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      Abbreviated rules   07/28/2017

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Today during the live fr, Stéphane Le Diraison explained his dismasting (proper word ?) and it appears that it is one of his Harken backstays blocks that broke, showing it very closely for quite sometime, not sure Harken will be very happy ! :)

See below around 16:15 :

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x5640sr_le-vendee-live-du-23-12-2016-vendee-globe-2016_sport

 

or below :

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x563ove_j47-stephane-le-diraison-bloque-dans-un-anticyclone-vendee-globe_sport

 

 

One more example of the failed design and engineering rules for the boats. The boat left the dock to race around the globe alone with a mast design dependent on a single block. How many times was that block loaded incorrectly? When was the last time that block was x-rayed? Each boat that fails and cannot continue does nothing for the sponsors, the race, the sport of sailing, or the industry. The foolish rules are written to foster underbuilt boats for an endurance race.

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Alex has @ 42 miles to the Ice line and he is sailing right for it. the wind's would seem to favor starboard tack, albeit slightly upwind, so his course and speed don't make much sense. It is not like he has tons of wind.

 

No thoughts or side news? Looking at his track, he makes a turn to starboard, sails @ 37 nm then makes another turn to starboard, and one more shift to send him almost due south, on port tack as well. This cannot be strategy since he's sailing slow in what looks to be decent breeze, on port tack, almost away from the mark.

 

Sailing experts, what the heck?

 

 

I'm no expert, but 11 knots close-hauled seems pretty decent. He's going to tack at the AEZ, meanwhile the wind becomes more southerly and he's on a nice starboard reach all the way to the Horn, sailing along the boundary line.

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Alex has @ 42 miles to the Ice line and he is sailing right for it. the wind's would seem to favor starboard tack, albeit slightly upwind, so his course and speed don't make much sense. It is not like he has tons of wind.

 

No thoughts or side news? Looking at his track, he makes a turn to starboard, sails @ 37 nm then makes another turn to starboard, and one more shift to send him almost due south, on port tack as well. This cannot be strategy since he's sailing slow in what looks to be decent breeze, on port tack, almost away from the mark.

 

Sailing experts, what the heck?

 

I'm no expert, but 11 knots close-hauled seems pretty decent. He's going to tack at the AEZ, meanwhile the wind becomes more southerly and he's on a nice starboard reach all the way to the Horn, sailing along the boundary line.

Maximizing the foil reach is what I suspect.

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A memorable vid, great weather to capture the moment, a flawless (close enough) transit of the Pacific, and a well deserved record. No translation of the vid needed. Congrats indeed.

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Alex has @ 42 miles to the Ice line and he is sailing right for it. the wind's would seem to favor starboard tack, albeit slightly upwind, so his course and speed don't make much sense. It is not like he has tons of wind.

 

No thoughts or side news? Looking at his track, he makes a turn to starboard, sails @ 37 nm then makes another turn to starboard, and one more shift to send him almost due south, on port tack as well. This cannot be strategy since he's sailing slow in what looks to be decent breeze, on port tack, almost away from the mark.

 

Sailing experts, what the heck?

I'm no expert, but 11 knots close-hauled seems pretty decent. He's going to tack at the AEZ, meanwhile the wind becomes more southerly and he's on a nice starboard reach all the way to the Horn, sailing along the boundary line.

Maximizing the foil reach is what I suspect.

 

Remora's experts say he should tack soon, if he hasn't already:

post-63767-0-71766900-1482510989_thumb.png

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Cannot listen to the audio on my phone but Armel must feel like a million bucks with the home stretch ahead Très bien fait, Armel!

 

Re:Meilhat, sounds as though his team had stroke of luck w/ Maître C'oq locating what is hoped to be suitable replacement cylinder for SMA

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So Alex has tacked, and looks like a fairly benign starboard reach to the Horn without too many worries for a change in delta to Beyou . Armel's prospects look reeeeeally good: he might have a private elevator to take him 1/2 the way up Argentina. The wind gods liked the champagne. Doubt they'll appreciate Alex's bucket as much.

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Today during the live fr, Stéphane Le Diraison explained his dismasting (proper word ?) and it appears that it is one of his Harken backstays blocks that broke, showing it very closely for quite sometime, not sure Harken will be very happy ! :)

See below around 16:15 :

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x5640sr_le-vendee-live-du-23-12-2016-vendee-globe-2016_sport

 

or below :

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x563ove_j47-stephane-le-diraison-bloque-dans-un-anticyclone-vendee-globe_sport

 

 

One more example of the failed design and engineering rules for the boats. The boat left the dock to race around the globe alone with a mast design dependent on a single block. How many times was that block loaded incorrectly? When was the last time that block was x-rayed? Each boat that fails and cannot continue does nothing for the sponsors, the race, the sport of sailing, or the industry. The foolish rules are written to foster underbuilt boats for an endurance race.

Looking at the picture it well maybe be a component failure... can't wait to hear from Harken what they think..!

Design question is how many a single point of failures could be reasonably engineered out from these boats ..

post-115626-0-46564800-1482516329_thumb.png

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Today during the live fr, Stéphane Le Diraison explained his dismasting (proper word ?) and it appears that it is one of his Harken backstays blocks that broke, showing it very closely for quite sometime, not sure Harken will be very happy ! :)

See below around 16:15 :

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x5640sr_le-vendee-live-du-23-12-2016-vendee-globe-2016_sport

 

or below :

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x563ove_j47-stephane-le-diraison-bloque-dans-un-anticyclone-vendee-globe_sport

 

 

One more example of the failed design and engineering rules for the boats. The boat left the dock to race around the globe alone with a mast design dependent on a single block. How many times was that block loaded incorrectly? When was the last time that block was x-rayed? Each boat that fails and cannot continue does nothing for the sponsors, the race, the sport of sailing, or the industry. The foolish rules are written to foster underbuilt boats for an endurance race.

 

You think the rule should prescribe how the runners are designed? WTF?

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So Alex has tacked, and looks like a fairly benign starboard reach to the Horn without too many worries for a change in delta to Beyou . Armel's prospects look reeeeeally good: he might have a private elevator to take him 1/2 the way up Argentina. The wind gods liked the champagne. Doubt they'll appreciate Alex's bucket as much.

