Sell up and sail

G

Guest

Guest
We want to leave May/June next year and are now on the real wish/need list. Our boat is a Bav38, not perfect but we love her. Our list of jobs to do is 4 A4 pages long, but hey guys how about some advice before we go to the Boat show clutching our pennies. Our wish/need list includes, watermaker (boat only holds 300 litres, we could make it more but that would take away stowage) 406 EPRIB, inverter, better alernator, SSB, Weatherfax, portable computer, parahcute anchor or Jordon series drogue or both?, Crusing chute or spinnaker or both, trysail (we've got the inner forestayand storm jib), good ball bearing mainsheet system, bimini, windvane (which one), Wind/water generator, solar panels, if we buy the solar panels, should we have a stainless arch at the back to mount them, along with the wind gen, simple things like manual fresh water pumps and a salt water one, and should we got for legs for the boat, it can be useful to dry out. Any thoughts would really be welcome and if anyone has copperbottomed their boats, their feelings would be most appreciated.
 

charles_reed

Active member
Joined
29 Jun 2001
Messages
10,413
Location
Home Shropshire 6/12; boat Greece 6/12
Having started down the same track 18 months ago -

unless you're planning to kick off with ocean passagemaking: leave the watermaker till later

biminis are a necessity as you get farther S
solar panels are very desirable, mount on an arch with 40 degrees of angular variability, get them in Portugal.
up your alternator (and belt drive) to 30-35% of your total battery capacity and fit a smart regulator such as the Adverc
fit a pulse charger which will totally recharge your batteries in 24 hours
get a wind generator, if you can sleep through Concorde takeoff look at the Airmarine.
windvane steering is great, but only for offshore and not for boats that surf - for your boat the Monitor or Pacific will probably be the best
fit a stern-anchoring rode of tape on a reel.

Sea-water, just into the galley - it's excessive to convert all your water pumps to manual, just turn off the power to the pump.

SSB is great for chat on the nets, but expensive and needs one of you to get the licence - talk to John Finch of RT Training on 02392 462122

Solent jib important (for windward work) if you're going to sail above 50 degrees N or S.

Spi essential for downwind, assymetric useful for light reaching but "cruising chute" is a poor (IMHO) compromise. Next to the roller jib a spi is my most used headsail.
I believe, for any but longkeelers, paranchors to be suicidal - get your weather forecasting right.

Up your groundtackle - 100m of chain and a choice of plough and pick anchors - apart from the CQR, Delta and Bruce are useful.
Look at Harken Ti-lite for the mainsheet race.
The Mc Murdo EPIRB is best value for money (I bought my ACR in the States before McMurdo brought out their latest version).
Inverter - what for - power the laptop off a constant current device, talk to RYD Boatowners catalogue 01797 270427.

Any other questions e-mail me direct - but don't miss the Rias Altas and Biaxas
 

BrianJ

New member
Joined
24 Oct 2001
Messages
888
Location
Melbourne/Australia
You cannot get much better advice than Charles has provided. The only point I make is about wind generators...they are noisy and do upset your neighbours.
Both of you should have qualifiations for your HF , which you must have.
Where will you cruise ?
Do yo already have the liferaft ? . Yes the EPIRB is important. (406) Tell us your plans and then perhaps we can expand your shopping list.
BrianJ
 
G

Guest

Guest
Thanks for all you advice. We cruise around Jersey/France. Our longest trip so far was to Isle of Man and we beat all the way there in F6, horrible but only one screw went missing and we discovered two stanchion leaks. We plan to go to the Med and then probably across to Caribbean next Nov/Dec, if we like it, then we will carry on up the east coast of USA, then into the pacific either from trucking from Thunder Bay, or back down through the P. canal. It is hard to get the priorities right and we can't have everything (we do have liferaft and other normal coastal safety gear, including jacklines on deck and we have some that we can attach in the cockpit so that you are clipped on from the minute you start coming up from the cabin). I think my husband will email you direct Charles. Glad to hear that you are out there doing it, did you find that that last few months just flew by?
 

Twister_Ken

Well-known member
Joined
31 May 2001
Messages
27,585
Location
'ang on a mo, I'll just take some bearings
watermakers - mixed blessing?

Never used one myself, but have discussed them with several owners.

The general opinion seemed to be that if you have one, you have to use it regularly, and frequently. If they are not used then it's quite a palaver to maintain/ recommission. They are also prone to breakdown, so make sure you have spares and consumables aboard.

For coastal cruising and short hops they are not neccessary, and on some routes/seasons you can expect to replenish by catching rain.

