Latest Updated Guides

DVD's dvd
Donald Street's DVDs
With Don's Streets half a century of experience this book gives you the benefit of his practical know how at sea
Seawise is a collection of ideas and uses for the equipment available to the yachtsman in the 1970s. It has been updated in the light of the new equipment available today and the experience I have gained in my life time. Now in 2004, up-dated and back in print.
A history of the Caribbean and a sailing guide
"Nostalgia, humour and fact"
The Guide that opened the Eastern Caribbean to the cruising yachtsmanb and made bare boat chartering possible.
Detailed Sailors cruising guide to the Virgins and Puerto Rico
"In the beginning was the word and the word came from Street.... Since 1964 all other guide authors have followed in Street's and Iolaire's wake, avoiding the rocks and shoals Street and Iolaire discovered" —Patience Wales, former Editor Sail magazine.
Street's Guides are for Real Sailors. The only cruising guide with detailed inter island sailing directions
If you are looking to get away from it all then this is the guide for you - find quiet and even deserted anchorages in the most beautiful sailing area of the world.
The Only guide to cover Martinique to Trinidad including Tobago and Barbados in one volume
As Dick Johnson, Editor, Yachting World said: "To find a quiet anchorage buy the other guides and circle in red all the anchorages Street describes that are not described in the other guides."
The Venezuelan guide for sailors wishing to explore along the northern coast of Venezuela and the ABC islands.
This guide is out of print. But rocks don't move, so the navigational information is still as valid today as it was when the guide was written in 1989.
Work is in hand to get this guide updated in the hope to have it back in print by next season.
Guide to the Atlantic islands, Transatlantic Crossings, Getting to and leaving the Caribbean from the east coast of the U.S. and an Introduction to the Caribbean
Yes Iolaire is for sale A spectacular deal for the right person. No boat has ever been offered for sale on such favourable and unique conditions - the reason is that I have owned her for 48 years. As each year
Despite the fact that she is 104 years old she is in as good shape as boats that are only 4 or 5 years old.She needs a new home with someone who will take good care of her, sail her and has enough money to keep her in good shape.
Know how from an experienced ocean sailor of half a century
Ocean Sailing Yacht Volumes 1 and 2 is being updated having been first published in the mid1970s, there is a tremendous amount of information on boats and equipment, gear and rigging tricks of the trade.

