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Old 10-02-2011
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Mooring buoy bumps in the night

Hello all,

Wondering if anybody has some advice for this mooring annoyance.

We were moored overnight in Boston Harbor a few weekends ago, in Perry Cove on Peddocks Island, in a rented Pearson 26.

All went great, until about 5:30 the next morning, shortly after the tide began to flood. We were awoken with BUMP. BUMP. BUMP. I climbed out of the V-berth groggy and found the wind coming from starboard roughly between abeam and the aft quarter. The mooring pennant was taut and running straight back from the (port) bow chock, where the mooring buoy was bumping up against the port side of the boat.

I was not thinking very clearly and was perplexed. I thought perhaps the keel had become fouled on the mooring system, but no. I guessed that the combination of tidal current and wind was trapping us against the buoy.

I tried lengthening the pennant with a dock line, but this just caused the mooring buoy to start bumping up against the outboard.

I tried motoring in reverse to put the buoy upwind of us, which worked initially but after a few minutes the boat settled back into the old position and the BUMPs came back.

This was a rented boat with a nice flag-blue hull, and I really did not want to put a mark on the paint. Also the bumping at 5:30 a.m. was not being favorably received by the crew!

Eventually (and I'm not proud of this), I just put the mooring pennant temporarily on the aft cleat, where it was happy and stayed taut, with the wind dead astern! At least long enough to wake up properly, have some breakfast, and start sailing.

Was there a better solution here?
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Old 10-02-2011
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If the boat has sufficient overhang, and if the chain pulls through the body of the buoy sometimes you can tie it up short so that it is more likely to stay directly under the bow chock or bow roller. That way the buoy can't slide down the hull of the boat and wake you up. A possible downside to this technique if there is swell or motion that the rumble of the chain through the buoy can transmit into the boat and be every bit as annoying.

We've noticed that the newest park buoys in our area have a much softer surface which would quiet this down considerably.
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Old 10-02-2011
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A small steadying sail will keep you into wind usally enought to conteract current and add enough drag to hopefully keep you off float. Ask sail maker to make up a small one with any old sail he has . A good way to recycle old sails that will never be used again. OOPS a charter boat i remember now. Try Fasters advice for charter boats.
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Old 10-02-2011
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I see the Buoy Monster came calling.

I've lost some sleep to him.

This happens a lot in the PNW.. not much wind at night, and lots of variable current

Faster's techniques work usually work for us.
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Old 10-02-2011
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Another option is to use a spar, such as a spinnaker pole or reaching strut, laid out on the foredeck and secured, then run the lead to the mooring buoy through the end, effectively acting as an extra-long bow-roller.

Cheers,
h
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfchallenger View Post
Another option is to use a spar, such as a spinnaker pole or reaching strut, laid out on the foredeck and secured, then run the lead to the mooring buoy through the end, effectively acting as an extra-long bow-roller.

Cheers,
h
Interesting.... but you'd want to be sure the pole itself isn't going to bang, roll or otherwise make noise.. the smallest sound will transmit, esp in the dead of night.

Another thing I've seen is people tying up so short that the buoy is literally hanging at the bow roller... but in our area the weight of all the tackle and the buoy might make that quite a lift.
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As noted above this is an issue in the PNW given alternating wind and currents. I use a length of shock cord to keep the buoy away from the hull when things are calm. As wind or current picks up the cord stretches, and the load is taken up by the proper mooring line. This only works if you have a decent overhange and/or a pulpit.
http://www.sailnet.com/forums/attach...1&d=1317578143
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baboon View Post
As noted above this is an issue in the PNW given alternating wind and currents. I use a length of shock cord to keep the buoy away from the hull when things are calm. As wind or current picks up the cord stretches, and the load is taken up by the proper mooring line. This only works if you have a decent overhange and/or a pulpit.
That's real interesting. We may try that in our battles against the Buoy Monster.
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Quote:
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... This only works if you have a decent overhange and/or a pulpit.
http://www.sailnet.com/forums/attach...1&d=1317578143
Would add 'sufficiently strong' to the pulpit requirement... but another neat idea!
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Originally Posted by Faster View Post
Would add 'sufficiently strong' to the pulpit requirement... but another neat idea!
But if he's just using bungee cords, there shouldn't be much load on the pulpit at all...
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