Have I missed something? Alex says that he's slow on Port and then says that he is also slower on Stbd than he'd like. What's up?!?

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Today during the live fr, Stéphane Le Diraison explained his dismasting (proper word ?) and it appears that it is one of his Harken backstays blocks that broke, showing it very closely for quite sometime, not sure Harken will be very happy ! :)

See below around 16:15 :

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x5640sr_le-vendee-live-du-23-12-2016-vendee-globe-2016_sport

 

or below :

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x563ove_j47-stephane-le-diraison-bloque-dans-un-anticyclone-vendee-globe_sport

 

One more example of the failed design and engineering rules for the boats. The boat left the dock to race around the globe alone with a mast design dependent on a single block. How many times was that block loaded incorrectly? When was the last time that block was x-rayed? Each boat that fails and cannot continue does nothing for the sponsors, the race, the sport of sailing, or the industry. The foolish rules are written to foster underbuilt boats for an endurance race.

You think the rule should prescribe how the runners are designed? WTF?
He's just desparately seeking out something to whine about.

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So Alex has tacked, and looks like a fairly benign starboard reach to the Horn without too many worries for a change in delta to Beyou . Armel's prospects look reeeeeally good: he might have a private elevator to take him 1/2 the way up Argentina. The wind gods liked the champagne. Doubt they'll appreciate Alex's bucket as much.

Have I missed something? Alex says that he's slow on Port and then says that he is also slower on Stbd than he'd like. What's up?!?

TWA 64, 11kns .. it looks ( unfortunately ) fine to me?

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Yeah but even if they got a replacement cylinder he's out of the race, right?

 

Yes, he will need assistance.

 

It's a little heartbreaking to see these guys go through the gut-wrenching, emotional process of facing the inevitable and deciding when to call abandonment. That transition back into the reality of land and mundane details after the intensity of each moment alone at sea. Hats off to all these guys. Respect.

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Yeah but even if they got a replacement cylinder he's out of the race, right?

 

Yes, he will need assistance.

 

It's a little heartbreaking to see these guys go through the gut-wrenching, emotional process of facing the inevitable and deciding when to call abandonment. That transition back into the reality of land and mundane details after the intensity of each moment alone at sea. Hats off to all these guys. Respect.

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Ah... the rituals of a Cape Horner. Same sentiment, whatever the dialect. Nice job, ALC.

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Today during the live fr, Stéphane Le Diraison explained his dismasting (proper word ?) and it appears that it is one of his Harken backstays blocks that broke, showing it very closely for quite sometime, not sure Harken will be very happy ! :)

See below around 16:15 :

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x5640sr_le-vendee-live-du-23-12-2016-vendee-globe-2016_sport

 

or below :

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x563ove_j47-stephane-le-diraison-bloque-dans-un-anticyclone-vendee-globe_sport

 

One more example of the failed design and engineering rules for the boats. The boat left the dock to race around the globe alone with a mast design dependent on a single block. How many times was that block loaded incorrectly? When was the last time that block was x-rayed? Each boat that fails and cannot continue does nothing for the sponsors, the race, the sport of sailing, or the industry. The foolish rules are written to foster underbuilt boats for an endurance race.

Looking at the picture it well maybe be a component failure... can't wait to hear from Harken what they think..!

Design question is how many a single point of failures could be reasonably engineered out from these boats ..

 

 

 

That also looks like it was secured incorrectly through the head in place of the mouth. Hard to believe Harken does not have someone inspecting all these boats long before the start?

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Stephane said (I don't remember where) that the broken component was replaced with a new one before the start. So, no point to x-ray a new component.

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Today during the live fr, Stéphane Le Diraison explained his dismasting (proper word ?) and it appears that it is one of his Harken backstays blocks that broke, showing it very closely for quite sometime, not sure Harken will be very happy ! :)

See below around 16:15 :http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x5640sr_le-vendee-live-du-23-12-2016-vendee-globe-2016_sport

 

or below :http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x563ove_j47-stephane-le-diraison-bloque-dans-un-anticyclone-vendee-globe_sport

 

 

One more example of the failed design and engineering rules for the boats. The boat left the dock to race around the globe alone with a mast design dependent on a single block. How many times was that block loaded incorrectly? When was the last time that block was x-rayed? Each boat that fails and cannot continue does nothing for the sponsors, the race, the sport of sailing, or the industry. The foolish rules are written to foster underbuilt boats for an endurance race.

Looking at the picture it well maybe be a component failure... can't wait to hear from Harken what they think..!

Design question is how many a single point of failures could be reasonably engineered out from these boats ..

 

That also looks like it was secured incorrectly through the head in place of the mouth. Hard to believe Harken does not have someone inspecting all these boats long before the start?

I was wondering the same... harken.com:

post-115626-0-26378400-1482526160.jpg

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Explanations by Le Diraison, about his dismasting. Quite telling...

 

 

During the first minute, he shows the block for the Starboard runner; and shows that the loop tying it to the boat does NOT pass through the center of the pulley itself. On the other block, on the same side, he shows that on that smaller size, the loop does pass through the center of the pulley; so if the smaller block breaks/disintegrate, the loop still holds the line. Not on the big block...

 

Then he shows the broken port tack runner block, and he shows that it is exactly what happened. The block broke, the loop is not inside the runner rope itself, the mast went down... (He is not saying it, but basically, he means that it is a design flaw: I would add that it is a design flaw not only because it broke, but also because if it had been well thought, you could mitigate the consequences of the failure and not make the rig go down because of that... In engineering terms, you perform what we call an FMEA - Failure Modes and Effects Analysis - when you desing something. You are supposed to look at all possible failures and their consequences, and put together measures to eliminate the failure mode (ideal case) or at least mitigate it (what could have been done here). My take on it: bad design by Harken.)

 

He is somewhat ironic while showing the broken runner block, calling it "the traitress" and also saying "this is this superb pulley that broke"...

 

Then he explains his ordeal after the event, starting at 1:30.