Welcome

Don Street has owned Iolaire for 53 years. Note that articles on her have appeared in Yachting Monthly, Classic Boat Nov 05’, Sail Feb 06’and Cruising World March 06’ Iolaire now has a diesel electric engine installation.
She was on the market, but only the right person.
Reason she was on the market as age is catching up with the owner (age 80) but not with Iolaire.
After sailing her for 37 years without the aid of an engine he has broken down and installed small desiel electric power.
Desiel generator in focsale where the chain locker was, (chain locker moved forward where over the years a lot of unnecessary spares had accumulated), the electric motor under the navigators seat,result, accomodations remain unchanged.
With the generator in the focsale, on deck when it is running it can not be heard, and barely heard in the skippers after cabin.
END OF AN ERA THE BEGINNING OF A NEW ONE
With my 80th bithday July 26 approaching, it was time to quit sailing Iolaire while I was still fit enough to run arround on Iolaire's deck and do everything.
We the whole Street family feel we are very lucky as we have sold the Iolaire to a very good owner Guy Sommers.
He heard Iolaire was for sale, flew to Ireland, spent an afternoon with me, asked me to leave him on the boat the second day, the third day over breakfast he said "I want her lets make a deal".
After 20 minutes talking a deal was made on a hand shake. I quickly typed out a list of things I would do before I turned the boat over to him, signed it and off to the bank to make a 10% deposit to seal the deal while he organized the transfer of the balance.
I am not quiting sailing as early July Gypsy our dragon went back in the water, and the the 80 year old WPOF(well preserved old fart)sailing an 73 year old dragon was out there giving the youngsters(at 80 anyone under 60 is a kid) a hard time.
Racing in Glandore harbor, good starts, good sail trimming, good spinnaker work and some old native animal cunning has kept us competitive against the fiberglass dragons.
Gypsy has not been in commission for 3 years, nor have I been racing dragons for three years so performance has been erratic. We have won some races and in the other races the kids had to work hard to beat Gypsy.
It is truly the end of an era 53 years 4 month of ownership and I have turned Iolaire over to a new owner.
The RORC is 85 years old, Iolaire has flown the RORC burgee for 80 years.
I think those two numbers must be records.
I delivered Iolaire to devon with new owner, he as skipper, me as sailing master.
It was a slow start, motored(diesel electric drive installed 07 flat calm power only) out of glandore then motor sailed for 1/​2hr then wind filled in and we shut the engine down.
I went below to sleep. I woke up two hours later, Iolaire did not feel right.
I went up on deck to discover the new owner struggling with heavy weather helm, everything miss trimmed
I sorted things out, properly reefed main, re sheeted yankee to end of main boom, moved the staysail lead from the windward going lead to the reaching lead, set up boom vang, doused missen and we took off at 7/​ 7.5 kts with neutral helm.
Glandore to Seven stones light ship 150 miles in 24 hours! dispite slow start.
Glorious night sail with smooth sea and full moon no clouds, doing a solid 7 all night.
As we passed Seven Stones light ship the wind went up and down and changed direction. It made a good sail drill for new owner.
His friend steered while new owner did fordeck under my direction. Four hours close reaching under MPG(light genoa) main, missen staysail, and missen. It was right up at the limit of MPG and missen staysail, smooth sea neutral helm doing a solid 7 1/​2 kts, fantastic!.
New owner is a good seaman, builder of dinghies and an electronic specialist.
His buddy that he has sailed with since teen age days DESIGNS motor controllers so the Asmo,electric drive system does not faze them.
I suspect they know more about the system than the boys that put the asmos system together.
Trich and I feel confident that we have sold her to the right owner
To those who would like to keep track of Iolaire's activities go to www.1905Iolaire.com.I
Sailors that know her from the Caribbean are puzzled by the fact that Iolaire is now white.
Sailors would ask me "why is Iolaire red?" my reply"because it matches the numbers in my bank account"!
Iolaire means "white tailed sea eagle" in Gaelic. The name had been on her for 52 year when I bought her so needless to say I did not change the name. It took me a year to find the meaning of the name.
My irish wife Trich insisted that Iolaire "white tailed sea eagle" be painted white for her 100th birthday sooooo
I know that the only thing that is more expensive than a wife is an ex wife so to keep my wife of then 39 years happy Iolaire was painted white.

One problem , when staying at the RORC every time I go to the third floor there on the wall is a beautiful half modle of "the old red race horse " with six photos and a brief history ofIolaire and her previous owners.
nick name used to be sqeaky but with the way I am having holes cut in me nick name should be changed to swiss cheeze
The famous Dragon Fafner has been sold to a really good owner who is planing to install a teak deck and bring her back to sweden to her birth place and race her there. She obviously will be sailing and racing for many more years. For more information please Click Here
D. M. Street Jr., a lifetime sailor, has spent over fifty years cruising, charting and writing about the Caribbean. Forty of those years were spent in his 46ft. engineless yawl, Iolaire, built in 1905, and 6 years on the 28ft engineless yawl L'll Iolaire,( L'll Iolaire was unfortunately lost during hurricane Ivan when a TTM catamaran dragged down on her) in the caribbean.
He now cruises the Caribbean on OPB "Other Peoples Boats", and in europe in the Iolaire, taking part in many of the classic regattas.
There follows a list of errors found in British Admiralty charts both Big Ship and their Leisure Charts.
Cross check British Admiralty, US NOAA and Nautical Publication Charts against the relevant Imray-Iolaire Charts.
If there are differences, then the Imray-Iolaire Charts are correct.
We can say this with confidence as twice in the Compass mariners were asked to send in corrections to Imray-Iolaire Charts, and/​or the need to improve them.
So far noting has been received, thus we can only conclude Imray-Iolaire Charts are correct.

ERRORS IN BRITISH ADMIRALITY CARIBBEAN CHARTS AS ACERTAIND BY D M STREET JNR., WHO HAS SPENT THE LAST 50 YEARS CRUISING, EXPLORING, CHARTERING AND WRITING ABOUT THE EASTERN CARIBBEAN.

In 2004 the British Admiralty brought out a set of Caribbean leisure charts.

