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Old 04 March 2006, 03:15   #1
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CobrarescuedbyRNLI

Hi all,
I'm new to owning a rib, boughta Cobra 8.5m last year. I had some experience of both sail and motorboats but not much. I completed the ICC late last year. Keen to use my rib, despite the weather I have been out about 5 times this winter with various problems with the boat - no reverse gear on return trip 1, no bilge pumps in force 6, no sterring b4 we got out, had all fixed and went out last week from Poole to Yarmouth. It was force 5/6 easterly and fought all the way into wind to Yarmouth. A few big splashes, making about 15knts, all in all good, but cold, fun. The water was trick at Hurst castle but boat handled ok. Set out on return been going about 5mins, following seas, much more pleasant, surfing waves 18-20knts then instead of climbing the next wave I can only assume I went through it, saw the begining of it, throttled up a little, next thing all is green, when cleared windscreen broken and boat completely full of water. Neither or passenger injured (couple of bumps from screen I think). Engine still going, all 3 pumps emptying boat so thought going to be Ok, kept going at about 6knts till engine stopped. Opened engine bay to discover half full of water including over batteries. At point called coastguard. Many thanks to the boat that stood by from Lyington and the fantastic RNLI from Yarmouth who collected us and the boat. I have some questions about insurance got boat startd next day changing wet electrics but won't start now, but my real question is how could I have avoided this- the RNLI tought I had been unlucky, whcih made me feel worse, it was very unpleasant. Also, would have been ok if engine bay hadn't filled up, surely that shouldn't happen. Going to fill boat with water (on land) to see how it gets in to bay. Plese constructive help, we all started out one day
P.S. I had all required safety gear (lifejackets, thermal blankets, handheld VF (phew), flares etc).
I'd load a phot of boat if Icould workout how - thanks in advance, great forum, love to read about A Priddy's adventures.
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Old 04 March 2006, 03:27   #2
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Glad your ok. Sounds like conditions were too heavy and you just got unlucky and swamped. I don't think I could stomach a situation like that.
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Old 04 March 2006, 03:50   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jozz99
Also, would have been ok if engine bay hadn't filled up, surely that shouldn't happen. Going to fill boat with water (on land) to see how it gets in to bay.
No, it shouldn't.

It sounds to me like you were crusing in fairly ambitious conditions, but with decent deck drains (does you boat have "elephant trunk" bailers?) and without a swamped engine box you would probably have been OK. I've had RIBs full to the top of the tubes a couple of times and carried on with no problems.

Onthe other hand, going out in those sort of conditions does make you more vulnerable as mechanical failure is more likely and potentially more serious.

Sounds like you did OK though!

John
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Old 04 March 2006, 04:02   #4
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Thanks, did Ok in that no-one was hurt, I hope it was inexperience so I can train and rectify!
There no deck drains, I assume 'cos of the bulkhead between seating area and engine bay?
A little further info - my experience has all beenon much larger boats, about 6 round the island races (sailing) on 45 -65ft and mtor about 45-66ft. Franky, you don't need to worry about the sea so much!
What I love about the rib is you are closer to the action. I am going to put myself on advanced powerboat course.
Waves were about 2.5m high with wavelength of about 15m.
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Old 04 March 2006, 04:08   #5
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Welcome to Ribnet. A lot of useful information hidden in the threads, but start with a search for "stuffing". Sounds to me like you are keen to learn but lacking some experiance.
Some of your problems appear to stem from a lack of training, some are new boat gremlins. Not sure how much experience or training you have had, but would definately start with a RYA level 2 course, then as soon as you are ready, do an intermediate or advanced course. Level 2 will fill in any gaps in your knowledge and will prepare you for the intermediate course. Cost of the course can easily be mitigated by not getting into trouble and breaking things in the first place. There are many south coast training schools that will do an excellent job and help you along.

Have a chat with other similar size boat owners at the marina and see if you can buddy up for a few trips.

Best of luck, and hope to see you and your boat around, sounds like you have a nice package there, be nice to see some pictures.

Tim'mers.
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Old 04 March 2006, 04:23   #6
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Thanks, I am defintely going to get some training. I've read a lot of the threads, what seemed unpredictable is instead of climbing the wave like all before went straight through. Ironically I was concerned about single engine so went for diesel as I perceived more reliable - if I can't either use elephant hoses for drainage or make engine bay more watertight then I'm switching to outboard.
I loaded a photo on photo section for anyone interested.
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Old 04 March 2006, 05:10   #7
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Firstly I'm happy you've emerged unscathed.

Your boat is too pretty. You'd be better off with a builder who understands the importance of building a rib which is worthy of the bread. Your engine compartment should not flood and you should have big drains in the hull.

