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Wind Strength


tizer
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So is there a maximum wind strength that a Maricat 4.3 can handle?

I've been out in 15 knots winds before and it seemed like it could take easily take more

The reason I ask is because I believe I saw a Hobiecat 14 get its sail ripped off the mast last week in 20-25 knot winds... I didn't stop for details - but wouldn't want it to happen to my Maricat smile.gif

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As long as you don't let the jib or main flog themselves for any undue length of time you can handle 30+ knots with higher gusts. Seabreezes are often 25 to 35 plus when they kick in

Provided you play your mainsheet so that you depower the sail but don't let it flog, there shouldn't be any damage or severe wear to the sail across a wide wind range...

Letting sails flap around does major damage and weakens them dramatically. The other thing to remember is that any weakness, torn stitching, chafe, corrosion or undue wear in a sail and its fittings will come under more pressure and tension when the wind increases and the degraded areas usually let go first.

I often used to sail on lake macquarie when it would be howling with whitecaps everywhere and felt safe and exhilarated when out on trapeze or hiking out. Gusts ripping through

are handled by keeping a hand on the mainsheet ready to ease off or as a last resort let go.

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Hi Tizer,

I've found 15-20 knot winds are about ideal for exciting sailing on my Maricat. 20 knots will generate plenty of boat speed, and plenty of thrills.

Granted the speed and thrills do incrementaly increase with the extra wind speed, particularly when your talking 20 + knots. Performing a jibe in 25-30 knots of breeze can get very exciting, and very wet!! LOL

Cheers

Barry

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  • 4 months later...

Maricat is a great heavy weather cat. In 1980 I raced a 4.3 in the Hoek van Holland-Scheveningen & Return-approx 26nm along the Dutch coast-started in 15-20knots,finished in 35-40--250 starters 31 finished.It was absolute carnage-over 50 boats abandoned[crews rescued by Dutch Navy],one H16 crew tragically lost,broken boats strewn along the beach for miles.I won the single handed division[i think the only one man boat to finish].Also did the 100klm Ronde Texel[Holland] on Maricat 4.3 409 starters from H14s,Darts.Hydras etc to Tornado,Supercat etc.

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It is a there & back passage race.HVH to Scheveningen approx.12nm shy run 15knots at start 20 at turn.10nm long stb/short port tacking back the coast to Scravenzander,30-40 knots.Out to sea 3nm on compass heading[hand held]in big seas & rain to find a buoy [tight reach],then 2nm dead square to finish off Hoek van Holland in really big seas[drove it staight up the beach & fell off.]

Feathered upwind & tight reaching but can't do that off the breeze.Experience combined with terror is the answer.Dont remember how long either race took.

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Thank goodness most of the catamarans can handle good breezes,otherwise over here in WA we would have very little sailing. Check the seabreeze site for Perth this week, About 5 hours all week when the wind is less than 10knts the rest anything up to 30knts.I have found out since moving here why sailors like Colin handle the heavy stuff so well.

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