D. M. Street Jnr., went through them carefully and made a list of all the errors he found. He gave the list to a number of Imray Iolaire chart agents.

That list of errors somehow or other ended up back in the Admiralty hands.

They admitted IN PRINT IN NOVEMBER 2004 Yachting Monthly, that there were errors in the British Admiralty Leisure Charts. arts hThey said the errors weould be corrected using satellite imagery. However, they continued to sell uncorrected charts that THEY KNEW TO BE IN ERROR!!!!!!!!Finally after selling charts the knew to be in error for seven years they discontinued the leisure charts


In contrast to the errors noted in the British Admiralty Charts twice in the winter of 2007 it was announced in The Compass that Imray was completely redrawing the Imray Iolaire Charts electronically as the Head Draughtsman Alan Wilkenson who has been working for Imray for 48 years was coming up for retirement. It was requested in The Compass, the free nautical newspaper that is distributed throughout the Caribbean, that sailors that knew of any errors in Imray Iolaire Charts, would they please contact D M Street Jnr., at streetiolaire@​hotmail.com. No corrections or suggestions regarding changes have been received. Thus, it can only be assumed that the Imray Iolaire Charts are correct.

THE US COAST GUARD USES IMRAY IOLAIRE CHARTS WHY DON’T YOU.

MCA Compliant Yachts are required by law to carry on board the British Admiralty Charts relevant to their area. BUT THE VAST MAJORITY OF OLD TIME CAPTAINS THAT HAVE A LOT OF TIME IN THE CARRIBBEAN THOUGH THEY CARRY ONBOARD THE BRITISH ADMIRALITY CHARTS, THE CHARTS THEY USE ARE THE IMRAY IOLAIRE CHARTS.

Talk to Brian Harrison of Dione Star, Phil Richards of Chanti al Mar, Mark Fitzgerald of Sojana, Phil Wade of Timoneer 11, Hans Hoff (now retired), John Barden of Creole, Jessica (now Adix) Shenandoah, Steve Carson of Adela, Steve Goss of Adix, they and many others rely on Imray Iolaire Charts rather than the British Admiralty Charts. There follows the list of errors found, and there are probably others.

