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 Post subject: About Hatches
PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2012 9:03 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2007 2:30 pm
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Location: Spring Hill, FL
Yes, I seem to be back, and of course, with some questions! :D

Kyaks in the 15 ft range, sit in types, all for the most part seem to have a fair amount of room in the bow and stern that can be separated from the cockpit by a bulkhead. And the plan often points out that the bulkhead can be installed watertight.

(Right off hand, I am thinking about designs such as the Freedom 15, South Wind 15-30, or maybe a Laker in any size.)

Does anyone have any experience with a 'yak like one of these, set up with watertight ends, and a flooded cockpit? Did it float high enough to be bailed out and let you be on your way? Has this happened to anyone here, either "for real," or during a controlled experiment or exercise?

Would be nice to know if it could work out well enough to allow for a self-rescue.

I've been looking at my options lately and really don't want to give up sit-in designs in favor of sit-on's, just because I spend most of my time paddling solo. On the other hand, I do have a new-found respect for my own mortality. :shock:

Working out a "solo re-entry" system for one of the above-mentioned designs is something I've given a lot of thought to, but it would be rather pointless if the boat was floating with its cockpit coaming as the new waterline. Well, might be pretty easy to get back in, but after that. . . I might wonder why I bothered.

So, any good news on this subject? (Will make similar post on Southern Paddler, as well.)

Mike S.
Spring Hill, FL


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 Post subject: Re: About Hatches
PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2012 9:42 pm 
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Location: Spring Hill, FL
It's been so long since I've posted, I'm not so sure I did a good job of getting my question across. After posting here, I made a similar post on Southern Paddler. Actually, I think I did a better job over there, since I'd "broken the ice" with my post here.

I just noticed I put the word "Hatches" in the post title, and then didn't mention it again. :shock:
The idea was to find out if the bulkheads did provide usable "flotation chambers," would deck hatches that usually seem to appear on our kayaks be watertight enough to allow the space to be used without loosing the flotation completely? Or would they scrap the idea of watertight compartments all together?

Hmmmm. . . Still seem to be rambling. Maybe it's my meds? 8)

Mike S.
Spring Hill, FL


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 Post subject: Re: About Hatches
PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2012 11:19 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 21, 2007 10:48 pm
Posts: 988
Location: Tx
Throw you a couple pool noodles in those hatches.
Ron


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 Post subject: Re: About Hatches
PostPosted: Fri Jul 13, 2012 6:27 am 
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Location: Greensboro, NC
If you have relatively balanced volume on the ends of your kayak that are sealed up, she will float with no problem. It might not be the most stable feeling but it will float while you remount and bail.

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 Post subject: Re: About Hatches
PostPosted: Fri Jul 13, 2012 8:02 am 
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Location: Spring Hill, FL
I know I'm being lazy, but I'm going to cut-and-paste a post I just made on Southern Paddler. :oops:

I guess I do have too much time on my hands, as I'm recovering from a little surgery. This has given me probably more time than I really need to think about things. One of the things I'm thinking about is the fact that I really need to get boat building, right after I clear out the garage (once again,) and all that as soon as the surgeon clears me to get back to work. In the mean time, I can only plot and plan. :|

But I do love to make long post! I'd rather not have to sit through them twice, myself, however. Come to think of it, I don't really wish that on anyone else, either. :) So if you already read it on the other Forum, stop right here!

Here is what I inflicted on Old Sparkey's pages. . .

Morning, guys! And thanks for the replies. :)

What I was thinking was that sealing off the ends with bulkheads would probably work, allowing the boat to float high enough to be bailed out, even with a fully flooded cockpit. That would be a worst-case scenario. I think more likely would be a partially flooded cockpit, probably from a difficult deep water re-entry.

