Sydney Hobart

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by Karsten, Jan 7, 2005.

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    D'ARTOIS Senior Member

    Canting Mess

    I must agree with you. Indeed, the boat was almost after point of no return!!:idea:
  2. Doug Lord

    Doug Lord Guest

    Canting Future

    Seems to me that the failure of Skandias system for whatever reason is being blown way out of proportion. There are canting keel boats now over half way in the Vendee and canting keel boats have had a 20+ year history of ocean sailing.
    It was interesting that when Konica Minolta had trouble even a "famous" sailing writer -Peter Campbell- reported that she had a "massive canting keel". Sail-World and Scutllebutt replayed his story.
    Coupled with the Skandia story canting keels became unsafe ,dangerous etc.
    Of course Konica Minolta has a fixed keel not a canting keel...
    The point is that any failure has to be analysed on a case by case basis not as part of a hysteria that could be based on false information-and is at least based on a lack of information.
    Hopefully ,the failures that occured will be analysed and shared with the designers all over the world so that everybody learns something.
    Don't put all canting keel designs/installations "in the same boat" because of one well publicized failure.
  3. Brett Aust

    Brett Aust Guest

    There was more than one canting keel failure...

    Xana retired on the first day due to keel problems. Electronic controls I believe.
  4. brett aust

    brett aust Guest

    Sorry - scrub that. The boat was targe. hmm must be friday...
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    FAST FRED Senior Member

    While much work is being done on finding a method of non distructive testing for Carbon fiber construction , there is NOTHING , yet, but "visual inspection" .

    So maxis will continue to shed keels , and Air Busses will continue to shed their rudders with booring regularity.

    And boat racers will sue designers & mfg as regularly as air lines sue Air Bus.

    At least the racers seldom end up DEAD!

  6. Doug Lord

    Doug Lord Guest

    Proving a point

    Unfortunately, Brett's comments again prove my point about "hysteria" or at least careless "reporting". Targe is the ex-Wild Oats that retired with some kind of electrical system problem that apparently affected all systems on the boat-not a structural failure of the canting keel.She competed in the Pittwater Coffs race immediately after the SH-and came close to winning it-but the newer Wild Oats beat her to it becoming the second canting keel boat to win a major ocean race recently(after Nicorette wining the SH) Dozens(there,now I'm doing it) of fixed keel boats retired for many reasons including electrical,mast failure and structural problems.
    No doubt canting keel systems make an important target because they are on the leading edge of design even after twenty some years having just won one of the worlds toughest ocean races and the Pittwater race.
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    D'ARTOIS Senior Member

    Sidney Hobart/Keel Accidents

    Let's keep in track - nothing has been said about the canting keel itself, nor about "that it is already 20 years in existence" - in theory, yes - but not in living reality. Only over the very recent past, the large racers are equipped with this innovative system.
    "The Vendee Globe is already halfway" says Mr Lord.
    That has nothing to do with the environmental circumstances of the Sidney Hobart, as I said already earlier in this post, the Grand National of yacht racing.
    What I am pointing at is simply this: A racing yacht is designed to go as fast as it can go. And the boy's on the boats do that. If they don't, they may go. Team members are as expendable as football players and an intimate knowledge of the boat they sail on is only achieved after a season or so. That is one.
    On the racing yacht of today, the crew is often unaware when something is going to collapse. A carbon mast goes in seconds, no advance warning. It is boom! - over and out.
    Rigging? It goes like that.
    Are there overload detectors mounted on vital parts? Tell me.
    Is there any kind of pre-warning system mounted or integrated in vital parts of the hull, giving indications of high stresses or undesirable flexing in the hull? Just tell me.
    Some years ago we had a m.o.b. case when one of the crewmembers was pulled overboard because he launched a pail over the side to get some water to wash out something.
    A yacht that moves at full speed through a moving sea is subject to massive
    If you undo - for whatever reasons - the integrity of hull and keel, you may rest assured that another point of failure is created.
    When a mast goes overboard, alas, such things happens - the hull still floats.

    And that's what this post is saying: bit by bit the modern racing yachts are becoming a risk factor, not only for the crew, but also for the coastguard,
    naval forces etc, that has often to go to distant locations to save a crew from a disfunctional yacht. To what purpose? Fodder for the tabloids and lawyers?
    Because that's the future of modern yacht racing. Making them first hazardous and then sueing the people who helped creating the increasing risk factor.
    The long distance racers are fully aware of this. Therefore they will keep a sharp eye on the rig in order not to overload it. Their ambition is to arrive at their destination - the high risk factor is therefore not there. It is in the medium to short distances where the boats are pushed till they break and the more conventional designed boats will profit from the mistakes of the bigger ones.
  8. mistral
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    mistral Senior Member

    Hey Lorsail, take a look at Vendee's boat, there's been two keel failure, Sill et Voila and the guy from Austria (i think his name is Robert Sedleck); it's a huge amount 2 failures in a 20 boats fleet, isn't it??? Think about any other part (mast, rudder,bowsprit, sails) and project this data, think of a 10% dismasted boat in a normal regatta, because VOR 60 ARE built for Vendee, so for such boats it IS a normal regatta!!
    keel failure is not even comparable with a broken mast or boom, or with a splitted bowsprit or an electrical issue, simply because there's a high chance that your boat will SINK losing the keel!!!