ERRORS FOUND IN BRITISH ADMIRALTY CHARTS OF EASTERN CARIBBEAN NOVEMBER 2010 Most of these errors were reported to the BA in January 2007 and have not been corrected and still appear in BA that have supposedly been corrected.
These charts had been hand corrected to beginning of November.
2047 Anguilla, the lights at Road and Windward points have been out for over 20 years
2005 St Thomas to Roadtown Tortola, wrong in Brenners Bay, Red Hook Enghn Pond St. Johns, Mary Creek,there has not been any customs in Coral Bay for 30 years
Nanny Cay, Sea Cow Bay and Roadtown are all wrong.
2008 St Thomas to Anegada same errors as above plus it shows rock south of Pull and Bedamed Point Camaneo , rock does not exist.
2019 Roadtown to North Sound, errors in Road town harbor, Hodges Cre ek, Fat Hog and Trellis Bays, soundings wrong and the runway extension done about 20 years ago does not show. Rock south of Pull and Be dammed point show but rock does not exist. North sound buoy on Oyster rock established over ten years ago not shown, soundings at Anguilla point entrance and between Pricky Pear, Saba Rock and Bitter end wrong.
2020 Harbors and anchorages in British Virgin Islands, North sound wrong, mistakes listed above. Roadtown harbor dispite the fact that a survey crew was sent out Roadtown
Harbor full of errors. Road Reef marina that has had 9/​10 ‘ of water in it for 30 years is show a 4’ deep!!!!! Sea Cow bay wrong, no controlling depths given for the various channels shown
2183 St Thomas harbor and surrounding are Saba island wrong, overhead cable obstructing Krum bay that has been there for at least 60 years is not shown, Haulover
Cut 4.6 meters nuts!!!!! More like 10’.
1025 Anguilla to Barbuda buoy on Proselyte that has been there for fifteen or more years not shown, sounding SE corner of Barbuda nuts
2079 Ports of St. Martin,Anguilla St.Barts. Oyster pond buoyage nuts, Roadharbor sounding nuts and light on Road Point out for 20plus years. Marigot sounding nuts, south bulkhead St Lous marina built about 2005/​6 not shown, Groot Baai sounding nuts, no channel shown connecting the north and south side of Simson Lagoon shown dispite this channel being dredged about 25 years ago. No info on depth of channel or width of bridge shown, Gustavia harbor nuts.
254 Monseratt and Barbuda sounding south east end of Barbuda nuts and new hotel with fake light house on west coast not shown.
482 St Kitts Statia Saba, no transits/​ranges show for safe passage thru the Narrows. They were clearly shown on the old BA charts but have been deleted.
2064 Antigua , depths Falmouth and English harbor wrong , no warning that range light in Falmouth are impossible to pick out because they are low and lost in other lights, buoyage wrong and no warning that lights and buoyage in Antigua unreliable.
491 Anchorages in Guadalopue Deserade Grand Anse, channel and harbor dredged about three or more years ago, Guadalopue , Grand Bourg nuts, St Louis marina built about 5years ago not shown, Terre Haute, Baie de Pointe Pierre, rock blown out by French divers at least thirty years ago.
371 Martinique wreck off beach of Anse Mitane has not been there for over thirty years, combination of worms feasting and hurricanes, Savan anchorage details 20 years out of date, Trois Islet nuts.
494 South coast of Martinique Cul de Sac marine depths and buoyage appears correct but no marinas shown. The marinas have expanded so much that the completely fill the entire north end of the harbor.
197 Northeast St. Lucia, soundings north side of St. Croix Roads nuts, Rodney bay completely out of date.Channel dredge to 14 ‘ at least 4 years ago.
1273 St Lucia errors as listed above.
502 Harbors of Barbadoes Pt St. Charles inadequate, refer to sailing directions on back of Imray Iolaire chart B 5 .
793 Northern Grenadines Charleston bay 30 years out of date.
794 Grenadines Central Clifton harbor/​Frigate island 20 years out of date, Gran Col Pt buoy frequently missing and not replaced for years, no warning.Boats frequently hit the rock when buoy missing. Shoal north of Petit Martinique in line between Petite St Vincent anchorage and Petit Martinique anchorage does not exist, nor does the rock that is shown on the south east entrance/​exit from the Petite St Vincent anchorage north of the reef.
795 Grenadines southern part, errors as listed above exist. Watering bay, north east corner of outer reef, there has been a steel freighter 90’ sitting on the reef for 20or more years, great land mark but not shown on chart.
797 Grenada, Grenville ranges/​transits not shown, Prickly bay Spice Island marine, channel and Coast guard station in NWcorner of harbor not show so chart 6 years out of date, two western channels into Mt Hartman bay not shown, nor is it mentioned that many of the entrances are privately buoyed but buoyage unreliable. Very few of the marinas are noted, nor the fake lighthouse on Prickley Point that is an excellent land mark noted, basically chart 6 to 7 years out of date.
799 St Georges harbor 3 years out of date, Port St Louis marina built, entrance to lagoon dredged to 16’.




This site will hopefully not be boring. I will be advertising my books, Imray-Iolaire Charts and my services as an Insurance Broker, design consultant for yachts of new construction and altering existing boats, to make them more habitable, more easily handled and in many cases faster and more seaworthy.
But this is not all. Every month there will be a news letter, both interesting and humorous. These bulletins will go into the aspects of what is wrong in modern yacht design and how to fix it— basically articles that no yachting magazine will publish as they are afraid of hurting their advertisers .
Because of electronic publishing all of the books I have written will be back in print, updated guides and the books on boats and seamanship updated in relation to what I have learned since the books originally went into print. Plus the way things have changed vis a vis new equipment that has come on the market.
Street's Guides are available at most good marine bookstores and Imray-Iolaire Chart Agents in the Caribbean. In the States they can be ordered directly from: Armchair Sailor, Thames St., Newport, RI08240 Fax: 401 847 1219 Email: armchair@​seabooks.com and in Europe from: Imray Laurie Norie & Wilson Wych House, The Broadway, St. Ives, Cambridgeshire PE27 5BT England. Telephone:
(01480) 462114 Fax: (01480) 496109 E-mail: inlw@​imray.com For books out of print check Amazon.com/​Internet.


Streets' Guides may not be the cheapest
but

they are the best.