 

"

It is middle of the night, there is 6 Beaufort, The sea state is already well developped; I am ahead of a cold front. The boat is doing about 16-17 knots.

The boat speeds up in a gust, and I hear something like a gun shot. A very violent noise, something very sudden, very short, very loud.

I run outside, and when I turn around and look forward, I realize that... the mast is gone...

Almost nothing is left. There is a 1 meter piece of the mast still tied to the deck and another 4 meter long piece, whith shrouds and spreader is attempting to make holes in the deck. Everything else, the rig and the sails are dragging in the water.

So I go back inside, put on my survival suit, a harness, take with me some spotlights and go back on deck to do a quick assessment. Assessment which ends up very dire, of course. Not only the rig is gone, but I have damaged the daggerboards, stanchions are gone... and the rig is threatening to hole the hull.

It takes me several hours to clean up the mess. You have to understand the conditions: breaking waves washing the deck, wind is getting stronger and stronger...Very cold water, all in the middle of the night. It is really not easy to manage...

First, I keep the rig and the sails attached to the transom, thinking that I will be able to recover some sails. After several trials, it is obvious that it is impossible to do. It is even dangerous, because the whole rig behaves like a sea anchor, attached to the transom, stopping the boat in the breaking waves. The wind is now 8 Beaufort, the swell is about 5 to 6 meters high, so each breaking wave is crashing in the cockpit, sinking the rear of the boat. It is now puting the boat, and therefore myself in danger. So I decide, heartbroken, to cut off everything and let the rig go.

 

After that, I went inside, took some rest for one hour or two, ate a hot meal, change cloths, and started another fight, another challenge: putting together a makeshift rig. It was very dangerous, the boat was rolling in all directions with the crashing waves, no stanchion and life lines on one side.

 

I had to do it though; the winds were pushing me towards the South and Antartica...I had to find a way to get out of those dangerous seas.

It took me about 12 hours, and since then I have been optimizing this makeshift rig...

 

And now, I am 400 miles from Australia...

"

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To complement post 6322 and 6324, Stéphane Le Diraison says in the video above that the big block is not designed to have the loop going through the pulley. I do not know if it is an accurate statement, or if his team made a mistake during the rig up, but I considered in my comments above that he was right.... which might not be the case...

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I looked thru my 2015 HK catalog on just that point - that's got to be at least a 100mm block? Catalog shows NO units that loop thru the base. Looking at the busted side plate, and the block on the other side, they have a chamfered edge across the bottom hole, but sheave center edge is squared off. I could not fing that profile anywhere in the catalog. Old stock??

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To complement post 6322 and 6324, Stéphane Le Diraison says in the video above that the big block is not designed to have the loop going through the pulley. I do not know if it is an accurate statement, or if his team made a mistake during the rig up, but I considered in my comments above that he was right.... which might not be the case...

bad choice of equipment then.

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To complement post 6322 and 6324, Stéphane Le Diraison says in the video above that the big block is not designed to have the loop going through the pulley. I do not know if it is an accurate statement, or if his team made a mistake during the rig up, but I considered in my comments above that he was right.... which might not be the case...

Laurent, thanks a lot for great summary and translation! Super useful. I wait for Harken to comment, beauty of this block is its failsafe feature ( when correctly rigged), I can't see why it would not be used / recommended for bigger blocks...

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Explanations by Le Diraison, about his dismasting. Quite telling...

 

 

During the first minute, he shows the block for the Starboard runner; and shows that the loop tying it to the boat does NOT pass through the center of the pulley itself. On the other block, on the same side, he shows that on that smaller size, the loop does pass through the center of the pulley; so if the smaller block breaks/disintegrate, the loop still holds the line. Not on the big block...

 

Then he shows the broken port tack runner block, and he shows that it is exactly what happened. The block broke, the loop is not inside the runner rope itself, the mast went down... (He is not saying it, but basically, he means that it is a design flaw: I would add that it is a design flaw not only because it broke, but also because if it had been well thought, you could mitigate the consequences of the failure and not make the rig go down because of that... In engineering terms, you perform what we call an FMEA - Failure Modes and Effects Analysis - when you desing something. You are supposed to look at all possible failures and their consequences, and put together measures to eliminate the failure mode (ideal case) or at least mitigate it (what could have been done here). My take on it: bad design by Harken.)

 

He is somewhat ironic while showing the broken runner block, calling it "the traitress" and also saying "this is this superb pulley that broke"...

 

Then he explains his ordeal after the event, starting at 1:30.

 

"

It is middle of the night, there is 6 Beaufort, The sea state is already well developped; I am ahead of a cold front. The boat is doing about 16-17 knots.

The boat speeds up in a gust, and I hear something like a gun shot. A very violent noise, something very sudden, very short, very loud.

I run outside, and when I turn around and look forward, I realize that... the mast is gone...

Almost nothing is left. There is a 1 meter piece of the mast still tied to the deck and another 4 meter long piece, whith shrouds and spreader is attempting to make holes in the deck. Everything else, the rig and the sails are dragging in the water.

So I go back inside, put on my survival suit, a harness, take with me some spotlights and go back on deck to do a quick assessment. Assessment which ends up very dire, of course. Not only the rig is gone, but I have damaged the daggerboards, stanchions are gone... and the rig is threatening to hole the hull.

It takes me several hours to clean up the mess. You have to understand the conditions: breaking waves washing the deck, wind is getting stronger and stronger...Very cold water, all in the middle of the night. It is really not easy to manage...

First, I keep the rig and the sails attached to the transom, thinking that I will be able to recover some sails. After several trials, it is obvious that it is impossible to do. It is even dangerous, because the whole rig behaves like a sea anchor, attached to the transom, stopping the boat in the breaking waves. The wind is now 8 Beaufort, the swell is about 5 to 6 meters high, so each breaking wave is crashing in the cockpit, sinking the rear of the boat. It is now puting the boat, and therefore myself in danger. So I decide, heartbroken, to cut off everything and let the rig go.

 

After that, I went inside, took some rest for one hour or two, ate a hot meal, change cloths, and started another fight, another challenge: putting together a makeshift rig. It was very dangerous, the boat was rolling in all directions with the crashing waves, no stanchion and life lines on one side.

