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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Learning to Sail > What do you tell 1st timers on your boat
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Thread: What do you tell 1st timers on your boat Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
07-22-2010 06:38 PM
kulokoo Hi everyone. So, OK. There are only three things you need to worry about.

The dock is the most dangerous place, if your body gets between the boat and the dock it will be crushed. The second thing are these drums we call winches. They grind rope and snap off fingers like it was nothing, keep your fingers well clear. Lastly is the boom, it comes swinging across the boat sometimes when we don't expect it. Duck, don't let the boom hit you in the head, cause it'll knock you out cold and into the water. That's why you wear a life jacket. You are a terrible swimmer when you're unconscious. We do practice recovering overboard sailors, so we'll get you if you fall over with a life jacket on, but you'll have more fun staying a bit drier.

Dock, winches, boom, got it?!

Moving around the boat, the rule is one hand for yourself, one hand for the boat -- even for the skipper. Ask any questions but ask them loud and twice because I am deaf in the wind.

I swear there IS NO MERMAID IN THE STARBOARD QUARTERBERTH so don't go looking.

All right. Any questions? Lets prepare to cast off, mateys.
12-29-2009 05:32 PM
CaptainForce I tell them they can put anything in the marine head as long as they eat it first.

Quote:
Originally Posted by alwheeler98 View Post
What do you do with the toilet paper?
Ok, I do add that they can use toilet paper. We always place used toilet paper in the head. I hear of others not doing this, but we have never, in four decades of live-aboard cruising, had any toilet paper clog our head or plumbing to or from our holding tanks. 'take care and joy, Aythya crew
12-29-2009 04:10 PM
duckduckgoose Sadly I don't own anything bigger than a dinghy and my only guests tend to be kiddies with anxiety issues

So in case you find yourself in a similar situation, with a somewhat reluctant or anxious passenger, here is what I do

1. show them the boat. Very brief run down of what the parts do and some basic nomenclature so they know what you're talking about if you say "sheet" or "tiller"

2. Have them put on proper fitting PFDs

3. Sail away from shore a little, then tell them that you're going to make the boat feel like it will tip over a little but that you'll then show them how to bring it back to flatten out, so that when they have a go they will know what to do in case it gets too scary (deliberate lack of jargon, both for adults and kids alike!)

4. Come up on the wind. Ease the main sheet and let the sail flap.

5. Repeat and get them to ease the main sheet until the boat is level again.

6. Go on a reach. Ask them if they know to make the boat stop. Usually someone will connect this activity with the previous one and will say something along the lines of ease the sheet

7. Ease the sheet

8. Tell them that if anyone falls overboard that that is to be their first action.

Most important of all is to at all times during the sail, STAY CALM. It's really tempting to overstress safety stuff but if anyone has a tendancy to become anxious, any emotion in your voice will be construed as anxiety and they will believe they have cause for panic. If your newbie looks uncomfortable, ask them what's wrong and make them comfortable.

Sailing with first timers isn't a time for egos, unless of course you're testing out potential team members for races, in which case - force 4 minimum, plenty of playing with the spinnaker and keep the leeward rail nice and wet
12-29-2009 03:58 PM
pdqaltair
Stay clear of the traveler, particularly fingers (it is big and fast on cats).

And basic safety and head stuff.

I single-hand so much I don't expect or require help from non-sailors.

When docking I give very simple jobs and tell them NEVER to jump or over reach. I make it clear that I can repeat the approach.
12-29-2009 02:10 PM
Guero I say: The boat WILL HEEL and it's normal, we'll not capsize, it has a huge 1000 pounds keel down there. If anyone feels uncomfortable with the heeling, let us know we'll reduce sails and speed.

Also say: This big metal tube there is called the boom, (followed by explanation of precautions regarding its potential dangers)

I offer sea sickness pills 1 hour ago, I really hate having to come back for 1 person.

Also tell people what they can hang on (stays for example) and what not to hang on (lines and bimini for example)

Instruct everyone to throw their empty beer cans in the sink.
12-12-2009 08:02 PM
TrevC
Quote:
3. Alcohol
• No consumption while we’re away from the dock.
Really? What about the Captain?!?
12-12-2009 12:42 PM
closehauled14 If you realy want to ditch the mother in law, pick a day that's going to be sunny so as to lure her to the boat for an outing. Make sure that the winds are forcasted to increase throughout the day. During the calmer winds early on get as far from your dock as possible, then when it starts to blow, don't take in sail until you've buried your leeward rail for a bit. When you do decide to reef, just take in one, and tack/jibe as much as posible on the way back making sure that if the wind eases a bit to shake that reef right on out. Also, make sure not to round up when she needs to use the head, rather, have an "unintentional jibe" while she's in there. Make her wear the big orange beast type 2 life preserver when it gets hairy. If she still wants to go with you after that, she's a keeper.
12-11-2009 04:40 PM
cormeum
Quote:
Originally Posted by Didjeridu View Post
The only thing missing here are letting your companions know what the consequences are of violating, in particular the Head Rules are... I usually add that the consequences are dire and consist of a pissed off Captain, and a very uncomfortable Keel Hauling....
Simple: "Don't like it and you can WALK HOME"- best said after you've left the dock.
12-11-2009 04:37 PM
Didjeridu The only thing missing here are letting your companions know what the consequences are of violating, in particular the Head Rules are... I usually add that the consequences are dire and consist of a pissed off Captain, and a very uncomfortable Keel Hauling....
12-11-2009 04:31 PM
smackdaddy Ahh - yes, but you still have the MIL problem. How about this angle...

"Remove shoes. Don't crap in the head. Toilet paper in the garbage. Puke over the lee rail. Pee on your grandma while she's sitting down. And don't touch my Corona."
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