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Old 26-11-2013, 06:09   #31
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Re: Docking

Coming from older two stroke outboards, you get used to the idea the the engine is going to die when you shift from one gear to the other, so I try to never get in a position to where I HAVE to have the engine, and yes I have had to several times "go around" and try again.
I've even shamefully asked the fuel dock on VHF if they could have someone standing by with a boat hook to help, I know a REAL sailor wouldn't need help, but I'll get there one day, maybe.
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Old 26-11-2013, 06:10   #32
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Re: Docking

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Originally Posted by Jammer Six View Post
One of the reasons I've always rejected this theory is because there is no speed at which I'd care to hit the dock. Therefore, following this logic, I would never dock.

I'd rather be going fast enough to avoid hitting the dock than hit the dock at a lower speed.


My point in starting this thread is that if it's not "just right", I'd rather have too fast than lose control. As long as I keep control, I can avoid hitting anything.
Well I will admit that under certain conditions(a unhelpful wind, waves, or a
unhelpful current) I have had to 'gun' it more than I would have preferred,
but only when I was prepared with a suitable push off pole.

It's the "keep control" element that is crucial IMHO.

I have had, and have seen docking problems caused by both to fast, and too
slow, and witnessed one where in spite of a smooth docking the skipper
managed to take a unintended swim after tying off. **** happens...
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Old 26-11-2013, 06:18   #33
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Re: Docking

Here's the method we use, it works every time:



You guys can debate slow vs fast etc, but this method works... it just takes some courage to try it the first time. Slow motion and throttle bursts do not work in wind and/or current.
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Old 26-11-2013, 06:19   #34
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Re: Docking

Quote:
Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
............I've even shamefully asked the fuel dock on VHF if they could have someone standing by with a boat hook to help, I know a REAL sailor wouldn't need help, ...........

A real sailor always understands that there are times when a little help avoids damage.

It is much more shameful to ignore the requirement for help due to misplaced pride.
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Old 26-11-2013, 06:22   #35
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Re: Docking

You only want to go as fast as you want to hit the dock.

Slow is the way to go.

Use bursts of thrust to make the boat do what you need her to do.

I have had a throttle cable break on my first boat and the bow climbed up the dock. Not fun.

The first time this happens to you as your hot rodding into your slip you will say, guess all those cruisers on the CF were right about Slow is the way to go.

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Old 26-11-2013, 06:26   #36
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Re: Docking

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
Coming from older two stroke outboards, you get used to the idea the the engine is going to die when you shift from one gear to the other, so I try to never get in a position to where I HAVE to have the engine, and yes I have had to several times "go around" and try again.
I've even shamefully asked the fuel dock on VHF if they could have someone standing by with a boat hook to help, I know a REAL sailor wouldn't need help, but I'll get there one day, maybe.
A real sailor never docks...just kidding...

Don't apologize....A real sailor knows when to go around, when to go someplace else or when to ask for help.

A real sailor also keeps an eye out for what works and doesn't.

If you think docking a boat is tricky...try docking one at the end of a tow line in conditions that most boaters don't even leave the dock...it's a little talent...but it's mostly using your head and practice.

Yes.... it is also about playing the wind and current...I often tell boaters that landing them after a tow and they say "thankfully no wind or current today" that those conditions actually make it harder because you have less control ....to a degree ...of the dead ship....no brakes back there (like sailing into your slip).

...then again you can have too much of a good thing...
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Old 26-11-2013, 06:31   #37
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Re: Docking

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cotemar View Post
... Use bursts of thrust to make the boat do what you need her to do...
... Slow is the way to go.
Indeed!
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Old 26-11-2013, 06:32   #38
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Re: Docking

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cotemar View Post
You only want to go as fast as you want to hit the dock.

Slow is the way to go.

Use bursts of thrust to make the boat do what you need her to do.

I have had a throttle cable break on my first boat and the bow climbed up the dock. Not fun.

