Advice on equipment for a Westerly Storm Cruiser

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Waverider
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Advice on equipment for a Westerly Storm Cruiser

Post by Waverider »

Hi all,

Looking for some advice on two things (to start with). We are in the process of buying a Storm and the boat does not come with a tender or a liferaft. I believe that there is a space for a liferaft at the the top of the companion way in the cockpit, which you can store it. The boat does not come with teak decking which you can use to create the step. So my first questions are:

- Does anyone have a liferaft stored there and if so which type and size? Also how is it fixed in place?
- Is there a way of storing the liferaft there if you don’t have decking in place? How would you create the step so you don’t stand on the liferaft to get in and out of the saloon?
- Has anyone with a storm purchased the teak decking for the cockpit and if so from where and how much was it?

The next question is about a tender. Where do people store the tender when it is deflated on a storm, and any recommendations on size and type? Also, do people generally store the outboard ?

Thanks in advance for looking at this post.
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Re: Advice on equipment for a Westerly Storm Cruiser

Post by Jolly Roger »

A lot of boats will store a liferaft either on the coachroof or using a quick release cradle on the pushpit. I believe it is possible on the Storm to have a life raft in the forward end of the cockpit. My concern would be, if needed it is further to move before deploying. To make a raised hinged teak deck to cover it is not difficult. You could use a grating kit from Howells (http://www.kjhowells.com/). A further consideration would be if you have a sprayhood, this would reduce the height and make access below a lot more difficult.

Inflatable dinghy's are all about choices. Do you want one to carry a full crew or are you happy with a smaller one. What material they are made from can affect their length of life and overall weight. Do you have a floppy floor, wood/aluminum slats or an inflatable floor. Also how much do you intend to spend. For storage, you would normally use the sail locker in the cockpit.

Outboards are usually stored either in the sail locker or on a block mounted on the pushpit. The latter would require a secure outboard lock and a canvas cover. Again the choice of outboard can make life easier. I have a 2.3 hp Honda as this is the lightest one on the market as it is air cooled, not water cooled. http://www.honda.co.uk/marine/products/ ... rview.html

Now for my advice. I started sailing in yachts over 50 years ago and have never needed a liferaft. Many boats had them on board as a requirement of the racing rules. I sail without one on my Fulmar as I believe the chances of needing one in coastal waters is extremely rare. I should point out the cost of buying, servicing and replacement of liferafts is quite high. Sinkings of yachts are rare in coastal waters and are not quick, so allow the time to take action for your own safety. Instant sinkings like the loss of a keel (unlikely in a Westerly) or run down by a ship, would not give you time to deploy the liferaft. Generally most people do not sail in extreme weather through choice, so never leave harbour if it is too windy. Instead of a liferaft, my solution is an electric pump for fast inflation of the dinghy and a waterproof floating hand held VHF.

Hope your purchase goes through smoothly.
Roger
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Nigel Birch
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Re: Advice on equipment for a Westerly Storm Cruiser

Post by Nigel Birch »

+1 to Rogers advice. The only thing I would add is that I lash my inflatable down in front of the mast when I'm on the move. It's an old 8ft avon so heavy to move to the foredeck from the cockpit....
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Re: Advice on equipment for a Westerly Storm Cruiser

Post by steve parry »

Hi,
I also concur with Roger.

However, I do have a liferaft and it can be expensive when servicing every 3 years. You can also hire them if you intend to go off shore. I have one for piece of mind but a do sail around the Bay of Biscay area which can be a bit wild at times! Mine is fitted on my Pentland just fwd of my spray hood in a purpose built cradle.

Also good luck with the purchase of your Storm.

Regards

Steve - WALKABOUT
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Re: Advice on equipment for a Westerly Storm Cruiser

Post by Vegable »

+1 with all the replies. If going on an off shore trip I hire a liferaft. This last summer it cost me about £250 for a six month hire of a 6 man canister and it was hard to lift it was so heavy. A liferaft came with my boat but was about 2/3 rds the weight of the hired one and virtually useless. The cheaper liferafts are no thicker than a kiddies paddling pool. If you do decide to purchase a liferaft research it very carefully.
I normally sail around the Hebrides with occaisional trips back to North Wales and would never think of needing a liferaft.
Re inflatable tender. If I'm on say a 2 week cruise around the islands and am day sailing I leave my tender inflated and tow it behind me with the nose of the tender either up in the air or resting on the sugar scoop step. On the Storm Cruiser page of the Westerly Wiki there's a picture of a similar set up. For stowage I leave the fenders tied to the pushpit and stow the dinghy in the cockpit locker. I did have a boat similar to Steve's and then I mounted the dinghy on the foredeck between the grab rails like Nigel does.
An additional piece of safety equipment I'd suggest instead of a liferaft is a GPS EPIRB which will give out your exact position when operated.
Good luck with your purchase. It's an exciting time.
Mike
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Re: Advice on equipment for a Westerly Storm Cruiser

Post by Waverider »

Wow this forum is so great, and thank you all for the great information. I agree that buying a liferaft for the costal Sailing we are planning would be a waste of money and space! I was not aware that you can hire one so will keep that in mind should we start venturing further afield - this was another great suggestion.

The honda engine looks perfect so I’ll take a look and probably look to store it on the push pit when we are using the boat, and having the lock was not something i was aware of (so you probably saved me loosing it!). I’ll have a look around for a Dinghy for the four of us and see if I can find a fast inflate option as that is a great mitigation to not carrying a liferaft.

Really appreciate the advice and hope to see you out on the water later this year!

Thanks!

Dave
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Re: Advice on equipment for a Westerly Storm Cruiser

Post by Nigel Birch »

I'm in the market for a tender too. Very interested in the F-Rib (folding Rib) might have to go the boat show to take a look at them...
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Re: Advice on equipment for a Westerly Storm Cruiser

Post by Waverider »

HI Nigel,

Did you get a chance to look at a F-Rib? Any thoughts?

Thanks ,

Dave
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Re: Advice on equipment for a Westerly Storm Cruiser

Post by KellyP123 »

I bought a Storm last year (not the Cruiser, but the fin version). My Storm didn't come with a liferaft so I bought one second hand. When day sailing I store it in one of the lockers in the V berth. When on a serious cruise that requires a Channel crossing or similar, it comes up into the cockpit.

You ought to have two wooden teak battens either side of the cockpit area under the sprayhood (adjacent to the jib winches). If you have grating it can sit either on the cockpit floor or on the battens, giving you a good sized void underneath. If you haven't got grating a piece of strong board cut to size may suffice, but won't look as pretty! There's enough height there to store a 4 person liferaft. The weight of the liferaft means that it won't move around much if at all. It's also quite accessible if you do need it. The other option is to buy a canister liferaft and a cradle and hang that off the pushpit. But you'll need at least two people to get it in place and the same if you remove it at the season's end. If those battens are not there, it wouldn't take much to make and fit them.

I also replaced my tender and got a new 2.6m inflatable for c.£330 - let me know if you want the supplier details. That came in a bag and the whole lot will fit in the cockpit locker. It does mean that access to other things in the cockpit locker is slightly restricted. We used the inflatable once in the Summer when in the Isles de Chaussy and rather than rebag it after that I just lashed it down (deflated) forward of the mast. The D rings on the dinghy make good lashing points and you can get some wire strop and padlock it there if you are worried about theft. The dinghy folded up very neatly back into the bag at the end of the season.

Hope this helps. Can email you photographs of the grating arrangement and liferaft storage space if useful.
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