Maybe the answer is to put off buying until you are about to go 'oceanic'. That way, you'll set off with a new watermaker rather than one that is two or three years old (and you'll benefit from any mods made between Earls Court and then.) Depending on where you set out from, you might well save money compared with rip-off Britain prices, and you might be able to save or recover VAT as well.
 

grahama

Member
Joined
12 Nov 2001
Messages
104
Location
Boat Holyhead, Me Chester
People seem to be put off by wind generator noise. Well we have an Airmarine unit which enables you, so long as you install a switch into the circuit, to effectively turn the unit off - it works by shorting the outputs from the geni - after breaking from the battery charging circuit!!. We turn ours of at night if the predicted wind means a noisy night. (OK so your not charging for a few hours but there are still 14 hours when you are.) And of course you aren't keeping you neighours awake either. Overall ours does a great job.
 

steveh

New member
Joined
16 May 2001
Messages
214
Location
UK
Just as a matter of interest, why do you think para-anchors are suicidal ?
 

iangrant

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Joined
16 May 2001
Messages
3,272
Location
By the Sea
My aerogen is just about silent, giving up to 15 amps of charge in a BIG wind - normal rate is about 3 amps

Ian
 

charles_reed

Active member
Joined
29 Jun 2001
Messages
10,413
Location
Home Shropshire 6/12; boat Greece 6/12
I know the Pardey's swear by them, but the underwater configuration of their boat is nowadays uncommon, being a long-keel with integral rudder.
For this reason their recommendations have to be put into context.

The theory behind the use of a parachute anchor is that you deploy it on a scope which ensures that both boat and anchor are at the top of a wave at the same time and this synchronisation is maintained.
Ideally this is 2 wavecrests away, to allow sufficient hysteresis in the cable and, usually, the anchor is deployed from the bows.

Most know insufficient of the theory or the practice of using paranchors and practical demonstration is too hazardous.

This very scenario brings your first danger - that of severely damaging a balanced spade rudder - which is increasingly the common method of rudder attachment in modern boats.

The second problem is that to maintain sychronisation during the course of a storm you will have to change the length of scope as the wave period changes.
This would be little problem if during the course of a storm the wave period increased - in fact it does not, it decreases.

The third factor is that involved in the history of a storm - the first stage, with the wind building and the seas following suit are the best scenario for the use of a paranchor, the second stage when the seas are being "compressed" into a shorter period by the wind force with breaking crests demands that you helm the boat to avoid the breakers and progressively shorten scope to keep boat and paranchor on the tops of waves makes the device less feasible, but it is the third stage, when the wind drops, the seas become more turbulent as the result of the loss of pressure and you desperately need to bring in the anchor to avoid being a sitting duck for the breakers, where the real disadvantages of the device become apparent.

You will appreciate that I'm speaking here of storms in the higher end of the 1 min mean of 34-63 knots.

The big disadvantages are:
1. Never having the opportunity to practise, IMHO anyone can deploy the parachute and adjust bridles in a F7 - but will not be able to in a F9.
2. The change in conditions during a storm - the paranchor definitely offers benefits in the first stage, but that is when few B2/3s occur in any case. It becomes an increasing liability in the later stages when wave damage is most likely to occur.

In truth most boats, given sufficient sea-room will survive a storm - the weak link is the crew.
Storm tactics should, first and foremost, be designed to reduce crew fatigue.

In the early part heave to or lie ahull to hoard stamina.
In the later stages active tactics, especially in light displacement boats, appears to be the safest course, especially in current prone areas such as the Gulf Stream and Bass Strait.

By far the best is to avoid storms by having a fast boat and knowing sufficient meteorology to get it right.
I will admit there is a place for drogues, I've used them twice behind RNLI tows.

Ironically sailboats seek depressions to provide motive power - but budding sailors are taught more about ColRegs than forecasting.

We see interminable, self-important postings about irrelevant subjects like ensign colour and overtaking vessels, but nothing about the differences between European and American computer simulations, about grib files or tropical easterly waves in the N Atlantic basin.

The trouble is - whenever you get two metmen together you'll get three expert opinions.
 

steveh

New member
Joined
16 May 2001
Messages
214
Location
UK
Thankyou for a most informative reply. Having recently purchased a catamaran I'm interested in the use of paranchors even thougth in my sailing its very unlikly that I would ever need one.Your points regarding the retrieval and adjustment seem very relevant but while 2 wave crests may be ideal would it not be possible to increase to say 3 waves. This would still be effective as the wave train decreases. I appreciate this would require very long warps!
Having seen small boats on moorings (one of them mine) in the open sea where I live, survive some quite large waves and wind, it seams the boat is quite happy all the time it is bouyant and nose to wave. As a survival tactic, without a strong crew, it still seams preferable. If I ever have the misfortune to sail into a storm I may well change that opinion but I think I would have one handy anyway ( along with some strong drogues).
 
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