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Dodged a bullet today!

Oct 26, 2010
1,207
Hunter 40.5 Beaufort, SC
Got out of watching the movie "Ford vs Ferrari" and got a call from my wife. Told me she got a call from the yacht club and my boat had broken free and drifted down the Beaufort River, under the bridge and was aground on a sand/mud bar. :poop: Ithad gone downriver with the mooring ball still attached. The chain to the anchor had somehow parted. It was only about 3 years old and way oversized. Everyone is scratching their head and the club will be inspecting all the moorings very soon.

I had all kinds of visions about having lost the mast as it went under the bridge. My air clearance is bout 65 feet and the bridge center span where the channel is located is only 65 feet at about half tide and lower! The yacht club crew got her off the bar on the rising tide and anchored her in a good spot not far from where she was grounded. They were afraid to tow her under the bridge not knowing the exact air clearance. When I got to the club, they took me out to the boat and lo and behold there wasn't a scratch on her, all the fixtures on the masthead were intact. There is no way she could have made it under the bridge and the windex, masthead light and wind sensor have remained if she hit the bridge. I am truely amazed. No I am flagergasted. I'll be going ove tomorrow to complete my inspection but it looks like I really dodged a bullet somehow. I'll have to wait to mid tide to get back under the bridge and I'm going to insist that they pay for having the boat hauled for an inspection.
 
Jan 1, 2006
5,175
Slickcraft 26 Greenport, NY
Ford v Farrari is getting great reviews - but that is another story.
I'm glad your boat was safely recovered. I'm not understanding your claim against who(?) for the short haul and inspection. Maybe you should take good fortune as an endpoint.
 
May 27, 2004
1,522
Hunter 30_74-83 Ponce Inlet FL
The club is responsible for the mooring.
The boat, while miraculously missing any hard targets with the mast and accessories,
may have hit rocks below the waterline and certainly should be inspected after an unattended, prolonged grounding, IMHO.
 
Oct 26, 2010
1,207
Hunter 40.5 Beaufort, SC
The yacht club where I lease my mooring is responsible for everything from the shackle at the bouy to the anchor block. I am responsible for everything from the shackle to the boat. My mooring pendant didn't part, the chain somewhere below the bouy parted and I drifted downriver with the bouy and chain still attached. As a result of the drag with the tide going out, I most probably ran aground stern first leading with my rudder and I'm worried about damage to the rudder. I think its reasonable for the club to pay for a short haul to inspect the rudder. I don't think they will object.
 
Last edited:
Oct 26, 2010
1,207
Hunter 40.5 Beaufort, SC
The club is responsible for the mooring.
The boat, while miraculously missing any hard targets with the mast and accessories,
may have hit rocks below the waterline and certainly should be inspected after an unattended, prolonged grounding, IMHO.
Exactly. I'm not to worried about hitting any rocks, but the running aground astern where my rudder is only a few inches shorter than my keel worries me a little. No one knows how long it was aground for except that they did say that it had "dug itself" into the sand/mud (kind of like your feet do when standing in the water's edge at the beach. I don't think they will object and besides, the owner of the boat yard is also a club member and will probably give them a break.
 
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Feb 10, 2004
3,332
Hunter 40.5 East Greenwich, RI
Dan,

I lost my last boat, a Morgan 30, in the same manner. The mooring chain became disconnected and the boat with the mooring ball still attached floated away. Thanks to an incoming current on the Thames River in New London, CT, the vessel floated past the Naval Underwater Sea Lab and some employee saw it moving past their building headed up the river. They called the New London CG who recovered the boat and tied it up at their dock just a bit further up the river. The CG entered the boat and found my name and phone number on my ship's papers and called me.
The cause of the disconnect? A Chinese manufactured shackle that was connecting the chain with the mooring ball. Part of the shackle but no pin was still attached. Needless to say I never bought another Chinese shackle and I insist that my marina use all mooring components that are American made.
I hope you are lucky and have no rudder or hull damage. Let us know how you make out.
 
