Nice video - Safe Speed Masterclass

40Plus

Member
169
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PNW
Stumbled over this gem in French. Most of you know this stuff of course, but I think the important points are very well explained. You can skip the last 5 minutes.



Cue the comments about the TS/ORC probably being the most capsized big multi of the last decade

Two capsizes I believe? First one caused by a UFO which they believed to be a fishing net? The most recent one during a solo race, downwind with the A5 and one reef in 30+ knots when the AP malfunctioned.
 

mpenman

Member
247
231
Pompano Beach
So they talk about the dreaded wind angles...........were they talking about twa or awa?
We love Charles, he pushes a boat hard. Notice how he has his hand on the sheet whenever the boat is moving beyond his comfort level.

The main takeaway IMHO is the dangerous sail is the one up front. Taking the pressure off that sail allows you to bear off with speed.........

Now those winds were strong but the sea state was fairly benign. Do that same exercise at night. ;)

I'd love to sail with him and Frank for a few hours.
 
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bushsailor

Anarchist
693
193
QLD Australia
well if you are sailing at say 90 twa at 20kn in 20kn of wind your APA is roughly 45.
However if you are only doing 10kn in 20kn then APA will be roughly 75. Still dangerous because sails may be luffing etc.
As a matter of interest we capsized our 50' cat on heady alone in a 42kn gust. Went to bear away through the zone mentioned above and jib sheet was not eased enough. When I felt the boat start to lift the jib was pulling the bows down preventing a fast luff back up and over she went sideways. We had her back upright in 2 hours with no damage but I still would not want to ever do it again.
 

mpenman

Member
247
231
Pompano Beach
well if you are sailing at say 90 twa at 20kn in 20kn of wind your APA is roughly 45.
However if you are only doing 10kn in 20kn then APA will be roughly 75. Still dangerous because sails may be luffing etc.
As a matter of interest we capsized our 50' cat on heady alone in a 42kn gust. Went to bear away through the zone mentioned above and jib sheet was not eased enough. When I felt the boat start to lift the jib was pulling the bows down preventing a fast luff back up and over she went sideways. We had her back upright in 2 hours with no damage but I still would not want to ever do it again.
Dang, more impressive than the capsize was the righting!!!!!

Your observations are close in boat speeds and angles, give or take 10 or so degrees on our boat. I pay attention to both, because in some cases I still want to head up. On faster boats the apparent gets up there pretty quickly when closed hauled as the boat does not really have a speed cap. I want to know TWA because that is for a practical matter what the boat would feel with no sails. No perfect answers.

We won't go over with jib at 42knots, so your boat is a lot lighter, most probably a lot faster too!!!!
That's why when cruising, we're reefed for safety if we know it's gusty and nasty out.
 

SSolo

Member
176
218
England
having flipped a couple of time.. and worked with UK coastguard and RORC on multihull safety
ALWAYS know your reefing plan and stick to it. You should have the plan stuck next to the helm, and unless you and your crew really know what you are doing, the simple message of reef according to the plan and reef early works


when you get caught out and over powered, it depends on your wind angle - both AWA and TWA as when is best to bear away or round up
Basically headsails pull you away from the and potentially towards 'coffin corner' the mainsail pushes you up into the wind. But as you get into coffin corner of max power the main becomes the problem as it continues to be powered, even though headsail can be flapping and useless.
IMHO is more often best to bang the helm down HARD, dump all sheets, depowering the sails and hard round up into the wind, then sheet in main enough to hold boat near head to wind, then you can furl / drop headsails and reduce mainsail

we did this massive round manoeuvre when crossing the ITC in the TJV ; initially bore away in a squall, then realised we where at 170 apparent at 25knots boatspeed with 25 knots Apparent ie 50 knots true and we had full rig up. Dumped everything and slammed the helm down, we climbed onto one hull, slammed down and sat head to wind shuddering. 5 mins later it was 10-12 knots and we went on our way cleaning our underpants!
 

