to survive that trip on such a minimal vessel much less be competitive. I had raced against Pete in the same class in the TwoStar two years previously and I had a pretty good idea of the challenges of sleep deprivation and couldn't imagine what it must have been like for Pete alone on such a spartan vessel. We spoke at length about the challenges and Pete told me that one of the first things that one is taught as a Royal Marine is that your body is your most important weapon and as such should be carefully maintained. A soldier is expected to have his weapons ready for use at any time and one must be certain that it is ready for action on short notice. His philosophy was to get rest whenever it was possible and 'put some money in the bank' so that when the shit hits the fan one has the reserves to answer the call. When it is warm and sunny and the tradewinds blow and everything is a delight, then one should not kick back enjoying the fine sailing but should set a course and try your damnedest to get some rest while one can. Not there is a lot of such opportunity on a TransAt race but I could appreciate what he was saying. I asked about alarms and he showed me a system that had been installed on the boat to study the sleep/rest vs activity patterns on that race. He wore a watchlike wrist band that was linked to similar G-meter device down below and they were both hooked up to a recorder that was much like a two track seismograph. He said that the unit below with the recorder measured the motions of the boat and simultaneously recorded the G-trace from the unit on his wrist. When he finished they downloaded the whole timeline and compared the traces and figured that when the two traces were identical that meant he was asleep or at least laying still and getting rest. Pretty crude but that was the best tech they had for this purpose at the time. He said that there were maybe four other skippers that year included in that study. Well as you can imagine, Pete had the least downtime of the bunch and he told me that he only went below decks (if you can call it that!) once to try and get some real sleep. He said he no sooner put his head down on the pillow that a gust hit and he barely made it out of the coffin like hull to the helm to blow the sheets and level the boat which was right on the point of no return for a capsize. He said that the rest of the race he basically slept on deck in his foul weather gear and only took catnaps as confirmed by the recording gear. I asked what he used for sleep alarms and he merely pointed at a turning block on the deck and said that if he laid down on top of that bit of gear, it would be about 10 minutes before it became too uncomfortable to continue sleeping. He then pointed at a nearby cleat on the deck and said that would permit maybe 15 minutes until it would wake him up. He went on to point out and quantify just about every piece of deck hardware and tell me how long one could possibly sleep on it before waking up! You gain a lot of respect for the Royal Marines from a guy like that...
  2. 6 points
    On the French version of the web site, there is an interview of Francis Joyon's routeur, Christian Dumard, who shares that responsibility with Gwénolé Gahinet (Gwénolé is himself an accomplished offshore sailor, he was part of the crew on IDEC when they won the Jules Verne Trophy and is the son of another famous French sailor in the 70's and 80's, Gilles Gahinet). A few interesting points raised during the interview: Have you been surprised by the performance by Francis Joyon? We started right of the bat at 100% of the polar performance of the boat... then he increased to 105% and he finished at 110%. We were above the polars we had for the crewed configuration for the Jules Verne Trophy. Francis was always above those polars. You cannot find 30 minutes where he is slower. He was pedal to the metal, the whole time! His route is not very different from the one by Gabart... We were not trying to control MACIF; we thought Francois would be faster than us in the Trade Winds. There was no tactical control, even if the boats ended up with a similar trajectory. There were several options, but only one was reasonable, with regards to the level of risk and the probability of breakage. Francis was adamant to never go over the limit. It is like on the rally-raid Paris-Dakar; on a nice track, the cars can go 200 km/hr, but on a rough track, you have to slow down. It is the same thing here. Tell us about the end of the race... Very quickly, we realized that MACIF was slower than its polars. We saw that we could believe in a victory. When we arrived on the island, we were 1hr15m behind. We put together a team of weather reporters, with 2 boats: one following Francis, and one close to the finish line. We were also in touch with some fishermen who started to give us some information, and also with a Guadeloupean motorcycle rider (???!!!) who is a good sailor. He gave us some very accurate data on the weather conditions on the lee-side of the island. In the last stretch of the around the island course, the wind is very fickle. Before getting to Vieux-Fort, we told Francis to stick to the shore as much as he could. He went very-very close... He told us he could hear people talking on the shore!!! He must have been at 70 feet from the shore at some point. Behind (the island?), he was closed hauled, because the wind could have eased. He had to be very careful afterwards, but that is were everything unraveled .
