Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Permanent Vacation
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We have davits now, so we don't tow anymore, but when we did, we used two painters, one as a bridal, and one on the bow. The bridal actually did the pulling. We tied them off to different cleats on the stern so if one failed, we didn't lose the dinghy.
We used to let out enough line so that the dinghy was about one "wave length" away from the stern, so the dinghy would ride up and down with the boat. It worked well, no slamming the boat and no, or at least minimal, tugging.
The reason for two painters? I had a friend who swore his dinghy had been stolen right off the back of his boat. He showed me the remnants of the frayed line which he claimed had obviously been cut. I don't want our dinghy to get stolen in the same manner.
BTW, there is a GREAT deal of drag from towing your dinghy which adds to fuel consumption and considerably slows the boat when sailing. You don't realize just how much drag until you try to pull the dinghy closer to the boat while traveling along at 5 or 6 k.
Saltwater Suzi and Cap'n Larry
"A sailboat is a fickle mistress. You’ve got to buy her things. You’ve got to understand everything about her. What you don’t know she’ll use against you." -Captain Larry
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