'Iolaire'

Insurance


There is good insurance and there us cheap insurance. But there is no good cheap insurance.
You never know how good your insurance coverage is until you have a claim.
Then if you have a broker, who has written a poor policy and the claim is denied because the claim falls between the planks so to speak, it is too late.
I well remember the story of a yachtsman who had an insurance claim denied (I had not organized his insurance ). He complained that the broker had sold him a policy, which can only be compared to a leaky French letter/​condom-maximum coverage with minimum protection.
David Payne and my claims settlement record over the years is so good that it cannot be beaten by any other broker.
I am very proud of the fact that all my clients (bar two that were trying to file fraudulent claims and I had to side with the underwriter) who have filed claims are still my drinking partners.
I have been in the insurance business for 47 years,45 working closely with brokers who placed the insurance with Lloyds of London, under the name of Iolaire Enterprises Ltd. until the new FSA regulations came in. Now I am only a referal agent and all policies are in the name of the broker who arrnages the insurance.
From 1966 when I started organizing insurance with Llyod until he retired at the end of 1999 I have dealt with David Payne.
Until he retired in 1996 the majority of my of my insurance was placed with underwriter Robin Kershaw. When he retired, his understudy Mike Waterfield took over. This continuity; David Payne, Robin Kershaw, Mike Waterfield and Donald Street, was a continuity unmatched in the marine industry.
Since 1990 I have been refering insurance to Besso who have been placing it with various different Llyods underwriters, picking what they feel is the best underwriter for the risk that I have refered to them.
Because of the changes that have happened with the re organization of Llyods in the late 80's early 90's and the new regulations of the FSA, paper work to place a risk is now so great that Besson will not handle insurance for boats whose hull valuation is less than ?
Besso is a large company with many divisions. Thus Besso is fully equipped to arrange all the various types of coverage that a yacht may need, hull, liability, crew insurance,health,accident, loss of wages, fine arts coverage, you name it they can organize it.
For values under ? I introduce inquiries I recieve to Ferryman, a non Llyods company headed by Peter Norfeild whic is based in Burnham on Crouch. Peter in his youth worked as an underwriter in Llyods. He has raced boats out of Burnham on Crouch all his life, for many years as a top notch navigator, now he is racing his own boat.

Most (but not all) underwriters give no coverage for named storms, between 12º to 35º north from June 1st to December 1st.
The old hurricane dates were from June 1st to November 1st but due to the fact that in the last 20 years there have been more named storms/​hurricanes during the month in November than there have been in the previous 100 years, many underwriters have moved the date on to the 1st December.
However if your boat is on the east coast of the States, and you want to sail to the Caribbean, some underwriters may be willing to give named storm coverage as long as the departure has been approved by a recognized weather router.
Sailors who wish to cruise north of 12º during the hurricane season, there is no problem. It is just a case of listening to the radio weather reports every morning. If a hurricane is reported approaching your area, pick up anchor and head south as fast as you can. With the satellite coverage we have today, the forecasters allow us enough time to get south of 12 north before the hurricane hits.. Being caught unawares by a hurricane is unlikely unless you are very careless or very unlucky.
Please remember there is no coverage north of 12` for damage caused by NAMED STORMS but if you are north of 12º from June 1st to December 1st, if you run aground, or your boat catches fire, or you loose your rig YOU ARE COVERED. You are only not covered for damage caused by named storms.
Regarding hurricanes, avoidance, frequency and securing a boat if a hurricane approaches if you decide to ride it out in a harbor, read ‘Reflections on Hugo’ which was written in 1989. This appears in all my Cruising Guides availble in the eastern Caribbean at all IWW stores, or internet iUniverse.com. It is also available in the states via Bluewater, Ft. Lauderdale, Armchair, Newport. Also check Caribbean Compass ‘Hurricane Myths Exploded’ October 2004 and ‘Reflections on Ivan’ written in November 2004 . Bluewater Sailing also had an article by me "Securing for a Hurricane"
I also recommend obtaining and studying carefully the Hurricane Book from;
National Climatic Data Center,
151, Patton Avenue,Room 120,
Ashiville
NC 28801 5001
Phone 828 271 4800
Fax 271 4010-TDD
Email orders@​ncdc.gov home page http:/​/​www.ncdc.noaa

