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Old 09-03-2015, 19:34   #16
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Re: Backing out of a slip

I am not quite sure as to what a small craft refers to. I am pushing off 14,000 lbs boat from the dock and then stepping on board. My learning curve has been that as a boat heaver the slow thing happen, harder to change, requires more planning.


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Old 09-03-2015, 19:45   #17
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Re: Backing out of a slip

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I am not quite sure as to what a small craft refers to. I am pushing off 14,000 lbs boat from the dock and then stepping on board. My learning curve has been that as a boat heaver the slow thing happen, harder to change, requires more planning.


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I guess for arguments sake, we could call a small craft any boat where pushing off with your arm actually works. There is a threshold where pushing off no longer works and you need to use your lines, engine and thruster, Hunters tend towards light, but often times a 36' boat is getting very close to that threshold.

That's why I said you weren't wrong, but- if you have a 45 in you're future, you're going to have to do it with it using flesh and bone for fenders.
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Old 09-03-2015, 21:08   #18
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Re: Backing out of a slip

I am a 69 year old single handler so a 45' is not likely, but a hard push on the shrouds before does a lot. I have only left dock or dock a few times times with help in the last dozen years. But like I said planning planning.


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Old 09-03-2015, 22:38   #19
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Re: Backing out of a slip

Warps or spring line with no knot on the end achieve the same purpose. Do not leave the boat when the axillary is running. I used to turn my outboard in reverse (in idle), then take off my last line (usually spring line) and guide my boat down the dock. Great until you misstep and fall in the water! There is nothing like hand over handing along the rail till you reach the stern ladder and getting control of the boat before it runs into the boats on the other side of the water way out! This was on smaller 27 foot boat. My 40 would probably kill me for such an error.
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Old 09-03-2015, 23:00   #20
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Re: Backing out of a slip

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Warps or spring line with no knot on the end achieve the same purpose. Do not leave the boat when the axillary is running. I used to turn my outboard in reverse (in idle), then take off my last line (usually spring line) and guide my boat down the dock. Great until you misstep and fall in the water! There is nothing like hand over handing along the rail till you reach the stern ladder and getting control of the boat before it runs into the boats on the other side of the water way out! This was on smaller 27 foot boat. My 40 would probably kill me for such an error.
You'd probably be better off letting the valiant crush the life out of you then resurfacing and explaining to your wife why your drunk ass fell in the water again.
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Old 09-03-2015, 23:16   #21
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Re: Backing out of a slip

the turn to port in s the big challenge. You could pull out like you were heading to starboard and then just pivot on the keel clockwise using the props walk to do this. Assuming you have a fin or wing keel and a port prop walk.

Otherwise you're going to have to use a spring.
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Old 09-03-2015, 23:26   #22
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Re: Backing out of a slip

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You'd probably be better off letting the valiant crush the life out of you then resurfacing and explaining to your wife why your drunk ass fell in the water again.
If only I had You tube and a Go Pro back then.
Of course the old guys at the yacht club would of filmed it if they could of just stopped laughing...
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Old 09-03-2015, 23:27   #23
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Re: Backing out of a slip

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How about reverse at idle untie all line with dock side tension line last. Push boat in the direction you want an step aboard. A little shot to get control flow over the rudder and steer too open water. (not for full keel boats)
If you don't have a bow thruster prop walk is your best friend just requires a lot of planing, oh add in wind and current as well.
Actually I single hand quite a bit and use the above technique with a 35' full keel boat... but I also use other processes under varying conditions. First thing is knowing which direction the current is flowing. Spring line seems to work well for me with current coming into the bow. When I'm backing into the current I stand on the finger with idle reverse and direct (push/pull) the boat in the direction I prefer.

I practiced a lot to develop my docking and departure processes... which I think depend so much on the boat. Until I got used to it, my full keel was much more difficult than my fin keel.

So... I found a sparsely populated section of a marina and practiced for hours in various conditions docking, backing out, backing in, etc. Before this, I focused on sailing while neglecting the most hazardous (docking) part of the trip.
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Old 10-03-2015, 00:04   #24
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Re: Backing out of a slip

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Originally Posted by Sailor Doug View Post
I am not quite sure as to what a small craft refers to. I am pushing off 14,000 lbs boat from the dock and then stepping on board. My learning curve has been that as a boat heaver the slow thing happen, harder to change, requires more planning.


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Wait, wait...The fall will happen . Just a matter of time. Mine just happened earlier because I'm clumsy. It always is a surprise....
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Old 10-03-2015, 00:45   #25
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Re: Backing out of a slip

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Hi All

Just after a little advise and wisdom on backing boat out of slip singlehanded.

I Dock with the Slip to Starboard and backing out is a little difficult with prop walk dragging me to port and often close to a pile by the time I start to get some backwards momentum and thus steering control often leading to a slightly embarrassing push of the pile to avoid an even more embarrassing prang into the pile. I have to back out and turn to port to get out of the Marina.

I usually try and counter this by pulling the stern close to the slip with one of the stern lines until I have steering control prior to tossing the stern line onto the slip.

