Re: Safety Equipment: Broken Mast

From: topher gayle (
Date: Fri May 29 1998 - 18:37:23 PDT

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From: "topher gayle" <>
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Subject: Re: Safety Equipment: Broken Mast
Date: Fri, 29 May 1998 21:37:23 -0400
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Pierre -

I think I remember seeing your name in New England a could years ago. I
just moved to the Bay Area from Boston myself, following my sweetie's
career move. So far I have sailed only once here (Coyote, two weeka go)
but that will change soon. On the other hand, sailing is enough more
popular here that four out of 70 people work wih are windsurfers. Much
better percentages than in NE. And that's pretty cool.

See ya at the beach - look for a rusty white Nissan pickup with an Aruba
plate on the front and a NBA greenhead sticker on the back!

- Topher Gayle

> From: Pierre St. Hilaire <>
> To: Multiple recipients of list <>
> Subject: Re: Safety Equipment: Broken Mast
> Date: Tuesday, May 26, 1998 5:43 PM
> At 12:40 PM 5/26/98 -0700, you wrote:
> >However, one significant type of equipment failure which has not been
> >fully discussed is a broken mast. Possibly because of the apparent
> >difficulty in repairing a mast in the water, I would posit that most
> >people expect to just abandon their rig in such situations. This would
> >explain the dearth of posts on the matter.
> >
> >Luckily, recent advances in technology have provided a solution to this
> >hithertoo intractable problem. My own experiments have shown it is
> >possible to sail back from the channel at 3rd Ave. on a sail of 6.0 or
> >smaller with the aid of two 500mg capsules of Viagra.
> :) :)
> O.K. here it is for a mast failure story.
> I broke my mast last Friday at 5:30 in the channel halfway between Third
> and Coyote. It simply exploded while on a very powered reach. I self
> rescued in the conventional way (rolled sail, tied with boom on top of
> board) and proceeded to paddle back. By that time the tide started to
> flood, and so about half an hour later I was close enough to the
> pack" to call someone with my whistle. Another sailor took my boom back
> my rescuer and I proceeded for the long tow to the shore. About halfway
> unfortunately my sail untied (maybe due to the repeated shocks from the
> towing) and quickly sank (probably because I had tied the universal and
> mastbase to it) before I had time to swim back to it.
> All in all a pretty uneventful rescue. I should have tied the sail
> , obviously, - everything is so incredibly more difficult to do while
> swells come crashing on you in the channel. It confirmed the utility of
> the whistle, although its range is more limited that what I would have
> expected (maybe 50 feet). I was sure happy to have my pouch with rescue
> equipment. Just knowing I had a radio and strobe in case of real shit
> definitely made me more cool-headed. I could probably have made it back
> without help after sunset, but that was only because the flood helped me
> (the flood is your friend at 3rd if you break down). I will definitely
> those paddling gloves. And a case of Viagra.
> If anybody finds a green 4.9 Windwing sail on shore please contact me.
> Also if my rescuer (his name was Ben) read this post please get in touch.
> certainly owe you a beer (or two, or three...)
> Best regards,
> Pierre St. Hilaire
> Interval Research Corp.

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