Bad design. Besides anything else, it's has put you at risk and I bet it's going to cost you money too.

Yours is not the worst I know of. One reputable builder puts silly stainless steel louvres directly into the side of the engine box, facing forward to scoop the water AND directly inline with the engine air intake!

Having said that, it is the modern way. Form before function. There are plenty of examples of it on RIBnet.

It's not for me.

Again, I'm pleased you're ok.
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Old 04 March 2006, 06:42   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jwalker
Yours is not the worst I know of. One reputable builder puts silly stainless steel louvres directly into the side of the engine box, facing forward to scoop the water AND directly inline with the engine air intake!

Having said that, it is the modern way. Form before function. There are plenty of examples of it on RIBnet.

It's not for me.
On this subject, 1 year down the line......

My engine bay has the louvres you describe above, and the engine bay has remained bone dry throughout the year including 1 small stuff.

The engine has no rust on it either.

Maybe not so 'silly'
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Old 04 March 2006, 07:08   #9
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I had no problems before the boat filled with water so my guess is the engine bay filled through the ducting for control cables etc under deck?
I'll find out when I fill it with water.
It is possible to have form and function. Jordan's got good form and I bet.......:-)
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Old 04 March 2006, 07:46   #10
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Originally Posted by Colin F
On this subject, 1 year down the line......

My engine bay has the louvres you describe above, and the engine bay has remained bone dry throughout the year including 1 small stuff.

The engine has no rust on it either.
Yeh, that's cool. How does it work? Do you have a hull which doesn't make any spray mist?

I've seen a conrod where the bigend and small end are touching, the rod section being bent double after a hydraulic.

Quote:
Maybe not so 'silly'
I maybe didn't phrase that well. It's not the louvres which are silly, more their placement which is silly.
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Old 04 March 2006, 07:48   #11
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Originally Posted by Jozz99
..It is possible to have form and function. Jordan's got good form and I bet.......:-)
Nah, the form has been compromised by the addition of a plastic material.
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Old 04 March 2006, 09:25   #12
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Good on you for admitting your "incident". And glad to hear no serious injuries.

I would suggest you give your insurance company a ring. If you (or they) respond quickly you might be able to prevent any serious corrosion etc to the wiring but if you leave it a week or two it might be too late. I have no experience with boat related claims but on both commercial and domestic insurance I have found them to be keen to take a proactive approach to preventing serious damage by getting a small amount of preventative work done.

I doubt there is anyone here who goes out in a F6 and can honestly say that they have NEVER stuffed the boat. So you need to think about how you make sure you can deal with it if it happens again. Sealing the engine bay is obviously one step. Investigating adding elephant trunks or similar "drain" to get the water out as quick as possible. I think changing to an outboard might be a bit extreeme but an auxiliary outboard might be a good idea.
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Old 04 March 2006, 10:12   #13
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I doubt there is anyone here who goes out in a F6 and can honestly say that they have NEVER stuffed the boat.
Not true, my friend! Assume that you mean a real stuff, and not just a bit of spray over the bow. From what I've seen, most "stuffs" are caused by a combination of poor boat design, driver error and bad luck. I've avoided one and three so far!
Quote:
So you need to think about how you make sure you can deal with it if it happens again. Sealing the engine bay is obviously one step. Investigating adding elephant trunks or similar "drain" to get the water out as quick as possible. I think changing to an outboard might be a bit extreeme but an auxiliary outboard might be a good idea.
Cobras are notorious for not emptying quickly enough in "extreme" situations. I know another former Cobra owner who suffered a very nasty stuff - his was an outboard powered Cobra, and the water could not drain out of the rear as he had bench seats fitted. Like you, Jozz99, he found out how slow electric bilge pumps are to empty a boatful of water. RIBs shold have large "elephants trunks" fitted to drain deck water quickly, and the higher the transom (or engine box or wrapround bench seating) the larger diamater of elephants trunks needed. An engine box full of water is, of course, bad too! The lid should seal, and the air intakes should have a "trap" which will allow water to drain to a bilge pump before entering the main engine box area. Look at the design of an outboard engine cowl - the air enters at the top and any water falls down to the bottom, leaving the cowling by drain holes. The air intake points downwards, and dry air enters upwards. All designs need to be able to cope with water coming from all directions, as simple louvres are open to any water coming over the stern if you need to reverse into waves. Without these measures, you've only got half the advantages of a RIB, and all the disadvantages of an open boat.

Book your Intermediate and Advanced courses straight away! (You may need to complete the Intermediate before booking the Advanced). They are excellent and will tell you a lot about handling a boat in rough conditions.

