Sailfeed
January 17th

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This might be the last of this I post for a while, but it’s pretty interesting. I wish it was more detailed, but then Dr. Paris certainly had more important things to tend to. I’m thankful (and frankly surprised), he was able to send me anything at all.

I emailed his shore team a few days ago after speaking with Patrick from Farr, and they forwarded along a few questions I had for Dr. Paris to try and clear up some of the misinformation that’s been going around the web. These are those questions and his reply, unedited, plus some commentary from myself in brackets:

1. How, and how many times did the boat crash gybe?

ONCE

2. Was there a preventer rigged when it did so?

NO. REGARDLESS I DONT BELIEVE IT WOULD HAVE HELD AND HAVE SEEN FAILURES IN SIMILAR SITUATIONS.

[Still unclear why he wouldn't have had a preventer rigged, but there might be a good reason, so let's wait and see...]

3. What caused the staysail fitting at deck level to fail, and why did the extrusion get so damaged?

A SPINNAKER HALYARD WRAPPED AROUND THE TOP OF THE FURLER AT THE HEAD AND THE FURLING TORQUE CAUSED THE SEPARATION. SAIL IS USEABLE WITHIN LIMITS.

[Furling wraps can really eff your day up. I saw one once before the Carib1500 that unscrewed the Sta-lok terminal on the headstay and brought down the whole thing. They were lucky the mast didn't fall down with it (it had an inner forestay, so some support). Furling systems work great, but you have to be really careful with them, because the consequences of a failure can be severe. I imagine Dr. Paris has some regrets about this one, as it MIGHT have been avoidable.]

4. What broke during the gybe, and is that the reason for the boom-end  failure? Did the gybe cause the most damage, or was it something else?

THE BOOM END PULLEYS THAT FUNCTION WITH THE OUTHAUL, PREVENTER AND FIRST REEF CLEW WERE YANKED OUT OF ALIGNMENT AND DOWN INTO THE BOOM. THE BOOM ALSO CRACKED.

[That must have been a hell of a gybe!]

5. Generally, we’re you happy with the design and layout of the boat and it’s sailing systems? Would you have changed anything now in hindsight?

THATS A TOUGH QUESTION AS EVEN IN NORMAL CIRCUMSTANCES ONE IS ALWAYS LEARNING AND WOULD MAKE CHANGES ON A SECOND MODEL. BUT YES I AM HAPPY BUT IF I AM TO RESTART I HAVE SOME SERIOUS QUESTIOINS AND BUNCHES OF IDEAS TO FOLLOW UP ON. THE DESIGN AND BUILD ARE NOT AN ISSUE. I WISH TO TAKE FULL RESPONSIBILITY AND AS IS MY CUSTOM SPEAK NO ILL  BECAUSE THIS AT PRESENT IS A ONE OFF AND THEREFORE SHORT COMMINGS CAN ONLY BE EXPECTED. i COULD THINK OF NO OTHER BOAT FOR A RESTART IN NOVEMBER.

[Good on Dr. Paris for taking the responsibility onto himself. It will be fun to see what changes he has in mind for the boat, if nothing else than as a learning experience for anyone heading offshore. I'll be rooting for him if he does indeed decide to restart. He's almost in Cape Town, so good luck on the last bit of his journey.]

This article was syndicated from 59 North, Ltd.

One Response to “Stanley Paris Email from Kiwi Spirit to Explain Failures”

  1. Like many over sailors, I have a great admiration for the effort of attempting a solo non-stop circumnavigation by a 76 years old man.
    We all hope to be at that age as healthy and as ambitious as Dr. Paris.
    However, this attempt to me looks like a case of too much money and not enough experience.
    It appears that the extensive boat damages (after having encounter only relatively mild wind and sea conditions)
    were the results of either a poor boat handling or a poor boat design or at the very least a non proper “shake-down” of the skipper and boat.
    Regarding the damage to the furling system, I don’t know if Kiwi Spirit has electric powered winches, but to me this looks like the case of using an eclectic winch for
    reefing a jib and not noticing the huge amount of force the winch was applying because of a problem in the furling system.

    I was also very disappointed by the blog.
    It was like reading the Pravda Russian newspaper of the communist area.
    News were filtered or omitted and the blog was just a self glorification of the ego of the skipper.
    The decision to retire because of the damage to the boat was a total surprise to the blog readers.
    No mention was done in the blog to the damage to the boom, furling or rigging before the post about the decision to abandon the circumnavigation.
    A blog from an on-going vessel should be an honest reflection to the daily life and situation of the skipper and of the boat.
    Not a censured optimistic version with the only purpose to glorify how good an exceptional the writer is.
    I believe that an honest blog is not only interesting to read but a very valuable mean to learn from other people experience.

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