Rainmaker in trouble.

Discussion in 'Multihulls' started by Doug Lord, Jan 30, 2015.

  1. Doug Lord
    Joined: May 2009
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    Location: Melbourne, Florida

    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    The Gunboat "Rainmaker" is in trouble off the east coast. This is what Peter Johnstone has to say on MA:
    UPDATE: The crew has been lifted off the boat and Johnstone and the insurer are coordinating her salvage.

    Please say a prayer for RAINMAKER’s crew.

    RAINMAKER was dismasted today 36 hours into her passage out of the Gunboat yard about 200 miles SE of Hattaras. From the very brief and patchy sat phone call, and various brief texts, the following is all we have been told:

    *Everyone is accounted for aboard, including the owner, his son, and three professional crew.
    *The rig was promptly cut away.
    *The boat was not holed.
    *At the last update there were no injuries.

    Conditions are evidently quite severe. It is not uncommon for the cold NW winds to accelerate over the Gulf Stream to windspeeds well above what may show on grib files. They have a large South swell, and are faced with deteriorating conditions with a building NW breeze in the Gulf Stream. Waves and swells have been observed from onboard to be getting worse over the course of the day.

    An onboard decision has been made to be airlifted off of the boat. The US Coast Guard expects to be on site within 30 minutes.

    These people are a part of our Gunboat family. Please say a prayer for the safe recovery of the RAINMAKER crew and the safety of the USCG rescue team that has been dispatched. An airlift is not an easy operation in any conditions, never mind these conditions. The Atlantic in February is a merciless place.

    Praying for their safe recovery and return.

     
  2. rcnesneg
    Joined: Sep 2013
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    Location: Utah

    rcnesneg Senior Member

    Oh no! I hope they recover it without incident!

    For those wondering, This is Rainmaker. A Gunboat 55.

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Corley
    Joined: Oct 2009
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    Corley epoxy coated

    It might be rough out there but people seem to abandon their boats at the drop of a hat these days. The things that struck me A) the rig was cut away safely b) the boat was not holed (c) the systems onboard the boat have not failed d) no injuries onboard. I can tell you us poor folks attempt to get back under our own steam wherever possible if we lose a rig. We ask our little ships to fight for us but we don't fight for them instead trust insurance and salvage? Maybe I'm just old fashioned.
     
  4. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    Location: Milwaukee, WI

    gonzo Senior Member

    I totally agree with you. There is nothing unsafe about a dismasted boat far from shore. Make some coffee, play cards and wait out the weather. Then jury rig it and go home.
     
  5. warwick
    Joined: Jan 2012
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    Location: papakura south auckland new zealand

    warwick Senior Member

    what has happened to self reliance.
     
  6. outside the box

    outside the box Previous Member

    +1
    Irens design PJ built the human element is often the lighter link in the chain of events.
    Hoping for a quick selvage.
     
  7. Doug Lord
    Joined: May 2009
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    Funny how there is always such a rush to judgement when something like this happens and NOBODY knows the facts!
     
  8. Corley
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    Corley epoxy coated

    Doug, we have enough facts before us to make a reasonable judgement. You and Peter are entitled to your opinion but mine remains that it was a judgement call that I don't agree with.

    The attitude of leave it to salvage and insurance will mean ultimately jacked up insurance premiums for everyone who wants to sail a multihull offshore. It probably wont put off people who can afford a Gunboat but will be bad news for the rest of us.
     
  9. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    The only way you have enough facts is to invent them. It may turn out that you're right but if it does it's just pure luck. I lived and cruised on the water for the first 20 years of my life and there are so many things that can go wrong it's just plain nuts to condemn a family and crew without knowing the whole story. I'm surprised you would do this.
     
  10. Corley
    Joined: Oct 2009
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    Corley epoxy coated

    The notes I've listed above are facts listed in the original post by Peter Johnstone and in light of them in my personal opinion I think it's a poor call. Your frothy mouthed fanboy behaviour convinces me of nothing, I look forward to reading the skippers report and his justification for his decision.
     
  11. Richard Woods
    Joined: Jun 2006
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    Richard Woods Woods Designs

    Those who say they would stay on the boat probably haven't ever been in a survival situation with their family members. I would wait until you have before making judgement calls.

    If your house is on fire do you say "I'll put it out", or call the fire department - even if it is only a small fire and you have a hose and water on hand.

    More relevant questions to discuss are: Why were they out there? Everyone in N America knows what the east coast weather is like right now.

    Another is: People think Gunboats are the ultimate multihulls. I believe that in the last year there have been two masts broken and one rudder, and I had heard that bulkheads had cracked on another. Doesn't sound a very good record to me.

    Richard Woods
     
  12. cavalier mk2
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    cavalier mk2 Senior Member

    Why be out there is the big question.....now they know Gunboats aren't bullet proof....
     
  13. Corley
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    Corley epoxy coated

    Makes you wonder whether delivery crew schedules were what influenced their decision to depart as was the case with the loss of the Alpha catamaran "Be good too"?
     
  14. gonzo
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    gonzo Senior Member

    I have sailed through nine hurricane force winds and many strong gales. Never abandoned a boat, but had to beach one that was leaking badly. I found some guys doing road work to help drag it up the beach and eventually fixed it. Seamanship is something people take less pride on than in the past. The idea that sat-phones and EPIRBS can get a rescue crew in short time makes people careless and lazy.
     
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  15. cavalier mk2
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    cavalier mk2 Senior Member

    Man made schedules are pretty ridiculous when it comes to the weather which doesn't care about the calender. I've been in a few survival situations but coastal cruising you are the man on the scene as nobody can get there in time but you...when our mast went do to a previous owner hardware mistake a tug called the coasties (mast took out our antenna) who showed up. We were out of gas and sparkplugs with a lee shore approaching but the guard wouldn't give us a tow as it was within the boundaries of a Vessel Assist operator....it was his birthday, he was based 2 hours away and he didn't want to come out. The coasties decided they could run to get us gas but not run to get the plugs so we coaxed the tow guy out, wish we hadn't..... the coasties would shout to my crew everytime I went down below "what is your Dad doing?" We had a great laugh pondering telling them I was dumping 10 keys of cocaine in case they boarded but really I was fetching the canoe sailing rig to step to keep us off the beach because the tow really was 2 hours away. We finally sorted out that the coasties were undertrained kids so let them play fetch doing man overboard drills with one of our fenders....save yourselves, the help might not be able to....
     
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