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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Seamanship & Navigation > Don't "drive" your boat like it's a car!
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Thread: Don't "drive" your boat like it's a car! Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
02-01-2014 04:26 PM
budvar
Re: Don't "drive" your boat like it's a car!

This may be a reposting. There is a wonderful 80 minute seminar on utube on docking techniques, from the Tom Tursi of the Maryland School of Sailing. I liked it so much, purchased the companion book from the American Sailing Association. Look forward to practicing when it warms up a bit more.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PoGMAEjiHmU

Chris
US Yacht 25 "Chinook"
Kennewick, Wa.
01-22-2014 11:12 PM
mike21070
Re: Don't "drive" your boat like it's a car!

This really is a very interesting topic...

I'm still new at sailing, and I'm still learning to take out and dock my 16 Topper. I share a slip with a powerboat, and I'm between the dock and the powerboat, with another boat on the opposite slip. My heartrate does increase with each leaving and landing, but so far I haven't hit either.

I do the untie-everything-and-jump-onboard-and-get-to-the-trolling-motor method when casting off and then slowly motor in and walk up to the bow and jump onto the dock to tie her in (I'm always solo). I can call in the marina to get some help, but I really don't want any; I'm trying to learn how to sail solo.

Anyway, that's all I've got. Sorry no insights or anything, just another guy making it up as he goes along...

Mike

By the way, I really like that sentiment about "...small boats make you a sailor."
01-22-2014 07:08 PM
Lou452
Re: Don't "drive" your boat like it's a car!

The most important fact to all this is I did not see this guy. It is hard for me to comprehend things that people will do. I try to think we all have a good amount of sense and respect. Sadly this is not always so.
Good day, Lou
01-22-2014 07:00 PM
Lou452
Re: Don't "drive" your boat like it's a car!

Yes use a stern line if needed and you are proficient . This can be the only safe way. What else do want me to say ? I am only try to point out that the pressure can be a danger. You do not have to agree.
How good do you think this guy would have been with a stern line any better?
Asking for help or advice can be prudent. Maybe he did once and got the salt rubbed into him. He may have heard " Don't drive your boat like a car!"
Good day, Lou
01-22-2014 05:01 PM
budvar
Re: Don't "drive" your boat like it's a car!

Great topic! Have sailed Chinook (US Yacht 25) less than a year now. She's in a slip, and docking is one thing I'm definitely deficient at. It's usually solo. I've done all the beginner mistakes listed, including jumping on the dock in a hurry, then stopping her by brute force.

This year, plan on practicing extensively at it.

Thanks again!
Chris
Kennewick, Wa.
01-22-2014 04:01 PM
L124C
Re: Don't "drive" your boat like it's a car!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lou452 View Post
Because you can not hear tone of voice by what I type I think you see me not trying to help. All your points are valid. Why would anyone by choice engage in an activity that by nature holds danger ? why not stay inside an stare at a TV. ? I would answer because we thrive on activity. We can mitigate most of the danger to the point many of the things we do look easy.
You are able to know that the your dock and your boat are in reasonable condition. What about at the next port ?
I watched a U-tube clip you had posted. It was very good. I noticed in it they were using the piling not a dock cleat .
I can tell you will spring away with only the minimum power needed to preform. Even more so when you are at the next port miles away. What about the cowboy that was a half hour before you ? Think He could have broke something and it could look ok but not be ? What if you are coming down the dock at the same time as he is going into action? This might be the dude that parked the little boat on top the light house ? ( I am not sure if that is a fake yet but the thread is up.)
I just hope to spread a little caution and thought into what we might all think is as easy eating pie. Tons of force ready to bite anyone needs respect.
All said with Respect, Lou
I do appreciate that you are trying to help, and completely agree with respecting the forces involved. Though I don't think they are as great as you do, given normal conditions as in the OP. However, your suggestion of leaving the dock without lines is exactly what the guy in the OP did. If I had a video of the incident, I sincerely doubt you would say what he did was safe. It took my breath away, and I don't scare easily!