 

I had to do it though; the winds were pushing me towards the South and Antartica...I had to find a way to get out of those dangerous seas.

It took me about 12 hours, and since then I have been optimizing this makeshift rig...

 

And now, I am 400 miles from Australia...

"

 

Thanks Laurent,

Very interesting.

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I looked thru my 2015 HK catalog on just that point - that's got to be at least a 100mm block? Catalog shows NO units that loop thru the base. Looking at the busted side plate, and the block on the other side, they have a chamfered edge across the bottom hole, but sheave center edge is squared off. I could not fing that profile anywhere in the catalog. Old stock??

Could be. This warning is from current catalogue:

post-115626-0-90943000-1482528343_thumb.png

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Well, Costa has finally passed Heerema. That puts him 18/21 among boats that haven't officially retired, and 16/19 if you take out Meilhat and Le Diraison.

 

He has a LONG way to go, though, before he can catch 15th. The good news is... that's a thick pack to chase. Good incentive... if he can get to them, a top-10 result would still be possible. Especially if you consider the likelihood of at least a couple more retirements before get finishes. It also seems like some of the guys in that group have taken a real beating the last couple weeks, whereas he still seems to have been fairly incident-free since his starting debacle. Maybe he got all of his bad luck out of the way at the start.

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The topic about redundancy in design is a fascinating one. A lot of my design work is dealing with redundancy and resilience questions.

The short answer is, at some point you have a singular point of failure in the majority of systems. Usually this will be in the last link, connection or interface. Or you build the equivalent of an A10 warthog. Engineering porn that she is, an A10 is anything but fast.

 

It does look like it is an older design block as Longy highlighted by the radius edges. So, if it was newly replaced, was it as simple as an older stock item being available?

That sucks when the loop-through-the-sheave design could have saved the rig. The benefit of hindsight.

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I'll pick on a common blocks found on most boats, where would you find it's SPoF?

Looks kinda flimsy compared to the newer style blocks, doesn't it?

It is screaming "break here!" but this was the standard design for an era.

Good to see this type of improvement.

 

Edit: I am not comparing it to a backstay block position, my point is on the general issue of redundancy in systems.

 

75_mm_carbo_double_h2662.jpg

Or, this! Hmmmm........

 

 

Harken_57C_block.jpg

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Digging through my Harken archives the broken block looks to be a 2007-08 era block. If it is a 125mm it was on page 79 of the Harken catalog as the #3032 Straphead black magic.

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I have never seen a HK block physically fail like that, their rating are usually conservative. Bearing go flat once "working load" is passed, and breaking load on the 100mm block is twice working load.

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Digging through my Harken archives the broken block looks to be a 2007-08 era block. If it is a 125mm it was on page 79 of the Harken catalog as the #3032 Straphead black magic.

What do they state for loads??

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Picture of a Harken #3032.

 

 

ss-3032.jpg

 

Description as follows;

HARKEN BLOCKS: 125 MM AIRBLOCKS, SINGLE, STRAPHEAD
3/4" max line. 125mm and 150mm Black Magic Airblocks feature Torlon rollers in a self-contained center cage. Rollers stay parallel for low-friction efficiency. UV-resistant, carbon-black Derlin balls carry sideloads. Used on offshore boats, these blocks offer a no "climb-out" deep groove sheave with radiused edges to protect line. Sculpted aluminum sideplates and thin-profile sheaves make these blocks very lightweight. No stainless-to-aluminum contact provents corrosion.

Use For:
Sheets
Halyards
Running backstays (my emphasis)
Control lines

125mm(5") diameter sheave, 6 7/8"(175mm) length, 26.0 oz.(737g) weight w/shackle, 3/4(19mm) max. line, 11000 lb(4990kg) safe working load, 22000lb(9977kg) breaking strength.

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I'll pick on a common blocks found on most boats, where would you find it's SPoF?

Looks kinda flimsy compared to the newer style blocks, doesn't it?

It is screaming "break here!" but this was the standard design for an era.

Good to see this type of improvement.

 

Edit: I am not comparing it to a backstay block position, my point is on the general issue of redundancy in systems.

 

Or, this! Hmmmm........

 

Good point, I am seeing 4 SPoF's removed by introducing loop-through-the-sheave design... I say respectable progress!

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Shaggy,

 

I've never failed a harken 57c, or even their 40mm block series, and I have pushed these blocks HARD, absolutely to the edge of their load ratings (running 1:1 or 2:1 purchases on 57c's with F18 and Nacra 20 spinnakers double trapped reaching in 15+ kts of breeze for 100's of miles). The point of failure there is the bearings, but the base could pull out of the housing or more than likely the swivel pin fail as a result of corrosion.

 

I'm surprised that any of these boats left shore with outdated gear, however I'm not that surprised given the cost of hardware in this size, and certainly these blocks have made the trip before.

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Lous,

 

Chafe. If the block isn't designed for it, it's a no go.

 

Loop designs have issues as well, the biggest being chafe which is easily identified but still difficult to deal with when it fails.

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G'day Samc,

I agree. Not saying there is anything wrong with Harken or the design, it has taken huge punishment.

My point is the modern design have addressed a single point of failure. And its beautiful in its simplicity, just move the loop position.

We're pushing redundancy deeper into the "system", that's a good thing.

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Further squinting at the video - note how the pic pasted by Shaggy has the loop going thru the block parallel to the sheave. The busted block had the loop at 90 to the sheave. I vaguely remember HK not allowing that path.(??)

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Watching all the video's and reading blogs etc, there's something that has popped into my mind a few times.

The skippers often mention they are trying to slow down, either from catching a depression, from nuts surfs on big swells.

These hull design appear to revel in heavy airs, producing high averages in speed.

The little pogo does this (which I only refer to as to the similarity in hull design concept). In heavy airs reaching or running it is really hard to get it to go slow, you'll have everything bagged out, reefed and its still doing 10+knots.

Would love to hear RailMeat's takes on a class 40 aspect. they would be the same, going slow is harder than it sounds.

