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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Seamanship & Navigation > Docking in current
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Seamanship & Navigation Forum devoted to seamanship and navigation topics, including paper and electronic charting tools.


Thread: Docking in current Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
07-14-2013 05:40 PM
capecodda
Re: Docking in current

If you pad the pole, you are going to slide the fat part of your topsides against the padding as you work your way in. With 2 kts pushing you against it....I think it will make a mark, even if it doesn't get buggered up from the tide.

I know people who have used the dock wheels. If you could figure out a way to mount one...but I also know people who have hit them hard, burst the tire, and put a hole in their boat.

2 kts...man!

This is black diamond docking your trying to do
07-14-2013 02:31 PM
davidpm
Re: Docking in current

Quote:
Originally Posted by capecodda View Post
I've used fender boards, they work great if you can make sure they set against the pole, if they ever get caught when you miss, you've got a bigger mess (don't ask how I know).
You've got over 2kts, not easy!!!
How about some padding on the pole?
We have about 4 feet of tide so I'm pretty sure it will get buggered with barnacles pretty fast.
07-14-2013 10:26 AM
capecodda
Re: Docking in current

This idea is good, but with the tumblehome on your boat, there's no good rub rail set on the pole. I've used fender boards, they work great if you can make sure they set against the pole, if they ever get caught when you miss, you've got a bigger mess (don't ask how I know). Maybe a long fender board plus this technique or big fender hung lengthwise at the fattest part of the topside bulge.

You've got over 2kts, not easy!!!
07-13-2013 11:42 PM
davidpm
Re: Docking in current

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jiminri View Post

Search YouTube for Maryland School of Seamanship docking video. They show the technique in that clip. Good luck. I pretty much still suck at docking, but this I can do.
Found it:


He calls it the waterman's spring.

I think I can give this a try.
If I bring a mate and do it at slack I can get a feel for it.

Thanks for reminding me of this.
07-13-2013 11:17 PM
Jiminri
Re: Docking in current

Quote:
Originally Posted by davidpm View Post
I love that idea. I actually saw that technique taught by an ASA certifying instructor during an ASA instructors class. It was very impressive.
The boat was something like a 38' late model Beniteau with something like 80 hp engine.

From a practical point of view however I have several problems.

I'm not sure I could position the boat on the fender board by myself, he had 4 instructor candidates available and we were all fending off. I would only have one shot and have to hit the exact spot. Too far forward and my bow would go into the next slip. Too far back and I would miss the board.

I really doubt if the engine has enough reverse to make this happen.

The biggest problem however is I can't think of a way to test this.

Maybe 4 guys and towboat.

I like it though in theory and I have seen it done.
I do this in my 30 foot Nonsuch with a 27 hp. Westerbeke. You don't need a big engine. If I understand your diagram, you want help with the ebb tide, so you just need the line to steer, no need for much power.

Pre-position a long (5'?) fenderboard. You will be running parallel to the current so you should be able to lay alongside the piling with that 5' window.

Get a buddy to help the first time. You'll see it's easy.

Search YouTube for Maryland School of Seamanship docking video. They show the technique in that clip. Good luck. I pretty much still suck at docking, but this I can do.
07-13-2013 10:57 PM
davidpm
Re: Docking in current

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jiminri View Post
Attach a fender board on your starboard side. Lay up against the piling like the blue boat shows. Run a line from your stern cleat, around the piling, and back to the cockpit. Put the engine in reverse, hold the line, and the boat will pivot back into the slip. You "steer" by how much line you let out. This technique is easy and works really, really well. It does require that the neighboring boat not stick out beyond the piling, but you said that's not an issue.
I love that idea. I actually saw that technique taught by an ASA certifying instructor during an ASA instructors class. It was very impressive.
The boat was something like a 38' late model Beniteau with something like 80 hp engine.

From a practical point of view however I have several problems.

I'm not sure I could position the boat on the fender board by myself, he had 4 instructor candidates available and we were all fending off. I would only have one shot and have to hit the exact spot. Too far forward and my bow would go into the next slip. Too far back and I would miss the board.

I really doubt if the engine has enough reverse to make this happen.

The biggest problem however is I can't think of a way to test this.

Maybe 4 guys and towboat.

I like it though in theory and I have seen it done.
07-13-2013 10:34 PM
Jiminri
Re: Docking in current

Attach a fender board on your starboard side. Lay up against the piling like the blue boat shows. Run a line from your stern cleat, around the piling, and back to the cockpit. Put the engine in reverse, hold the line, and the boat will pivot back into the slip. You "steer" by how much line you let out. This technique is easy and works really, really well. It does require that the neighboring boat not stick out beyond the piling, but you said that's not an issue.
07-13-2013 10:22 PM
TomKeffer
Re: Docking in current

I keep my boat in the Columbia River, so I have to deal with this every day.

In any kind of current, it's just about possible to back into an "uphill" slip without some chance of getting pinned. And, my boat is a very maneuverable J/42.

The problem is that you're very vulnerable for the few seconds between when your transom passes the end of the finger pier, and when your pivot point passes. If a cross-current happens any time during those 3 or 4 seconds, you can't accelerate out of there fast enough and you're going to get pinned.

If there's a way to avoid this, I haven't discovered it. I eventually gave up on the slip and switched to a "downhill" slip.

I think you're stuck with waiting for the flood.

Or, using warps.
07-13-2013 09:04 PM
davidpm
Re: Docking in current

Quote:
Originally Posted by capecodda View Post
If it's 2.1 kts, can you point into it in the fairway, power slowly forward, and hold the boat in position? If so, you could effectively (maybe), back into the slip while still in forward, reducing throttle a bit. I'm thinking that you never use reverse in this approach. You'd need to be careful to never loose the bow, you'd have to keep working the rudder so that the stern stays directly behind the bow, and into the current....even if you're not initially aligned with the slip. If you loose the bow, you'll surely end up pinned against the pilings as indicated.

I hope you have good rub rails, that will help if you end up against a piling. If the rub rails touch either piling on the way in, you'd still have some control of the stern, again in forward all the time.

It's a tough one! I knew a guy who got good at this in Newburyport...he practiced the drill near some moorings before trying it in the slipway. Master this and you'll be one good close quarters boat handler!
The technique you are describing is called ferry gliding by some.
http://www.sailnet.com/forums/seaman...y-gliding.html

Thanks for the encouragement that it might be possible in this situation.

I tried if for about half an hour and it was very tricky.
The boat was slipping port even while going straight back.
The rudder was very reactive.

A couple of times I got close but the center of my stern was lined up with the pole so I had to bail.

Starting in exactly the right place escaped me for about 6 tries until someone showed up on the dock and we just fought it in and suffered the scrapes.

Sadly their is no rub rail at all. The hull bulges out below the rail.

I was thinking of a fender board but the chanses of it getting pulled out of place are almost 100%.

I also thought about laying against the pole on purpose, fendering it properly and bending the boat around the pole but then I can't figure on how to get to the dock with a line.

My neighbor is a very short power boat that doesn't reach to pole.
07-13-2013 08:50 PM
davidpm
Re: Docking in current

If my picture is north up then to the west I have plenty of room. Probably several hundred feet.
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