Line cutter advisable for Chesapeake Bay? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 26 Old 04-04-2013 Thread Starter
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Line cutter advisable for Chesapeake Bay?

My prior boat, which I moved down to Annapolis, MD from Marshfiled, MA, was equipped with a line cutter. The current boat, which like the prior boat also has a fin keel,semi balance spade rudder, and a Flexofold prop, does not have one.

Is a line cutter worth having? Any downside (other than cost)?

I swear that sometimes I wonder whether I'm really sailing in the Chesapeake or mostly dodging crab pots (and fish traps and container ships). Although I do love eating crabs, so I guess I can't complain too much.


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post #2 of 26 Old 04-04-2013
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Re: Line cutter advisable for Chesapeake Bay?

No, you don't need one in the Chesapeake. The watermen here shoot guns at each other, so you have been forewarned.
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post #3 of 26 Old 04-04-2013
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Re: Line cutter advisable for Chesapeake Bay?

Jim-

It's not an essential piece of gear for sailing the Chesapeake, but it wouldn't hurt. If you had one, I'd keep it. If you don't have one, I wouldn't rush out and buy it.

I have personally laid eyeballs on your boat, as I was visiting a friend's boat. Very nice ride.

The West River has a "float free channel" that leads out to the Bay. Although the crabbers frequently encroach on the float free zone, it's better than driving through the main body of traps, so I advise you to get familiar with the locations of the white/orange informational bouys that mark the channel, and plug them into your GPS.

Also, be advised that the West River and Pirate's Cove Sailing Clubs put race marks out in the water that resemble the float-free info bouys, so be careful.
The race marks are usually light gray, and most (but not all) of them have a pointy cone on top.

Hope that helps, and hope to see you out there.

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Re: Line cutter advisable for Chesapeake Bay?

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Originally Posted by jameswilson29 View Post
No, you don't need one in the Chesapeake. The watermen here shoot guns at each other, so you have been forewarned.
Guess I better polish up the, ah, um, "signal" canon.

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Re: Line cutter advisable for Chesapeake Bay?

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I have personally laid eyeballs on your boat, as I was visiting a friend's boat. Very nice ride.
Thanks Bubblehead, we enjoyed it a lot for the couple months we had it in the water before it went up on land for storage. I've loved cat boats every since my Beetle Cat when I was a kid

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Jim-

The West River has a "float free channel" that leads out to the Bay. Although the crabbers frequently encroach on the float free zone, it's better than driving through the main body of traps, so I advise you to get familiar with the locations of the white/orange informational bouys that mark the channel, and plug them into your GPS.
Appreciate the tip. I do know about the channel, although as you say it's not always honored, or the traps shift with the weather. Mostly, though, I worry about the traps in the spots where I don't expect them.


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post #6 of 26 Old 04-04-2013
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Re: Line cutter advisable for Chesapeake Bay?

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Originally Posted by Jiminri View Post
Is a line cutter worth having? Any downside (other than cost)?
A line cutter can be rough on divers cleaning your boat bottom, and on their equipment. They aren't perfect so if you get a line wrapped in the prop that the cutter doesn't handle you have to deal with the wrap AND the line cutter. Sometimes that means a tow and a haul instead of a quick dive.
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post #7 of 26 Old 04-04-2013
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Re: Line cutter advisable for Chesapeake Bay?

With all the boats on the hard this time of year, stroll around a few yards and see for yourself. I think you will find as I did that they are certinaly not common?

I considered one a few years ago but ultimately chose no for reasons mentioned by Auspicious, plus we swim a lot off the boat with our kids

I have caught a line probably 5-6 times on our current boat, only once did I have to dive and cut the line, the others I was able to remove with the boat hook.

Cheers,
Shawn

S/V Windgeist
1982 Tartan 37C

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post #8 of 26 Old 04-04-2013
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Re: Line cutter advisable for Chesapeake Bay?

LED lighting, soundproof, Sailor's Solutions Inc.

The above is actually a link. Don't look like it, but, it will take you to sailors solutions . com to have a look see at the hook knife.

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post #9 of 26 Old 04-04-2013
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Re: Line cutter advisable for Chesapeake Bay?

I'll second others thoughts. We've been sailing on the Bay for over 20 yrs. Never had a cutter, nor wished we had one. Caught a line a couple times, but it usually pulled right off. Have to admit that it's sorta second nature to keep a 'crap pot watch' - especially when the engine's on.

I have been considering one of the hook knives, but it's a little pricey for me compared to just jumping in with a mask and rigging knife. Still might add it to the toolbox, though.
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post #10 of 26 Old 04-04-2013
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Re: Line cutter advisable for Chesapeake Bay?

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Originally Posted by paperbird View Post
I'll second others thoughts. We've been sailing on the Bay for over 20 yrs. Never had a cutter, nor wished we had one. Caught a line a couple times, but it usually pulled right off. Have to admit that it's sorta second nature to keep a 'crap pot watch' - especially when the engine's on.

I have been considering one of the hook knives, but it's a little pricey for me compared to just jumping in with a mask and rigging knife. Still might add it to the toolbox, though.
Oh yea, you all have stuff called "warm water"... I've heard of it

It is a quality product, comes with a shorter removeable handle and it's made to fit on the end of a common boat hook/scrub brush handle.

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