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Turtle Prevention

Lateen

New Member
I thought this looked like a good idea (4 big pool noodles on the upper spar to prevent turtling). Has anyone done this? If so, have you tried capsizing? Do you have any advice?
 

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Dickhogg

Active Member
Have never done it on a sunfish but at our club we sometimes tie old 4L plastic milk bottles to the tops of the masts of training boats (toppers). Does the trick.
 

Keukasail

New Member
I thought this looked like a good idea (4 big pool noodles on the upper spar to prevent turtling). Has anyone done this? If so, have you tried capsizing? Do you have any advice?
I did practice capsizing a couple of summers ago, and found it quite easy to slide off the leeward side, hang on to the boat, quickly move around the stern to windward, step on the daggerboard, right the boat sliding on as she rights, in time to prevent a turtle. Need to be quick, but no need to panic...and I'm an old slow guy..you have a few minutes before the sail begins to submerge. Only danger is you need to stay very close to the boat when you go into the water (hang on to the boat) so you don't wind up out under the sail. Oh, my grand-daughter laughed when I told her I'd practiced capsizing.. Said she and friends do it all the time for fun!
 

Keukasail

New Member
One more suggestion...practice capsizing in low wind conditions...do it intentionally by shifting your weight or having a friend help capsize the boat...hold off on waiting for strong winds until you are confident in your ability to right the boat by yourself. Baby steps at first.
 

RogerMusser

New Member
This sounds interesting, how much “lift” do you get out of the pool noodles as shown?
It doesn’t seem like it would provide much flotation but then maybe not much is needed. The mast-head floats that zip onto the Flying Scot mainsail looks to be much too small but I hear that it works.
 

Alan S. Glos

Active Member
I am 75, have been sailing/racing small sailboats since age 16, have capsized at least once per season but never turned turtle....until last summer. I was sailing the Sunfish close hauled in gusty, very shifty conditions and sailed right into 20 mph 100 degree shift. The sail instantly filled on the other side, pushed the boom into my chest and over it went with me scrambling to get out from under the rig and back to the surface. The boat turtled before I could get around the hull and grab the daggerboard. Righting the boat and dragging my sorry butt back on board took about 5 minutes (glad I was not racing when all this happened.) In retrospect, I wondered if a better move would have been to swim out to the head of the sail and grab it to prevent a turtle then swim for the daggerboard when things stabilized a bit. Any thoughts? And, no, I will not tie a plastic milk bottle to the rig!

Alan Glos
Cazenovia, NY
 

Lateen

New Member
Maybe I will add pool noodle and test it in shallow water. I appreciate you who've commented. Still hoping to hear from someone who's tried the pool noodle. I'm wondering what sort of tape to use--gaffer?
 

Mashmaster

Active Member
We use a pool noodle on the upper spar. we use on of the thicker ones cut in half. cut a split along lengthwise and then zip tie it onto the spar. It doesn't guarantee no turtle but it helps.
 

Mashmaster

Active Member
I am 75, have been sailing/racing small sailboats since age 16, have capsized at least once per season but never turned turtle....until last summer. I was sailing the Sunfish close hauled in gusty, very shifty conditions and sailed right into 20 mph 100 degree shift. The sail instantly filled on the other side, pushed the boom into my chest and over it went with me scrambling to get out from under the rig and back to the surface. The boat turtled before I could get around the hull and grab the daggerboard. Righting the boat and dragging my sorry butt back on board took about 5 minutes (glad I was not racing when all this happened.) In retrospect, I wondered if a better move would have been to swim out to the head of the sail and grab it to prevent a turtle then swim for the daggerboard when things stabilized a bit. Any thoughts? And, no, I will not tie a plastic milk bottle to the rig!

Alan Glos
Cazenovia, NY
It is probably an age thing, my scouts can turtle and do often in a flash. usually they are righted in about a minute. For me in my 50's it is like two minutes.
 

Fremont

New Member
The Hoofers Sailing Club in Madison WI has, among it's fleets, 12' dinghies. Most everyone that sails them, likes to go out into the middle of Lake Mendota, capsize and turtle, and sunbathe on the hull bottom!

Speaking of masthead floats, my Hobie Cat Getaway has a big obnoxious float (they call it a Bob) attached to the masthead. I always tell people it's my radar dome. But it does keep the boat from turtling, and you really don't want to turtle a catamaran.
 

Lafayette Mike

Active Member
We have attached about 12" of split pool noodle at the top of the upper spar on our club boats. Seems to keep the mast from sinking long enough that most people can get the boat back upright quickly. Pick the correct color and you hardly see it up there.
 

RogerMusser

New Member
Lafayette Mike: The 12-inch piece? That’s on a Sunfish?
Any drawbacks? Such as storage problems, wear on sail , other issues?
 

Lafayette Mike

Active Member
It may be hard to visualize......I'd take a picture if I was near the boat..........Just to clarify. 12 inches long, about 3 inches in diameter. We just split a piece and tied it to the upper spar. Trimmed it to fit between the end of the spar and the first sail clip. rotated it such that the split cut is next to the sail. Nothing rubs anything, spar fits back into sail bag with no issues. If and when the noodle rots out, we will put another piece on it. Not just like this, but similar. 1589926290430.png
this is on the forum.........https://sailingforums.com/threads/help-with-mast.18314/

Mike
 

Mashmaster

Active Member
If you look at the top of the mast in this pic, you can see how we do it. We use the large size pool noodle without the big hole in it. We slice the noodle lengthwise and wrap it as shown. More flotation than the one above.DSC_0588-2.jpg
 

Lateen

New Member
We use the large size pool noodle without the big hole in it. We slice the noodle lengthwise and wrap it as shown. More flotation than the one above.
Do you know what is the diameter of the "large size pool noodle?" Would 6 inches work?
 
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