Loosing all that potential storage space would be a shame, though. So, about those deck hatches that I've seen so many pictures of. With a good, sturdy lip mounted in the hull and some good gasket material, just how "water tight" does the usual arraignment of bungee cords keep the compartment? At first, I though the space would almost have to be lost as far as storage went, but then I realized the 'yak wasn't meant to double as a submarine. (Whole 'nuther design project!) :D

Keeping whatever is kept in the ends sealed in waterproof bags should work out just fine. In fact, when I first started thinking about this a while back, the was talk about filling end compartments with plastic bottles, (recycling!) just so the compartment would not have to be completely water tight. What I thought was that even in the open area where the first couple of feet of my pirogue had a little deck installed fore and aft, a bag of plastic water bottles, milk jugs, whatever, could be tied in and used for flotation. (Water proof bag or even a net bag.)

What I was thinking back then was not so much "self-rescue," but taking the boat out for scalloping when they're in season. Where I live, scallops can be taken during the season in water just a couple of feet deep, mostly 5 to 15 feet, from the grass beds. Snorkeling is the usual thing, Scuba not really needed.

But what is needed is the ability to get out of and back into, the boat.

Getting out, not usually a problem. Getting back in, when the water is too deep for you to just step in, that can be problematic. :shock:

I'd seen outriggers fitted to kayaks for those who wanted to fish standing up, and thought that a single one would probably work out just fine for my intended purpose. Nothing permanently attached to the boat, just something that could be added when I knew I'd need it. A single arm, projecting out from the boat, probably just behind the cockpit, maybe 3 to 6 feet long, with a float of some sort on the end. Fall off the boat in whatever fashion suits you, then when you want to get back in, swim to where the outrigger is attached to the hull, grab the outrigger a foot or so from the boat with one hand, grab the cockpit coaming or inwhale with the other, and pull yourself up so you are half out of the water and plop ever-so-gently into the boat.

To make it a little easier, you can make a loop in a short length of rope to use as a step (or stirrup.) This could be left in the cockpit at all times, tied off inside the cockpit, and rolled up ready to go, held in place under the cockpit coaming with a bit of velcro on a strap. Leaving it in place makes it part of a self rescue system. . .

The little outrigger should not pose any real engineering problems as I don't think there will be nearly as much stress on the parts as one might suspect. I doubt the outrigger arm would have to be much more than 3 to 6 feet long. The sponson or float, probably wouldn't need any more flotation than a life jacket, maybe two. The longer the outrigger, the smaller the float needs to be, since it is working at the end of a lever.

Putting such a system together and in use for specific functions, such as scalloping or planned snorkel trips would probably be easy enough. What I'm now hoping to do is to make it work as a self-rescue "system," without a permanent installation getting in the way, or various bits and pieces that can't be found when you need them.

Just to keep it simple (as it would have to be to work,) the "outrigger" could easily be a kayak paddle or push pole. I always kept my paddle, and a spare single blade paddle, tethered to the boat. The spare was reachable from outside the boat, just under the gunnel. The float could be a cooler, a couple of floating cushions, or even a waterproof bag sealed shut. Any and all of those should have been tethered to the boat, just like the paddle. Use that tether to attach it to one end of the paddle.

The other end of the paddle could be attached to the boat by pushing the blade under the bungie cord holding the rear hatch closed. Not a rigid, tight system, but it should be enough to keep the boat from rolling too much while you scramble back in. Probably even easier if you left that "stirrup" described above in place and remembered to use it. Being a little tired and possibly "shocky," you'll need all the edge you can give yourself.

Takes a lot of explaining sometimes, to get what is basically a simple idea across! I think this would be a lot easier to do than it sounds like. And since I'll probably be doing most of my paddling solo, I think it is a project worth working on.

What do you think? Too much time on my hands?

Mike S.
Spring Hill, FL


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 Post subject: Re: About Hatches
PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2012 1:29 am 
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Joined: Fri Jul 18, 2008 10:12 am
Posts: 388
Location: Seaford, South Oz
Yep, you have too much time on your hands :lol:
.....but at least you are recovering 8)

This old post may be of interest.
viewtopic.php?f=12&t=3033

There are also various articles on other parts of the net, you just have to search for paddle float or self rescue etc.

