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Old 12-26-2018, 07:15 PM   #1
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Adding Mast and Sails to Trawler

Hello everyone! Yes, I am new here, and just want to say I really enjoy reading all the awesome questions and answers here on this forum.
O.K. so here goes my first question:
I have been reading many threads concerning adding one or more of the following to a traditional Trawler for purposes of either sail assist, or Sail Steadying; Get Home Sail; Ride Sail; Steadying Sail, and/or Lugger Sail. I do understand the many replies in which it has been pointed out that a trawler just does not have what it takes to truly have a Sail Rig for purely propulsion purposes. namely hull design, Keel, Rudder, nor proper Ballast. But what I was considering is more of a Spinnaker type Sail Rig for running with the wind.
I have a 60 foot Concorde Motor Yacht, 16' Beam and about 60k pounds (loaded and provisioned). Not looking for total sail propulsion via a Spinnaker, but more along the lines of assisting the 8V71tti Detroits to maybe help save some fuel?
Any ideas or even the flat out no way, would be appreciated.
I do hope that everyone had a wonderful Christmas and wish everyone a pleasant stress free (as much as possible) New Year.
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Old 12-26-2018, 07:30 PM   #2
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I would maybe look at some of the kite sail rigs. I think they could be placed on a trawler relatively easily.
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Old 12-26-2018, 07:31 PM   #3
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Greetings,
Welcome aboard. I suspect you can buy an awful lot of diesel for the cost of mast and sail.
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Old 12-26-2018, 08:11 PM   #4
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Most sails are "wings" not "kites", so to be effective the sideways force they exert on the boat must be counteracted by an underwater appendage (keel or centerboard) that generates lift, or form stability (flat wide hull). Adding a sail like this to a trawler is a bad idea without substantial modifications to the boat.

A "kite" sail, like a traditional symmetric spinnaker, should be fine to use on a trawler in light winds as far as the hull is concerned. However, a sail like this puts extreme loads on the "rigging", of which a trawler has none. Adding rigging to handle a sail like this is probably extremely expensive, but your local rigger could give you a price quote. Any competent rigger should be able to make the modifications.
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Old 12-26-2018, 10:04 PM   #5
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Adding Spinnaker Rig to Trawler Suggestions

Thank you guys for the fast replies to my question concerning adding a Spinnaker Rig to my Trawler.
RT Firefly, Yup you are right about cost of Spinnaker Rig v/s cost of Diesel Fuel, however does the cost only concern Diesel fuel?, I mean if I am not in a hurry, which I am not, could the cost be somewhat offset by reduction in running the Detroits? Also, while I am not the typical Tree Hugger kinda guy, I am concerned about all the pollution from the big Detroits. I know, I know someone will say then just get a sailboat, and yeah that is true, and I really love Sailboats, but the 60' Trawler has so much more living space, it truly is like a house with a mobile address. BTW, RT Firefly, I am also considering removing the Detroits and replacing them with Tesla Electric Motors (A subject for another thread).
D Hays, Yes! when I read your comment I instantly thought of a Parasail type set up that could lead the Yacht by maybe 50 yards or so, and in light to low moderate winds heading in the same direction I wish to go, just might fit the bill.
Rain Dog, RIGHT! great answer and advice. Yes, I can reach out to a Rigger to get some input into this. Yeah, I was watching a motorsailer flying a large Spinnaker and she was really moving along at a nice clip! I believe it was a 53' Gulfstar motorsailer, her main was 2/3 reefed, but she was moving!
So, thank all you for your help! I will post some pictures of my Boat soon, as she is currently on the hard, getting bottom job, and topsides restoration and painting work performed.
Thanks Again!
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Old 12-27-2018, 06:15 AM   #6
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I'm with RT on this,nix the sail idea and buy a Motor sailor. I wouldn't bastardize that boat with sails or electric power. I'd sell it and buy a single screw M/s with the room you desire. With or without electric propulsion. Since your still going to need a genset engine, why not an efficient diesel propulsion engine and solar/inverter power for ac loads?
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Old 12-27-2018, 07:26 AM   #7
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Greetings,
Mr. La. "...cost be somewhat offset...? Sure but it may take you 432 years to realize the break even point. I think you're trying to make a pig's ear out of a silk purse.


Pretty well the same deal with Tesla motor replacement but it may only take 196 years (you could sell the DD's and recoup some of the expense) to "break even".



Sorry to be so blunt but as many have said, fuel is a small expense in the greater scheme of boat ownership as you will most probably find out once you get the bill for your bottom and restoration work.


There is another alternative BUT it might take a substantial crew...


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Old 12-27-2018, 07:41 AM   #8
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For all the reasons offered, a kite sail may be your most viable option. There are a handful of companies offering these systems, I would suggest not trying to re-invent the wheel. This is one of them:

Kitecontroller for motor boats






Quote:
Originally Posted by LaVolta View Post
D Hays, Yes! when I read your comment I instantly thought of a Parasail type set up that could lead the Yacht by maybe 50 yards or so, and in light to low moderate winds heading in the same direction I wish to go, just might fit the bill.
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Old 12-27-2018, 10:39 AM   #9
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The boat we just sold had a tall mast and steadying sail. It was a 1981 and none of the 4 owners ever hoisted the sail, it was still new in the bag. I in fact cut the mast down since I was unable to get under many fixed bridges. Iím in Jackís camp, if you want a motorsailer buy one that is designed for that purpose.
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Old 12-27-2018, 12:01 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RT Firefly View Post


Sorry to be so blunt but as many have said, fuel is a small expense in the greater scheme of boat ownership as you will most probably find out once you get the bill for your bottom and restoration work.

