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View Full Version : Help Me Boat People! Nautical Questions



Kitty Pryde
02-13-2009, 11:45 PM
OK, so I've been doing research and answered lots of other questions I have had. These are the stumpers. I know there are some intrepid sailors around here. If you can answer any or all of these, I would be a very happy nautical novel writer:

1. For a motor yacht in the 30-50 ft LOA range of sizes, is there a spot to access the engine from inside the boat? Like, an engine room? Or a hatch to climb through to access it? I don't know much about inboard motors.

2. Here's my situation: big motor yacht is foundering, big sailing yacht (about 60-70 ft LOA) has come to rescue the person onboard. They are going to take the dinghy from the sailboat to the motorboat. Would they do anything to keep the sailboat in place while they do so? Too deep for the anchor, about 20 miles offshore from central California. Sailboat has motors too, obviously. Would they take a line from the sailboat with them and tie the boats up together (but far apart)? sea anchor? let the sails loose and point upwind? furl the sails? Or would they put down fenders and tie up alongside the other ship? ETA: forgot to say, conditions are just a little bit rough, 3 foot waves, wind about 10-15 knots, storm on its way in (isn't it always!).

3. If a great big huge historic sort of square-rigged tallship comes upon a dinghy with a person in it, how do they get the person aboard? I feel like they would lower down a rope net to climb up, but I don't really know. If they did, would they tie the dinghy up alongside first?

4. What do you call the master bedroom on a sailboat? You know, the biggest cabin...

5. What is the word for the entrance/exit to a big ole tallship where one walks up/down a gangplank to the dock?

6. Is it realistic or not that a ship is dead in the water and (slowly) sinking but the US C0ast Guard is too far away to do a rescue within a few hours? In the story I said that most of the nearby USCG vessels were up north in San Francisco for an unspecified sailing/nautical/boat festival, and thus unavailable to help. Ship is about 20 miles off the central california coast (Santa Barbara-ish). I know IRL USCG is pretty super awesome, but for the purposes of the story, my MC is going out to pick her friend up off his sinking boat because they are nearby and USCG is not.

7. Could anyone direct me to a website where I could check out plans/layouts of boats of various sizes? Specifically live-aboard motorboats and sailboats that are for funsies, not for work, and also racing sailboats.

Thanks in advance! :D

semilargeintestine
02-14-2009, 12:01 AM
I can answer a few. My parents used to own a 40-footer, and there was a panel on the floor of the living room that you could lift up to get to the engine, so the answer to 1. would be yes, although it's not exactly a separate room so much as a compartment beneath the living quarters.

As for 2, we've pulled up beside boats before. You have those nice bouncy bumpers on the side for a reason. You just gotta go nice and slow, use the lines, and make sure you don't have an area where the boats will actually touch. We used to do this all the time.

I'm not sure about 3.

As for 4, all the boats we've had and have been in in that range have had the biggest bedroom be near the aft of the boat, called the aft cabin. I've never heard anyone call it anything but the master bedroom.

For 6, just watch Deadliest Catch on Discovery. The boats sometimes have to wait a while before the USCG can get there.

For 7, you can usually find floorplans on the manufacturer's websites, e.g., www.silverton.com (http://www.silverton.com/index08a.html).

This is the type of boat we had, pretty much exactly:
http://www.everyboat.com/images/boats/476/9058l.jpg

Is that what you were thinking of? I can give you pretty detailed descriptions of the inside if you want.

HoraceJames
02-14-2009, 12:06 AM
What are the wind and wave conditions?

My experience is with little boats, but somebody has to stay on the sailboat.
Tying off would impossible unless it was dead calm
All sails would be furled and sailboat would have to be running on its own power.
Depending on the strength of rowers/rescuers, it may be easier to have the people in the power boat swim to life preservers and be pulled in.

The CG could be tied up with other emergencies if there's a storm.



You can make it as hard or easy as you want, really, as long as it fits the conditions.

semilargeintestine
02-14-2009, 12:09 AM
Yeah, if it was rough, tying off would be hard. But it depends on the situation. Two boats trying to have fun and hook up? No way unless it's calm. An emergency? Could still happen, though it would really depend on the situation. It also takes people on both boats to do that.

