What''''s wrong with the MOB Poll?
Billmac, I don''t think the MOB drills are any great mystery. The key is to pick one type of MOB practice,and make it second nature to you. The sailing schools I attended stressed what is called a "figure eight" method.I can sail this pattern and avoid using my engine,and the chance of running over my victim.I''ve come to rely on it and feel confident I can use it effectively if ever needed. The scenario you gave of the winch handle is an interesting one. Last year while sailing single-handed in the Florida Keys,I had a depth sounder cover go overboard.I immediately put the boat on a beam reach and started my figure eight approach.I was trying to watch the cover.The wind was ~18,and the seas rolling.It wasn''t long before I lost sight of the cover, but by the time I was finishing the figure 8 pattern, I spotted my cover on the leeward side of the boat where it should''ve been. The exercise emphasized two things to me.1) It was very hard to see a white plastic cover in rolling seas,and I could imagine how much harder it would be to spot a bobbing head with perhaps a flash of color every now and then 2)By using the figure eight method,it gave me a good chance of finding my target while keeping it on the leeward (protected)side of the boat. Now I have a GPS chartplotter on my boat that has a MOB feature on it. If I loose that darn cover again, I''ll push the little button on it, start my figure eight,and let the two technologies merge. Well, at least that''s the way I hope it works ;^)