^^^ Dose of boat wisdom.

Someone here has a sig line that says something like: You don't know it yet but everything on your boat is broken.


Cherish the times when fuel costs are your biggest problem.


The sail idea is a good one. Thanks for a good thread.


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Old 12-27-2018, 12:36 PM   #11
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You could use a kite sail, but it will never pay for itself at current diesel prices. That is, if it is used, it will require replacement before its cost is made up by diesel savings. This isn't true just of a kite sail, but sails in general. A set of sails for my sailboat (main and mizzen only) is around $30K today. They will be good for about 30,000 miles if well treated. The main propulsion engine was $10K, and fuel for 30,000 miles costs about $18K @ $3/gal. So the sails alone are more expensive than the diesel and fuel to run it.

Buy a sailboat to sail, or because it can go many places a trawler cannot, not to save money.
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Old 12-27-2018, 12:55 PM   #12
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If you want to add a few hp with sail, find out how much hp you get per sq ft of sail, at various amounts of apparent wind. Google probably has that answer, though I haven't looked.
I do know that on my first few boats, the sail needed was substantial, and all I was trying to drive was a few thousand lbs of properly designed sail boat. To get enough drive to take the load off of your DDs will take lots and lots of sail area. To add that to your old boat will take lots and lots and lots of $. have fun.
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Old 12-27-2018, 10:10 PM   #13
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RE: Adding Spinnaker Rig to Trawler Suggestions

Hello Everyone!, Wow, I love this Forum! so many awesome responses, and all of you have great advice!
This reply is directed to you all and BTW, RTF that Gif you attached was priceless! when I saw that I almost laughed so hard beer came out of my ears and my nose! Then I saw me in that Gif, I'm the slug three rows back of Mr. Heston!
O.K. so, I did speak with an old salt who is from South Africa and he is a Boat Builder, he has 2 trawlers being built in his yard as I write this response. He flat out told me....NO! to a Spinnaker for a Trawler, but he did say this " A Spinnaker will pull the bow down on a semi-displacement hull which would make the vessel almost uncontrollable, however you could still use a type of 'Chute' that leads the vessel by about 30-50 yards and would be positioned only about 20 degrees above the bow, so the chute will 'Pull' the vessel in light to low moderate winds" and then he went on " I can design the Rig for you and the cost will be in the low to mid $40's". I choked right then and there! I said "Do you mean Dollars?" he laughed and told me to forget it, but he was interested in the Hybrid Diesel Electric idea, because he said "Why not? Modern Cruise ships and the military are using hybrid Diesel Electric".
Anyway everybody and Moderator, I am guessing I'll have to start a new thread about the Hybrid Diesel Electric Idea, but just for this once please allow me to elaborate just a few more lines to this response o.k.
There are multiple reasons for the switch to Diesel Electric.
1. The DD 8V71tti's in the boat now generate about 460 H.P. and at 12-14 Kts, they burn about 25 gallons of fuel per hour, at W.O.T. they will guzzle about 40 GPH!
2. The DD's are very LOUD, and they smell,.... o.k., they actually stink.
3. The Tesla's can develop about 900 H.P. and about 950 Lb. Ft. of Torque (Last Dyno Test of Tesla Model X).
4. The Tesla's are nearly SILENT, and they do not stink.
5. The DD's that I have only have about 1700 hours on them and they run excellent, so yeah, I have been offered $15k for them and the 2:1 running gears.
6. I can buy wrecked Teslas from the Insurance sales auction for about 7k each (depending on amount of damage) which I will harvest the Motors AND the High Voltage Batteries from.
7. I have already converted a 32' cabin cruiser to electric using 2 Nissan Leaf motors, and Lithium batteries from wrecked Chevy Volts.
8. I have my own design electric motor controller that can control 2 motors, one CW the other CCW, no issue there, I wrote the software to maximize for Marine use.
9. The DD's require maintenance, oil, filters, diesel fuel, ect, ect, ect,
10. The Teslas are virtually maintenance free when used in a boat because do not need the 140 various sensors required for automobile use (No seat belts in a boat).
11. Oh btw, I also have converted a small SeaDoo Speedster to a 210 HP Nissan Leaf Motor and it runs great, AND Quiet, you can actually talk to each other while running....
most obviously the SeaDoo only weighs in at about 1200 pounds, the 32' only weighs in (with the Gasoline 454's removed) at about 8500 pounds, but the 60' Trawler weighs in at about 60k pounds so, yeah much much heavier.
The MAIN reason I wanted to try this with the large Trawler is the space available, not only living space but the mechanical space savings would be huge. The DD's are huge engines, and weigh in at a couple tons each easy, while the Teslas are small, and weigh in only at about 160 pounds each.
The boat also has 2ea. 500 gallon fuel tanks to feed the DD's, but by going Hybrid, I only need the fuel tank for the 20kw generator.
By removing the DD's and the huge fuel tanks I would have room for my ultimate idea! Are you Ready for this?
Gold Dredging equipment in the extra space!.......Yup that is the ultimate goal, turn the Pleasure Craft Trawler into a covert Gold Dredging machine!...
with the electric motors, I get quiet, and a virtually non-polluting boat and plenty of space to build out the dredging equipment and pumps.
So, there it is, all in a nut shell, so it's not just the cost of fuel, it's the total package that is important to me....O.K. so now all my new friends can tell me i'm bat crude crazy!!! hahahaha.
Moderator, I will start 2 more threads if it is o.k. 1 to do more with Hybrid Electric Propulsion and the other about mounting a gold dredging rig on a pleasure craft if it is o.k. with you?
Thank You Everybody!
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Old 12-27-2018, 10:58 PM   #14
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Lots of good ideas, LaVolta. No - a sail wonít pay for itself on a boat. Neither will an electric motor. In fact - I canít think of a single item on a boat that pays for itself. Yet we still get lots of enjoyment out of them.
Have fun!
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Old 12-27-2018, 11:15 PM   #15
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RE: Adding Spinnaker Rig to Trawler Suggestions