Oct 26, 2010
1,207
Hunter 40.5 Beaufort, SC
Rich, I know what you mean about Chinese shackles. Our club mainenance manager won't allow anything but american made "green pin" shackles or better for the shackles from the pendant to the mooring ball swivel. I can't imagine that they would use inferior shackles below the ball but they may so I'll have them check it out. They are sure perplexed by the failure but it just happened some time last night or this morning so they haven't had time to even get the diver in yet. It will probably be after Christmas before they can get a diver on it.
 

Mikem

.
Dec 20, 2009
717
Hunter 466 Bremerton
Got out of watching the movie "Ford vs Ferrari" and got a call from my wife. Told me she got a call from the yacht club and my boat had broken free and drifted down the Beaufort River, under the bridge and was aground on a sand/mud bar. :poop: Ithad gone downriver with the mooring ball still attached. The chain to the anchor had somehow parted. It was only about 3 years old and way oversized. Everyone is scratching their head and the club will be inspecting all the moorings very soon.

I had all kinds of visions about having lost the mast as it went under the bridge. My air clearance is bout 65 feet and the bridge center span where the channel is located is only 65 feet at about half tide and lower! The yacht club crew got her off the bar on the rising tide and anchored her in a good spot not far from where she was grounded. They were afraid to tow her under the bridge not knowing the exact air clearance. When I got to the club, they took me out to the boat and lo and behold there wasn't a scratch on her, all the fixtures on the masthead were intact. There is no way she could have made it under the bridge and the windex, masthead light and wind sensor have remained if she hit the bridge. I am truely amazed. No I am flagergasted. I'll be going ove tomorrow to complete my inspection but it looks like I really dodged a bullet somehow. I'll have to wait to mid tide to get back under the bridge and I'm going to insist that they pay for having the boat hauled for an inspection.
Geez, Merry Christmas. I think you dodged a 30k lb bunker buster. I am certainly glad there was no damage. Wow.
 
Oct 22, 2014
13,130
CAL 35 Cruiser moored EVERETT WA
Smokey yesterday was a day of grace. Boats like cats sometimes have multiple lives. Sure sounds like your boat used up a couple.

Merry Christmas to ya. Good idea to have a complete inspection. And say a prayer of thanks. Maybe even spill a taste of good wine to Poseidon for watching over your boat on her self steered outing.
 
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Likes: bawlmer
Oct 26, 2010
1,207
Hunter 40.5 Beaufort, SC
Smokey yesterday was a day of grace. Boats like cats sometimes have multiple lives. Sure sounds like your boat used up a couple.

Merry Christmas to ya. Good idea to have a complete inspection. And say a prayer of thanks. Maybe even spill a taste of good wine to Poseidon for watching over your boat on her self steered outing.
Thanks and Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all of my forum friends.

JS - I like your idea of a taste of good wine with Poseidon getting his fair share for looking after Song of the Sea. I still can't figure out how it managed to get through that bridge but it did it and I'll take whatever good luck managed to land on her. Maybe one of those pesky birds that frequently visits when I'm not there decided to sit in the "crows nest" and guide her through the right span.
 
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Likes: jssailem
Feb 5, 2009
232
Gloucester 20 Kanawha River, Winfield, WV
Ford v Farrari is getting great reviews - but that is another story.
Also there's a documentary titled The 24 Hour War which makes a good backgrounder for the film. I watched it on Netflix after seeing FvF and I think the two complement one another nicely.
 

DougM

.
Jul 24, 2005
1,901
Beneteau 323 Manistee, MI
I haven’t seen Ford v. Ferrari yet, but there is an interesting documentary ”Shelby American: the Carroll Shelby Story” on Netflix.
 
Jul 6, 2017
141
Hunter H 41DS Hampton, VA
The Netflix Ford vs Ferrari documentary is great, as is the movie.
Don't get me started on Chinese hardware. And not just shackles. It's everything for sale on Amazon and in retail and hardware stores ranging from fasteners to electrical connectors, components and tools.

Happy Christmas all.
 
Aug 2, 2005
1,021
Celebrity Class 19 Penn Yan, NY (Seneca Lake SP)
Merry Christmas and Best Wishes for continued good (really fantastic) luck following the parting of the chain.
Inquiring minds want to know..... Were any/all shackle pins "moused" with the appropriate stainless steel wire?