Thanks
Lots of excellent advice being given. And really reading your post, you are doing it right. If you can't overcome prop walk then you have to use a line, which is what you are doing.

What the bigger boat drivers know but are forgetting from their smaller boat days is mass and momentum. Their advice is still good and valid but things can happen faster on a smaller lighter boat. Like the effect of propwalk, current or windage.

What you want is sufficient steerage before windage, current or propwalk takes over.

In a small boat in calm conditions (no W or C) a short "high" burst of throttle is in order. The boat should start to move rearward and very little walk. Burst it again. Soon you will have 1 knot in reverse and can start to steer.

However when C and W show up you may have to resort to lines sooner than the bigger boat as C and W take relatively more time to get the boat going in the non-intended direction. In some regards a heavier boat is easier.

A small boat in reverse, at low speed the other issue is the bow falling to leward or down current. You need a fair amount of boat speed in reverse before the keel becomes effective in helping you keep the bow in alignment. Happens to big boats too but slower.

Go out to a piling in the bay, give yourself some room and practice. 1/2 the time on my boat I feel out of control. Doesn't affect me that way in a bigger boat for some reason.

Someone said, Planning, planning, planning. I agree. And give yourself bailout options. And use lines when you need to. And if W and C are raging you might need crew/dockhands.
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Old 10-03-2015, 01:07   #26
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Re: Backing out of a slip

I'm with the spring line folks. I use one for my (comparatively tiny) Catalina 30. 60' of cheap poly line from the home depot. From the boat to a pulley on the dock and back to the boat. No drama at all. Nobody pushing the boat around and then trying to get aboard. Something goes wrong? We're still hooked to the dock until we let it loose. Just throw it in reverse and pull on the string. Pull the other end to bring it all back on the boat.

Can do it singlehanded easy.

OTOH, there's a guy on my dock gotta be around 70. Has a 33' boat that's way heaver than mine. Only singlehands. He pushes his out and jumps on. Now if you've only got piers and nowhere to push from that's not gonna work. Or if you're worried what that boat's gonna do if you miss the jumping on part. (That's my biggest worry, watching my cheap boat smash into some $200K motoryacht since I'm not on it.)
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Old 10-03-2015, 08:31   #27
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Re: Backing out of a slip

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Wait, wait...The fall will happen . Just a matter of time. Mine just happened earlier because I'm clumsy. It always is a surprise....
And the snagged line will happen too... knot or not!
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Old 10-03-2015, 13:24   #28
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Re: Backing out of a slip

Thanks for all the responses team!

I guess I am sort of on the right track, I will just change the Stern line for the spring and use the throttle in a short burst and see how that goes.


I will let you all know how it goes after this weekends adventures!


Cheers


Jeff
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Old 10-03-2015, 14:10   #29
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Re: Backing out of a slip

I brought a 44' Cheoy Lee from CT to NC in an ill-fated trip (more here if you are interested)

Lightning Brings Abrupt End to Journey . . .

Anyway, the point being that I just could not get this thing out of the slip in reverse when we were doing the shakedowns before the trip, it just would not steer! I mean, most boats have some manifestation of this problem, but this was ridiculous.

The answer is a warp, assuming that your boat wants to back to port, you would run a stout line from one of your starboard cleats (which one would depend on other factors, but a stern cleat is probably the easiest given your position in the cockpit) to the nearest forward piling, then back to the cockpit. As you go into gear, the pivot induced by the resistance against the piling will pull your stern to starboard, and as you move out you just slip the line gradually until you have steerage. Make sure your line is long enough to slip, and that there is nothing it will catch on, has no knots, etc. The approach may have to be modified depending on the situation, but mainly the idea is to pivot on the piling to counter the prop walk. Speaking of which, there is nothing embarrassing (in my opinion) in having to push off of a piling. Much more embarrassing to hit something. Pete
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Old 10-03-2015, 14:15   #30
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Re: Backing out of a slip

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Originally Posted by pete33458 View Post
I brought a 44' Cheoy Lee from CT to NC in an ill-fated trip (more here if you are interested)

Lightning Brings Abrupt End to Journey . . .

Anyway, the point being that I just could not get this thing out of the slip in reverse when we were doing the shakedowns before the trip, it just would not steer! I mean, most boats have some manifestation of this problem, but this was ridiculous.

The answer is a warp, assuming that your boat wants to back to port, you would run a stout line from one of your starboard cleats (which one would depend on other factors, but a stern cleat is probably the easiest given your position in the cockpit) to the nearest forward piling, then back to the cockpit. As you go into gear, the pivot induced by the resistance against the piling will pull your stern to starboard, and as you move out you just slip the line gradually until you have steerage. Make sure your line is long enough to slip, and that there is nothing it will catch on, has no knots, etc. The approach may have to be modified depending on the situation, but mainly the idea is to pivot on the piling to counter the prop walk. Speaking of which, there is nothing embarrassing (in my opinion) in having to push off of a piling. Much more embarrassing to hit something. Pete
Only embarrassing when seen I guess!

As always seems to be the case, when you execute a docking perfectly there is no one around. Something goes awry and there happens to be a convention of docking experts taking place on the slip next to mine!

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