Kitty Pryde
02-14-2009, 12:12 AM
Horace: Thanks! 10-15 knot winds, 3 foot waves, conditions getting worse slowly. Person on the motor boat thinks his leg is broken so he needs to be retrieved. Dinghy has an outboard motor + oars.

PS your avvie is crazy! :D

RJK
02-14-2009, 02:28 AM
OK, so I've been doing research and answered lots of other questions I have had. These are the stumpers. I know there are some intrepid sailors around here. If you can answer any or all of these, I would be a very happy nautical novel writer:

1. For a motor yacht in the 30-50 ft LOA range of sizes, is there a spot to access the engine from inside the boat? Like, an engine room? Or a hatch to climb through to access it? I don't know much about inboard motors.

2. Here's my situation: big motor yacht is foundering, big sailing yacht (about 60-70 ft LOA) has come to rescue the person onboard. They are going to take the dinghy from the sailboat to the motorboat. Would they do anything to keep the sailboat in place while they do so? Too deep for the anchor, about 20 miles offshore from central California. Sailboat has motors too, obviously. Would they take a line from the sailboat with them and tie the boats up together (but far apart)? sea anchor? let the sails loose and point upwind? furl the sails? Or would they put down fenders and tie up alongside the other ship? ETA: forgot to say, conditions are just a little bit rough, 3 foot waves, wind about 10-15 knots, storm on its way in (isn't it always!).

3. If a great big huge historic sort of square-rigged tallship comes upon a dinghy with a person in it, how do they get the person aboard? I feel like they would lower down a rope net to climb up, but I don't really know. If they did, would they tie the dinghy up alongside first?

4. What do you call the master bedroom on a sailboat? You know, the biggest cabin...

5. What is the word for the entrance/exit to a big ole tallship where one walks up/down a gangplank to the dock?

6. Is it realistic or not that a ship is dead in the water and (slowly) sinking but the US C0ast Guard is too far away to do a rescue within a few hours? In the story I said that most of the nearby USCG vessels were up north in San Francisco for an unspecified sailing/nautical/boat festival, and thus unavailable to help. Ship is about 20 miles off the central california coast (Santa Barbara-ish). I know IRL USCG is pretty super awesome, but for the purposes of the story, my MC is going out to pick her friend up off his sinking boat because they are nearby and USCG is not.

7. Could anyone direct me to a website where I could check out plans/layouts of boats of various sizes? Specifically live-aboard motorboats and sailboats that are for funsies, not for work, and also racing sailboats.

Thanks in advance! :D

I'll take a stab at your questions:

Most boats that size have a hatch in the rear deck to access the engines.
The Sailboat would come close with sails furled, depending on the weather, it would either come alongside, or throw the man a line. the would then pull him to the sailboat. (He's wearing a life jacket I hope).
They're send out a whaleboat or a skiff.
The captain's stateroom.
Gangway or gangplank.
Helicopters? you're only 20 mile out. Make it 80 miloes out.
Google

qwerty
02-14-2009, 01:18 PM
1. A 30-50ft boat would likely have a hatch in the cockpit with immediate access to the engine compartment. Wouldn't require climbing into an engine room as such.

2. I don't understand why they will take a dinghy from one boat to the other, especially to move an injured man. The sailboat would furl sails and motor alongside the other boat. They would need to get a line from one vessel to the other and tie up together with fenders between them. Three foot waves aren't too serious for that to take place, and less dodgy than taking a dinghy into the sea. That would take time which you don't need to waste in an increasing storm.

3. A crew member lowered in a rope sling, taking another one with him for the guy in the dinghy. Yes, secure the dinghy. Plenty of crew on a traditional tallship to operate the ropes and get them on board.

4. I call it the master cabin

5. Gangway: An opening in the bulwark that passengers pass through to get to the gangplank.

6. I think it's unlikely any coastguard operation would have most of the vessels tied up in a festival without leaving sufficient coverage at base.

7. Yachts for sale websites.