CAL 2-46' ketch in a knock down

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by Light, Jan 17, 2007.

  1. Light
    Joined: Jan 2007
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    Location: Santa Cruz, CA

    Light New Member

    We have been updating and reworking our Cal 46 we bought over a year ago now. We have future blue water cruising in mind, as well as liveaboard intentions. As a newby ocean sailor, I am interested in all things safety and preparing for the worst case. My husband has years of sailing experience, but I am off doing my own research for my own peace of mind. With recent knock downs/roll-overs in the news, I am interested in how to refit our boat to be able to survive such a hit. What do I need to be looking at?
    Thanks!
     
  2. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Knock downs don't happen often, but can. Most cruisers don't see the sea conditions which may knock them on their beam ends, but it does happen.

    What must be remembered is this simple truth, that the millions of miles, under the keels of thousands of cruisers, aren't news worthy, because they didn't get sunk, knocked down or other ill event.

    It would be nice to have prepared for every eventuality, but this is hardly possible and have room to stow your stuff too.

    Your boat has a fair amount of windage, large ports and a pretty vulnerable deckhouse structure. Storm shutters for those ports and a stout companionway at both ends of the house will make you much more secure in a big blow. The best advise is watch the weather and try not to let a schedule dictate your passages across green water. This point alone can save your life, as many have tried to make a port for scheduling reasons, just to get caught in weather that could have been waited out.

    Carry spares of every sort, regularly run MOB drills practicing recovery techniques. Use you safety equipment. A fancy tether can't help if it's stowed in a locker. Maintain a constant watch and be aware of your and other vessels position in relation to your own position. Keep your friends and family abreast of your planned schedule, including spur of the moment revisions, so they can contact you or authorities if you don't arrive where and when you said you would.

    There are many books on outfitting and cruising in deep water. Try the BoatDesign book store or your favorite book seller. Cruising is a wonderful life, enjoy and sail safe. White knuckled helm sessions are for big budget ocean racers and aren't much fun, unless you like breaking equipment, the backs of your crew and bashing your boat into a short life span. Nothing can't wait 24 hours, so that a big low pressure area can clear the scene so you can have a safe, uneventful passage. You'll still get your thrill rides, from time to time, but you don't have to go looking for a butt kicking.
     
    Angélique, Doug Lord and marshmat like this.
  3. RHough
    Joined: Nov 2005
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    Location: BC Summers / Nayarit Winters

    RHough Retro Dude

    Hear Hear!

    Could you post this in the Seaworthiness thread? :) Some people seem to think that to be seaworthy, a boat must be able to sail through hurricanes with the waves broadside ... :rolleyes:
     
  4. eos2voyage
    Joined: Jul 2008
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    Location: Australia

    eos2voyage New Member

    looking at buying a CAL246

    Hiya,

    As you have recently bought a Cal246 and getting her ready for the big trip can I ask you what you tink of her so far? All the age old stuff I can find on the web claims them to be a good seaworthy design that was built for passage making.

    My instincts though, say she has too much windage, too much uptop when a large wave might hit from the side, too much glass area and a pilot house with the main keel stepped mast going through it so that, should the mast fail, it could well take the weak looking pilot house with it. Also the rudder is not skeg mounted to protect it and give it strength. The side decks are narrow with the strouds right in the middle meaning poor working decks for crew to traverse in bad weather!!

    On the plus side it is a heavy boat (15 tonnes) so I assume it has a lot down below. The keel is long and encapsulated, the freeboard is high with bulwarks up front to make it a dry boat and lets face it the big draw card is it is designed for comfortable living. But is it safe? How can it have a reputation for being a deep sea passage maker if it is not really seaworthy? Would putting lexon plastic shutters over the large windows be sufficient to stop a big green wave breakin through the windows? Also why did they design it with sliding windows if it is designed for ocean crossings?? Was it to pass out the Camparis to the crew?

    Should I go elsewhere and look for a more seaworthy design or can I put my trust in this one and enjoy the benefits of a comfortable liveaboard as I expect to spend a good few years aboard. Anyone know of any particular issues to look for on these boats like osmosis etc.

    Thanks for any comments, Colin
     
  5. eos2voyage
    Joined: Jul 2008
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    Location: Australia

    eos2voyage New Member

    Just to add to my concerns I was talking to a fellow yesterday who was rescued in the Pacific when as crew aboard a Roberts 38 they got caught by a deep Pacific Low in huge seas and 70knot winds. The boat got rolled and lost the engine, the sails got ripped to pieces, the rudder went, then all the ports got broken in. The skipper went below and locked himself in his cabin apparently he totally got freaked out and left it to the crew to handle. The boat was still afloat, still together but in a real bad way. Eventually the skipper put out a mayday call and they abandoned the boat. The main crunch for that decision was when the ports all got blown out by one of many side on massive waves.By this time the boat was lying a-hull. My friend, who was one of the crew, actually felt the Mayday call was one level too high and that with help they could have made the vessel safe.There was however a forecast for Force 11-12 for the next three days to continue.

    It made me sit up and think more seriously about the possibility of ports getting broken. The ports in question were perspex. I do not know any more specific details than that though.

    Interesting to note that when the huge cargo tanker pulled up beside them the skipper was the first to get off without looking once behind him!!!
    Colin
     
  6. gspxpac03
    Joined: Jan 2009
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    Location: Pasadena

    gspxpac03 New Member

    Rudder, Rudder, Rudder

    This past summer I sailed our Cal 2-46 in the Pacific Cup race to Hawaii - The boat performed amazingly! We went a little overboard with our prep of the boat; full compliment of Pattison D4 carbon/kevlar headsails, carbon fiber oversized spin poles and a full arsenal of new spinakers, new lightweight engine, and other weight reductions etc... end result was a top speed of 13.4 kts!!!

