Jack line tied to boom

rpm

Member II
I single hand an E28 and had a thought I would like your opinion upon. If I strap onto the boom, and go overboard, my deadweight should cause the main to luff, jib to back wind, stop the flow over the rudder thus disabling the auto pilot. With my tiny displacement it should work.
One advantage is that most of my climbing is behind the mast as a practical matter. Any opinions out there?
 

toddster

Curator of Broken Parts
Blogs Author
I can’t really imagine how the jack line would be taught enough in that situation to act as a jack line. :confused:
In the past, I’ve pondered how it might be great to have a dead-man’s switch sort of arrangement that would blow the sheets if one fell overboard. Perhaps rigged to a line trailed astern. They have such electronic things for mobo’s now. But in any sort of blow, even with blown sheets, the boat would still be sailing downwind at a pretty good clip.
If one is getting clever about such things, best to arrange those jacklines so that one doesn’t go overboard in the first place, me thinks.
 

bgary

Advanced Beginner
Blogs Author
my deadweight should cause the main to luff, jib to back wind, stop the flow over the rudder thus disabling the auto pilot.
...or, your deadweight will break the gooseneck, tear the main across a seam, and you'll be in the water weighed down by the boom, tangled in the vang and mainsheet, while your boat sails merrily along under the jib.

Or something.

Hook in to something solid - a pad-eye in the cockpit or next to the companionway - and on a short-enough tether that you *can't* end up in the water.

$.02
Bruce
 

bgary

Advanced Beginner
Blogs Author
... might be great to have a dead-man’s switch sort of arrangement that would blow the sheets if one fell overboard.
When I was doing deliveries - young and immortal - I used to trail about 100' of poly-pro line behind the boat. At the trailing end was a small fender, the forward end was tied to the throttle lever. The idea was that if I went in the water, I'd have (some number of seconds) to grab the line, and when I grabbed it the load would pull the throttle back to idle.

Never tested it, but it seemed "really smart". As an aside, I frequently wonder whether that's why so many people trail their inflatables on a long line when motoring up and down the Sound.

These days - older and quite a bit less eager to test my immortality - ensuring that I *can't* come off the boat seems a smarter approach.

$.02
Bruce
 

supersailor

Sustaining Member
Do not terminate the jack line at the stern. Should you go overboard, you do not want to be drug along behind the boat. It is a sure formula for a drowning. When singlehanding, I keep a loop over the side at the stern with a foot strap at water level. The attachment for the harness brings me up short where I can get a foot in the strap and raise myself out of the water. It is almost impossible to raise yourself with just your arms in moving water. Basically, my jack lines end at the back of the cabin and I use pad eyes in the cockpit to clip to.

I haven't tried out the system and hope not to ever. As the old adage goes: If you are prepared, it won't happen.
 
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Kenneth K

Sustaining Member
Blogs Author
... and when I grabbed it the load would pull the throttle back to idle.
Hell, if I still had youth and immortality on my side I'd just tie the line to the shift lever--one tug and the boat backs up to retrieve me.

What could possibly go wrong?
 
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p.gazibara

Member III
Hell, if I still had youth and immortality on my side I'd just tie the line to the shift lever--one tug and the boat backs up to retrieve me.

What could possibly go wrong?
What I don’t understand is why moving a lever would stop a sailboat from sailing off
 

Kevin A Wright

Member III
< When singlehanding, I keep a loop over the side at the stern with a foot strap at water level. The attachment for the harness brings me up short where I can get a foot in the strap and raise myself out of the water.>

Back in my younger days I was doing a lot of diving off my E27 before I found a boarding ladder that would fit on the boat. Didn't stop us, we just tied up special lines to the stern cleats that had both a large clip on the end for weight (so the line would sink) and to clip your tanks and weight belt to before reboarding It also had a loop to put your foot in. But be sure the loop is about 1 1/2' to 2' UNDER water level. You have to be very young, athletic, motivated, and flexible to put your foot into a loop at water level (which will be the same level as your head while you are in the water), then pull yourself up by that same line. Having it down deeper makes it infinitely easier. But of course too deep and you can't reach the rail/gunnel to pull yourself up. Really think about this folks and maybe do some experimenting on a nice warm day because that gunnel as a LONG way up there when you are looking at it from water level.

I also would put a crab pot float out with 100' of 1/4" floating poly line when we anchored for a dive and didn't have anyone left in the boat to pick us up. Only had to use it once when the tide picked up fast off Matts Matts Bay and we hadn't made it back yet. My buddy was too far off, knew it, and just inflated his BC figuring to swim for shore in an hour or two when he passed Oak Bay. I used every last ounce of strength I had to make the end of the float against about a 2kt current and eventually pulled myself back to the boat and headed off to pick up my buddy (would have been easier if I'd dropped the goody bag with about 20# of scallops in it, but hey you have to have priorities right?). Weren't in danger of our lives, but it sure would have been a long day and embarrassing to have to eventually swim to shore then find someone with a boat to run us back out to my boat.

Kevin Wright
E35 Hydro Therapy
 
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