The perils of edgy design offshore

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by CutOnce, Jul 18, 2011.

  1. MikeJohns
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    MikeJohns Senior Member

    The fact that they had completed several of those races without any problem probably lead to overconfidence. The boat set out on an overnight offshore race with that storm forecast and they were aware of it before they left.

    The next issue is that they didn't appear to understand the crafts vulnerability, had they done so they might have chosen a different course of action than lying ahull and letting the boat encounter a beam sea even if the sea was relatively benign in their experience.

    A concerning issue in this thread is the very apparent initial denial of some posters that there is any inherent dangerous design feature. Or that such facts are eminently predictable. That's in direct contradiction of understanding a vessels vulnerability and compensating for it with skill.
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    BATAAN Senior Member

    1. Don't be stupid.
    2. **** happens.
    3. Bring beer.
  3. Paul J. Nolan
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    Paul J. Nolan Junior Member

    19 pages.

    Never has more been written about less.

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    BATAAN Senior Member

    See 3 rules above, and amen.
  5. GTO
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    GTO Senior Member

    The thread was interesting to me.

    "The perils of edgy design offshore" can include sudden death in common, not-to-be-unexpected, conditions.

    The various discussions of stability and effects of boat design on said property also captured my attention.

    Human psychology being what it is, I think that there will always be "edgy design". If people just wanted to go fast, they could hop on an airliner, where you go fast but it all seems so safe. What people are really looking for is that "nearly out of control, on the edge of sudden disaster, but I don't think it will really happen" feeling. The same feeling amusement rides try so hard to achieve, without putting someone at risk of actual harm.

    It's always bad when the pursuit of that feeling ends in disaster, but obviously a lot of people seem to need the rush. So no matter how many rules and regs are created, people like that will keep on being "edgy".
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    BATAAN Senior Member

    Motorcycles are an example. Marketed with risk.
  7. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    The Perils of Edgy Weather in Any Boat

    For reference: Pyewacket-Roy Disneys Max Z86-one of the 'winningest' ocean racers ever:

    From Latitude 38--

    Today's Photos of the Day(see below) are of Roy Disney's 'new' Volvo 100-ish Pyewacket, all primed to crush the monohull elapsed-time record in next month's TransPacific Yacht Race. You might remember that she started life as a MaxZ86 and, after the last TransPac, was donated to the School of Sailing and Seamanship at Orange Coast College. Disney's next venture was the Morning Light project, in which a group of young sailors will be racing a TP52 in this year's TransPac for a feature film he's doing on the subject. He was so inspired by the kids that he decided to do another TransPac himself, with a much modified Pyewacket.

    It's not as if the boat wasn't fast before. We were lucky enough to race on her last summer in the Long Point Series from Newport to Catalina and back. Even then, she'd sail upwind at 11 knots in just six knots of wind, and would close reach at 17-18 knots in just 16 knots of true wind. It was amazing. But think what she'll do now that: 1) The front half of the boat was cut off and replaced, increasing her hull length from 86 feet to 96 feet; 2) Her new rig is 145 feet tall; 3) A closely monitored diet resulted in her shedding 7,000 pounds; 4) She's sprouted 8-ft wide deck-level wings; and 5) Her forward rudder has been replaced by two asymmetrical dagger boards amidships, and her full-length 18.5-ft keel foil has been put back on. Sailing team member Scott Easom, who did all of the running rigging for the 'new' and 'old' versions of the boat, and will be part of the TransPac crew, describes the new Pyewacket as being like a Volvo 100. Pyewacket went out sailing for the first time last weekend, and reports are that the results are right on target, as the boat was doing about 14 knots in 8 to 12 knots of wind. Even if the weather conditions for next month's TransPac aren't ideal, it's hard to see her not smashing the elapsed-time record for monohulls.

    A maxi with wings.
    © 2007 Scott Easom

    Some people are griping about Disney making a mess out of the TransPac by engaging in an arms race. We're not buying it. It's been a long time since well-to-do owners have been willing to agree on a top limit on boats, so what he's doing isn't anything new, it's just to a greater degree. As Disney has been one of the great guys in sailing, and in the TransPac in particular, we think everybody should stop whining - and after this year's TransPac, try to get everybody to agree to an upper limit.

    - latitude / rs
    last pic=Kiwi 35

    click on image-

    Attached Files:

  8. Paul B

    Paul B Previous Member

    No, it isn't.

    The boat in the picture isn't even the Max Z86.
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    BATAAN Senior Member

    Day after night after day of sheer terror/thrill ride. What a rush it must be and sorry I never did it.
  10. Paul B

    Paul B Previous Member

    The Lord of all Foiling/Canting/and now Wings is up to his old tricks of changing his posts again, something he claims he doesn't do.