,

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What is over Armels left shoulder that is leading to the outrigger? Looks shreadded.

I thought it looked like something was growing on it.

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Today during the live fr, Stéphane Le Diraison explained his dismasting (proper word ?) and it appears that it is one of his Harken backstays blocks that broke, showing it very closely for quite sometime, not sure Harken will be very happy ! :)

See below around 16:15 :

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x5640sr_le-vendee-live-du-23-12-2016-vendee-globe-2016_sport

 

or below :

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x563ove_j47-stephane-le-diraison-bloque-dans-un-anticyclone-vendee-globe_sport

 

 

Maybe I'm a bit blind but it does not seem that Harken is one of his sponsors. Looking though the photos on the VG site zero Harken stickers on the boat.

If I paid in full for the part that ended my VG campaign...

 

It has been mentioned before that this part of the boat has been reengineered and replaced before the start.

histoiredeshalfs has a few pictures where the new setup is clearly visible. Also pictures of the old setup which did not have this particular flaw.

 

Wrong use? Wrong design choice? Old type with flaws "everyone" knew about?

I can't tell but there was certainly enough time to triple check if the install was according to the manual of that particular block before making the video.

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I looked thru my 2015 HK catalog on just that point - that's got to be at least a 100mm block? Catalog shows NO units that loop thru the base. Looking at the busted side plate, and the block on the other side, they have a chamfered edge across the bottom hole, but sheave center edge is squared off. I could not fing that profile anywhere in the catalog. Old stock??

 

I agree with you. The fact that the sheave center hole is not chamferred or rounded off means to me that the loop is NOT supposed to go through. It would be guaranteed premature chaffing...

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I looked thru my 2015 HK catalog on just that point - that's got to be at least a 100mm block? Catalog shows NO units that loop thru the base. Looking at the busted side plate, and the block on the other side, they have a chamfered edge across the bottom hole, but sheave center edge is squared off. I could not fing that profile anywhere in the catalog. Old stock??

 

I agree with you. The fact that the sheave center hole is not chamferred or rounded off means to me that the loop is NOT supposed to go through. It would be guaranteed premature chaffing...

 

 

 

If you look closely at the image of the broken block, it has HARKEN 125 stamped on it. I've looked through a couple old catalogs that I could find online, but I didn't find anything that looked quite exactly like it. I agree with both comments that it appears to have been rigged correctly, but I can't find anything out there that actually matches it. Does anyone happen to have a stack of old Harken catalogs who could look for an exact match? Or is it possible that this is custom?

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Ha! Banque is puttin' the hurt on Hugo. Never liked their fucking clothes anyhow.

 

Why are the environmentally friendly entries doing so badly. Doesn't anybody give a fuck about the fucking environment anymore?

 

Well?

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Watching all the video's and reading blogs etc, there's something that has popped into my mind a few times.

The skippers often mention they are trying to slow down, either from catching a depression, from nuts surfs on big swells.

These hull design appear to revel in heavy airs, producing high averages in speed.

The little pogo does this (which I only refer to as to the similarity in hull design concept). In heavy airs reaching or running it is really hard to get it to go slow, you'll have everything bagged out, reefed and its still doing 10+knots.

Would love to hear RailMeat's takes on a class 40 aspect. they would be the same, going slow is harder than it sounds.

,

I have not had too many times where I was trying to slow down, but when you do need to, the only way to do it is by tanning down sail area.

 

Even doing that is no guarantee. I have been making 9 knots under bare poles in one case.

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Will ALC gybe inside Staten Island? Seems to be more wind offshore, so maybe not.

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Ha! Banque is puttin' the hurt on Hugo. Never liked their fucking clothes anyhow.

 

Why are the environmentally friendly entries doing so badly. Doesn't anybody give a fuck about the fucking environment anymore?

 

Well?

 

 

since you asked, something that personally pains me profoundly; presently, it almost seems like one is considered an extremist or a heretic if they give more than two shits about the biosphere. we're all part of the problem, some care, some only 'care' when it's convenient. it's a moral issue, and ecological guilt is a bitch. back to the yacht race.

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Will ALC gybe inside Staten Island? Seems to be more wind offshore, so maybe not.

 

A few hours ago http://www.vendeeglobe.org/en/news/17445/time-to-choose-an-option-after-cape-horn said Armel had a decision to make. forss tracker shows an elevator ride up the coast of Argentina in 36 hours, but a tricky transition to get on it. Armel has made all the tricky transitions so far, so maybe he'll play it safe and avoid the coast.

 

Maybe Alex will get on the elevator, and we'll see another Telefonica run on the leader :)

He's pulled back a few miles, and his 4hr speed at the 0400 sked is double Armel's

 

Too, Conrad Colman is posting the best 24 hr run, 3 miles more than Beyou

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Hope JPD has an eye open for that ice limit this time!

Looks like it is further north on the Forss map

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G'day Samc,

I agree. Not saying there is anything wrong with Harken or the design, it has taken huge punishment.

My point is the modern design have addressed a single point of failure. And its beautiful in its simplicity, just move the loop position.

We're pushing redundancy deeper into the "system", that's a good thing.

+1 "pushing redundancy deeper into" .... love it!

G'day Samc,

I agree. Not saying there is anything wrong with Harken or the design, it has taken huge punishment.

My point is the modern design have addressed a single point of failure. And its beautiful in its simplicity, just move the loop position.

We're pushing redundancy deeper into the "system", that's a good thing.

+1 "pushing redundancy deeper into" .... love it!

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In a letter from today, Le Diraison says the block was brand new apparently :

http://www.vendeeglobe.org/fr/actualites/17443/stephane-le-diraison-le-diable-est-dans-le-detail

 

 

 

Le fameux maillon faible... Tout était pourtant neuf sur le gréement, tout avait été soigneusement contrôlé, vérifié, éprouvé. Cette poulie on lui accordait toute notre confiance, au point qu'elle n'avait pas de doublure : comme quoi le travail en binôme et le contrôle indépendant devraient être la règle !

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Time for a bit of naviguessing towards the finish, post 1/3.

