Trimaran “Buddy” abandoned north of Bermuda

unShirley

Super Anarchist
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313
Ventura
paging Ryan Finn

googled Trimaran Buddy. Patterson 44 that was listed on Sailboatlistings.com in 2019.

Looking forward to getting the rest of the story.
 

Lykke

Member
122
66
So Cal
“15-foot breakers with 53 knot gusts”…

Good luck crawling to the flooded ama to pump out or stuff fenders in these conditions. Dumping heavy stuff on the other side might’ve been possible.

B6A0E7B1-8AD1-44B2-889C-B02485F94CC6.png


The photo looks a little (but not much) more benign than described though.
 

unShirley

Super Anarchist
1,739
313
Ventura
one seldom hears of a multihull sinking. Abandoned after capsizing or dismasted, but sinking? no. Ryan Finn was on board, evidently. He is an excellent sailor and writer, so, I am looking forward to his account of the incident.
 

multihuler

Anarchist
825
322
Reno
Long shot and probably bad timing as I just left Winslow Arizona heading to North Carolina, if someone wants to go hunt Buddy I am game. Of course nobody knows better of how to find her than Ryan.
Generator, pumps, air bags and lots of luck there is a very small chance to rescue her, obviously time is of the essence.
I can use Skateaway as a rescue platform, and she can be ready in a day, besides it would get me off the computer.
 

boardhead

Anarchist
Early December, 250 miles north of Bermuda, holed and likely now inverted - Buddy is off on a slow passage to Ireland.
The new owner had spent a fortune on her - paint, chainplates, rigging - sad ending.
Will be interested to hear Ryan's account, particularly of the circumstances of the holing.
John Patterson, the builder, would know the number and placement of watertight bulkheads in the amas, OSTAR requirements were really good in that respect.
Skateaway would be a really bad choice as a salvage vessel - stay inshore and enjoy those Diams Stephen!
 
I'll write up the whole story. Just got back home today. A bad situation with a good outcome. All crew safe and sound.

I too am awaiting Ryan's response, hopefully posted here.
We had our ama fill considerably more than 1/2 way with water on a 40 foot Farrier F36 in 25 knot winds gusting only 33. Ours was able to keep sailing the entire time. It took us about Two Hours to manually bail the ama with both my wife and I on that leeward ama when the winds dropped below 15-20kn.
From the pictures in the scuttlebutt posting and the degree of heel... It is very hard to understand how the water-tight compartments are intact. This; because... Our Farrier was able to keep sailing on course toward Hao with the ama we were bailing to leeward. The airtight compartments made the difference.

And as a side note.... This makes me wonder if Hypalon or Vinyl float bags inside our water tight compartments now might be worth a consideration??? R.Finn???
 

r.finn

Super Anarchist
2,001
662
I too am awaiting Ryan's response, hopefully posted here.
We had our ama fill considerably more than 1/2 way with water on a 40 foot Farrier F36 in 25 knot winds gusting only 33. Ours was able to keep sailing the entire time. It took us about Two Hours to manually bail the ama with both my wife and I on that leeward ama when the winds dropped below 15-20kn.
From the pictures in the scuttlebutt posting and the degree of heel... It is very hard to understand how the water-tight compartments are intact. This; because... Our Farrier was able to keep sailing on course toward Hao with the ama we were bailing to leeward. The airtight compartments made the difference.

And as a side note.... This makes me wonder if Hypalon or Vinyl float bags inside our water tight compartments now might be worth a consideration??? R.Finn???
Working on it gang. Its a lot to get down. Hold on.
 