    At least it looks like maybe he has learned something. The "Max Z 86" he showed in the picture was not a Max Z 86.

    So, as a Max Z 86 (before most of the boat was replaced) what races did it win to be "one of the winningest ocean racers ever"?

    Let's see. Built for the 2005 Transpac. Lost line honors to Morning Glory. Corrected in the teens.

    Donated by Roy and sat at the OCC dock until Roy chartered it back for the 2007 TP. Spent the better part of the year in the shed and came out with the new hull, keel, rudder, rig, boards, wings, deck, etc. No longer a Max Z 86.

    Sailed TP 2007. Took line honors. No surprise, it was 20% longer than any other boat in the fleet. Corrected in the teens.

    Was shipped back from HI and sat at the dock at OCC until about a year ago. Seems someone bought it and has had it in a shed since.

    So, these results make this "one of the winningest ocean racers ever"?

    By the way, we're still waiting for the list of ocean racers with wings that are sailing all over the world, as claimed by The Lord earlier in this thread.
  11. Gary Baigent
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    Gary Baigent Senior Member

    Double victory in Med Cup, IBrit Soto 40 team Ngoni (from Sailing Anarchy) - someone should inform them of their incorrect hull design. ;)

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  12. Guillermo
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    Guillermo Ingeniero Naval

    Soto 40: A not so extreme winged design as the KIWI 35's, specially conceived for daylight "cans" racing ( What's your point? :confused:
  13. Ad Hoc
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    Ad Hoc Naval Architect

    So, you're saying this is offshore racing? Well, what do the organisers say?

    "..The racing waters are surrounded on two sides by high, rocky cliffs and scrubby mountains... :confused:

    Agree with G...what's you're point?? :?:
  14. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

  15. sharpii2
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    sharpii2 Senior Member

    Thanks, Doug.

    70 mph squalls are a lot of wind.

    My guess is that it got pinned on its side then hit with a breaker, which pushed her beyond the point of vanishing stability. That could happen to any boat. It happened to mine.

    I had a Siren 17 at the time and was returning from a summer sail on a small lake. A thunderstorm was moving in and I had my severely handicapped brother on board. I desperately wanted to beat the storm in.

    I had the boat less than 50 yards from safety, when we were hit with a sudden squall. Foolishly, I tried to maintain my course. The boat started to heel severely. I let out the main sheet, but it was too late. I told my brother to jump and, after he did, I did too.

    The boat continued its capsize until it was completely turtled. My brother and I swam to shore, which was about a dozen yards away.

    Thanks to my brother in law, who had a runabout, he and I were able to right the boat, bail it out, and have it tied to the dock by dinner time.

    Still, the incident troubled me. I had been out in a far worse blow on Lake Si. Clair (winds gusting to perhaps 55 mph). While trying to reef the mainsail, the halyard untied a flew straight out from the mast, like a pennant.

    With her side to the wind, the boat heeled sharply, perhaps more than 50 degrees, but heeled no more. She rode the seven to nine foot swells like an elevator.

    Why she stayed up right in those conditions, but capsized on the smaller lake in much less wind has troubled me for some time.

    I see two possibilities:

    1.) We were hit with a wind shear, where the wind blows straight down, a possible but highly unlikely event, or

    2.) There was considerably more weight on deck during the small lake incident than there was in the Lake St. Clair one. At the time of the Lake St. Clair incident, I weighed around 150 lbs. and I was by myself. In the small lake incident, I weighed 180 lbs and I had my 170 lb brother on board.

    We were sitting in the cockpit, but the cockpit was of the self draining type.
    In order to keep its sole high enough to drain, the seats had to be high. Once the boat tips beyond a certain point, the weight to windward, which was helping to hold the boat upright, starts to contribute to a capsize.

    My lighter 150 lb self was probably successfully counter weighted by the 145 lb center board. With more than double the weight up on the windward cockpit seat, the poor thing was probably overwhelmed.

    My guess is this is what happened to WINGNUTS. From the excellent photos of her capsized, I can see her keel bulb looks emaciated. At least in comparison to what it is supposed to look like in the presentation drawing. There, it looks like a fat blimp. In the photo, it looks almost like a thick end plate. Maybe ballast was added at one point. But I will not be surprised if it was later subtracted, and then some.

    With less weight in the keel and more weight on deck, the boat likely developed vastly different behavior than in her original state, when hard pressed. Perhaps this is the reason for the behavior discrepancy between how she behaved that night and how Stumble said a boat of the same design had behaved in similar conditions.
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