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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 01-12-2008
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Dockside boarding

Just wondering what people are using to board 36-40 sailboats when at the dock. Myself and spouse and nimble enough to board at the stern but her mother who is mimited in mobility could never make that big step up to the deck. Something like a stepping stool makes me nervous that it could slip and whammo!! The alernative is to "winch" my mother in law aboard (sorry couldnt resist---gives me a hilarious visual) Is there some good boarding ladders that are secure withour taking up too much precious space for storage..just wondering what any recommendations are on specific products...
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Old 01-12-2008
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are we looking at your current berthing situation?

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Originally Posted by sab30 View Post
Just wondering what people are using to board 36-40 sailboats when at the dock. Myself and spouse and nimble enough to board at the stern but her mother who is mimited in mobility could never make that big step up to the deck. Something like a stepping stool makes me nervous that it could slip and whammo!! The alernative is to "winch" my mother in law aboard (sorry couldnt resist---gives me a hilarious visual) Is there some good boarding ladders that are secure withour taking up too much precious space for storage..just wondering what any recommendations are on specific products...
here's how i see it..if you happen to have a floating finger pier, you are golden, however, if you have one good side to, well..spring lines, two in number is the first best step. next step (ahem) is a portable boarding ladder, light in weight, but strong in stature. you might need this one day, as a matter of fact (or opinion).
you will need to get very adept at pulling, and cinching off the boat right next to the stationary pier.use your fenders to get it 'slam up against the pilings.'
if M-I-L is a little unsteady on her feet, one strong person on deck to help her down..or one strong on dock to put her back on terre firma.
bottom line...no water space between you and the boat.

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Old 01-12-2008
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My dock neighbors have a set of dock steps which are bolted to the dock, and make boarding their boat relatively easy. They are an older couple, so are probably in the same boat as your MIL. Having a gate in the lifelines probably a good idea as well, since stepping over them is not a good idea.
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Old 01-12-2008
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Sorry the pic is of my boat but not how it sits at dock. I am Bow in, which means yes the boat needs to be tight to the dock to have the stern as close as possible. I do have a gate which yes helps...specifically I am looking at boarding ladders as my slip location may change. Any recommendations on specific ladders..make model etc that people have that work well or just use any generic ladder....
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Old 01-12-2008
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The first question you need to answer is, how often your going to need the boarding ladder. If it's only on the rare MIL visit. Then it can be stored in the garage at home most of the time, and left on the dock when your out sailing. If thats allowed at your marina. We used to leave ours padlocked to a peir when we were out for a sail.
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Old 01-12-2008
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A recent (sorry, can't remember the month exactly) issue of Boatworks featured a boarding step project that was designed to clip/fit onto the toerail and provide a couple of steps up to deck level. I believe it was made of wood or starboard. Such a step could be totally customized for your needs.

We had a custom made aluminum one for our last boat, two steps, and this was a big help for certain people when we were tied to a low floating finger.
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Old 01-12-2008
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Do a Google search on passerelles. My Nemo folding one mounts on the stern and folds into thirds to be secured to the pushpit. I also have a stainless steel ladder that hangs off the pushpit for bow access.
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Old 01-12-2008
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Why not a gangway and let her walk?
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