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GALES OF WIND, LYING-TO, ETC.
SCUDDING.—When scudding in a heavy gale of wind, care should be taken that sufficient of lofty sail should be carried on the vessel to keep her freely and fairly before the sea. A ship will scud better with the sea right aft than quartering. With a heavy sea, the danger to be apprehended is, that the wave, travelling faster than the ship, may overtake and break over her. For scudding, the most approved sail seems to be the close-reefed maintopsail, with a reefed foresail. The course alone might get becalmed under the lee of a high sea, and the vessel losing her way, would be overtaken by the sea from aft, whereas the topsail will always give her way enough and lift her. The foresail is of use in case she should be brought by the lee. It has been recommended that the foretopmast-staysail or fore-storm-staysail should always be set in scudding, to pay her off if she should broach-to, and with the sheets hauled flat aft.
With the wind quartering and a heavy sea, it is deemed that a vessel is more under command with a close-reefed foretopsail and maintopmast-staysail. The foretopmast-staysail may also be hoisted. If the ship flies off and gets by the lee, the foretopsail is soon braced about, and, with the maintopmast-staysail-sheet shifted to the other side, the headway is not lost.
SCUDDING-BROACHES-TO.--This is when a vessel is scudding, and comes up into the wind and gets aback. For such an accident the foretopmast-staysail is set, which will act as an off-sail, so that by keeping the helm up, with the maintopsail (if set) braced into the wind, she will pay off again without getting stern-way. If the close-reefed foretopsail is carried instead of the main, it can be easily filled.
SCUDDING-BROUGHT BY THE LEE.—This is when a vessel is scudding with the wind quartering, and falls off so as to bring the wind on the other side, laying the sails aback. This is more likely to occur than broaching-to, especially in a heavy sea. Suppose the vessel to be scudding under a close-reefed maintopsail and reefed-foresail, with the wind on her port quarter. She falls off suddenly and brings the wind on the starboard quarter, laying all aback. Hard a-starboard your helm, raise fore-tack and sheet, and fill the foresail, shivering the maintopsail. When she brings the wind aft again, meet her with the helm, and trim the yards for her course.
On ROUNDING-TO IN A GALE.—An experienced seaman remarks, that when he wished to bring-to in a hard gale, when running before a heavy
sea, he always watched for a heavy sea breaking abaft the main chains, and immediately after he eased the helm down, and rounded-to at once, having previously prepared for doing so. In managing this way he found he could avoid shipping a sea.
TAKEN ABACK.-It will frequently happen when sailing close-hauled, especially in light winds, from a shift wind, from it dying away, or from inattention, that the ship will come up into the wind, shaking the square sails forward. In this case it will often be sufficient to put the helm hard up, flatten in the head-sheets, or haul their bights to windward, and haul up the spanker. If this will not recover her, and she continues to come to, box her off. Raise fore-tack and sheet, laul
spanker and mainsail, brace the head-yards aback, haul the jib-sheets to windward, and haul out the lee-bowlines. When the after sails fill, Let go and haul! This manoeuvre of boxing can only be performed in good weather and light winds, as it usually gives a vessel stern-way.
If the wind has got round upon the other bow, and it is too late for box-hauling, square the yards fore-and-aft, keeping your helm so as to pay her off under stern-way, and, as the sails fill, keep the after yards shaking, and haul up the spanker and mainsail, squaring the head yards and shifting your helm as she gathers head-way.
Suppose that, instead of coming-to, you are taken aback in light winds. Put the helm up if she has head-way, haul up the mainsail and spanker, and square the after yards. Shift the helm as she gathers stern-way, and when the after-sails fill and she gathers head-way, shift the helm again. When she brings the wind aft, vrace up the after yards, get the main-tack down and sheet aft, and haul out the spanker as soon as it will take. The head braces are not touched, but the yards remain braced as before.*
ON THE MANAGEMENT OF SHIPS AT
UPON THE NATURE OF SHEERING A VESSEL TO ONE SIDE OF HER Anchor.If the side of a ship at anchor is presented to the tide by any means, the anchor will act upon her in two ways, one in the direction of her
* The former mode of wearing by squaring the head-yards, when the after yards are full, has a great advantage over the latter mcthod, as the vessel will go off faster when the wind is abeam and abast, and will come-to quicker when the wind gets on the other side,
+ See The Anchor Watch, an admirable little book on this subject, published by J. D. Potter, 31, Poultry, London.