    P.S: vendee's guys (and girls) demonstrate us to be able to repair almost evrything during the race, but to have trouble with your keel means that you have to retire immediately, no doubt!
  9. Tripp Gal
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    Tripp Gal Junior Member

    Just an observation to make.

    You are trying to determine the relative "safety" and "integrity" of a system that is being used in the world's toughest races where the skippers do push their boats far harder than the recreational fleet does.

    Canting keel technology isn't bad technology. With that said, owners and designers make tough decisions regarding fail over systems, and overbuilds when they put these boats together. It's risk management 101. Is the risk greater than they are willing to take? If so, they build in safety systems.We aren't privy to those discussions so we do not know exactly what is said in those meetings other than the press releases fed to us.

    Before canting keels there were fin keels being ripped off a boat. Whether it's the BOC or SH or whatever, keels have been ripped off, bulbs have dropped off, and the list goes on. When bulbed keels came out people were ranting about how often those keels were ripped off and how "unsafe" they were. But again there were long discussions between owners and designers about how little engineering is required to get them around the course barring what they considered extreme acts of God.
  10. Doug Lord

    Doug Lord Guest

    Canting Keels

    Well said TG. Canting keel technology should not be indicted because of a few isolated failures on race boats being pushed hard. The failures need to be looked at on a case by case basis. Sil's failure was ,apparently a laminate failure and yet there is a sistership sailing with the same identical system that has not(knock on wood) failed . The failure on Brother,apparently, was caused by a bearing failure. Both boats got the crew to safety.
    And,again, the Vendee is being won by canting keel boats just as was the SH and Pittwater Coffs.Canting keel systems have hundreds of thousands of ocean miles on them; this is fast, reliable, technology that can only be improved as time goes by.
  11. D'ARTOIS
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    D'ARTOIS Senior Member

    Sydney Hobart again

    I was corect in my assumption that the older and smaller boats would profit from the problems of the bigger ones. The 55' Aera was the overall winner.

    Next to that I want to say: what a spectacular sight to see those yachts fighting against 6-7 meters high seas!

    Rest assured that the problems with the canting- or swing keels as they are called here will be only temporarily.
  12. K4s
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    K4s Junior Member

    No joke the boats didnt ruin themselves,if conditions had been easier all would probably have finished.Im not trying to condem the sailers but are reminded of another saying,"A bad tradesman blames his tools",again Blake has been consistantly quoted along the lines of seamanship(good)is the most important member of your crew in any offshore excursion.I dont want to disparage anyones sailing efforts but to blame the boats and by association the designers and builders is in my mind unfair.
    Perhaps if the boats had not been driven as hard as they were they would not have broken.
    Just a thought
  13. Doug Lord

    Doug Lord Guest


    Seems to me the the guys on Skandia and the other raceboats embody the term seamanship in that they went thru horrendous situations yet got everybody home safely-that happened because of the crew and skipper working together.
    As I remember it, both(Konica/Skandia) skippers said they weren't "pushing too hard" whatever that means; it is after all a race.
    But when all hell broke loose they handled themselves in an exemplary way.....
  14. Brett aust

    Brett aust Guest

    Unfortunately, Brett's comments again prove my point about "hysteria" or at least careless "reporting".

    Hysteria or careless reporting, I don't think so. Whatever the reason, if control to a canting keel system is compromised, the complete system can work against you which in turn compromises the vessel.

    Canting keel systems are appearing to suffer (at this point) from reliability issues. Unless improvements are made, these types of incidents are going to continue.

  15. Doug Lord

    Doug Lord Guest

    Canting hysteria

    "Canting keel systems are appearing to suffer(at this point) from reliability issues". Bret, come on! Give me a break!!
    Which canting keel systems? All canting keel systems? Are you deliberately vague?! Why?
    The recent "score":
    Sydney -Hobart structural failure: one canting keel, one fixed keel.
    In the Vendee two canting keels have failed for two different reasons neither of which was similar to the published reason for Skandia's failure.Four other boats have withdrawn for myriad other problems.
    There isn't a single shred of evidence that "canting keel technology" is responsible for these widely different failures. Every case must be analyzed separately and rationally just as they have been in the failures of carbon masts, rudders and fixed keels.
    Again, to focus on these failures given the recent success by canting keelboats and the fact that canting keel boats are leading the Vendee globe is absolutely absurd!!! To knock the whole technology because of a few failures is nuts.To say there is a crisis of reliability belies the extraordinary reliabiliy shown by canting keel boats in the worlds toughest races over the last twenty years.
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