Besso or Ferryman can sometimes arrange named storm coverage for boats stored ashore if they are stored as described as below;
To be regarded as properly stored; masts must be removed and boats should be stored with their keels and rudders in a hole, resting on tyres, plus additional supports bow and stern if necessary (catamaran club marina hauling facility actually has carefully fitted chocks both bow and stern that absolutely fit the curvature of the hull, obviously done by a carpenter that also a good draughtsman).
If the boat is supported on screw stands the stands it must have plywood pads under them so that they cannot sink into the soft wet ground that the heavy rain during a hurricane produces. The stands must be secured together by "Ree bar" welded to the stands; the screw jacks must be secured so that they cannot unwind. The surveyor then certifies that there are sufficient stands for the size of the boat (I noted in an add not too long after Ivan in the Compass in an add there was a photo of a boat sitting there with only two screw stands on one side. This chocking arrangement is obviously inadequate.) Sand Screws must be driven into the sand or dead men properly buried or if on a hard standing bolts secured into the solid ground so that the boats can be secured down into the stands or into the hole resting onto the tyres by heavy nylon straps. Thsi is necessary as even well chocked boats have been known to blow out of the cradles. The same type of straps as are used to secure loads on trucks.
Alternately they can be stored in the special built steel cradles (with the masts out) but must also be tied down into the cradles as described above.
Many underwriters will not cover for damage caused by other boats falling over and damaging the properly chocked and insured boat. Thus there would have to be substantial space between boats and the masts removed from all boats in the area where the hauled boats are insured against named storm damage.
Besso or Ferryman can also SOMETIMES arrange coverage for named storms for boats in the water well secured in certain marinas, or tucked way up in a mangrove area, bow in, with all anchors out astern.
This of course is judged on each individual case after the underwriter has seen the boats hurricane preparation plans. Needless to say this coverage does not come cheaply.

Before quoting on insurance, the underwriter will need to see a copy of a recent hauled survey done by a surveyor that the underwriter approves of. The underwriter will require that all recomendation essential for the safe navigation of the boat are complied with.
New surveyors are popping up in the Caribbean like mushrooms out of an old log. By the time a man has enough experience to be a really good surveyor he is usually approaching retirement age. Be suspicious of young surveyors.
Because of old age and size, many of the older surveyors will not (or often are not capable) of going up the mast and doing a complete rig survey.
Underwriters usually insist on a complete rig survey. If the surveyor does not want to go up the mast, have the surveyor hire the local rigger to do the rig survey.
There have been number of losses where stainless chainplates which were buried in fiberglass had become corroded and failed.If this happens many underwriters have denied the claims as most policies not state there is no coverage if the loss has been caused by corrosion.
Pull chainplates out and inspect them, or if this is very difficult or impossible go to Trinidad and have them checked by having them x rayed in place.In trinadad they have the equipement to do this and the price is very reasonable.

Please note most underwriters do not insure single handers.
It is possible to organize insurance for Catamarans but most underwriters do not like them, thus the insurance rate is not cheap.
Because of the new FSA regulations I can no longer advise on insurance, I can only pass on the inquiry for insurance to a broker that I feel is best suited to the needs of the pontenial insured. Please supply as much of the information requested below. I will then examine the information and pass your name and contact on to the broker that is most likely to be able to arrange insurance for you, or I may say that I do not know of a broker that can give coverage suitable for your needs.

Please read the below information needed to obtain insurance, supply all the possible information requested. Please send the information to streetiolaire@​hotmail.com I will examine it and send your name and contact information on to the insurance broker or brokers that will be most interested in insuring your boat or reply that I can not help you.


For last months Article: Towboat Hitches go to Article page at the top of this page.

For last months Article: Towboat Hitches go to Article page at the top of this page

Street Tips
Last months Article: Towboat Hitches.

