[Amel] Re: Genoa sheets and runaway winches


karkauai
 

Thanks, Richard and Craig.  I have a much better understanding of how they work now.  The "Top Climber" looks pretty good, I'll have to try to find someone who has one to give it a try.
Kent

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Craig Briggs
 

Bill,

"Runaways" , as you say, are most certainly a failed switch closing the
low current side of a relay, which in turn energizes the electromagnet
that closes the hi current terminals.

To address Kent's question of whether flipping off the panel switch
eliminates all possiblility of a runaway and Bill's second scenario of a
solenoid failing and going to the closed position - there is virtually
no realistic chance of such a failure and turning off the panel switch
is definitely "enough" as Kent put it.

These relays/contactors/solenoids - whatever term you wish - are highly
engineered devices that have their high current terminals held open by
strong springs (some are normally closed, but ours are normally open).
They are designed so that any realistic failure mode will not activate
the switch. Bill, I guess I can't disagree when you say this "could"
fail - but it's in the realm of an irrelevant hypothetical, not real
life. Oh, I suppose if you had dripping sea water making it a massive
corroded wad it could fail - but, hey, these are Amels!

Thus, unless and until you hit the switch (or the switch fails and
closes by itself), thereby feeding low amp current to the electromagnet,
thus closing the contacts, the relay/solenoid will not energize the high
current side - period.

This is NOT analogous to "hot wiring" a car (and I grew up in Detroit
when we could still do that!). Hot wiring is simply bypassing the switch
with a jumper, which IS totally analogous to the failed switch scenario
- not the failed solenoid scenario.

I'd suggest some KISS, and just turn off the panel breaker - a simple
routine easily made habit. It will, ideeed, eliminate all reasonable
possibility of a failure and, more important, it'll get done. Can't
quite see traipsing around after every sail from engine room to
companionway to bow to open breakers becoming anything but a PITA.

Having said all that, this part is really not too important. What's
really, really important is that all the crew know exactly what to do
with a runaway.

Bill - sounds like we may have crossed paths as you're in Crete and we
just left there and are now in the Dodecanese. Will you be headed back
this way or to Turkey - would welcome you for sundowners. Ever come up
on the Med Net?

Cheers,

Craig Briggs, "SANGARIS", SN#68

--- Bill aboard SV BeBe" wrote:
.. breaker ..only turns off the low-amp side .. high-amp side remains ON
when the 24v panel breaker is OFF. If any of the relays/solenoids fails
and closes the high-amp side, the motor will run with .. breaker set to
OFF. Some of you may remember "hot wiring" a starter solenoid on a car
with the key switch OFF...same principle. (NOT THE SAME PRINCIPLE -
Craig)

In my opinion there are two possible/probable causes of a runaway
electric winch:
---One is if the winch/windlass control button fails and closes...this
will cause the winch to runaway if the 24v panel breaker and the
high-amp breakers are ON.
---The other potential cause could be if the the relay/solenoid fails
and closes, the winch will runaway even if the 24v panel breaker set to
OFF. ("COULD", BUT SO IMPROBABLE AS TO BE IRRELEVANT - Craig)

Bill
BeBe, SM2k, #387
Crete, Greek Islands

Kent Robertson karkauai@ wrote:

If the winches are turned off at the 24v panel, does that shut off
all possiblity of the winches running, or do you have to turn them off
at their individual breakers or even the primary 24v breaker at the
battery bank?
We've always turned them off at the 24v panel, but now I'm
questioning if that's enough.
.....


Richard03801 <richard03801@...>
 

Kent given that I'm on a lot of boats I have a "top climer" that allow getting up on my own. We use the windlass and a safety line on our SM

Regards. SM 209 FOR SALE IN ANNAPOLIS

Richard Piller

Cell 603 767 5330

"brokerage beyond your expectations"

On Aug 19, 2011, at 17:09, Kent Robertson <karkauai@yahoo.com> wrote:

If the winches are turned off at the 24v panel, does that shut off all possiblity of the winches running, or do you have to turn them off at their individual breakers or even the primary 24v breaker at the battery bank?
We've always turned them off at the 24v panel, but now I'm questioning if that's enough.
As for taking someone up the mast, turning the winches off when at the top of the mast is a great idea too. We need to know where the closest fail-safe switch is that can be thrown in the event of a runaway.
Craig (Sangaris) taught me to tie the secondary safety line off at the halyard winch and use a rolling hitch to move up and down that line. With the real possiblilty of runaway winch, I will now ALWAYS use that method instead of using the two jib winches together for my primary and secondary lines.