So, I'm simply asking you, in those conditions how would you leave the dock without using lines? Maybe you wouldn't cast off, but he did, and almost created a incident. Is your position that if conditions are keeping your hull against the dock, you simply get help or don't cast off until conditions change? Is your position that what the OP skipper did was safer than using a stern line? If so, we simply have to agree to disagree.

BTW, the You tube video states that you can use a cleat OR piling, both of which were options in the OP. However, if you are concerned about lines snapping, (to use your terminology) the line doesn't know a cleat from a piling.

Here is a shot of Larry Ellison's yacht at the AC. Common procedure was for crew to power away from the dock with two lines holding the stern, while the forward mooring was released. Then, they backed off the throttles, the stern lines were released and they pulled away from the dock. All of this while guests sipped margaritas on the rear deck! Yes, bigger cleats, bigger lines, but a MUCH bigger boat.
01-20-2014 02:59 PM
MarkSF
Re: Don't "drive" your boat like it's a car!

PS, things will go wrong. That's when you're glad you were going slowly. Reminds me of the time we were entering a slip in a Catalina 27, I engaged reverse, and throttled up. Or tried to, the throttle lever came off in my hand. We were going slowly though and a crewmember quickly stopped the boat with a line.

Hitting the dock at 1 knots vs. 4 is a factor of 16 reduction in kinetic energy, and hence damage.
01-20-2014 02:48 PM
MarkSF
Re: Don't "drive" your boat like it's a car!

Sometime the trick is to go with the flow. My boat has a rather tall bow, and if the wind catches it, can spin around quite quickly. The other day this happened as I was backing out of the slip, rotating the bow in totally the opposite direction to the one I wanted to go in (back down the fairway instead of up it.). So I just went that way for a bit, and then turned around using back and fill. Anyone observing would think I just wanted some turning practice.
01-19-2014 10:30 PM
Lou452
Re: Don't "drive" your boat like it's a car!

Because you can not hear tone of voice by what I type I think you see me not trying to help. All your points are valid. Why would anyone by choice engage in an activity that by nature holds danger ? why not stay inside an stare at a TV. ? I would answer because we thrive on activity. We can mitigate most of the danger to the point many of the things we do look easy.
You are able to know that the your dock and your boat are in reasonable condition. What about at the next port ?
I watched a U-tube clip you had posted. It was very good. I noticed in it they were using the piling not a dock cleat .
I can tell you will spring away with only the minimum power needed to preform. Even more so when you are at the next port miles away. What about the cowboy that was a half hour before you ? Think He could have broke something and it could look ok but not be ? What if you are coming down the dock at the same time as he is going into action? This might be the dude that parked the little boat on top the light house ? ( I am not sure if that is a fake yet but the thread is up.)
I just hope to spread a little caution and thought into what we might all think is as easy eating pie. Tons of force ready to bite anyone needs respect.
All said with Respect, Lou
01-19-2014 11:39 AM
L124C
Re: Don't "drive" your boat like it's a car!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lou452 View Post
True you are right but the world is not perfect. Budgets are tight.
How much strain might be on a line and a cleat with a 42 foot yacht engine engaged? How much more pressure will wind, wave and current add all pulling on a dock cleat that has been there for how many years exposed to the elements, Bet your life on it? It does not have to be a large yacht. Inertia can build in smaller craft. Something for all of us to think about. We all know not to get a hand are or leg caught between the dock and the boat on the way in. This bone crushing force is the same when going out just better hidden, The cleat could care less. The line has no mind.
Good day, Lou
If the budget is so tight at your marina that they can't provide you with serviceable cleats, I think you might want to look for another marina! Line choice and maintenance is on you, but they should certainly be able to hold your boat in low to medium rpm maneuvers. As far as safety...There are many safer hobbies than sailing.
But OK...So how would you suggest the single handed skipper in my OP leave the dock safely, without using lines?
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