Monday, 15 October 2007

Roll, roll, roll yer boat

Slightly perplexed by articles I’d been reading regarding stability, I decided to capsize OB. Maybe perplexed isn’t the right word; I was aware that nothing I read would tell me as much about OB’s initial stability, righting moment or angle of vanishing stability as actually rolling her over in the drink. I turned her empty hull in the shallows hoping to beach her if she proved reluctant to right.

As I had suspected from her flaring lower chines she had a lot of initial stability. I struggled to tip her through the first 45º but she rose quickly through the second 45º and continued over. To right her I put a hand in the daggerboard slot and a big toe on the gunnel and that was enough, she flipped happily. OB came up less than half full, lower in the water for it and slightly less stable.

Had I been more scientific about the capsize I no doubt could have learnt more. It would have been interesting to take her half way over and then let go to see which way she’d fall if left to her own devices. I could have totally swamped her too.

In the face of my scientific failings I can only say that capsizing and swamping one’s own boat intentionally requires a psychological effort that I could not maintain.

However, while the camera was still running I had a little row and practiced coming in to the beach a few times. The waves were small and on the last run I tried my new technique.

The videos are of a quality that long suffering followers of this blog must be getting used to. In this case I didn’t have the correct cable to transfer the film from the video camera to the computer and had to resort to filming the images direct from the television screen with my coolpix stills camera. However, the light that afternoon was good so the colours are alive and the general effect reminds me of old super 8 films.

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