Good to hear that you and your crew are OK - but next time you should even be able to avoid the bumps from the screen!
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Old 04 March 2006, 10:33   #14
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Not true, my friend! Assume that you mean a real stuff, and not just a bit of spray over the bow. From what I've seen, most "stuffs" are caused by a combination of poor boat design, driver error and bad luck. I've avoided one and three so far!
OK - yes I guess I did mean a "real stuff" - when enough water comes over the bow that you are knee deep in water. And I accept your supperior skill and experience. I guess what I meant was really "no one on here can garuntee they won't stuff the boat" in those conditions (and so the boat needs to have the ability to deal with that much water )... ...but I accept what you say about (1) driver training and (2) boat design as being big factors.
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Old 04 March 2006, 11:38   #15
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Yeh, that's cool. How does it work? Do you have a hull which doesn't make any spray mist?
i didn't say that, i just said the engine has remained bone dry.....

maybe the bench seat in front shields it but either way no water has entered the engine bay
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Old 04 March 2006, 11:47   #16
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OK - yes I guess I did mean a "real stuff" - when enough water comes over the bow that you are knee deep in water. And I accept your supperior skill and experience. I guess what I meant was really "no one on here can garuntee they won't stuff the boat" in those conditions (
Have to agree with Polwart Richard - sorry, trying going though the Alderney Swinge when its on form; you can have any course and rating you like, the water simply opens up in front of you and there is bugger all you can do but hang on. Massive scuppers is the only way to deal with it. My Scorpion unfortunately has to rely on 3 large bilge pumps - crap design at the time.The Hysucat is truly the most amazing rib in getting rid of water extremely quickly, try looking at their design if you can.
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Old 04 March 2006, 12:11   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin F
i didn't say that, i just said the engine has remained bone dry.....

maybe the bench seat in front shields it but either way no water has entered the engine bay
Nah - it's good engine bay design, and decent intakes.

Ribcraft use an intake which baffles the water coming into it, lets it run down the side of the box to the bottom where the 2 big bilge pumps get it out ASAP. Some spray does reach the engine (if it's been an enthusiastic day) but otherwise it works really well.

And the other plus point, the intakes are ABOVE the top of the tubes (as are the other electrics).

Don't laugh - I've seen them in all sorts of stupid positions.

I got caught out crossing a sand bar with wind over tide with a heavy boat - and although we were going very slowly just trying to pick our way through, the waves were steep enough and short enough that we took 3 successive waves over the bow (green water). I didn't notice how much water was in the boat, until I realised that was why my feet were wet in my wellies. With the 2 pumps and the trunks it emptied amazingly fast. Also the contents of the engine box stayed dry.

There is another RIB (BWM?) in the compound, and that has a full width bay, but has drilled holes in the front of the box and the transom, glassed in some skin fittings, and then connected up and piped through to give some drainage 'through' the box - that might be worth thinking about. Luckily mine has enough space down the side of the box to fit the trunks with no problem.

Good to hear that everyone was OK!!

Cheers,

Dylan...

P.S. There isn't much electrical in the engine bay on a Yanmar 315 - what are the symptoms of your problem? I've had a starter relay failure - which had nothing to do with getting wet (immersed) - turn the key and nothing happens.
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Old 04 March 2006, 12:35   #18
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Have to agree with Polwart Richard - sorry, trying going though the Alderney Swinge when its on form; you can have any course and rating you like, the water simply opens up in front of you and there is bugger all you can do but hang on. Massive scuppers is the only way to deal with it. My Scorpion unfortunately has to rely on 3 large bilge pumps - crap design at the time.The Hysucat is truly the most amazing rib in getting rid of water extremely quickly, try looking at their design if you can.

Not only the Hysucat - the Ocean dynamics boats have no transoms at all - they can shift tons of water in seconds!!! Also the Zapcats have open transoms.

I am suprised at the Scorpion not having proper drains - Cobra's aren't so bad after all.

I think it would be fairly easy to modify boats without trunks - you would need to make holes through the rear mouldings lined with drainpipe leading out to a flexihose/trunk at the back. Could be done quite neatly.

Also a bit of sealing work around the engine bay would work wonders.
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Old 04 March 2006, 13:07   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DGR
Ribcraft use an intake which baffles the water coming into it, lets it run down the side of the box to the bottom where the 2 big bilge pumps get it out ASAP. Some spray does reach the engine (if it's been an enthusiastic day) but otherwise it works really well.
I'm pleased to see they've learned by their mistakes.
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Old 04 March 2006, 13:22   #20
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I think it would be fairly easy to modify boats without trunks - you would need to make holes through the rear mouldings lined with drainpipe leading out to a flexihose/trunk at the back. Could be done quite neatly.
Really ??? Come and do mine then!
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