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Old 18 August 2016, 16:00   #1
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Weather/swell limits for a sib

Hi,

Just trying to get an understanding of how regularly a sib is usable in the sea.
I know weather is complicated and combined with tides etc it's even more complex but just looking at general guidelines.

Apols for the Paragliding analogy but that's what I'm used to.

I'm very cautious and also don't want to waste a day sitting on takeoff waiting.
I look at xcweather.com and look at the site I'm considering flying. I take the forecast windspeed and double it to account for venturi and wind gradient at the top of the hill at takeoff. If the doubled windspeed exceeds 20mph I don't even bother going out. This formula is simple but has worked very well. I very very rarely go out and and spend the day parawaiting. Whereas when I was young and keen I'd happily sit all day waiting and hoping the forecast was wrong.

So my Q is an interest in your rules of thumb for whether it's even worth considering sea fishing on a sib weather-wise. For arguments sake let's take 1 mile off Fleetwood lancs as an example as that's one of my nearest coastal sites.

I know it's impossible to give a catch all answer but in your opinion. Are sibs only really enjoyable on that 1 millpond day a month? Or what kind of windspeed do people generally deem 'doable' or 'enjoyable' for sib sea fishing.

I should mention. I have no boat currently but seriously considering a new frib 360 with Suzuki df20 hence the Q's I've posted recently on here.

Thankyou very much.
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Old 18 August 2016, 16:38   #2
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Off north Devon my limit is 10mph wind, 2.5ft swell. If the swell was long period, say 10secs or more, would venture out in slightly larger. Short period, say 7 secs or less = wind chop = very uncomfortable. Not sure about other sibs but I have not yet found a finite limit to the aerotecs capabilities, only my own bodies ability to absorb the impacts. I have been known to venture out quite a long way.
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Old 18 August 2016, 16:55   #3
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In this part of the world it's those small boats that head out in giant swell to rescue overturned boats. Not that I recommend heading out in 5m + swell but in my area that's what the young nut jobs live for.

Jon
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Old 18 August 2016, 18:20   #4
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This is so hard to answer as so much depends of your understanding of what any particular wind speed is likely to do in the area you'll be in that day... and how changing tides/current will interact with that wind speed/direction.

We are a 90ml trip to the sea so to avoid wasting the journey we rarely travel unless the wind is below 20mph and prefer below 15mph... 10-12mph great.

This past two weeks in Scotland however it's only been a 10min job to put the boat in the water and we have been launching into a very sheltered bay where you can then nose out and see how it looks. So we have launched in up to 25mph winds and had some very entertaining runs.... hard work going out against the wind at a semi-displacement speed around 7-10kts but exhilarating returning with the waves on the plane at around 15-17kts.

Bear in mind this is with two fairly adults plus a teen... with a full 25l fuel and quite a heavy anchor/kit bag so the SIB is well pinned down and very stable.

I've been out in the same wind strength one up and it feels a far more flighty situation.

Having said all the above it's very relaxing to be out on those rare days with gentle 4-6mph winds.
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Old 19 August 2016, 01:41   #5
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Correction to above...

"Bear in mind this is with two fairly HEAVY adults plus a teen"
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Old 19 August 2016, 03:18   #6
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category C boat up to 2 m waves then its down to as fenlander has said plus your skill & experience and the way you set your boat up.
IMO you need to try the ruff stuff but build up to it get confidence in your self & the boat keep distractions to a minimum until confident by that i mean dont take the kids out for instance until you can concentrate on them too.
the sea can change rapidly be prepared for it on a nice day there is no better place.
SIB'S are a very safe boat if driven correctly do a power boat course good place to start.

cheers
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Old 19 August 2016, 04:07   #7
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All the above advice is sound advice. There are so many variables, and like Fenlander said, also depends on coastline. The majority of my boating is done in and around Torbay, so if we had 15-20mph westerly, no problem. If same speed wind coming from the east, you would get soaked through just walking along the seafront....!

I can understand your analogy, as I used to, (and still have all the gear) do power kiting and buggying, and was always watching, waiting, and hoping for the ideal conditions.
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Old 19 August 2016, 04:54   #8
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Conditions can and do change very rapidly - something I have to think about every time I venture out over the bar. If they deteriorated sufficiently then I am stuck outside the bar with only exposed beaches to land on. Last weekend I took the boat to clovelly, smooth glassy conditions on the way there. Just over an hour later and the return journey was very bumpy with some surf over the bar. Saw some dolphins though which made it all worthwhile
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Old 19 August 2016, 05:12   #9
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Some good advice here. I think the key is to start in reasonably calm/ stable weather and build up your experience gradually. One important factor is the type of SIB... we have had a fairly big Zodiac Grand Raid out in some rough weather but the boat was kitted out properly, all items were secure and, most importantly, the crew were experienced and equipped properly... dry suits, PLBs etc. This would not have been wise in a small leisure SIB.

A large swell is easy to deal with, short steep and breaking seas are another issue. Try to launch somewhere sheltered, it makes things safer and easier and can also give you a bolt hole if the weather turns out to be worse than expected when you reach more open water.

Always have a plan for the worst case scenario... e.g. man over board, engine failure etc.
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Old 19 August 2016, 06:00   #10
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What this thread is high lighting is..its personal experience and comfort zone that dictates.. and everyone is different. The boat will take it if you can

My 275 F-Rib in heavy seas..it was gusting Force 6 ..and 2 meter waves at times .. going up the sound of Mull which is an exposed tidal stretch of water..but im used to small boats... I appreciate many folks wouldn’t be happy in those conditions in a wee boat. The boat is..assuming you know what you are doing.





Larger SIBs in Force 4-5 in strong tide race off Lismore point





There is a wee SIB in there somewhere .. Force 4 off Ardlamont Point .. gets kind of wet at times..so wear a raincoat



All these photos are from exposed locations

However as you are asking about fishing. there is no way I would put an anchor down in such conditions.. and I wouldn’t drift fish in them either. The F Ribs are exceptionally stable fishing platforms though..so good choice.

You do need to ensure your engine is reliable.. or you are in deep trouble
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