AusCan, Yup I have to agree that not any 'single' item on a boat may in fact pay for itself, but can we put a price tag on enjoyment? Hmmmm the other day I was kinda sad, so I went and spent $4.58 on a Happy Meal at Mc D's, at first I was not that Happy about it, but then caught myself playing with the toy for twenty minutes.......was I not Entertained?
Oh, I can think of 1 thing that can actually pay for itself....my life jacket....Ha.
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Old 12-28-2018, 01:12 AM   #16
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What kind of range do you think you will get with the Tesla motors?

Unfortunately, the First Law of Thermodynamics is still in force, energy has to come from somewhere. This is why electric boats haven't caught on, except for something to tool around the harbor in.
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Old 12-28-2018, 06:46 AM   #17
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I know there are a lot of former sailors here....

I dont see a kite or any downwind sail working worth a hoot for most cruisers.

Unless doinng all offshore legs or ocean cruising.... how much use will it really get?

Most sailors admit to motoring most of the time while coastal cruising...if they want to get anywhere. You would need a lot of sail to get ANY assist running downwind ....as most running downwind, you need enough wind to keep the apoarent wind high enough to keep the sail from being a PIA.

If there is that much wind continuously from astern, are the conditions such you want to be running downwind offshore? If nice enough, do you want to go slow enough to get assist from the sail without it collapsing all the time?

Me, while I love the miserly fuel burn at 6.3 knots of my boat, I wish I could get more knots more often than not.

Go sail if you want to sail or at least motorsailer....there is a reason for totally different hull designs. Thats why sailboats can motor by me all day long with much smaller engines burning way less fuel. But theres a tradeoff in so many other deireable traits of the motor cruise for coastal cruising.
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Old 12-28-2018, 08:05 AM   #18
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There are cost/benefit reasons cruise ships can use Diesel Electric effectively, a trawler will not fit into that envelope. There have been many threads here about Diesel Electric, maybe take a look at those for some background.
There is also a segment of the marine industry dedicated to diesel electric, there is a magazine and annual shows in Europe and the US:

https://www.electricandhybridmarineworldexpo.com/en/

The consensus is that unless you have "religion" about hybrid power, or are making a statement, then it's just not quite ready for prime time in pleasure boats. Very close, but not yet.

I sat in on a seminar of where the presenter showed the operational costs of 2 brand new harbor tugs, 1 Hybrid and one conventional. The Hybrid won until you figure in battery replacement cost and then the cost analysis just blew up.

There are Duffy electric boats, Greenline, and a few others. Check out this ferry and see the tight operational envelope and the hoops they had to jump to make this viable.

https://www.workboat.com/news/shipbu...lectric-ferry/

In my opinion the reality is for today except for a very limited type of pleasure boat and mission (like maybe a canal boat,) the additional cost, complexity and space do not make Hybrid a valid choice....yet

My $0.02

Quote:
Originally Posted by LaVolta View Post
but he was interested in the Hybrid Diesel Electric idea, because he said "Why not? Modern Cruise ships and the military are using hybrid Diesel Electric".
Anyway everybody and Moderator, I am guessing I'll have to start a new thread about the Hybrid Diesel Electric Idea, but just for this once please allow me to elaborate just a few more lines to this response o.k.
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Old 12-28-2018, 08:18 AM   #19
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I experimented with this idea on my commercial trawler a number of years ago. As it already had a substantial mast and rigging it was no great difficulty flying a surplus 35 ft. military cargo parachute. My boat weighed 45K light and the parachute did help save fuel on a long run downwind. I intend to add some sort of sail rig to the current boat I'm building.
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Old 12-28-2018, 10:16 AM   #20
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Having sailed a lot with a spinnaker I don't think you will have enough rudder or hull shape to maintain course
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