 

Input

- 0830 CET positions

- GFS 10 days and after that

- Open CPN climate plugin with historical weather data as proxy

- standard IMOCA 2015 polars (thus overestimating performance Alex starboard foil on port tack)

 

Output

- Armel to finish ETA January 14th see yellow routing

- Alex to finish ETA January 16th see blue routing

- Delta time Alex compared to Armel: 40 hours

- Alex port/SB tack: 37 % / 63 % => could be a worse ratio

- Alex upwind: 49% => not good for catching up with the stub

post-49019-0-28096800-1482575260_thumb.png

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If you look closely at the image of the broken block, it has HARKEN 125 stamped on it. I've looked through a couple old catalogs that I could find online, but I didn't find anything that looked quite exactly like it. I agree with both comments that it appears to have been rigged correctly, but I can't find anything out there that actually matches it. Does anyone happen to have a stack of old Harken catalogs who could look for an exact match? Or is it possible that this is custom?

They used straphead block and it was rigged wrongly. The loop should go through the foot but parallel to the wheel not crosswise like in case of loop-block:

LoopBlock-QA_straphead.jpg

 

This is how it was rigged:

post-121355-0-28174800-1482575143_thumb.jpeg

 

This is what Harken sais about straphead blocks (might be added after this failure):

 

Are Loop and straphead blocks interchangeable?

Definitely not. Running a soft attachment through the head of a Loop block instead of the center of the sheave is risky and could result in block failure, even when loads are less than the Maximum Working Load. Loop blocks have less material in the head because the sheave is designed to be the primary load-bearing component.

Doing the reverse—running soft attachments through the center of the sheave of a straphead block—can also cause problems. The edges are not appropriately radiused for this use and could chafe or cut your soft attachment.

 

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Well, Costa has finally passed Heerema. That puts him 18/21 among boats that haven't officially retired, and 16/19 if you take out Meilhat and Le Diraison.

 

He has a LONG way to go, though, before he can catch 15th. The good news is... that's a thick pack to chase. Good incentive... if he can get to them, a top-10 result would still be possible. Especially if you consider the likelihood of at least a couple more retirements before get finishes. It also seems like some of the guys in that group have taken a real beating the last couple weeks, whereas he still seems to have been fairly incident-free since his starting debacle. Maybe he got all of his bad luck out of the way at the start.

Heerema is older then Costa but Rich Wilson is same age as Pieter.

Rich has more Imoca experience..

 

Now Pieter has to stay in front of Sebastien-Destremau.

post-17796-0-20196100-1482575484_thumb.jpg

 

And this one:

Romain Attanasio skipper of Famille Mary - Etamine du Lys.

post-17796-0-12940700-1482575930_thumb.jpg

post-17796-0-58650200-1482575942.jpg

post-17796-0-75937100-1482575375_thumb.jpg

post-17796-0-68663700-1482575611_thumb.jpg

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I looked thru my 2015 HK catalog on just that point - that's got to be at least a 100mm block? Catalog shows NO units that loop thru the base. Looking at the busted side plate, and the block on the other side, they have a chamfered edge across the bottom hole, but sheave center edge is squared off. I could not fing that profile anywhere in the catalog. Old stock??

 

 

I agree with you. The fact that the sheave center hole is not chamferred or rounded off means to me that the loop is NOT supposed to go through. It would be guaranteed premature chaffing...

All above makes perfect sense. However, this picture shows a center hole nicely rounded off...:

post-115626-0-91780700-1482576442_thumb.png

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Beyou's penalty decided and met (don't see it on his forss tracks, but the geoville track shows it at 117º W)

Otherwise it has been a night of repairs and making good for certain skippers who took advantage of amenable breezes. Jérémie Beyou (Maître CoQ) made good on a penalty given to him by the International Jury for breaking an engine seal in the Indian Ocean. Beyou was given a segment of ten miles to sail back and forth on for two hours, making no net gain in the course direction, which he fulfilled around 2200hrs. Around the same time some 4000 miles behind him, Fabrice Amedeo (Newrest Matmut) was sailing directly downwind seemingly making a repair to his mainsail which had a large gash in it between the second and third reef. Amedeo is back to course this morning, making 10kts. And Arnaud Boissières (La Mie Câline), who had sailed north to find ideal conditions, was repairing his mainsail track on his mast and making good on a series of other small repairs. Of Beyou's penalty race director Jacques Caraës, who administers and monitors the Jury's decision, explained: “Early in the Indian Ocean, Jérémie fell down and accidentally put his propeller in gear breaking the seal on the engine. He took advantage of some light conditions (5-10 knots of wind) to halt his progress for two hours before setting off again eastwards,” Beyou is advancing slowly this morning as he has entered a transition zone.

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All above makes perfect sense. However, this picture shows a center hole nicely rounded off...:

 

 

Compare to the radius on the loop block next to it. Can also see the attachment going through the head, not around the posts

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Time for a bit of naviguessing towards the finish, post 1/3.

 

Input

- 0830 CET positions

- GFS 10 days and after that

- Open CPN climate plugin with historical weather data as proxy

- standard IMOCA 2015 polars (thus overestimating performance Alex starboard foil on port tack)

 

Output

- Armel to finish ETA January 14th see yellow routing

- Alex to finish ETA January 16th see blue routing

- Delta time Alex compared to Armel: 40 hours

- Alex port/SB tack: 37 % / 63 % => could be a worse ratio

- Alex upwind: 49% => not good for catching up with the stub

 

Thanks Herman. "Naviguessing" is useful now for as a benchmark of Armel's strategy; av. speed will be useful later to compare these new foilers with the old polars. You played around with Remora a bit earlier. Are their polars much different than the ones you use?

Cheers, and a Merry Christmas to you and yours.

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Been out of touch lately due to big work deadlines. ALC, around the horn with an 800 km lead, awesome dude! Made my day actually. Family now together (almost) for the holidays. Not so for our heros out there sailing. How do they do it? Love y'all. Be safe and happy. Here's one for y'all.... Cheers.

 

And for all of you there, be safe and please have a very happy holidays. Merry Christmas! And a Happy Anarchy!

