Dismasting

While highly unlikely, you need to consider the elements of a dismasting, and how to deal with them in advance.

The most important element is preventing hull damage from spars which may be over the side, while protecting the crew from injury.

Using wire cutters requires a technique rather than brute strength. Phil Garland demonstrates the "bounce." The jaws of the cutter are tightened on the wire, and then rather than applying steady pressure he uses his weight to bounce the handles. Note the compound lever action of this model C112 Felco cutter. This design gives you more leverage, and is far superior to the single-action heads. Note that none of these wire cutters are going to be easy to use at sea—which is why practice is important.

Using wire cutters requires a technique rather than brute strength. Phil Garland demonstrates the "bounce." The jaws of the cutter are tightened on the wire, and then rather than applying steady pressure he uses his weight to bounce the handles. Note the compound lever action of this model C112 Felco cutter. This design gives you more leverage, and is far superior to the single-action heads. Note that none of these wire cutters are going to be easy to use at sea—which is why practice is important.

Some injury risks may have to be taken in dealing with the rig in order to insure vessel safety. Being prepared will reduce these.

To repeat what we said earlier, make sure all your clevis pins are free-turning and well lubricated so you can get rid of them in a hurry if required.

A corollary of this is making sure that split pins (cotter keys) are properly spread and not excessively long (see photos page 22).

Being familiar with the proper use of wire cutters is another part of this equitation. If you are ever called to use it the odds are it will be on some stormy night, not the time to be reading manuals!

If getting rid of the rig is undesirable, impossible, or simply too dangerous, some attempt needs to be made to secure the spars alongside to prevent them from damaging the hull. If you have enough of a spar standing, it may be possible to use this to rig a tackle with which to get the overboard sections back on board.

It is generally better to cut the rig away and protect the hull from damage by the spar.

There is going to be a strong urge to get the engine into gear to give you control and get you back on your way. Do not start the prop until you have checked and rechecked that no sheets or rigging are dragging where they could foul. Otherwise, Murphy's law states you will have a fouled prop!

If the rig does go over the side in rough weather:

□ Get the heading of the boat stabilized as soon as possible, (by using a drogue or the engine.

□ If the engine is used, be sure there are no lines to catch in the prop (which will necessitate some cleaning up).

□ Have all crews wear harnesses.

□ Use safety lines on all tools to keep them from going overboard.

The photos below show the stump of a mast being used as a jury rig. The mainsail has been "reefed" down to trysail size, to fit the spar.

Note the storm jib being flown inverted.

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How To Have A Perfect Boating Experience

How To Have A Perfect Boating Experience

Lets start by identifying what exactly certain boats are. Sometimes the terminology can get lost on beginners, so well look at some of the most common boats and what theyre called. These boats are exactly what the name implies. They are meant to be used for fishing. Most fishing boats are powered by outboard motors, and many also have a trolling motor mounted on the bow. Bass boats can be made of aluminium or fibreglass.

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