  3. 4 points
    Crankcall didn't get it quite right, there were several Star 30's built but in several different versions. FLAK, Risky Business '90, Freestyle, Heartbeat, Jeans, Canned Heat, Short Circuit were not Star 30's. Of the Star 30's, many were built with the original tall house & cockpit seats which also had higher freeboard to get the headroom. Original design brief was for a boat that could cruise with full headroom. Because of the high freeboard and same stem angle to other boats of the day, the Star 30 waterline had to be shorter and with all the accommodations it had to carry, it couldn't get lighter. When some clients asked about a racing version, we designed the racing deck and cut some freeboard down to make Risky Business '87 which became Flags and Incognito which was originally Red Inc. Notorious also has the Star 30 racing deck and freeboard is somewhere in between. This boat started with Star Marine, spent some time at Northcastle Marine and was essentially finished by Wiggers. FLAK, Risky '90, Heartbeat and Freestyle are all a newer hull design and were all vacuum S-glass and hi-tech construction for the day. Waterline is longer, less rocker to the profile aft, more sail area and more draft. FLAK & Freestyle were just about the last boats built for '89 Internationals with FLAK by Wiggers and Freestyle by H. Gozzard. Risky '90 and Heartbeat followed a few years later from Wiggers. Since original launch racing has changed from MORC W/L's generally in less that 15 TWS to PHRF and some races that have reaches. When racing is mostly W/L's and no one planes and few surf, it is tough not to look carefully at MORC's 1 sec/mile for 100 pounds of weight. That's what pushed so many of the boats to be up to 7000 pounds. In recent years many of the boats have taken out internal ballast and increased sail area with longer booms, taller rigs, etc. They are still pretty nice sailboats but it is quite reasonable for there to be considerable variation in PHRF rating when some A30's built like the original Star 30's don't have ballast to take out. There are five different Andrews MORC 30 basic hull designs, design differences between some boats from the same molds and probably at least 15% difference between the heaviest and lightest Andrews 30's. The heavier ones probably also have the shortest waterline length. Fun boats, glad people are still enjoying racing and winning races, but many Andrews 30's are not even close to being the same as another.
  4. 3 points
    The author gets on the right track by noting that actual conservatives left the GOP long ago, then jumps right off of the track by saying that they fell for the con. “Conservative” and “Republican” are very different things in 2018. AOC makes Republican heads explode, which we have heard is Presidential. As long as she represents the people who voted her into office instead of what the democRAT party and/or big capital $ays for her to do, especially when those interests conflict, she’s fine by me.
  5. 2 points
  6. 2 points
    Still finalizing design of team uniforms.
  7. 2 points
    In truth, I kind of like her. Politically, she's a bit of a baby giraffe which is refreshing. Would I have voted for her? Probably not but I'm not unhappy she won. The house should be a rebellious bunch.
  8. 2 points
    Even though this Father Fitzgerald warned bishops, nothing was done. Another indictment of the Roman Catholic Church hierarchy. FWIW, I was a practicing R.C. until about 10 years ago. Vent: My first step away from the R.C.C. was when the great state of North Carolina passed a constitutional amendment, later ruled unconstitutional by the federal courts, that marriage was between a man and a woman. The bishop of our diocese donated $50,000 of church funds to the organization promoting this amendment. Later, he opposed the Affordable Care Act rule that required all employers to cover contraception. In the first case, he was happy to have "government" dictate to individuals in their private life. In the second case, he opposed it. I decided that he was a hypocrite, and stopped donating to his annual fund raising appeal. In 1998, Sisters in Arms: Catholic Nuns through Two Millennia by Jo Ann Kay McNamara was published, and I read it. What struck me was that for the first 300 years of the church, the Mass, the Eucharistic meal, was usually held at the home of a widow, and the widow presided over the meal, saying the words of the consecration. After the Edict of Constantine, in 300-something, when Christianity came out of the shadows and became the religion of Rome, the men crawled out of the woodwork and commandeered leadership. Women were cast into subservient roles and had to endure condemnation for having been the "temptress" of Adam. There they have remained ever since. What a monstrous crime. After seeing the depth and breadth of the sexual abuse scandal and the bishop's cover up, and the R.C.C.'s unwillingness to consider abandoning the all-male, celibate priesthood, I am finished with it.
  9. 2 points
    Yes, I have spotted it: the guy on the rail wearing dark socks with shorts. The only thing worse would be if he were also wearing leather sandals.
  10. 2 points
    Light airs, leeward float foil flying. Missed moment to get fast foiling shot in earlier medium strength breeze, too busy; but will try harder next time. Need someone in another boat. Have added a vertical strut between the two foils - which has stopped flexing of main lower foil tip. Also had to beef up the interior of the beam/clamp positions plus adding an angled strut from main hull to shroud/beam staying position. Have same setup on my other boats but thought I could get away with not having struts on the smaller boat - but was wrong. Slowly getting the Frog sorted. Boat is fast by the way. As it should be for a 7 metre/150kgs boat?
  11. 2 points
    Here's one sailing. We're rounding an island into an opposing wind/tide sloppy section. Pressed a bit with full jib and the 1st reef in about 20-25 kn on the beam. Spot the mistake?
  12. 2 points
    Sail, I personally dont care if we're staring at a piece of wood floating past, thanks for the pics. Some sick addiction makes all pics of boats and the water addictive. Silent Maid, I thought you said Silent Mad, which somehow appealed to me a lot!