 

Love y'all,

Varan

 

Tsk Tsk. Now that you've lobbed a warm fuzzy into the thread, where will the grinches go? :)

Anyway, cheers to you and yours too.

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[vid above]

 

He was finally able to retract the damaged foil.

 

. . . and AP only trusted with magnetic course, not TWA. That's not good. So the foil won't be inspected until after the finish . . .

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I looked thru my 2015 HK catalog on just that point - that's got to be at least a 100mm block? Catalog shows NO units that loop thru the base. Looking at the busted side plate, and the block on the other side, they have a chamfered edge across the bottom hole, but sheave center edge is squared off. I could not fing that profile anywhere in the catalog. Old stock??

 

 

I agree with you. The fact that the sheave center hole is not chamferred or rounded off means to me that the loop is NOT supposed to go through. It would be guaranteed premature chaffing...

All above makes perfect sense. However, this picture shows a center hole nicely rounded off...:

The block that broke is a design that was discontinued in 2009, so the block itself is at least 7 years old but likely even older than that.

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Some thoughts about the Harken Block debate.

 

This was a very poor choice of a block for that application even if the working load was respected. This was probably the same set up as the original rigging with just the blocks replaced. Technology has come a long way, and you must use in critical areas blocks that if they fail they do not release the load. Ino-Block is the best for this application. BP is using them in many areas. Karver blocks are very common on the IMOCAs as well

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Very interesting interview by Armel Le Cleach, I took the proposed automatic google translate provided by "jonas a" of this Voiles et Voiliers interview and tweaked it for the few mistakes. You will learn that he has not had a single crash jibe so far...

 

Armel Le Cléac'h: "The Vendée Globe, its wearing you down!"
699 miles! It is the abyssal gap this Friday morning in the ranking of 5 O'clock between Banque Populaire in final approach of Cape Horn in a mollifying wind, and Hugo Boss. Armel Le Cléac'h continues to drive the point, whereas Alex Thomson will be more than two days behind when turning the famous rock. Jérémie Beyou (Maître CoQ) clings to his remarkable third place despite the return of Jean-Pierre Dick (StMichel-Virbac), always followed closely by Yann Eliès (Quéguiner Leukemia Espoir) and Jean Le Cam (Finistere Sea Vent) . As for Louis Burton (Bureau Valley), he discreetly pursues his superb course, and runs alongside the ZEA in 7th place. Finally, the big beneficiary of these last days is Eric Bellion (Commeunseulhomme) who, since he crossed the Cape Leeuwin, doubled his opponents one by one. This morning, he sailed in 12th position and founded Alan Roura (La Fabrique) still impressive on his "old" plan Rolland dating from 2000. Third to cross eight years ago, second four years ago, Armel Le Cléac 'H will this time turn Cape Horn largely in the lead this Friday at midday, in a cleanly hallucinating time and five days ahead of the record of François Gabart!

Wednesday, December 21 afternoon, less than 1000 miles from Cape Horn, the Vendee Globe leader gave us a long interview despite difficult weather ... Banque Populaire VIII then sailed port tack downwind in a West North West wind very irregular between 25 and 35 knots and on a strong and crossed sea. Armel Le Cléac'h was preparing for a final jibe in the evening before plunging on the famous "hard cape". You will notice that Armel never says "I" but "We" as if he always spoke of his boat and of him at the same time ... The man is shrewd, modest, does not deliver easily at sea, but he does not evade the questions. If the link was almost perfect, if the sailor was once again of astonishing availability and lucidity, it was nevertheless perceived at the sound of his voice and the surrounding noise that life on board at that moment was frankly very painful ! There was a certain weariness. Armel does not say everything ... but one can read between the lines.

 

Voilesetvoiliers.com: First of all Armel, how are you?

Armel Le Cléac'h: It's alright, it's okay. It's a little sporty right now, but we do go. The wind is very irregular in strength and the sea is in all directions, and so it is not very simple ... but by this night it should be better. In the South, we live virtually permanently inside. It is like being inside a washing machine, in spinning mode... and after a few weeks, it is getting tiring.

 

Voilesetvoiliers.com: What about physically?

ALC: Look, it's fine. I do not have too many small cuts and scrapes and bruises apart from my hands that are a bit ruined and make me suffer, and that I try to soothe with cream regularly. I did not have too many physical problems until then despite some good falls in the boat. When the sea is rough, even on all fours you end up bumping right to left, but nothing serious. The hardest part is sleeping in the day when you have conditions like today, where it's hard. I will have to rest a bit to prepare my jibe in the evening. As it is planned from 30 to 35 knots, it will be necessary to be vigilant, to make a beautiful last maneuver before leaving on Cape Horn. Quickly turn left!

Voilesetvoiliers.com: Talking about the jibe, how long does it take, in 30 to 35 knots?

ALC: With or without shifting the gear from one side to the other? (Laughs)

 

Voilesetvoiliers.com: With ... between the moment you make the decision and the moment you are on the other tack?

ALC: Shifting all the gears, so that everything is clean, you need a good half hour from the time you begin to move the bags and when everything is tidy across the cabin. The jibe maneuver in itself is quite fast: about ten minutes. The jibe is finally quite easy, but then you still have all the sails on the deck to change side ...

 

Voilesetvoiliers.com: Do you realize that you've been away for 45 days?

ALC: Not really. What is clear is that the pace is fairly sustained. It is difficult to take stock of the past. In fact, the length of the days depends really on the weather conditions, capes to cross, gusts of wind ... Let's say that when the wind is less strong, it helps to better pace the time on board. I did not even know we were at 45 (laughs). You tell me! But good 45 days on these boats, it's not easy, and then 47 days to go from Les Sables D'Olonne to Cape Horn, it's pretty good. Nevertheless, the Vendée wears down the boats and the guys.

Voilesetvoiliers.com: Did the foil breaks of Alex Thomson and then Sébastien Josse prompted you to sail differently? Did you take the foils back into the big sea?

