Halberg Rassy signals trouble...iPhone for rope info...seven hour swim after MOB...cargo ships with sails, coming soon...copycat piracy in West Africa... and much more...

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 08 Sep 2011

Happy survival, tragic loss - the recurring stories of the ocean

... when an icebox had to serve for a life-jacket and save a life  .. .
As a cruising sailor writing of the world's sea incidents I rejoice with every amazing survival and mourn for every tragic end, even though I rarely know the sailors involved.

Two stories this week at opposite ends of the scale. As hope gives way to grief for the two very experienced British sailors disappeared on a trip from South Africa to Australia, one can't help rejoicing at the unlikely survival of a skipper in Florida, who spent seven hours swimming home from his yacht after falling overboard.

However in his case the rush of joy is slashed with regret that he caused not only his own incident by neglect but could have caused harm to his inexperienced clue - read why.

In another article, it's a great tribute to British sailors Paul and Rachel Chandler's sturdy character that they are preparing to go sailing again after having spent more than a year in captivity of Somali pirates. This time, they have told the British press, they won't return to pirate waters.

On the business front the depth of the Western World's recession is indicated by one of the most respected boatbuilders of cruising boats having signalled that they may have to put off staff – for the second time within the year. We also talk about two new cruising sailboats to be introduced to the market – a monohull and a cat.

Romance was ever the domain of the cruising sailor and this week Balvenie tells us of exotic experiences along the coastline of Spain; some breathtaking windjammers get together to celebrate; and it's good to read how even bulk carriers may look elegant in the future with the solar sails that renewable company Solar Sailor is planning.

At a practical level, a well-known rope manufacturer has brought out a free App for your iPhone; and many tips about how to keep your sailing boat's diesel engine in tip top condition.

Much more too, so browse down the headlines to see what catches your interest.

Sweet sailing

Nancy Knudsen, Editor

Swedish boat builder Hallberg-Rassy warns of possible job cuts.
Des Ryan,
One of the world's most respected boatbuilders for cruising sailors and Sweden's largest sailing boat builder, Hallberg Rassy, has warned that further job cuts are likely in the future. Having made a similar warning to 25 workers only in May this year, the new cuts are sign that the economic malaise in Europe is cutting deep, even to the best of firms.... [more]
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Sailor survives seven hours in amazing MOB tale
Sail-World Cruising round-up,
It would be too repetitious to report on all overboard (MOB) sailing incidents that occur on the planet. Every week a coast guard from one or another of the sailing nations around the world reports at least one incident. Most, sadly, drown or disappear without trace. The following story is different only as an amazing survival story. Can you pick at least three mistakes that were made?... [more]
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All about ropes - on your iPhone
Sail-World Cruising,
If you're the kind of sailor that likes everything to come on the iPhone, then you might be interested in the latest App that Marlow Ropes has just introduced to the market, Version 1!... [more]
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Catalina 385, a promising new model
Sail-World Cruising,
The latest Catalina - the 385 - is to be released for North Americans at the Annapolis Sailboat Show in October. At around $200,000 it sounds like an excellent deal, particularly if the boat lives up to the description here, given out by Catalina themselves:.... [more]
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Yes, that seabird off your bow probably has plastic poisoning.

They might look happy and free, but those seabirds off your bow are probably suffering from plastic poisoning. The vast collections of plastic in our oceans have long been reported by roving sailors and the number of investigations as to their effects on fish and birds are growing. Now there is a new one in the South Pacific, conducted by an Australian researcher, with alarming results.... [more]
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Catana 59 - all the features, and then some
Guy Nowell, Sail-World Asia,
If you like cruising catamarans, it looks great. Catana describe it as 'a revolutionary concept in recreational catamarans,' and tell of how it has lots of go-fast features borrowed from the world of racing multihulls. Carbon fibre, curved daggerboards, high aspect main and big headsails, reverse bow profile and so on.... [more]
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Sailing with Balvenie - finding a real Spanish Bullfight
Amanda Church and Mark Farrell,
New Zealander cruising couple Amanda Church and Mark Farrell continue to cruise in their 47ft fractional rigged sloop Balvenie, in which they have already covered over 25,00nautical miles. They have been cruising in the Mediterranean for four summers, but have now - momentously - left the Med and headed north to cruise the Atlantic coast of Spain, reaching Barbate for their first night.... [more]
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Copycat piracy is cause for concern in West Africa
Des Ryan,
One of the joys of sailing is the freedom to go where you want when you want. While all sensible cruising sailors are now avoiding the western Indian Ocean as too dangerous to sail, latest reports also suggest that West African pirates are copy-catting their Somali counterparts and cruising sailors are best to avoid these areas as well.... [more]
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The Breathtaking windjammers celebrate in Camden, Maine
Sail-World Cruising round-up,
There's nothing more breathtaking than the sight of a traditional windjammer under sail, and these days, at a special time of year, there's no place like Maine in the USA to see them.... [more]
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Simple Inspections to keep your sailing boat's engine in top shape
Captain John Jamieson,
Do you know the five best ways to keep your sailing boat's diesel engine running like a lion--and save you huge dollars in the future? John Jamieson (Captain John) here shows you the most vital engine and rigging checks you need to make aboard your cruising sailboat for trouble-free cruising.... [more]
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Back to the future? Solar and wind sails for cargo ships
Sail-World Cruising round-up,
Back to the future for a new world of sailing ships? Solar Sailor, an Australian company specialising in renewable energy technologies, is negotiating to install its solar and wind power systems on a massive dry cargo ship that could be used to haul iron ore from Australia to China.... [more]
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Pirate victim sailors preparing to sail again
Lee Mylchreest,
You could be forgiven for thinking they would never sail again. After the horrific experiences that Paul and Rachel Chandler suffered at the hands of Somali pirates, it would have come as no surprise to the sailing world if they had shunned the idea of ever getting on board a boat again, especially the one which must have so many grisley reminders of their year in captivity in Somalia..... [more]
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British sailors missing at sea between South Africa and Australia
Sail-World Cruising,
Grave fears are held for the safety of a British yachting couple who left Richards Bay in South Africa in March heading for Fremantle in Western Australia and have not been heard from since. Alison Cooper sold her own yacht while in South Africa to join Barry Garnett on his yacht Tiana on the voyage.... [more]
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New Zealand to welcome Superyacht Captains Forum delegates next week
Clive Bennett,
In less than one weeks weeks time, the inaugural NZ Marine Export Group Superyacht Captains Forum will start off with a welcoming address by the New Zealand Prime Minister Rt Hon John Key, at the Opening Cocktail Function, Wednesday 14th September, Viaduct Events Centre, Auckland.... [more]
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