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Tips for towing broken down sailers
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koogzah



Joined: 06 Jul 2005
Posts: 488
Location: right here

PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2013 2:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

zirtaeb wrote:
I've punched guys, slapped guys in the face, and plenty of times yelled at guys who wouldn't respond to my instructions.

It is true. Beatriz has used this "tough love" approach to train the barristas at Starbucks, and now they never get his order wrong.
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zirtaeb



Joined: 03 Jul 2009
Posts: 2396

PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2013 2:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like to stand up when I"m towing because...I"m human, and humans stand on their two feet, use opposable thumbs, and like to be visable to other watercraft.
If the towee is holding my harness, I can't eject him when I want to.
If the towee is holding my harness, it makes it tough to water start, while staying together during the setup. Dragging by a downed sailor in waterstart position, it's kinda hard to have him grab my harness.
Butt dragging while towing leads you both downwind. Feet up for the tower take the unit across the wind.
While neither method allows any chance for planing, on your feet, the sail catches more air, get's you IN faster and quicker.
If you get launched, you just don't know how to sail towing someone....lack of experieince and skill.
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keycocker



Joined: 10 Jul 2005
Posts: 3385

PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2013 2:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You are sure right .
Holding the harness is a last resort when no tow line is available. I mentioned because that seemed to be the case with the OP.
As I noted several times it is best to keep a tow rope.
None of us ever developed a good enough technique to do several mile long tows standing up.
We had the same experience as the OP.
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zirtaeb



Joined: 03 Jul 2009
Posts: 2396

PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2013 3:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would venture to say that both SteveYong and I have done over 5 tow jobs longer than one mile, in our younger years. I'm not about to try it now, at 64, nor Steve, at 60.
The mouth of FlyingTigers is just over 1/2 mile. My 132lbs ex g/f, using a 8'3" Haut wave and 4.6, towed a 210 lbs guy, no board or rig for him, across the mouth from the shore on the N end to the launch at the S end. She did it in 4 tries, getting launched, of course. She'd been windsurfing for 2 years, this was her first non daggerboard style board.
Dennis's rig drifted downwind, past the second oil platform, easy 3 miles downwind into the bay. I sailed down on my 9' Haut slalom, tossed his battens, rolled up his sail, tied the managerie together, and towed it upwind to the airport runways, about 2 miles upwind on the maps. Took almost an hour. And no, I did not butt drag.
Humans are meant to be on their feet, not their butts.
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keycocker



Joined: 10 Jul 2005
Posts: 3385

PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2013 4:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That water is not always very flat. Must have been some tough rescues at times.
Kudos for your efforts.
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zirtaeb



Joined: 03 Jul 2009
Posts: 2396

PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2013 5:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you ask Crissy sailors from the mid '80's thru 5 years ago, I'll BET every single one has nothing but admiration for Steve. At 5'4" and 112 lbs., he is credited with more rescues at Crissy than any other TWO sailors, maybe 3.
He even stopped to rescue a guy I abandoned. Said guy was non reponsive to my suggestions to try to roll up his sail, or to sit on this board and wave for boats. I did swing by a few times, mainly to spray him out of his funk, but successive attempts just gave him less and less hope. Steve did mention he punched the guy in the face, something I hadn't tried.
Well, maybe I won't win any awards for good samaritan, unless the victum is willing to listen and do as I say.
Oh, one time ever, I sailed from Kahala on Oahu to see the hills of Molakai, with Billie, a lifeguard at some body surfing beach up near Wialaea golf club...Makapuu, of course. He used a Seatrend 8'6", I a 8'10" Haut. All the while, I went thru in my head, as many rescue scenarios as I could conjure up. We crossed in front of the SuperFerry and kept going another hour before we saw the top of the hills.
I'm not much for open ocean sailing, just a whuss, I guess.
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zirtaeb



Joined: 03 Jul 2009
Posts: 2396

PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2013 6:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh, the two yo yo's, RayDieter and MattGhurash.
Those guys would regularly launch from Agate or PaloMarin, go to the Farallone Islands 23 miles W, and not tell anyone that was their plan. Talking springtime NW winds, 52 degree water, 50 degree air temps, and a complete lack of not only jibing skill, but basic sense.
Yes, they broke masts. Yes, they did have a radio to call the Alameda Coast Guard for several Heli rescues.
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koogzah



Joined: 06 Jul 2005
Posts: 488
Location: right here

PostPosted: Sat Jun 22, 2013 9:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Seems like the "key take aways" from this thread are:

1) If you need to be rescued, pray to God that Beatriz is not the only sailor nearby

2) Doug Haut is the premier shaper of rescue boards

I think we all learned a lot. Be safe out there.
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keycocker



Joined: 10 Jul 2005
Posts: 3385

PostPosted: Sat Jun 22, 2013 11:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Our entire crowd wears wetsuits to sail every time. It is the most important piece of gear in a breakdown.
My wife wore a full body 2mil even today with 86 degrees and warm water in Maui, ready for that next broken mast.
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BRIMAR



Joined: 03 May 2004
Posts: 99

PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 3:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

this is a topic thats very dear to my heart,
I've been the tower at least three times I've been the TOWIE at least 4 times I've had the Coast Guard called on me twice, I've gotten in on my own countless times, I have sailed small items out for replacement, (fins, unis etc) at least three times.
most of my windsurfing life I've been over 220 pounds. I have broken everything that there is to break on to windsurfer mostly booms which I've been able to flip over on sail in on my own.
I learned by far the most about rescue and towing from a bay area sailor name Prescott. he learned from a bloke named Owain.
the tower attaches a line to his harness hook, the TOWIE attaches the other end of the line to his universal joint, Prescott towed me in this way in about 10 minutes and we made it back to the launch at 3rd Avenue in 5.2 conditions.
as I was laying on top of my board he towed me while standing up hooked in we were nearly planning at least subplanning the whole time!
I had broken my mast and another sailor sailed in my sail and yet another sailor sailed in my boom.
it was a great day and I was back out sailing an hour after I initially broke the mast!!
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