Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Desert Sailing: Heel Angle Question

Question: What is the proper angle of heel for an 34-foot, 11,000 lb. boat sailing across the desert sea?

Is the angle shown above somewhat excessive for the sand and wind conditions shown?

Do you suspect that the rudder would stall out under these circumstances?


At 12:26 AM, August 17, 2006, Blogger Carol Anne said...

Ouch! How did that happen?

You bet the angle of heel is excessive -- the blender needs to be relatively upright to turn out those margaritas.

And we want to help get that boat upright and on the water in time for the Sunrise Regatta -- despite its great creature comforts, it's actually got a pretty fast Portsmouth rating (faster even than an Etchells) and can really give the fleet a run for the money if the winds are stiff.

At 1:57 PM, August 17, 2006, Blogger Pat said...

Dumbledore spent a good chunk of his weekend trying to fix things. Cheech's trailer seems to have failed; Zorro and Dumbledore seem to think that the uprights were too close together and lacking in lateral support (bracing) to withstand sideways stresses. The big tall boat and massive keel that generate stability on the water don't necessarily make for stability on the trailer.

Although there's no doubt some damage, the situation could have been far worse. Had the trailer failed at 70 mph on a highway with a steep embankment a dangerous or tragic situation could have resulted.

Or, if the S2-34 had been parked next to a row of smaller boats and it's 11,000 pounds and tall mast had rolled over onto them, perhaps with a "domino" effect ... that would have disrupted the season for many other sailors and exposed Cheech to a great deal of liability, trouble, and perhaps bad feelings.

Now Cheech needs to get boat and trailer repaired quickly, so that the boat is usable, doesn't suffer further damage, and isn't in the way of parking and moving the other mast-up boats. He'll need to re-design and re-build the trailer so it'll be secure; if it failed while parked, it's not likely to be trustworthy at 70 mph with a quartering cross wind.

And, he may want to evaluate whether the experiment in dry-storing a large boat has been successful and met his needs. Although initially he had the boat in and out of the water often, rumor has it that lately "Cultural Infidel" has had many fewer launches.

At 12:29 AM, August 18, 2006, Blogger Carol Anne said...

Yes, the tragedy could have been great, given that the space next to Cultural Infidel was reserved for longer boats such as Etchells, and Black Magic or one of the other Fleet-31-in-formation boats might have been parked there.

Cheech had a tough choice -- pay exorbitant costs for keeping the boat in a marina (with two of the lake's three marinas being run by monopolist profiteers more interested in the short-term buck than the long-term satisfaction of boat owners, and the third marina being completely full), or the much less expensive option of mast-up storage, with the accompanying hassle of having to launch the boat in order to use it, and unfortunately, also overstraining the trailer -- I'm guessing turbulent winds associated with recent thunderstorms contributed to the crash.

If Cultural Infidel's hull is still sound, I could envision getting the boat temporarily onto another trailer (one would hope without having to engage the services of Overprice Joe's crane) and launching it, and then Cheech and Dumbledore could have a lot of fun with the arc welder to rebuild the trailer. Tadpole and I would probably have fun helping, too.

But then, fantasy gives in to reality -- school has started for Tadpole, and it's about to start for me, and so we won't have time for fun with arc-welding.

At 9:47 AM, August 18, 2006, Blogger Pat said...

Tad checked his high school course catalog. Now that he's a junior, he's eligible to take concurrent enrollment classes at Central NM Community College -- and welding is offered (a practical lab along with a classroom metallurgy course). Perhaps if he can keep his grades and music practices up...?

At 2:45 PM, August 19, 2006, Anonymous AdriftAtSea said...

Welding sounds like a good skill for Tadpole to pick up... he might find it very useful... or his parents might...

Ouch... pavement and sailboats shouldn't mix. I hope that the boat isn't too badly damaged... but rotational accelleration can be greater than gravitational, and there might be some serious damage.


Post a Comment

<< Home