The first time this happens to you as your hot rodding into your slip you will say guess all those cruisers on the CF were right about Slow is the way to go.

using speed to advantage is not necessarily hot rodding...slow is a relative term as is fast, bursts of throttle are necessary but NOT the way to approach in high current as you will never see your proper approach angle as it will be changing all the time....

Steady approach is always better in current till you really need to adjust and "slow" may not be cutting it with decent cross current...but then again...what is "slow"
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Old 26-11-2013, 06:34   #39
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Re: Docking

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Originally Posted by Jammer Six View Post

I'd rather be going fast enough to avoid hitting the dock than hit the dock at a lower speed.

My point in starting this thread is that if it's not "just right", I'd rather have too fast than lose control. As long as I keep control, I can avoid hitting anything.

I've found "faster" usually makes it easier to lose control on our boat...

And there's a point where "too slow" is equally bad.

-Chris
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Old 26-11-2013, 06:40   #40
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Re: Docking

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Umm.... how does that work when the prevailing wind blows me INTO my pen? And there is no current...

Yeah, that's a harder one for us.

Not so bad it it's into a slip with 4-way tie up; I've got enough engine to overcome wind, when I can use it in the fore-aft direction.

Much more difficult to approach an alongside tie-up when wind will slam us up against the dock.

Two mitigating techniques I've tried: 1) approach upwind near the end of the dock (if there's room in a fairway), lay up against the outmost pile, then warp the boat around that pile. 2) Approach the dock at a very steep angle, lay the rub rail somewhere forward against a pile, and gradually let the boat turn into the dock -- with deck crew holding fenders at the upcoming "bounce" points.

Within reason, these have made it better... but if the wind is too strong... we just wait, go elsewhere, whatever.

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Old 26-11-2013, 07:25   #41
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Re: Docking

Not unlike pilots landing a plane, everyone you walk away from is a good one. Seriously, the harder you push one end of the boat in one direction, means you will have to counter in the opposite direction for the other end of the boat. Flat calm an no current can make a landing more difficult because there is nothing to work against, of course there are the extremes that can make things tricky. I try to only use as much thrust as needed to move water across the rudder to maintain control, any more than that is asking for trouble.
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Old 26-11-2013, 11:39   #42
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Re: Docking

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Not unlike pilots landing a plane, everyone you walk away from is a good one. Seriously, the harder you push one end of the boat in one direction, means you will have to counter in the opposite direction for the other end of the boat. Flat calm an no current can make a landing more difficult because there is nothing to work against, of course there are the extremes that can make things tricky. I try to only use as much thrust as needed to move water across the rudder to maintain control, any more than that is asking for trouble.
unless you have a knot or two of cross current...then the speed required has to be high enough to make the approach angle..

all these "go slow as maneuvering allows" must be from those that never see much cross current in docking....cause the current rules the approach...not water over the rudder
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Old 26-11-2013, 11:53   #43
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Re: Docking

coming in fast means that when you hit the dock you will damage property and possibly injure nearby humans. if coming in slow you can apply thrust when needed and not collide with immovable objects. i also have seen what happens when the boat refuses to go into reverse or stalls while approaching the dock.
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Old 26-11-2013, 12:08   #44
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Re: Docking

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coming in fast means that when you hit the dock you will damage property and possibly injure nearby humans. if coming in slow you can apply thrust when needed and not collide with immovable objects. i also have seen what happens when the boat refuses to go into reverse or stalls while approaching the dock.

well sorta...I have seen MANY docking accidents where the guy starts too slow...realizes things are going wrong then misapplies power....

as has be posted only by a few...neither answer is correct as every docking situation is a little different...some extreme.

The OPs original premise is that his experience shows that dead slow doesn't work for him like it does for many other's..that's just his opinion...and I guess he sure got a lot of answers that really don't apply...at least to him.
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Old 26-11-2013, 12:28   #45
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Re: Docking

Yes, you have to take all the factors into consideration, no, one approach will work for every landing, that is where the experience, and judgement comes in.
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