SailingTips.Ca

Feigns Knowledge
790
340
Victoria, BC
The main takeaway IMHO is the dangerous sail is the one up front. Taking the pressure off that sail allows you to bear off with speed.........
My understanding (which may be flawed) is that the headsail is the dangerous one when you’re above the dreaded wind angles, because it can pull you down and power you up when you’re trying to luff to depower.

But once you’re below the dreaded wind angles the mainsail is the one to fear, because it’s the one that will push you over and/or head you up when you’re trying to bear away. So we’ve always reefed the main first when heading downwind TWA (which may actually be upwind AWA) in a breeze because then you can dump the headsail sheets to depower when the main can’t be eased any more.

Or do I have it all wrong here?
 

mpenman

Member
247
231
Pompano Beach
My understanding (which may be flawed) is that the headsail is the dangerous one when you’re above the dreaded wind angles, because it can pull you down and power you up when you’re trying to luff to depower.

But once you’re below the dreaded wind angles the mainsail is the one to fear, because it’s the one that will push you over and/or head you up when you’re trying to bear away. So we’ve always reefed the main first when heading downwind TWA (which may actually be upwind AWA) in a breeze because then you can dump the headsail sheets to depower when the main can’t be eased any more.

Or do I have it all wrong here?
I think much depends on the boat.

Our boat won't stop accelerating. We've seen 30knts of boat speed heading down a wave with a single reef, with mainsail and one reef only. Got caught in a squall from behind and basically ran downwind. Because the boat keeps trucking the AWS was only about 25 knots, which is totally acceptable so long as you don't stuff the bows into the next wave.

Downwind with the main blocking the head sail it's very easy to furl the headsail, even in 45-50kts TWS.

I think that the key here is to have a set of reef rules ala @SSolo and also have a way out should things not work out as planned. A catamaran is different to a mono because you need to reef to the gusts.
 

munt

Super Anarchist
1,226
241
The belt
I was driving a Reynolds 33 in very ominous, gusty conditions one day, about 1/4 mile from a sister boat. We saw a particularly black gust headed our way and released main and jib sheets and feathered into it. Probably 25+ kts and a different direction. Sister boat released main and attempted to feather but was blown over by the cleated jib. Our avoidance of the same fate was mostly just luck as well as my high level of raw fear on a day that certainly wasn't ideal for the R33. I wouldn't have thought the jib could do it but it drove the boat off and then flipped her right over. I think the skipper being a highly confident mono sailor may have contributed...So it can happen going to weather too.
 

mrybas

Member
185
75
My brother and I were coming back from the Bahamas a couple of years ago dodging squalls on the approach to NC. There’s a squall coming up behind us moving ENE and we’re sailing N. Wind was behind us, we’re running fairly deep. There’s also a container ship to port headed same direction as the squall but just on its edge.
I made radio contact about about 2-3 miles out when it looked like it was a close passing. I explained I wanted to maintain course to move away from the squall but not have to gybe. The Korean captain didn’t speak much English and all I could make out was ‘Maintain Course!’

We’ll fuck me…He’s maintaining course or he wants me to?

We’ll we could damn near see the whites of their teeth before it became obvious we were the loosing hand at a game of chicken. The wind had built into the 30’s by that time and we had to make a decision. Boat speeds are now upper teens getting close to 20 knots. We blew the jib sheet, and turned into the wind. The windward hull felt like it came out of the water a bit as the sails started flogging like crazy. Got the boat into the wind and dropped the sails as the squall over took us with heavy rain and wind in the 40’s. The tanker passed probably not more than a couple hundred yards from us.
That was probably the most scared I’ve been on a boat. Not sure what I could have done differently beside be proactive sooner.

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Scary episode mrybas! At least you had photo evidence of it in case he ran you down😉.
I had a similar situation once(not quite as extreme as yours) and must admit that I was very happy with my choice of rigs(biplane balestron). They really work a treat when doing heavy air gybes with the jibs softening the landing of the mains, especially with a reef in the mains balancing it out.
 




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