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Old 17-10-2012, 19:39   #46
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Re: Docking In Heavy Wind

ExCal

What purpose does the line from the stern cleat serve, in your mind's eye?

(if any - maybe you intended for it to be left loose, and secured later)
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Old 17-10-2012, 19:47   #47
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Re: Docking In Heavy Wind

Lets assume wind is port to starboard and abeam when the spring line from bow to outermost windward post or cleat gets tight as you motor forward ( which it will be in 30mph !!!! ) your bow WILL go to port(windward)so you will need to power up with starboard rudder which will bring your stern up to the post or cleat adjusting throttle / rudder angle
Buy the way no one will be available to video during this time !!!!!!!!!!
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Old 17-10-2012, 19:55   #48
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Re: Docking In Heavy Wind

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Originally Posted by Andrew Troup View Post
ExCal

What purpose does the line from the stern cleat serve, in your mind's eye?

(if any - maybe you intended for it to be left loose, and secured later)
Yes - it doesn't have to be tight but at some point it has to be on the pole. Once abeam the wind I anticipate the whole boat will shift sideways and one may not be able to reach the pole at position 3 so the deckhand drops it on while passing by - I don't think it is really active in the exercise.

Like I said I've never done this (in 30kts) so I will let Atoll or carsten comment on my post.

Also the spring may work better from the bow cleat as opposed to mid-cleat - I don't know. If my boat was very beamy I could see a bow spring having a horrible angle and the line may even ride up over the deck. I expect the spring will be pretty heavily loaded at position 3.

PS - I purposefully drew the sketch with all neighboring boats overhanging the poles so "carsten" couldn't "dock" aside the poles head to wind.

This is really a sketchy approach - I wouldn't have the guts to do it. I've docked in 15 knots abeam to a finger dock and that was scary.

I tried to think of a "bail out" option but in this approach there is none I can see. You get one shot at it.
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Old 18-10-2012, 04:04   #49
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Re: Docking In Heavy Wind

Ex-calif,

I like your sketch and it accurately depicts the situation. You're showing a line from the mid cleat, atoll/starzinger suggest bow cleat. I suspect you are right in your thinking regarding the beaminess of the boat. Very beamy and you probably should go mid cleat.

I also feel that in order to pull this off, you need to practice it mutiple times, without wind, and then practice it with more and more wind.

BTW, this isn't only a theoretical exercise. This summer, we ended up out in 35 knot winds, gusting 40. We had to dock. And the wind was crosswise. Luckily we were sheltered a bit by the breakwater. After we finished, my aereometer was showing 38 knot winds at the mast top. I'd estimate we had about 30 knots at water level.

We didn't have this technique ( or I would have tried it). My wife set up the lines both forward and aft to go to windward pole, and another forward line to go to windward on the dock.

We came in hot, (my wife is an excellent crew), she dropped the two lines on the pole from the bow as we went past. I tauted up on the aft line, she tauted up on the bow to pole line, I hit reverse, stopped the boat a foot from the dock. She did her death- defying leap onto the dock with the extra bow line, tied it off on a dock windward cleat.

By this thime the aft end was blowing to lee side, since we were stopped, i threw hard port rudder, gave it a second or two of all the gas the engine could take. This threw the stern to the windward pole and i tauted the aft end tight.

We were now in(yes they are still applauding over there), but probably more by luck than good seamanship.

Especially the "death" leap. That should never really be necessary. You shoukd always have the boat under control.

As i noted earleir, i'm putting together a course for our members on heavy weather. This docking maneuver had me stumped, so again thanks to all. If any of you have a different solution, by all means let me know.

I will make a video of this maneuver come spring, albeit not in beaufort 8. I'll show it in little or no wind and post it here.
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Old 18-10-2012, 05:01   #50
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Re: Docking In Heavy Wind

best of luck carsten!
i would just like to say that using a spring to keep up to wind ward was a theoretical suggestion,as i have never used it with poles as you describe!

however i have used the same technique many times in the red sea for getting alongside windward docks with limited space fore and aft in 35+knot winds.

also have noticed that the manouver works better using the bow cleat,rather than the midships,as it creates a longer leaver.

at 63 feet with no bow thruster,generally in situations as carsten has suggested,where the proximity of other yachts could prove expensive,my first choice would be to find a fishing boat to lie alongside,or a less constrained berth!
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Old 18-10-2012, 07:05   #51
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Re: Docking In Heavy Wind

Hi Carsten,best of luck with your course and video, sounds like an interesting enterprise.
Don't forget to include the wifey death jump; but be warned that it has been my experience that damp wives can remain grumpy for a long time.
Regarding the seamanship aspect of difficult weather : I think it is important for one to recognize that which one cannot do---- often in more severe conditions,one must choose a safe way,even if it's not what you desire.
Might be a worthwhile topic to explore in you classes or for further comment by readers here. Regards Mike.
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Old 18-10-2012, 09:18   #52
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Re: Docking In Heavy Wind

Mike

You're right of course, the problem is that we don'tnalways have a choice. On the trip noted above, the weathernreport said winds of 14/15 knots. In reality no big deal. Whortly after we got out there it was a gale. We Know what we are doing, so sailing in gale force with the wind from aft was not a big deal. Docking with the wind from the side was

This can and does happen to everyone. At the Danish Sailing Assoc. We want to offer some courses so the unlucky boater has a fighting channce when the sh't hits the fan.

