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Thread: Capsize on Reversing broad reach

  1. #1

    Default Capsize on Reversing broad reach

    I am almost 70, so my recent capsize may be partly due to that. I have sailed my homemade TigercatII 17 ft catamaran for nine summers on a 100 acre lake. I was sailing alone in about 15 mph wind and love going fast across the true wind and making sharp reverse tacks across the wind. I do not take the precaution of going close hauled 45 degrees to the true wind before quickly setting the rudders 45 degrees. I think the boat accelerates in this turning maneuver and my rapid 180 degree tack caused the capsize. I can not afford to capsize when my family and friend are with me. Any advice?

    Ted

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Capsize on Reversing broad reach

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Clarke View Post
    I am almost 70, so my recent capsize may be partly due to that. I have sailed my homemade TigercatII 17 ft catamaran for nine summers on a 100 acre lake. I was sailing alone in about 15 mph wind and love going fast across the true wind and making sharp reverse tacks across the wind. I do not take the precaution of going close hauled 45 degrees to the true wind before quickly setting the rudders 45 degrees. I think the boat accelerates in this turning maneuver and my rapid 180 degree tack caused the capsize. I can not afford to capsize when my family and friend are with me. Any advice?

    Ted


    Errrr. . . . . Go slower!

    Being 70 is no impediment at all.

    It's just that you don't have many excuses left. You should know better. Youthful exuberance is all very well, but . . . . . !

    Cheers, and have fun!

    Mike
    Nothing works on an old boat, except the skipper.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Capsize on Reversing broad reach

    "reverse tacks "??

    Do you mean jibes?

    "I do not take the precaution of going close hauled 45 degrees to the true wind before quickly setting the rudders 45 degrees."

    Please elaborate on what this means.

    2 Hulls Dave

  4. #4

    Default Re: Capsize on Reversing broad reach

    My fastest heaading is at 90 degrees to the true wind. I capsized by rapidly turning into the wind for a 180 degree reverse tack. I did the turn quickly but probably did not release tension on the main. I am used to shoving the tiller over 45 degrees for a fast reverse in course across the wind.

    Ted

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Capsize on Reversing broad reach

    OK, so you're tacking from a beam reach to a beam reach.

    Assuming your main is sheeted properly on the original reach and your traveler can run freely to the opposite side of the boat during the tack, you should not have to touch your main. All you have to do is get your body to the new windward side before the mainsail fills. If you really want to play it safe, unsheet the main or travel out some as the sail begins to fill on the new tack because, whereas the apparent wind was quite forward of abeam before the tack, the apparent wind and true wind will be pretty much the same as you complete your tack. This is because the boat speed has slowed significantly during the tack. Unless you unsheet or travel out a little as the sail fills on the new tack, the main will be sheeted too tight until the apparent wind moves back forward as the boat accelerates.

    Does this boat have a jib? If so, how are you handling it during the tack?

    2 Hulls Dave

  6. #6

    Default Re: Capsize on Reversing broad reach

    The boat has Hobie 16 rigging with the battened jib. I don't remember if I released the jib before the sudden 180 degree turn. It flipped about half way into the turn.

    Ted

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Capsize on Reversing broad reach

    I'm actually surprised you can make a 180 tack without going into irons in 10-15 kts. Oh, here's why > Being on a 100 acre lake has a lot to do with this. In more open water you would likely not succeed.

    Just make sure you can get to the other side in time!

    2 Hulls Dave

  8. #8

    Default Re: Capsize on Reversing broad reach

    The boat makes the 180 degree turn in about one hull length. I think it accelerates going into the turn. I was on the windward hull and had not gotten to pointing into the true wind.

    Ted

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Capsize on Reversing broad reach

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Clarke View Post
    My fastest heaading is at 90 degrees to the true wind. I capsized by rapidly turning into the wind for a 180 degree reverse tack. I did the turn quickly but probably did not release tension on the main. I am used to shoving the tiller over 45 degrees for a fast reverse in course across the wind.

    Ted
    Sounds to me like your quick turn upwind will rapidly (and briefly) increase your apparent wind just when the cetrifugal force of the turn wants to lift the inside hull. Classic hobie capsize and cause for much discussion on these forums as to which way to turn in a catamaran when a big gust hits and you want to dump wind and power without going over.

    I believe you have a choice: Perhaps bleed off some speed before heading up wind into your turn, or start doing high speed jibes. The forces of the jibe will tend to flatten your boat on the water and the downwind turn will drop the apparent wind. You won't go into irons, but remember to control the boom ! If there is a swell running, time it right and you might not loose much speed. Much more fun than tacking IMO.

    Dave L38 #38

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Capsize on Reversing broad reach

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave View Post
    Sounds to me like your quick turn upwind will rapidly (and briefly) increase your apparent wind just when the cetrifugal force of the turn wants to lift the inside hull....
    Dave makes a good point and raises the question I should have asked first > did you capsize before or after the tack, i.e., did the boat go over with the wind on the new windward side or the prior windward side?

    My prior responses were assuming you capsized after the tack with the wind on the new windward side.

    2 Hulls Dave

  11. #11

    Default Re: Capsize on Reversing broad reach

    The capsize was less than half way into the 180 degree turn. I think the Hobie capsize when pointing into a gust is part of the mechanism combined with the centrifigal force from the rapid rotation.

    Ted

  12. #12

    Default Re: Capsize on Reversing broad reach

    I think the mass of the Hobie cat float on the top of the mast contributed to the tipping monent in the rapid turn. The float did its job in preventing a turtle, making it absolutely necessary for my TigercatII.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Capsize on Reversing broad reach

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Clarke View Post
    The capsize was less than half way into the 180 degree turn. I think the Hobie capsize when pointing into a gust is part of the mechanism combined with the centrifigal force from the rapid rotation.

    Ted
    ---------------------------------------

    Ex Tornado helmsman Bazcatana here,


    This sounds like a NOSE DIVE capsize like what happens when you watch the Americas Cup Cats doing what Tornado's do off the wind.

    Trying to loose power will not happen until you get into wind and you might find you where pushed under water so to speak like we were once.

    All I can see is the Leeward bow digging in and over you go.

    Any Help???

    Bazcatana

  14. #14

    Default Re: Capsize on Reversing broad reach

    You confirmed my suspicion of no drop in speed until pointing into the wind. I suspect there is an increase in speed in the early part of the turn. The leeward hull did not bury, but there were no significant waves on the small lake at the time. TigercatII can make a 180 degree reverse course in about one hull length based upon the wave patterns. I suspect the Tornado can do the same. The centrifugal force, made worse by the mast head float, is probably the cause of the problem.

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