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Another keel breaks...

Printed From: Yachts and Yachting Online
Category: Keelboat classes
Forum Name: Keelboat news and development
Forum Discription: All the latest developments for yachts
URL: http://www.yachtsandyachting.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=2454
Printed Date: 21 Apr 21 at 1:38pm
Software Version: Web Wiz Forums 9.665y - http://www.webwizforums.com


Topic: Another keel breaks...
Posted By: Iain C
Subject: Another keel breaks...
Date Posted: 23 Nov 06 at 7:22pm

So Hugo Boss is out of the 5 Oceans.

I'm a development dinghy sailor so all for pushing the boundaries of design, but how many more of these canting keels are going to break before the designers get it right?  Will it take a few fatalities to get them banned?  Or does it need some kind of extreme test (like the capsize test) involving canting the keel on each boat X times with a T ton weight on the end?

Discuss...



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RS700 GBR922 "Wirespeed"
Fireball GBR14474 "Eleven Parsecs"
Enterprise GBR21970
Bavaria 32 GBR4755L "Adastra"



Replies:
Posted By: Prince Buster
Date Posted: 23 Nov 06 at 8:21pm
This is very true and I was just having the same conversation with my dad.  But I am against banning them as sailing always needs to modify and develop and canting keels are one of the most groundbreaking innovations on boats in the last few years.  However, I do think that they need far more thorough testing and if they are to be used there needs to be strenuous testing and regulations to make sure they are fail safe.  They will not be banned and they will continue to be widely used purely for the fact that, from a sailor's point of view, the benefits outweigh the risks.  Every sailor wants to win a big race and they will always have the "it will never be me" attitude so the only option is to develop the technology further and make it safer. 

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international moth - "what what?"


Posted By: CurlyBen
Date Posted: 23 Nov 06 at 8:28pm
Have to say I don't really understand why they are regularly failing, I could understand one or two - whether due to miscalculations or unforseen circumstances, or jsut bad luck - but the regularity with which they fail is pretty worrying. Are they pushing so hard for performance that they're not allowing a great enough safety factor? I understand the desire for less weight on the boat but you're never going to win a race when the keel drops off halfway round the course...

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RS800 GBR848
Weston SC


Posted By: 49erGBR735HSC
Date Posted: 24 Nov 06 at 2:00pm
A case for the canting keel would be that they reduce the stability of an upturned boat making them easier to right from full inversion. With a conventional keel, you are dependant on the force of a wave to roll the boat back over from total inversion. If you consider Isabelle Autissier's inversion on Open 60 "PRB" with a conventional keel, the upturned stability of PRB was too much for the force of a wave alone to right the boat. With the beemier boats like the VO70s, Open 60s, etc, the canting keels provide a bias of force when the boats do go fully inverted and aid the righting of the boat. Consider a dinghy sailor hanging onto a centreboard to right an inverted boat, and you have the same effect a canting keel provides. Reckon canting keels are a step forward from a safety point of view aswell as a performance point of view, and feel that most offshore racers would support that point of view. The failings are from a mechanical point of view, but on the whole, canting keels seem a step in the right direction.

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Dennis Watson 49er GBR735 http://www.helensburghsailingclub.co.uk/ -
Helensburgh S.C
http://www.noblemarine.co.uk/home.php3?affid=560 - Boat Insurance from Noble Marine



Posted By: CurlyBen
Date Posted: 24 Nov 06 at 2:32pm
Also, by providing more righting moment the canting keel will reduce the liklihood of a capsize, and even if the keel is hanging freely it will fall to one side after capsize and so help to right the boat. However, I just can't comprehend why the designers can't get the mechanisms to hold together. I haven't looked deeply at the incidents but it doesn't even sound to be in unusual conditions, certainly well within what the boats should be expected to endure.

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RS800 GBR848
Weston SC


Posted By: WildWood
Date Posted: 24 Nov 06 at 3:26pm

Re Alex Thomson / Hugo Boss, good news that he is safe onboard Ecover.  Anyone know what will happen to Hugo Boss now?  Is it just left to drift in the southern ocean until it breaks up and sinks?  The report didn't seem to suggest the keel damage was causing her to take on water.  Would they try and salvage the boat?

Anyway, what a shame.  Pretty crappy thing to happen.



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Posted By: hurricane
Date Posted: 24 Nov 06 at 7:11pm
bad news is ecovers mast has just snapped....

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lifes to short to sail slow boats!

RIP Olympic Tornado 1976-2007


Posted By: tgruitt
Date Posted: 24 Nov 06 at 7:39pm
at least there are two people on board to set up the jury rig.

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Needs to sail more...


