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


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  #11  
Old 08-11-2007
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All the techniques that have been suggested are good alternatives. I'll suggest one more alternative worth considering.

On my previous 25' boat I found that, even in fairly moderate winds I could "sail" it with a reasonable degree of control, under bare pole, using the windage on the hull. After practicing with it for many years, I could even get it to coast/sail a little forward of a beam reach for some distance, if there was enough wind.

Of course, everything depends on all the conditions, but in most conditions, on that boat or most similar boats, I wouldn't hesitate to "sail" it through the mooring field with bare pole, at least until I got it to a less congested place where I had room to get up a sail or do something else.
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Old 08-11-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rickm505 View Post
I'd look pretty silly hoisting a mainsail in my marina slip. We hoist sails after we clear the marina breakwater and are in clear water.
Interesting. We have a few old R-boats and Eight Meters that have no engines and regularly sail on and off the slip. I've done it a few times, due to either engine problems or just for practice (after having my hand forced!)

We had a mooring for the second boat last year and found hoisting the main and sailing off a real pleasure. The same can be said for the more tricky sailing to the anchor maneuver, I suppose.
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  #13  
Old 08-11-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marvshirley View Post
If your engine dies while in a dense mooring field you might be able to coast or drift alongside another boat. Just make sure you have fenders set before you come alongside.
I deploy fenders prior to passing through the gaps in our basin's sea wall for exactly this reason. My wife gets a tad annoyed at what she deems my "paranoia", but my logic is that if the engine dies when we've got sails furled, we're either going into the wall or into the sides of the gap, both of which are very worn rebar and concrete. Not to mention that this is the area when we are most likely to meet another, perhaps disabled boat. Better they encounter rubber than steel.
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  #14  
Old 08-11-2007
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I should add that it is best to practice the procedure I posted outside the marina first.
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  #15  
Old 08-11-2007
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I have just had this happened to me last month. While on a Catalina 36 that I chartered in Annapolis, I had just entered Gratitude Marina in Rock Hall Md with instruction to tie up on the other side of the fuel dock. This required me to spin the boat 180 degrees after passing the fuel dock finger. As I was spinning the boat, the transmission locked up in reverse and stalled the engine. I could not take the transmission out of reverse nor start the engine (caused by water in the transmission and metal shavings from the rear bearing). The wind was blowing 16 knots, in the wrong direction, the marina is real tight with only one small entrance in and out, and a virgin sailing crew of 3 women ( This was their first sail). Can I paint a worse picture here. So what did we do.

I instructed the crew to switch lines from the port side to starboard side. I put out all fenders in record time. My main objective was to stop the boat from drifting. As the wind was blowing the boat into the poles, I lasso one them with the springline to stop the boat from further adrift. I got lucky with the lasso. I guess all the living in Oklahoma rubbed off on me. With the boat stopped and the girls fending me off, I toss the bow line to a person on another boat to control the bow. We now had the boat under control and not the wind. We towed the boat via the ropes into a empty slip. Not an easy task considering we had to spring off the poles to get the boat to turn into the slip. We didn't scratch one boat and no one got hurt. The girls stepped up to the plate and rocked! After we got it all tied up, I breathed for the first time and treated everyone to cold ones! Many cold one! The blender required maintenance the next day!

1.So, good maintainance cannot forsee all that can wrong!
2. Wind drift will always be in the wrong direction. Murphy's Wind God rule! Same rule that says where ever you are sailing the wind will upon the bow!
3. It will happen when you least expect it.
4. It will happen in the most hazardous area during your motoring! Murphy's Law again.

Lessons learned. Alway have a plan B everytime you are motoring. Every few minutes or less say to yourself, what would I do if the engine quits now. Trying to figure out what do after the fact will put you and others in harms way.

Be careful out there
Melissa
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  #16  
Old 08-11-2007
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DrB-
On most of what we call sailboats, the inboard engine is properly called the AUXILIARY ENGINE. The big white engines above deck are the primaries.
I was taught to make sure they are deployed, or ready to deploy, at all times because the auxiliary engine can and will fail when you least expect it. Fuel clog, line in the prop, whatever.
So on leaving a mooring, I'll start the diesel "early" and then proceed to free the sails and rig the lines. I may or may not sail off the mooring--but will make sure that I can hoist the main immediately if it is needed. Had that happen a year or two ago, the boat had been ignored for too long and when I cast off the mooring (shorthanded, one guest on board with near zip skills) and put the engine in gear...we just started drifting backwards. No engine power, the folding prop had gotten so heavily encrusted in a month that it wasn't worth an eggbeater.
Mainsail up, pray to fall off and start forward promptly. And then once clear of the moooring field...swim time, that prop was truly ugly.
That reminded me to raise the main BEFORE I cast off the mooring, even if I'm planning to motor out. (I'd rather run the engine briskly for 20 minutes in and out, to exercise it and the alternator, than be a purist and sail on/off.)
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Old 08-11-2007
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jump in the dink and the use the dink as a pilot boat/cushion/fender/towboat etc. if all else fails...drop hook
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  #18  
Old 08-14-2007
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I find it amazing how many people talk about their grandiose procedures prior to leaving the dock. We always prep the boat for sailing before we leave the dock since we like to raise the sails shortly after leaving the marina, but outside of that - we turn on the engine, let it idle for 2-3 minutes, untie our docklines and go. Perhaps I'm tempting fate, but I just can't see spending 15-20 minutes prepping to leave the dock before we leave the dock.