  13. 2 points
    This is a problem worldwide; old boats, large and small, change hands, again and again, each time the new owners have great plans but not much in the way of resources. The boats deteriorate. We see smaller boats selling in California for a few thousand dollars and some bozo buys it and says to his friends, " Hey, I got this boat, lets sail to Mexico." They get here, find out it's hot, boat work isn't much fun, and their girl friends want to know when they are coming home. They leave it anchored somewhere and fly back. Why not, they've got nothing invested in it. And a good old boat becomes a derelict and a problem for someone else when it goes adrift. Take the bigger boats, a grand old maxi, for example. Yeah, I know, dinosaurs, but they are beautiful under sail, awesome really. I love them. And the equipment that they have simply cannot be bought anymore. And, not much market for these boats outside of Arlie Beach, so the price drops. Now along comes some guy with a couple hundred grand and good intentions and he buys an old maxi. Oh yeah it takes 20 people to sail it. And the broken bits are outrageous to fix. So the boat sits, and deteriorates. And how can we as a society, afford to do this? How can we take an object which represents so much human endeavor to design and build, including all the tech bits and equipment, countless hours of effort, and just throw it away. I have to shake my head. I don't know the solution to this, but it makes me sad to see grand old boats go to waste and eventually become wrecks.
  14. 2 points
    Nola, thanks for the follow up on the ghost boat. I had a couple of unwanted rescue efforts out of New Orleans, one of which had a 'happy ending' as well. This story reminds me a a time that I was out sailing with a girl on a Hobie Cat on Lake Pontchartrain on a hot summer day. We were well out in the lake with few boats in sight and there was very little wind. The girl had bought the boat a couple of months earlier from the Hobie dealer for whom I worked. Part of my duties there were to give new buyers an intro on how to trailer, rig, launch and even sail their new boats. This girl was a quick learner and very enthusiastic (in more ways than one...) and she had asked me to come out and check up on some of her newly installed equipment to the boat. She had packed a great picnic lunch with wine and further appetite enhancers and we had a great lunch. I commented that her picnic basket/cooler was a great addition to the boats functionality and she smiled and told me that was just the tip of the iceberg. She pointed out a nylon backbackers string hammock that was strung between the mast base under the trampoline back to the little SS bracket on the aft beam which is the tie off for the traveller line. We had let me mainsheet off during lunch and the boat was barely drifting along so I flipped over the main beam into the warm water and crawled into the hammock. She sheeted in and got the boat moving once again and it was a great way to cool off on that hot muggy day. Next thing I know is I hear the hiking stick flip up and over the rear beam into the water and then the girl pulls off her suit and dives over the front and soon wiggles her way into the hammock with me! My trunks were soon off and poked up through the tramp lacings and I was introduced to her new nautical skills. The light winds and calm waters permitted such antics with little or no attention to the boat which was happy to reach along just fast enough to keep steerageway. Well the connection of this story to the unintended rescue which was the original subject of this thread is that it wasn't long until we hear a motorboat approaching and then slowing down with excited voices taking measures to intercepting the abandoned HobieCat 16, which has its trampoline raised about 6 inches off the hull decks by little pylons. That let us watch the approach of the fishermen through that gap without us being seen or our antics in the hammock. I started to reach out and wave them off with a yell but my skipper told me to keep quiet and lets see how this rescue/salvage ended. She waited until one guy from the fishing boat was about to step aboard with a towline and then rolled out butt naked from under the trampoline yelling, 'Jeez, can't a girl get laid out on the lake without a bunch on Perverts showing up?' That job had some fine perks...
  15. 2 points
    Quite impressive Damien Seguin (born with only one hand, and who has several paralympics medals) :
  16. 1 point
    The Olympic gold medalist is whining after every tack, "the headstay is sagging, you gotta get the runner tighter." On the next tack I give the runner all I got. The headstay pulls out of the mast, the jib falls in the water, the boom hits the deck, and the mast bends precariously backwards. "Is that tight enough Robbie?" I ask. "F**k, we're screwed," he says. "We're gonna be more screwed in a moment unless you turn downwind," says I.
  17. 1 point
    It's obvious she is referring to the slave based economy our country was founded on. We fought a war that altered that. The capitalists/humanists won.... Socialism, and capitalism are expressions of humanism. Slavery, and oppression is not humanism.They are expression of evil. You can chose with your vote, or your life. But you can't get what you want by vilifying a young member of congress.
  18. 1 point
    The USA. A country I enjoyed being in and extolled all that was good and did my best to break down the stereotypes 20 years. Now it’s just a another country I’d prefer not to visit unless it was for work and even then, I’d have to seriously consider it. Its a great shame.
  19. 1 point
    Even with sunpower and if you custom spec every diode and connect every tiny cell to its own MMPT controller, you're still dealing with the fundamental problem that the VG puts these boats in a part of the world where you're not going to get much effective sun. The problem isn't the technology or method - its the expected conditions.
  20. 1 point
    The boat was somewhat a 'tombstone' on the designers career which was what I meant. It did nearly kill someone and I was there to witness If it had ever made it to the Southern Ocean with a solo sailor the odds are that death would have resulted. As it was, I was in fear of being mangled by the mast goosenecks and the travellers during gybes. Innovative, yes; manageable, no.
  21. 1 point
    A slip of the tongue like that can make a thread go on for years here.
  22. 1 point
    Maybe you should stay with truck driving, which you do seem to be familiar with?
  23. 1 point
  24. 1 point
    Disruptive ‘49 Mercury with Ludicrous Balls out.
  25. 1 point
    Play this ... While looking at these... Ok, that last one may not really be too far gone.