Posted By: Iain C
Date Posted: 25 Nov 06 at 6:00pm

Dennis

I really have to disagree that canting keels are a step forward from a safety point of view!  Just look at the numbers of high profile failures, Ericsson, Boss, Nicorette, the list goes on and on. How on earth no sailor or rescuer has been killed yet I have no idea. It just seems to an enormous achilles' heel of modern designs, there is no other failure that causes as much of an issue.

Granted they do make an inversion less dangerous, but I really would not fancy my chances of canting the keel in an upside down boat in the dark.  The issue here is to do more with the shape of stuff like an Open 60...however not sure on this but haven't the stability rules been tightened up anyway? 



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RS700 GBR922 "Wirespeed"
Fireball GBR14474 "Eleven Parsecs"
Enterprise GBR21970
Bavaria 32 GBR4755L "Adastra"


Posted By: 49erGBR735HSC
Date Posted: 25 Nov 06 at 10:18pm

I've been researching a lot about canting keels, and although they have had their failings, they do have the support from sailors such as Mike Golding, and it wasn't my own personal opinion, although I do agree with it, that canting keels are tending to make off-shore racing more safe on the whole. The tightening of the offshore rules for Open 60s has been aided through canting keels because it has allowed boats which would be incapable of self-righting with conventional keels, to right. There are two routes which the designs seem to be going down as I'm percieving it now, "beemier" boats with more upright stability and canting keels, which perform higher, or narrower boats with the ability to self-right but less sailing stability. It's a bit of a trade off between the two and it's really down to the sailor's personal decision on which design they choose, and at the present moment, the canting keel boats seem to have preference. My point initially was that if they can get the mechanics behind the canting keels right, it makes the sport slightly more safer due to the fact that wider designs of boats can be sailed, with the likely-hood of capsize reduced slightly and if need be, the canting keel can aid righting in the worst case scenario. From a general point of view, canting keels may aid the sport as a whole due to the fact that it's quite scary how many cruisers, racer/cruisers, etc have high inversion stability, in such they won't self right. If the cutting edge of the sport can pioneer and refine canting keels to the point there are no general failings, in years to come, they may filter down into other classes and lessen the ammount of  supposedly "safe" boats which can't self-right.



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Dennis Watson 49er GBR735 http://www.helensburghsailingclub.co.uk/ -
Helensburgh S.C
http://www.noblemarine.co.uk/home.php3?affid=560 - Boat Insurance from Noble Marine



Posted By: Stefan Lloyd
Date Posted: 26 Nov 06 at 8:23am

Originally posted by 49erGBR735HSC

 From a general point of view, canting keels may aid the sport as a whole due to the fact that it's quite scary how many cruisers, racer/cruisers, etc have high inversion stability, in such they won't self right.

So name a few instances of an offshore monohull, with keel intact, failing to self-right. Other than the Open 60, which was been allowed to go a trend of exteme beam. You will find the offshore rating rules in use for cruiser/racers have provisions to ensure that designs won't go that way.  In any case, for general performance around the bouys, extreme beam isn't fast. I've matched the pace of an Open 60 for several hours in a 38 foot cruiser racer in light running conditions. Of course in the strong-wind reaching conditions they are designed for, it's another story.

I think you are confusing the preference of some sailors for canters for performance gains (which are certainly real) with safety improvements. Given the high number of failures it is rather hard to argue that canters are safer.

 



Posted By: Stefan Lloyd
Date Posted: 26 Nov 06 at 9:56am

Originally posted by CurlyBen

Also, by providing more righting moment the canting keel will reduce the liklihood of a capsize

Depends on whether the keel is on the "right side". Dinghies mostly capsize to leeward (except, perhaps, Lasers and similar), whereas on a keelboat, broaches to windard (i.e. capsize to leeward) are generally quite tame affairs. It is broaches to leeward (with unplanned gybe) that cause the grief. In that case, not only will the sails be pinning you down but so will the keel, now on the wrong side.



Posted By: CurlyBen
Date Posted: 26 Nov 06 at 10:36am
After seeing a spectacular video of a Mumm 30 crash gybing I have to agree! I have found that a lot of high performance boats (especially those with the helm on the wire) tend to go in to windward more often - it's easier to dump sheets than to bring them in again - but that's another topic.

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RS800 GBR848
Weston SC


Posted By: WildWood
Date Posted: 27 Nov 06 at 10:43am

Canting keels seem to be gettng a fair bit of grief and they obviously have some reliability issues, but the suggestion that they should be banned is taking things too far. 

Going sailing offshore short handed is inevitably going to be dangerous, whether going in a canting keel boat, conventional keel boat, or (craziest of them all!) a multi hull.  There are an almost infinite number of things that can go wrong with offshore race boats - for example snapping a mast, hitting something etc.  I guess it is best to let the sailors decide if the performance gain from a canting keel outweighs the risk of a keel failure.

It seems there are plenty of other dangerous things out there that don't get banned'so why pick on canting keels!



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