    In gusts to 40+ kts it was quite a battle to keep the Cal 2-46 from rounding up and knocking down - My biggest suggestion would be to consider enlarging your rudder. But then again most people wouldn't push a Lapworth cruiser to these limits! Not to toot my own horn, but toot toot! We sailed the ol' dog hard and it seemed to prove its seaworthiness over and over!

    A GREAT BOAT, THANKS BILL LAPWORTH FOR SOME GREAT MEMORIES!!!!
     
  7. PortTacker
    Joined: Nov 2008
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    Location: Oregon USA

    PortTacker Junior Member

    A seaworthy boat certainly should! But a smart cruiser tries NOT to do that!
     
  8. PortTacker
    Joined: Nov 2008
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    Location: Oregon USA

    PortTacker Junior Member

    A good friend (and fellow racing sailor) had one for over 20 years.
    I loved that boat! Great boat. He and his wife sailed her all over the Pacific, including through some serious stuff on the PNW coast, things like spending a couple days laying off in bad weather waiting for a chance to cross a bar, stuff like that. (They did have covers for those large windows, although I am not aware they ever used them.)
    I'd hook you up with them, but they're off to parts unkown.

    My first thought when reading your post was that you were asking about the interior, not making sure the boat itself is prepared. My answer to that would be simple, everything stowed, all the time. Make sure every single locker and stowage place latches, locks, or otherwise has secure methods (even bungee nets etc) of retaining contents in a knockdown. Murphy's law - the day you get lax is the day that squall catches you with all sail up... Knockdowns do happen, all of my offshore experience is racing or deliveries, so we push the weather windows a bit - I've been knocked down dozens of times, a couple severely (while racing.) Usually it's just a nuisance, everything on the high side relocates itself to the low side, noisily. Stuff gets broken. Once saw a laptop secured to the nav virtually exploded by a pair of binocs that had been left on shelf instead of holstered. If you happened to be offwatch in a lowside bunk, you can get hurt by stuff falling 16 feet. So we generally follow the everything stowed, all the time, rule when at sea.
     
  9. pkoken
    Joined: Mar 2003
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    Location: Cruising Hawaii

    pkoken S/V Samadhi V

    Great boat, but BIG windows.

    Those windows are a liability, if one pops out in the wrong conditions things are going pear shaped RIGHT THEN. Not saying you will encounter these conditions, but if you do it's too late to start to think about it then!

    Trashman was lost because of a failed window, it does happen.
     
  10. thataway4
    Joined: Apr 2005
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    Location: Pensacola, FL

    thataway4 New Member

    I sailed a Cal 46 about 40,000 miles, and always felt that the boat was seaworthy. We replaced the windows with 3/8" polycarbonate (UV and scratch resistant). The windows were over lapped by 1.5" on the fiberglass. As to the narrow decks--not really a problem. The companionway was drop in slides and were secure. We never had control problems with the boat--but a trick in heavy weather is to have the engine ticking over to always give water flow past the rudder even in heavy beam or aft seas. We have many friends who own Cal 46's and it is one of the most popular boats for circumnavigations. The acummulative experience of ocean passagemaking is many hundreds of thousands of miles in the Cal 46. We choose that boat specifically after already having sailed well over 100,000 miles. Robert Perry once said that the Cal 46 would be high on his list of circumnavigations. Many have built shutters for the windows, but rarely used them. We sailed a Force 50, which has equally large windows across the Atlantic in a full storm, with 65 plus knots of winds, and seas over 40 feet/breaking--rolled to 90 degrees several times, and never had a widow problem. We had pre cut plywood and strong backs to fit over the windows if one broke. But I have seen small port holes break the glass under the right conditions. As to the mast taking out the deck house--there is an aluminum box structure which goes from the mast partner area, down into the deck, and to where the chain plates are located, so this is one metal structure. The boats are relitatively short rigged, and dismasting seems to be rare in the Cal 46.

    Bob Austin
     
  11. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    gonzo Senior Member

    I've been knocked down and capsized a couple of times, maybe more :). Last time was April 2009 in the Southern Caribbean. The most important thing is to not have any loose stuff. I always have all the gear, food, etc. locked down. I hear and read about people getting hurt and having a mess after. Particularly worrying is when most or all the food is ruined. I push boats to the limit, specially when I am sailing solo, so this may never happen to you.
     
  12. thataway4
    Joined: Apr 2005
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    Location: Pensacola, FL

    thataway4 New Member

    If I had capsized a boat several times, I would be looking for another boat--and perhaps honing up on my sailing skills.

    Yes, in severe storms, I have been over as much as 90 degrees, but the boat self righted--the only "causality" was a television set, which was well secured with bungee cords, which went flying. It still worked after the "crash". Certainly any boat which goes to sea, should have loose objects secured at all times.

    Bob Austin
     
  13. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    It's been is different boats. I believe my sailing skills are much above average. As with motorcycles, skateboards, surfing, etc. you are not pushing the envelope unless you wipe out and get hurt on a regular basis. However, for common sailing, capsizing is not a common occurrence.
     
  14. Cory Charlton
    Joined: Sep 2017
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    Location: San Diego

    Cory Charlton New Member

    I know this is an old thread but I'm fairly certain the boat the OP mentions is the boat my family cruised on during my childhood and I'm interested in an update. Please contact me if you're still around @Light.
     

  15. pro from dover
    Joined: Feb 2012
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    Location: el lay

    pro from dover New Member

    Just add a few more bags of cement under the cabin sole. That's what Lapworth did when the boats were first launched.
     
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