Hatches

As reported in the discussion on Dorades, yachting magazines regularly have articles on sea sickness, it's prevention and cure. But, they never mention what many sailors feel is the best way to prevent sickness - Make sure the boat is well ventilated, both in port and at sea.
The ventilation on the vast majority of modern yachts is hopeless, as per our discussion on Dorade ventilators. The vast majority of them are water scoops. They put little or no air below decks.
Hatches are in most cases the same, as —although they are water tight— the modern aluminium hatch is also air tight. The vast majority of boat builders install single hinged hatches. I.e. They will only open in one direction. Those hatches that open facing forward are great in port if it isn't raining. The minute it starts raining (or at sea) the hatches must be closed. In northern climates below decks just gets stuffy. In the southern climates - Mediterranean and Caribbean, the boat rapidly becomes a sweat box.
Some boat builders hinge the hatches on the forward end. At sea, if spray is not flying, they can be left open and a good amount of air gets down below decks. But, the minute the spray starts flying, the hatches must be closed. Again causing a stuffy boat or sweat box. Plus the aft opening hatches are fine in the northern climate in port, but in a tropical climate facing aft they gather no air.
The athwartship opening hatches are absolutely useless except on a beam reach, or lying in a marina beam to the wind.
Properly designed hatches can be water tight, and yet suck in plenty of air.
First of all Double Opening Hatches are the solution. They open facing forward in port, facing aft at sea. Fit a good dodger over the hatch, and they can be left open facing aft under the dodger at sea in all but very extreme conditions. There are a few manufacturers of aluminium hatches that are double hinged. But, the vast majority of them you must go on deck to pull the pins and reverse the opening.
Needless to say, with intermittent squalls it is a real nuisance. If the hatch opening forward, a rain squall comes in you must run up on deck close the hatch, change the pins, and opening it aft. All is well. Next minute the rain squall passes and you have to go back up on deck close the hatch, change the pins, and opening it facing forward again.
This is not necessary as I reported in Ocean Sailing Yacht, Volume 2, page 329, illustration 27. A Goiot hatch is a double opening hatch that can be reversed from below decks without having to go on deck. Why all boat builders do not install this hatch is beyond me. They make the excuse that this hatch is too expensive. But, the cost of installing a proper Goiot Hatch, is probably 1/​10 of 1% of the coast of the boat. The excuse of expense is not good enough.
One point to remember about the Gigot hatch, there is one point when you are switching the direction of the opening of the hatch, when the hatch is attached to nothing. It could conceivably at this point, blow over board. Thus you should tie to the centre of the hatch a light wire lanyard going down to a pad eye in the cabin head, and so prevent it going adrift. A Gigot hatch with a dodger over it, is a real step forward.
A problem with hatches and water on the modern fibreglass boats is the hatches are either absolutely flush with the deck. The least bit of water running across the deck goes straight below the open hatch. If opened under a dodger, in heavy weather inevitably some water drives under the dodger and comes down below. Just where you don't want it.
The solution to this problem is to mount the hatch on a two inch high coaming. This will minimise the amount of water finding it's way down below.
Of course there is nothing new in yachting. Back in the 1930s, the late Maurice Griffith designed the Griffith hatch. This was a wooden hatch with an inside coaming. See the sketch in Ocean Sailing Yacht Volume 1, page 281, sketch 112. A Griffith hatch, even without a dodger can be left partially open, gathering air and no water coming down below decks. Equipped with a dodger —as per sketch in OSY V.1, page 280, sketch 111— even in extremely heavy weather it can be left open. Then in storm conditions if you have to close the Griffith hatch, as there is an inner and outer coaming, it drains like a properly designed Dorade. Even if there is leaking gasket water will not come below decks.
Besides hinging the Griffith hatch, so it can be opened forward or aft, the ultimate Griffith hatch has hinges on all four sides. When making a Trade Wind passage, on a beam reach and light airs, it can be opened facing to windward, and really suck in air, and if it blows up it can be facing to leeward, under a dodger, and still suck in plenty of air and no water.
Hinges with removable pins are available from Jamestown Distributors
Jamestown Distributors,
500 Wood Street,
No. 15 Bristol Industrial Park,
Jamestown,
Rhode Island 02809.
Phone: 001 401 423 2520
Fax: 001 402 423 0542
Catalogue No. PBI 1192

Needless to say when putting hinges on all four sides of the hatch it is very difficult to get them lined up perfectly, so the pins will fit easily. The way to ease this situation is to drill out the male portion of the hatch, from 5/​16ths to 3/​8ths fore you fasten the hinges in place. Thus even if there is a little misalignment, the pins can still be inserted.
The ultimate four way opening hatch was designed by Jay Parris for the yacht Lonestar. This hatch appeared in Sail magazine in their June 200 issue. The information on the hatch can be obtained from J. Paris
J. Paris
P. O. Box 459
Brunswick
Maine 04011
U.S.A.

