Sailing scares me & "Kids these days"- your pick.

Discussion in 'All Things Boats & Boating' started by bntii, Jan 20, 2011.

  1. TeddyDiver
    Joined: Dec 2007
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    Location: Finland/Norway

    TeddyDiver Gollywobbler

    Agree with Gonzo..
     
  2. Submarine Tom

    Submarine Tom Previous Member

    You would.



    (Kidding...)


    -Tom
     
  3. jehardiman
    Joined: Aug 2004
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    Location: Port Orchard, Washington, USA

    jehardiman Senior Member

    Yep, 5 feet under the keel makes me a lot more nervous than 5000. And one should avoid sea buoys that mark the entrance to shipping channels like the plague. Approach them like someone is waiting in ambush for you.

    Really, ocean crossing in a well found yacht is easier than coastal maneuvering. Less worry about tidal effects,set and drift, or unmarked shoals and obstructions. Offshore the seaway is less steep and confused (except in certian well known places), much more rolling and easy.

    Just stay clear of the great circle shipping routes and sea buoys, don't rush to make a late/night time landfall, have a radar detector/enhancer, satnav weatherfax, current charts for all expected landfalls, two GPS's nowadays. All the real work is done before you leave port anyway...hand-over-hand the running lines, be sure of the standing rigging, have the sails/engine in good shape, everything stowed for a knockdown, bowse down the ground tackle so it won't shift, etc.
     
  4. gonzo
    Joined: Aug 2002
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    gonzo Senior Member

    I think that learning small boat handling first is a good thing. That would of course mean close to shore. Learning on bigger boats, or sailing ships, is harder and more dangerous close to shore. Most losses are by wrecking on the coast or reefs.
     

  5. Tim B
    Joined: Jan 2003
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    Location: Southern England

    Tim B Senior Member

    I think the key here is if you are sailing offshore (and no, I don't have experience) don't be afraid to reef deep and reef early. You won't get your ego massaged if you turn up dead at the end.

    Racing boats regularly break in the open ocean, for the same reason that F1 cars fall apart sometimes. The "drivers" are pushing the limit all the time. On a cruising yacht, don't push so hard, you'll break less.

    I think there is also a lot to be said for simplicity. After all, it can't break if it isn't there! In the same vein, make any control mechanism (eg. autopilot) oversized, and make sure you understand every bit of it. APs seem to break for a pastime, so you might even carry a spare.

    There is also a mental element, and I think that this is more important than anything else. As soon as you panic, you have pretty much had it, as long as you can stay calm, you'll work your way through it (after all the first reaction to any emergency (generally depowering) can be an almost stock response).

    The problem with sailing inshore for a long time is that you will either get confident (that's fine) OR be scared to go out on a boat, because you know what can happen. There is a fine balance between knowing your limits and not being confident enough to find out where they are. However, patience and a relaxed attitude will go a long way to safe and happy sailing, and I often wonder why that isn't mentioned more often.

    Cheers,

    Tim B.
     
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