What would you recommend I purchase as a method of going up the mast without relying on the winches (ie if I were single-handing)? There are several products on the market that I'd like to hear some feedback on. Perhaps that's the best way to go up every timye!?
Scary, huh?!
Kent
SM2K 243
KRISTY

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Judy and Bill aboard SV BeBe <yahoogroups@...>
 

Kent,

The breaker on the 24v panel only turns off the low-amp side of the voltage to the relays/solenoids of the electric winches, the furlers and outhaul, and to the windlass. The high-amp side of voltage still remains ON when the 24v panel breaker is OFF. If any of the relays/solenoids fails and closes the high-amp side, the motor will run with the 24v panel breaker set to OFF. Some of you may remember "hot wiring" a starter solenoid on a car with the key switch OFF...same principle.

In my opinion there are two possible/probable causes of a runaway electric winch:
---One is if the winch/windlass control button fails and closes...this will cause the winch to runaway if the 24v panel breaker and the high-amp breakers are ON.
---The other potential cause could be if the the relay/solenoid fails and closes, the winch will runaway even if the 24v panel breaker set to OFF.

As Eric posted, on a Super Maramu, the PORT winch high-amp breaker is in the engine room, the STARBOARD side high-amp breaker is above the passage berth, and the windlass high-amp breaker is inside the forward port side locker in the V berth.

The troubling Caribbean story about the loss of limbs caused me to always acquaint new crew members with all of the breakers and their purposes.

A "runaway windlass" on an Amel equipped with the low-amp control switches on top of the windlass is almost always caused by water egress into the switch which is a direct result of damage to the rubber switch covers. Egress of water causes the switch to close and the windlass to runaway. These rubber covers should be inspected regularly. My experience in the tropics is that UV damage will shorten the life of the rubber cover to about 3 years. I do not agree with earlier postings that the location of the windlass switches on top of the windlass causes the problem. This sort of windlass runaway operation is problematic with deck-mounted foot switches and deck-mounting will open one more hole in the deck...in my opinion, a much bigger problem.

Hope this helps.

Best,

Bill
BeBe, SM2k, #387
Crete, Greek Islands

--- In amelyachtowners@yahoogroups.com, Kent Robertson <karkauai@...> wrote:

If the winches are turned off at the 24v panel, does that shut off all possiblity of the winches running, or do you have to turn them off at their individual breakers or even the primary 24v breaker at the battery bank?
We've always turned them off at the 24v panel, but now I'm questioning if that's enough.
As for taking someone up the mast, turning the winches off when at the top of the mast is a great idea too.  We need to know where the closest fail-safe switch is that can be thrown in the event of a runaway.
Craig (Sangaris) taught me to tie the secondary safety line off at the halyard winch and use a rolling hitch to move up and down that line.  With the real possiblilty of runaway winch, I will now ALWAYS use that method instead of using the two jib winches together for my primary and secondary lines.
 
What would you recommend I purchase as a method of going up the mast without relying on the winches (ie if I were single-handing)? There are several products on the market that I'd like to hear some feedback on.  Perhaps that's the best way to go up every timye!?
Scary, huh?!
Kent
SM2K 243
KRISTY

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


karkauai
 

If the winches are turned off at the 24v panel, does that shut off all possiblity of the winches running, or do you have to turn them off at their individual breakers or even the primary 24v breaker at the battery bank?
We've always turned them off at the 24v panel, but now I'm questioning if that's enough.
As for taking someone up the mast, turning the winches off when at the top of the mast is a great idea too.  We need to know where the closest fail-safe switch is that can be thrown in the event of a runaway.
Craig (Sangaris) taught me to tie the secondary safety line off at the halyard winch and use a rolling hitch to move up and down that line.  With the real possiblilty of runaway winch, I will now ALWAYS use that method instead of using the two jib winches together for my primary and secondary lines.
 
What would you recommend I purchase as a method of going up the mast without relying on the winches (ie if I were single-handing)? There are several products on the market that I'd like to hear some feedback on.  Perhaps that's the best way to go up every timye!?
Scary, huh?!
Kent
SM2K 243
KRISTY