Presently this is a custom made item and costs a God awful fortune. But if you have a boat worth $1million, the cost of the ultimate four way hatch is very small in proportion to the cost of the yacht. Also, if a boat builder such as Swan, Rassey, Baltic, were to order those hatches in quantity the price would certainly come down to where the yachtsman could afford a J Paris or four way opening hatch.
The proper hatch should suck large quantities of air below decks, both in port and at sea. It should be protected with a good dodger either snapped around a 1-inch high coaming, or on a flush deck boat, made with a bolt rope fed into a aluminium or wooden bolt rope. See Ocean Sailing Yacht Volume 1, page 245. That will allow air get down below and minimise the chances of water going below, even in heavy weather.
You can sort out ventilation with good Dorade ventilators and proper hatches, and you will minimise sea sickness among the crew.
Remember was Dr. Samuel Johnson—the author of the first English dictionary stated — A sure cure for sea sickness is to find yourself a big oak tree and rap your arms around it.

WHAT THEY WON'T PRINT
Few if any Editors of yachting magazines, designers, builders, salesmen, yacht brokerages sailed and/​or raced in the hey day of Cruise Racing in the 1950s to the 1970s...d


I often discuss the fact that the vast majority of modern yachts are uninhabitable at sea. Many of us feel the reason for this is that the present generation of designers, builders and salesmen were not sailing in the hey day of overnight/​off shore racing. The hey day of this type of racing was done in the middle 1950s to the middle 1970s. In those days the cruiser racer practically never raced around the buoys. All the races were overnight or longer. The short races would start off at the yacht club on a Friday evening, have supper/​dinner served up underway, 95% of the time on a gimballed table. Cooked on a properly gimballed stove. The off watch went in to sleep in bunks properly fitted with bunk boards or lee canvases. Below deck was properly ventilated. The Off Watch never went on deck unless they were called. If they stuck their noses up on deck without being called the On Watch would feel very insulted and would make comments such as "What the hell's the matter? Don't you think we know how to run our watch?"

The races took were over night, or two nights. Then of course there were the longer ones such as the Bermuda Race and Transatlantic Races, etc. Often at the end of a race one boat would gloat on how they won, but other boats would be putting them down saying "what the hell, you may have won the race but we ate a hell of a lot better than you did."
A good skipper spent as much time and energy recruiting a good cook as he did in recruiting a good Foredeck boss.
In contrast today the cruiser racer spends a vast majority of its racing with the entire crew perched on the weather rail. No one goes below decks. Even on over night races, or longer races like the Fastnet, the entire crew perches on the weather rail for the entire race. Below decks the habitability has been completely forgotten about.
This is not pointed out in yachting magazines Sail Tests articles—a subject I will come back to in some future date on this web site.
Every month we will put out our version of any of several complaints yachtsmen have with all sorts of gear, rules, publications and theories that have been put out to the public and make suggestions as to why the yachtsmen don't like them, and how to fix the problems with them.
Watch this space for:
better yacht design
better chart accuracy
innovative ideas on cruising comfort
better safety gear
and lots more.....

Donald M. Street Jr.

HURRICANCES
Anyone who is going to be in the Caribbean on their boat, or is leaving a boat in the Caribbean afloat or ashore should do their homework.
Read in any of the Street’s guides (it is in all three) ‘Reflections on Hugo’, written in 1990, then ‘Hurricanes, some Myths exploded’, published by Compass in October 2004 (repeated in this web site) and ‘Reflections on Ivan’.
This was liked by the Compass and many other magazines as they said it covered all the bases, but was however too long to go into print, bits and pieces of the article will appear in some magazines but no one will have the whole story that is presented here.
I know about hurricanes, I well remember the disastrous 1938 hurricane, also the 1944 hurricane that cleaned out Manhasset Bay where I grew up and literally dozens of others since that time.
I have been in the insurance business for forty six years and needless to say I have read hurricane reports too many to count.
Read everything, and then make YOUR decision as to what you are going to do with the boat.


Beken - Fastnet Race 1975

Iolaire at a quiet anchorage - Los Roques

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