ALC: Yes, but not that much! Me since the start, I was rather conservative about the use of foils, as in the transatlantic races. The difficulty on a Vendée Globe is to find the time when you can sail with or without. And as you never know if you're 100% right or not ... I try to keep these tools for the right angle for the right configuration, when it does not push too much on the boat.For instance, right now, it is downwind VMG in strong wind and sea, and so there is no need to foils. But actually, what happens to others, it cools you down on the moment. You try to understand what happened. What is certain is that when you are a little ahead of your pursuers, you take less risk, you get less annoyed. You put a little more time to do your maneuver, you take another five minutes to release a reef. In short, you go more cool and you try to make it clean. It is a small luxury ...

 

Voilesetvoiliers.com: You give the impression since the departure of "sparing" your boat, unlike Alex who seems to loar her more?

ALC: Yeah, but we stil have problems on board! There are always tinkers, wear, chaffing, worries of waterproofing ... For now it holds up, but the road is long. I have already done two Vendée Globe and we know that there can be so many things happening. To date, I have not had too strong OFNI causing great damage, and I have had a bit of success unlike some.Keeping my fingers crossed.

 

Voilesetvoiliers.com: All the competitors say they have crashed jibe. You, have you?

ALC: Look, no! Again, I touch wood! For the moment I have not made a downwind crash jibe. Broaching into the wind, of course, I did, when we were a little on the attack in the descent of the Atlantic (more than 17.5 knots average, ed.)

 

Voilesetvoiliers.com: And you have not suffered major breakdowns?

ALC: I did. I had an auto pilot problem ... but related to another problem: my heating on board. When I put a little heating in the cabin, a night when it was bad weather outside with 20 knots of wind and rain this caused a drop in electrical voltage. My pilot was going crazy, and the boat was broaching. I did not understand.It lasted ten minutes, and I thought to myself that it would be a big hassle. I searched, and when I turned off the heater, it started to work again.

 

Voilesetvoiliers.com: Is it true that your bag of food for the passage of Cape Horn bearing the n ° 52, you planned this year to cross it after 52 days?

ALC: I think it's time we had been there four years (the record is 52 days Gabart 6:18 minutes ed), and so we decided to stay on the same figures with Sébastien Duclos when the catering was done, because we had already been fast enough. There we are at how many days? 42? (45 in fact, note) I have not even counted (we give him the answer again when we talked a few minutes ago, ed.) Oh ok. Well, it's going to be around 47 days. It should be a little earlier than expected! We will not complain ... and so I have extra food to finish the Vendée. I can even feed my friends ... I do not know if I will have other worries, but not the lack of food contrary to eight years ago when I had arrived with nothing left to eat.

 

Voilesetvoiliers.com: All the observers are unanimous on your perfect trajectory. Looks like you've never mastered the weather so well and everything looks easy?

ALC: (laughs) No, it is not easy! (Laughs) They ask lots of questions. In terms of weather, I try to do my strategy without too much wondering what my opponents wil do, and I advance piece by piece. The weather models are almost always agreeing with each others, the routings are not always effective, but I always try to find a trajectory that seems to me the best. And then in the famous transition periods, when you have to stoke the boat up to pass these important phases, as a few days ago with this ridge under New Zealand, you sometimes have to be tricky. Same, when you have to push the boat to stay ahead of a front. Overall, I feel not too bad about it, even if I did some not so good stuff.

 

Voilesetvoiliers.com: How do you see the climb up the Atlantic where four years ago, François Gabart have slightly dropped you when you navigating virtually in sightof each other?

ALC: I know that the South Atlantic is a very very complicated part, weather wise. I suffered eight years ago and again four years ago. I'm starting to look at what is brewing for us. We will try not to do too many fuckups in this delicate part that lasts at least as far as Rio.

 

Voilesetvoiliers.com: Finally, you have time to follow a few news including the record of Thomas Coville?

ALC: Yes I follow what happens. They give me info. I had the times of Thomas. This is an amazing feat he is making! And we realize the speed of the boats, because he left the same day than we did (November 6) and he will arrive shortly after I crossed the Horn. This gives an idea of ​​the differences with our IMOCA ... which however are not slow!

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Some thoughts about the Harken Block debate.

 

This was a very poor choice of a block for that application even if the working load was respected. This was probably the same set up as the original rigging with just the blocks replaced. Technology has come a long way, and you must use in critical areas blocks that if they fail they do not release the load. Ino-Block is the best for this application www.inoblock.pt/fr/ BP is using them in many areas. Karver blocks are very common on the IMOCAs as well

 

I think you meant this....

 

http://ino-block.com/

 

and not a new building brick company...

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I looked thru my 2015 HK catalog on just that point - that's got to be at least a 100mm block? Catalog shows NO units that loop thru the base. Looking at the busted side plate, and the block on the other side, they have a chamfered edge across the bottom hole, but sheave center edge is squared off. I could not fing that profile anywhere in the catalog. Old stock??

 

 

I agree with you. The fact that the sheave center hole is not chamferred or rounded off means to me that the loop is NOT supposed to go through. It would be guaranteed premature chaffing...

All above makes perfect sense. However, this picture shows a center hole nicely rounded off...:
The block that broke is a design that was discontinued in 2009, so the block itself is at least 7 years old but likely even older than that.

Oh boy ..

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Lous,

 

Chafe. If the block isn't designed for it, it's a no go.

 

Loop designs have issues as well, the biggest being chafe which is easily identified but still difficult to deal with when it fails.

I get that if rigged through the centre of the block it would chafe. My point was that a slack loop could have been employed as a fail safe. Doing so would have saved his rig and he would still be in the race.

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Merry Christmas to all.

 

The Boss has the hammer down again this morning. Good to see.

 

Such a pity for Alex that HB is wounded. Still, it's a long, long climb back up the globe from down under.

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Laurent, thanks man,

 

the heating crashing the AP, damn, and no chinese gybes... nice.

 

Contrast that to what Conrad wrote:

"It's Christmas season and I'm sure you are all rushing around and sometimes lose track of which way is up. Sadly my boat has the same problem as it keeps falling over! [...] . Since the first wipeout this way after the fire, this was the fourth episode like this so far in this race and while I'm sick of picking the boat up after it loses its mind I am starting to become quite adept at dealing with what is normally classified as an emergency situation! [...]"