myiW Current Conditions and Forecasts Community Forums Windsurfing Videos Buy and Sell Services
 
Hi guest · myAccount · Log in
 SearchSearch   ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   RegisterRegister 
Bad decision - good outcome at the Stick

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    iWindsurf Community Forum Index -> Southwest USA, Hawaii, Mexico
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
veterduet



Joined: 29 Jun 2000
Posts: 243

PostPosted: Wed Aug 28, 2013 1:14 pm    Post subject: Bad decision - good outcome at the Stick Reply with quote

Went to the Stick to catch some wind after some sluggish days in the eastbay and got more than I bargained for. Went out on a 5.2 when a 4.2 would have been about right. Turned around and found that my sail had crumpled (top came off and sail slid down the mast). Wind and waves pretty strong, and after a while gave up trying to repair, de-rig, swim, or whatever. Folded up rig as best I could and lay on board waiting for Godot. Pretty soon 3 SFPD boats showed up and one of them picked me up and deposited me at Oyster Point. Hitched a ride to my truck and headed for home where I punished myself with 2 hours of yard work (as if the Bay Bridge traffic wasn't enough!).

Thanks to:

The person who called in my distressed situation (probably Fred who may have felt obligated since I was the wind dummy - in more ways than one!)

The SFPD for pulling me out before I had drifted too long

The nice lady who gave me a ride back to my truck

No ill effects and gear seemed OK. Only thing unusual I noticed about the sail mast cap is that it had no clearance frm the top of the sail. It could have been possible for the sail to push the cap off, I suppose, or it may not have been full engaged with the mast, in which case I would have thought it would have come off when I put all that downhaul on it. Added an inch of clearance just in case. Thinking about getting some emergency communication equipment.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
surfskimd



Joined: 08 May 1997
Posts: 31

PostPosted: Wed Aug 28, 2013 3:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Had the same situation in the 3rd ave channel 3 years ago. Luckily 2 other sailors stopped to help and the 3 of us were able to derig the sail and put the cap back on correctly.
Most likely you did not have the cap seated in the hole at the top of the mast correctly and it pulled off.
After my humbling experience, I always add this to my pre launching checklist to ensure that the sail cap is seated properly at the top of the mast
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
xander.arch



Joined: 23 Apr 2009
Posts: 189

PostPosted: Wed Aug 28, 2013 4:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Happy you made it back! This is defintely a safety item that can be easily looked over...... Case in point - I had the exact same thing happen while bottom turning on a wave at Waddell this spring. When I went into the top turn the sail dropped like a levolor blind. In my case the webbing that loops over the head cap plug had worn through. I found it kind of amazing that it happend while on a wave, and thank god this didn't happen when I was way the heck out there - would have been shit out of luck. I checked my other sails and noticed similar chaffing to various levels so I went and got the others repaired / replaced. Its definitely something to keep an eye on that I also never really paid any attention to. Especially for those like me that sail and crash in waves alot where the mast tip gets alot of wear over the bottom. That top cap and strap has to carry equal the force as your downhaul lines - and there is only one loop of webbing. There are three loops of downhaul.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
windgood



Joined: 06 May 2005
Posts: 51
Location: On water

PostPosted: Wed Aug 28, 2013 4:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

veterduet wrote:
The person who called in my distressed situation (probably Fred who may have felt obligated since I was the wind dummy - in more ways than one!)

Yes, it was Fred. After I told him that you drove off, he was surprised that you didn't stop by for a little chat at all.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
carl



Joined: 25 Feb 1997
Posts: 2491
Location: SF bay area

PostPosted: Wed Aug 28, 2013 5:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Similar happened to me about 1/4 mile out at Coyote a few weeks ago. "Sail dropped like a Levelor blind" is a good description. I was able to swim in the 1/4 mile (without de-rigging) without too much trouble. Part of the time I was able to hold the sail up in waterstart position and drift, but the floppy sail was so unstable that holding it up was tiring.
BTW: a floatation vest comes in real handy when swimming your equip in. I made it in to "last chance beach" near the Coyote yacht harbor and a kind Boardsports employee was there to give me a ride back to the car. (thanks to the sailor that told Boardsports).
The top of my sail broke in a different way though. It was a non-adjustable top and it has a large webbing strap that is sewn inside the top part of the luff sleeve. The sewing failed. The strap being hidden, it is not easy to check for damage while rigging. (it rigged fine). It was an old sail with more than 100 sessions on it though. So it looks like 100 sessions is like 100000 miles, time to retire it.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
windmaddness



Joined: 09 Oct 2010
Posts: 36

PostPosted: Thu Aug 29, 2013 1:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

i sailed back mine a few times before and sailed my friend's once as well when the webbing broke on him. i was able to hook in and sub plane but the trickiest part is to water start though. i think from all the breakdowns, a mast failure is the ultimate, anything else is deal-able with.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
veterduet



Joined: 29 Jun 2000
Posts: 243

PostPosted: Thu Aug 29, 2013 12:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

windgood wrote:
veterduet wrote:
The person who called in my distressed situation (probably Fred who may have felt obligated since I was the wind dummy - in more ways than one!)

Yes, it was Fred. After I told him that you drove off, he was surprised that you didn't stop by for a little chat at all.


It was an oversight, but I was so glad to be back in the truck that I headed staight back to Oyster PT. to retrieve my rig.

Appreciate the feedback and commiseration. Did try to drift with semi-folded sail in waterstart position, but had the sense that any progress I was making was in the wrong direction. The strong gusts and heavy chop were discouraging, to say the least.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
246



Joined: 14 Mar 1994
Posts: 30

PostPosted: Fri Aug 30, 2013 12:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Top cap strap tore loose from the sail once when I was way out and, of course, the sail slid down the mast. A good Samaritan gave me his spare downhaul which I tied to the strap and to the end of the mast (I made kind of a knotted basket). Wasn't real secure but tightened the sail enough that I could sail a mile or so to shore.

Convinced me to always carry a spare downhaul which I consider more important than a radio or phone or ......
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
carl



Joined: 25 Feb 1997
Posts: 2491
Location: SF bay area

PostPosted: Fri Aug 30, 2013 10:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

246,
Extra rope is a great idea. It can go a long way to "fix" a broken boom too, by tieing it back together with some hitch knots.
Just thought of an idea for a broken sail top:
Release the downhaul and pull the top of the sail out so there's enough sail to fold over the end of the mast. About 4 to 8 inches should do it. Then tie around the folded section with the spare rope to keep it folded.
Tieing the rope to the broken strap should help anchor it. Then lightly downhaul with your foot on the universal as leverage. (never detach your board). Don't downhaull too much, or the end of the mast will go thru the luff sleave. There might be enough tension in the sail to at least slog back.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    iWindsurf Community Forum Index -> Southwest USA, Hawaii, Mexico All times are GMT - 5 Hours
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum
You can attach files in this forum
You can download files in this forum

myiW | Weather | Community | Membership | Support | Log in
like us on facebook
© Copyright 1999-2007 WeatherFlow, Inc Contact Us Ad Marketplace

Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group