What would I do if we had engine problems? First thing I'd do is resign myself to the fact that getting some damage to my boat is OK. Second, I'd look at what I was drifting towards. If I'm drifting towards another boat, perhaps it's an opportunity to raft to it? I'd quickly reset bumpers as necessary. Our slip is in 50 feet of water, and it gets deeper faster as you go 10-15 feet from our slip. Anchoring would be a tough option. It would take some time just to get the anchor to the bottom, let alone get it set. I'd raise my sails if I had the time, but raising sails vs. making headway are two completely different things. I guess what I'd do most of is pray and hope we don't tangle rigs with another boat. Depending on the color smoke coming out or the types of alarms, I may try to keep the engine on or turn it off - I don't know. My guess is that it would shut off fairly quickly on its own depending on what's wrong with it! Losing an engine in a tight spot with few ways to control your boat - I don't know that there's anything you can do.

Sailing in and out of our slip? I don't think it would be possible. Sailing into it perhaps, but we only have three feet of clearance to the boat next to us, so I'm fairly sure they wouldn't appreciate it. And if the wind was on our beam? Could be interesting.

Getting into the fairway and raising our sails right away to get out? It usually takes us about 2-3 solid minutes to raise our main with NO problem. If we hit an issue we'd be drifting around the fairway. I guess we could just unfurl the genny, but even with our really wide fairways, I'm fairly certain someone would quickly complain to marina management and I'd be told to stop.

Anyway, I'd just tell myself that I was screwed and try to make the best of a poor situation.
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  #19  
Old 08-14-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Melrna View Post
I have just had this happened to me last month. While on a Catalina 36 that I chartered in Annapolis, I had just entered Gratitude Marina in Rock Hall Md with instruction to tie up on the other side of the fuel dock. This required me to spin the boat 180 degrees after passing the fuel dock finger. As I was spinning the boat, the transmission locked up in reverse and stalled the engine. I could not take the transmission out of reverse nor start the engine (caused by water in the transmission and metal shavings from the rear bearing). The wind was blowing 16 knots, in the wrong direction, the marina is real tight with only one small entrance in and out, and a virgin sailing crew of 3 women ( This was their first sail). Can I paint a worse picture here. So what did we do.

I instructed the crew to switch lines from the port side to starboard side. I put out all fenders in record time. My main objective was to stop the boat from drifting. As the wind was blowing the boat into the poles, I lasso one them with the springline to stop the boat from further adrift. I got lucky with the lasso. I guess all the living in Oklahoma rubbed off on me. With the boat stopped and the girls fending me off, I toss the bow line to a person on another boat to control the bow. We now had the boat under control and not the wind. We towed the boat via the ropes into a empty slip. Not an easy task considering we had to spring off the poles to get the boat to turn into the slip. We didn't scratch one boat and no one got hurt. The girls stepped up to the plate and rocked! After we got it all tied up, I breathed for the first time and treated everyone to cold ones! Many cold one! The blender required maintenance the next day!

1.So, good maintainance cannot forsee all that can wrong!
2. Wind drift will always be in the wrong direction. Murphy's Wind God rule! Same rule that says where ever you are sailing the wind will upon the bow!
3. It will happen when you least expect it.
4. It will happen in the most hazardous area during your motoring! Murphy's Law again.

Lessons learned. Alway have a plan B everytime you are motoring. Every few minutes or less say to yourself, what would I do if the engine quits now. Trying to figure out what do after the fact will put you and others in harms way.

Be careful out there
Melissa
Way too many comments CD would have to edit out, let me just say good job in handling the boat
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  #20  
Old 08-14-2007
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By the way, just to augment my prior post... when NOT in a marina fairway or mooring field, life is much easier. We had the impeller go on us a couple of months ago... we dropped the hook, replaced it, and then went on our way.
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