keel, the other in the direction of her beam, which last will cause her to sheer out to one side of her anchor, which before was a-head. Suppose, for example, the power that presents the ship's side to the tide was a spring from the anchor coming in aft on the starboard side; upon heaving in the spring, the ship will sheer over to port, bringing the anchor
the starboard bow. The more the spring is hove in, the more the ship will go a-head and over to port, till her side makes an angle with the tide of 45 degrees, when she will be the furthest over from her anchor that she can go; and if the spring is hove in after this, the ship will return, and be in the stream of her anchor when she is hove round broadside to the tide. Now if the helm is put over to starboard, it will act the part of the spring, by forcing the ship's stern to starboard, and thus, by causing the water to act upon her starboard side, the ship will be forced over to port: and if the helm had been put to port the port side would be presented to the action of the water, and the ship would go over to starboard; but the power of the rudder being according to the strength of the tide, which strength lessens upon the rudder as the ship sheers obliquely to the stream; it can never produce so great an effect as the spring.
ANCHOR TURNING IN THE GROUND.-In order to insure the certainty of an anchor turning in the ground with the tending or swinging of the ship, it is recommended (whenever it is possible to resort to this practice), to shoot the ship on the same side of her anchor, at each change of tide; for if the anchor should not turn in the ground, the cable will get foul, either about the stock or upper fluke, and trip it out of the ground. As the ship by being sheered presents one bow to the tide, if the wind is directly against the tide, it must blow upon the upper quarter.
To TEND TO A WEATHER TIDE.—Let it be supposed that a ship is riding at single anchor, upon a lee tide, with the wind in the same direction as the tide, and that it be required, upon the tide setting to windward, to tend the ship clear of her anchor. To effect this, as soon as the ship begins to feel the turn of the weather tide, and that the vessel brings the wind broad on the weather-bow, the head sails should be hoisted, and the lee sheets hauled aft, in order to shoot the ship from her anchor, on a taut cable. The helm must be put "a-lee," and kept in that position until the tide sets the ship over to windward of her cable, and the buoy appears on the same side with the helm. If from light winds the buoy bears nearly abeam, her head sails may be hauled down; but if the breeze be strong, and it causes the ship to shoot in a direction nearly end-on with that of the cable, bringing the buoy on her quarter, it will be necessary to keep the foretopmast staysail set, in
order to check the vessel, should she be disposed to break her shear against the action of her helm, or be inclined to drop to windward and “go over" her anchor, in a broadside or lateral direction.
To KEEP THE HAWSE CLEAR WHEN Moored.—When it is nearly slack water, cant her with the helm the right way, and, if necessary, make use of jib, spanker, and yards.
To TEND TO WINDWARD.-When the tide slacks shear her with the helm, run up the jib and foretopmast-staysail, with weather-sheets aft; when canted the right way, the lee-sheets may be hauled aft, and the yards filled, thus setting her abreast to a taut cable; when the buoy is on the lee-quarter, brace the head-yards to the wind, and fill the after ones: when the tide swings her head round so as to shake the sails, haul down and stow them.
To TEND TO LEEWARD.— As the tide slackens, shear her to the same side of the buoy on which she came to windward, and fill the yards, which will set her end-on over the cable; she will now, by the effect of the wind, bring her stern over the cable, and bring the buoy on the weather-quarter; put the helm “a-weather," and she will shoot ahead, tautening the cable by shearing her head from the wind. When the wind gets a little abaft the beam, hoist the jib to prevent the cable from drawing her head to the wind.
Let her lie in this position until she falls off; when the head sails shake, haul down and stow them.
To BREAK THE SHEAR.- When tending to the tide, and the ship comes over her anchor, she may break her shear by canting her stern the wrong way; when this is the case, put the helm “ a-weather," run the jib up, fill the head yards, and the after yards kept to. Everything is now arranged to bring her round again, when she must be managed as before mentioned.
Note.--In Taylor's instructions for the management of ships at single anchor, which are universally read by mariners, it is recommended “always to shear a ship to windward,” for if the wind is blowing across the tide, or nearly so, the cable is eased of a great part of the strain by keeping the helm a few spokes down; but it must not be supposed that a ship should be kept always to windward of the anchor, for it is impossible to do so except in a very deep ship, and during the strength of the tide. On the contrary, a ship should, as long as it is practicable, be kept to leeward of her anchor, If, when blowing hard, she has been kept to windward during the strength of the tide, she should be sheared to leeward as soon as it slackens. In bad holding ground the shear should be against the rise of the ground, without reference to the wind, as long as the tide runs with any strength, If on the weather tiden that is, with the wind against the tide, or on the ship's quarter-she forges ahead and brings the buoy on the weather quarter, she is safe enough as long as it can be kept there; but the danger of this position is, in case the wind freshens, her head