I must say that although the technique worked when I tried it, I would not have much faith in it on open water with even a mild chop unless the kayak had a high stability.

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Cheers, Bob

Laker 13 - christened and slimed (just).
Laker accessories underway.


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 Post subject: Re: About Hatches
PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2012 10:17 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 03, 2009 2:29 pm
Posts: 179
Location: Longview East Texas
FlaMike,
yes deck hatches will definitly give you a watertite compatment, using a paddle float would be the way to go for reentry,plus that isn't wasted space in the pic below the 3 wood boats are carrying everthing needed for a few days that includes fresh food and beverages [url]Image[/url]


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 Post subject: Re: About Hatches
PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2012 10:53 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 03, 2009 2:29 pm
Posts: 179
Location: Longview East Texas
yesterday (Fri 13th) decideed to sail my trimaran.winds were lite 6/8 mph, had just made new sails and wanted to see how they worked. sailed around for 3 hrs enjoying it all.
then I noticed the ominous clouds so headed back home, did I mention that these were new sails?? with no means of furling/reducing sail (my bad)

well I had the ride of my life very strong gusty winds driving rain thunder ect, completly over powered the boat,every time I got close to a lee shore for shelter a gust would power me offshore, didn't want to go to the windward shore, waves were crashing big time would have broken me up for sure. The boat is more than half full of water my bilge pump (sponge) blew away,I'm worried the birdsmouth mast will break in a gust every time I try to sail for safty I get over powered and water breaking over the boat, Scary :!:

So I hove to in the middle of the lake keeping my head to wind and bailed with my soft sided cooler til the storm passed.

The moral of my stupidity, the watertite compartments and my outriggers kept me afloat and I got home intact, note to self make sails that can be reduced in a blow :!: :!:

MM[url]Image[/url]


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 Post subject: Re: About Hatches
PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2012 11:26 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2007 2:30 pm
Posts: 85
Location: Spring Hill, FL
OnkaBob,

Appreciate the link! Don't recall having seen that one before. I have done some looking around the web at different videos over past day or so. Your point about not wanting to try blowing up a float when you need it NOW is well taken.

I'm convinced I need to work out a self-rescue system for me and tailor it for my specific boat. And practice it until it gets easy. I've read plenty on what many think won't work or what isn't practical, but most of those thoughts were based on theory and not hands-on experience. Also, I do understand that the rougher the conditions, the less likely anything will work.

If I were to focus on that, I guess I'd probably just stay home, high & dry. NOT likely!

I'm just looking to improve my chances of getting back. There is NO iron-clad, under any and all conditions, a guarantee of a complete round trip.


makenmend,

Great pics, beautiful Tri!

I spent a good deal of my youth sailing small craft with way too much canvass in too much wind. I feel your fear, brother! (Still miss those days, too.) Understand your point about the space in watertight compartments not being wasted, I clearly wasn't thinking when I came up with that notion.

Nice work on the say, by the way!

Mike S.
Spring Hill, FL


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 Post subject: Re: About Hatches
PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2012 4:54 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2007 2:30 pm
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Location: Spring Hill, FL
In my last post I said: "I've read plenty on what many think won't work or what isn't practical, but most of those thoughts were based on theory and not hands-on experience."

Just re-read that and I can see where that line might have come across quite differently from what I intended. :oops:

Although I was hoping to hear from people who have some experience with making a deep water re-entry, I also know that happily, very few have been in that position. And I most certainly do appreciate and respect the thoughts and opinions of all who take the time to share them.

The River Rat from TX said he'd "played" with filling the cockpit with water and found that he could still paddle around,
OnkaBob used a paddle float to make a re-entry to see if he could do it, and those instances will likely be the only sort of "hands-on" experience available to me.

And you know what, for that, I'm glad! :mrgreen:

When I get another boat in the water, I'll see what sort of "system" I can get working. When I do, I'll take some pics to post, and make a video, too.

Thanks for the help!

Mike S.
Spring Hill, FL


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