r.finn

Super Anarchist
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662
On December 1st I departed on a delivery from Woods Hole, MA to Puerto Rico, with the owner Laura Shulman and crew Tomasz Dvorak. We left in a NW wind, 25-35 knots with only a staysail up and sailed conservatively with wind aft of beam, towards the Gulf stream. As we approached the wind became lighter and we hosted the mainsail, until ultimately, we were motor sailing safely across the GS. We exited the GS in light upwind conditions which increased and swung aft through the evening. In the early AM hours of 4th we were close reaching at 8-10 knots with a staysail and double reefed mainsail, wind gusting to 30, but very manageable. I was awakened at around 4am by something, and came on deck to see what was happening. Boat speed had fallen to nearly zero, and a quick look to leeward showed the ama underwater with only the deck visible. It was obvious that it had a big hole from a collision, since Laura noted our abrupt stop, and it filling completely with water. Buddy began to slowly capsize over the next four hours. During that period, we doused all sails, put on life jackets and began untying the rigid inflatable we had lashed to the port trampoline. Our attempts to motor Buddy under her own power were useless as we could only make 1 knot at full throttle, and we had no steerage with the weight/drag of all that water on the port side. During this time we were also in communication with the J/133 Vamoose, who was roughly 10 miles upwind, to our west. They were on standby waiting for our decision. After it was clear that we couldn't rescue the boat under its own power we decided to abandon ship and told Vamoose that we would like a rescue. We also turned off all electronics except for navigation lights and 12V outlets to keep the Iridium Go tracking device on, updating its position on the Predict Wind app, in hopes of arranging a tow from shore. Roughly two hours into the event, the port ama started to fall apart, with about 8’ of it tearing away between the beams. She began listing even more to port. We packed our small dry bags with passports, boat papers, some personal gear and waited on deck with our ditch bag, handheld VHF and EPIRB, ready to board the dinghy. By daylight Vamoose appeared on the horizon. A little while later they were abeam of us, striking all of their sails. At this point Buddy began listing even more and it was clear that we had to get off the boat as soon as possible. Vamoose motored well to leeward and let us know by vhf that they were ready for us. Tomasz climbed in first and received all of our gear, then Laura, then myself with the knife ready to cut the painter. Once the painter was cut, it took longer than expected for us to drift away from Buddy, the two drifting back and forth as if attached by bungee cord, probably a minute or two, but that’s not how it felt at the time. Eventually we broke away and drifted to a safe enough distance to board Vamoose. Surprisingly, once drifting away, the 10' dinghy with three adults, 25-30 knots of wind and 10' waves, felt more secure than being on Buddy. Next thing we know the port bow of Vamoose was upon us and we boarded safely aft with all of our gear. The dinghy was left to drift away with Buddy. In communication with observers on land we were told that Buddy's tracker stopped transmission about an hour after we abandoned her, meaning she probably capsized. As far as near tragedies go, it couldn't have gone more smoothly. 29 hours later, borrowed clothes and new friends, we were safely in Bermuda having dinner at the White Horse Inn.
In discussions with the designer/builder, John Patterson, he confirmed that there was a foam filled compartment from the forward beam to the bow and another from the aft beam to the stern of each ama. This means that the forward compartment was breached into the central compartment of the ama, allowing a lot of water into it at once. We never saw anything floating nearby as it was still dark and too dangerous to investigate underwater and to leeward. We felt it was wise to stay put and be prepared to board the dinghy which was ready with a single painter to be released. A lot went through my head at the time for getting Buddy to port on her own bottom. I considered cutting the rigging away to reduce weight and windage aloft, but there’s a lot of danger in doing that with steel rigging on the windward ama. Getting out there for the operation would have been dangerous (Buddy’s trampoline only goes half way across to the ama for launching and retrieving the dinghy). The other idea was to partially flood the windward ama to counter the weight of the breached one, but that too would be very risky and something about adding more water at that time made me very uncomfortable. Another idea was to cut the port ama off and go proa, but there was no way to do that with what we had on board, as it would have required sawing away underwater if we wanted to keep the mast up. Still too dangerous. These were fleeting ideas though, and the #1 priority was getting off safely, which we achieved. Once we heard that the tracker stopped transmitting, I don’t think any of us had regrets about our decision to abandon Buddy, and live to sail another day. She was a beautiful trimaran though.
The technologies that made this rescue possible need to be noted here. Without them, we would have had to be rescued by the Coast Guard, in whatever capacity they chose, as opposed to sailing into Bermuda under spinnaker with some of our possessions and all of our bodies intact.
At the helm station we had a tablet in a waterproof case. Using Navionics on the tablet, it showed Vamoose’s position on AIS. The AIS transmission allowed them to sail directly to our position, not wasting a minute, and in light of the likely capsize, all those minutes counted. Without these technologies working so well, this could have been a much more complicated and potentially tragic story. If you ever wondered if they were worth getting for your next offshore passage, the answer is a resounding YES!
Many thanks to Laura and Tomasz for remaining calm and working together as a team during this crisis situation, and a thousand thank you’s to Geoff Manchester, William Dresser, Chris Lash and Tim McKenna for rescuing us on board their vessel Vamoose.
Below is a picture I look from the dinghy as we drifted away.
-Ryan Finn

Buddy RIP.jpg
 

Kenny Dumas

Super Anarchist
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489
PDX
Well done
I would think that in windless conditions, the flooded ama would be floated by the foam ends, so it must have been driven under by windage. The photo shows the slack halyards blowing over the sunken ama, so she was tripping over it. Weird, I’d expect it to drift down wind with the dragging ama to weather
 

jdazey

Member
485
162
Kingston, WA
From the Scuttlebutt article: "The conditions were 15-foot breakers with 53 knot gusts recorded".

I expect a J133 has the ability to monitor wind speed. Looking at all the photos, I see no reason to doubt their account.
 

tp#12

Member
136
40
On the water
That’s quite the ordeal, thank you and the owner for sharing.

That AMA has been absolutely smashed by whatever it was they hit. Losing the sealed buoyancy compartments was the critical factor in this being very serious as opposed to something you could limp home with, it would seem.

Well done to everyone involved. Good decisions and a safe response
 




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