I'm curious in how far out you would take the seahawk? I have an aim of learning to sail this year and maybe next year once competent go on a weekend sailing on the seahawk. I'm thinking of taking her from southampton to lulworth and back again over a few days. How far do you guys take the seahawk?
Depends on the weather! In force 3/4 I'm happy 10 miles offshore. Coastal trips are fine providing you always have a plan B for if the weather turns nasty. Beware Lulworth in a strong southerly wind - there can be serious swells in there. But you can always run for Portland/ Weymouth. Sounds like a great cruise though - how about a blog on the site?
I'm starting to get a collection of pictures together to make a small case file on her, like you said maybe a blog would be good.
I'ts nice to know that someone takes her quite far out to sea, I'd obviously work a trip around the weather but sailing in those sort of winds would be ideal.
The idea of a trip further away gets my enthusiasm going and i cannot wait for the warmer weather to arrive. the keel is going back in once some gelcoat filler has worked its magic on some cracks. then the rigging will be back on and some learning will be underway, I'm sure she won't be too difficult to sail :D
Either way I definitely want an overnight trip on her.
Resurrecting this thread to see if anyone has any thoughts on sailing their Seahawk out into open water.
Many smaller yachts have made long journeys offshore Shrimpy the Caprice of Shane Acton being the one that springs to mind for me.
Have any forum members ever had to cope with heavy seas/weather in the Seahawk and if so how did she fair.
I am happy keeping the shore in sight but just interested to know what to expect if I should ever get caught out, I have read the account of the channel crossing which seemed a brave idea but they were lucky with the weather.
Has anyone ever capsized?
Thanks Greg seems generally accepted that the Seahawk does not capsize which is reassuring.
I hope to get out around the Norfolk Coast /Wash area this year and am cheered to hear that the Seahawk is considered capable.
The key to sailing safely offshore is to have a good fast reefing system and to reef early. A furling jib is a must - my boat has a simple system that works perfectly - and I prefer slab reefing on the main rather than rolling it around the boom. I can reef my main (new from Jeckylls!) from the cockpit and of course the jib can be reefed in seconds. My boat sails well in force 6 winds with a deep reef in the main and about 2/3 jib out. T
One of the main dangers in big waves is the risk of a following wave coming aboard (pooping) and swamping the cabin. For this reason always have a system for installing some kind of washboard in the cabin entrance. A piece of strong canvas clamped to the door surround works well, but the solution I see most often on Seahawks is to split the large door horizontally so that the lower part can be fixed in place as a washboard. My Seahawk steers well in following seas unlike some 60s boats I have sailed!
If sailing offshore never, ever cleat the mainsheet! I have seen several larger boats flattened in squalls off Dartmouth and in Lyme Bay simply because skippers have failed to release the mainsheet to spill wind quickly.
Having said all that my experience is similar to Greg's - it is hard to push a Seahawk over 45 degrees tilt on a reach although I have exceeded this in very strong gusts under full sail in sheltered waters. A tad scary for the crew but not for the boat.
Have fun offshore - in the right conditions Seahawks can make good progress to windward.
My Door is already split which is handy as it would stop any wash filling the cockpit.
I am not a yachtsman by any means, so all great tips thx.
Really looking forward to getting my keel wet
Make sure you have a vhf radio - handhelds are OK for around 3-4 miles and will go further if a tall aerial is rigged to the set. It's also well worth taking a small gps - I use a Garmin eTrex - It tells you the boat's true speed over the ground and can be really useful in misty and foggy conditions if you programme waypoints that will take you to nearest harbours. Smart phones and tablets can also do this if you download the cheap (sometimes free) navigation apps.
I assume from your comments that you have never ventured far in a boat before. But the only additional comment I would make, having done 30 years of offshore sailing, is check over all your standing and running rigging before you attempt any open sea sailing. From my own experience you are more likely to get problems with this than worrying about the boat's stability. The weather can change very suddenly and a squall can turn up before you are able to reef (for instance) and put tremendous tensions on rigs especially those that are small section (as on seahawks) or tired rigs which appear quite ok for inland or inshore, fair weather sailing. Check all rigging fixing points too. I have been caught out several times on the west coast of Scotland, (Not the south coast, I know,) but on one occasion I had a back-stay come away because the nuts on the retaining u-bolt had loosened and eventually fallen off! Take a proper Auto inflating Life-jacket too if you are sailing solo. Be safe! good Luck.