Carsten
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Old 18-10-2012, 10:29   #53
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Re: Docking In Heavy Wind

Practice makes nearly perfect. A few years back trying to berth our 54 foot DeFever in Egmont, BC, just below the Skookumchuck Rapids that run up to 18 knots would probably make most folks a bit squeamish. There was a mob of about half a dozen locals standing on the dock watching the performance as we came in sporting a US flag. None would lift a finger to help or take a line. I laid her up in about 15 knots of cross wind and current running over 10 knots. One of my crew stepped onto the dock, secured the bow line and the current just eased our stern into the dock where he tied her down as I balanced the current and crosswind off with the engines. Years before I had worked out of Egmont driving large seineboats and spent many hours docking and leaving under these exact circumstances so it was a pretty familiar maneuver to me but that was unknown to the local audience. Sure helps to have some familiarity with how your vessel performs under a variety of circumstances and be used to the conditions under which you are trying to maneuver. Search out situations that test you and practice, practice, practice. The yacht club observers, while they may not be proficient themselves, enjoy watching a docking technique well performed. They also enjoy watching total cockups! Docking IS a spectator sport! Phil
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Old 18-10-2012, 13:54   #54
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Re: Docking In Heavy Wind

The mention of "Death leaps" - gives me a funny feeling in my water.

When I was a teenager, we were coming in 'hot' one time, head to wind, in forward gear on a heavy steel 52' expedition yacht, into an industrial-strength dock

A good mate (still a close friend, and a great sailor) who had been standing on the anchor, missed his footing as he was about to leap forward onto the dock from outboard of the pulpit.

He ended up hanging like a bow fender, with both hands still in a deathgrip on the bow rail, his arms behind him.

I thought I was a reasonably wiry type back then (for instance, I can recall going up one of the backstays on that same yacht without needing to use my feet - 16mm wire is ideal for grip!) but I'm sure I couldn't have done what he did next: he did a reverse pull-up, and hopped back inboard.

Mind you, given the alternative....

Within a few years he'd dislocated at least one shoulder in motorcycle crashes, so I doubt if he would have been able to put on a repeat performance.
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Old 18-10-2012, 14:02   #55
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Re: Docking In Heavy Wind

Atoll writes:
"i have used the same technique many times in the red sea for getting alongside windward docks with limited space fore and aft in 35+knot winds.

also have noticed that the manouver works better using the bow cleat,rather than the midships,as it creates a longer leaver."

I think that's a fair point in relation to a solid dock, but perhaps the situation's a bit different in respect of piles, if this makes it viable to angle the bow up into the gap to windward. In the latter case, it seems to me a midships cleat might be preferable.

Nosing the bow further upwind means the prop drive vector has a component acting to windward, so in the extreme scenario of the OP, it occurred to me that "cheating" the bow into the upwind gap (if any) might just be enough to keep the stern from clouting the leeward pile.

To those who have no midships cleat

(or sufficiently strong alternative - I've sometimes rigged a temporary toggle, using multiple webbing slings laced through a slotted toerail)

I can't say strongly enough how valuable they can be, in many different scenarios.
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Old 18-10-2012, 14:15   #56
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Re: Docking In Heavy Wind

some places in florida have the set up--we tried in winds and currents from hell and FAILed....big time--both going into and out of the dock......oops...
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Old 18-10-2012, 14:39   #57
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Re: Docking In Heavy Wind

Interesting that thiz tread has gotten so much interest. Now i'll throw another one at you.

Having docked last night in the inclement weather described, you now decide to make tracks and leave the harbor.

Unfortunately, it is still blowing a gale force ( say 35 knots) crosswind. Let's say the wind is from starboard. You want to get out without destroying the entire marina, and, hopefully without all the old salts on the pier nodding sagely and saying, well if he (she) had known what they were doing, they would have....

My take on this would be to:

1. Get at long loop line in the lee pole.
2. Winch (drag) the boat over and release the windward line, allowing the boat to end up resting against the lee pole.
3. Have the crew (pity her!), haul the windward bow line taut and keep it as taut as possible.
4. Back out and at some point taut the lee aft line thereby forcing the bow tonswing to starboard.
5. Continue backing (the aft line will continue to force the boat to turn.
6. Release the bow line as the boat exits between the poles
7. The aft line will force the boat tomturn and finally you put the engine in forward and motor the hell out of there

Does thar sound reasonable? Other opinions?

Remember, this is (un)docking in heavy weather. A situation none of us want tonend in, but wind and weather obey no man(woman).
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Old 18-10-2012, 14:51   #58
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Re: Docking In Heavy Wind

Quote:
Originally Posted by carstenb View Post
Interesting that thiz tread has gotten so much interest. Now i'll throw another one at you.

Having docked last night in the inclement weather described, you now decide to make tracks and leave the harbor.

Unfortunately, it is still blowing a gale force ( say 35 knots) crosswind. Let's say the wind is from starboard. You want to get out without destroying the entire marina, and, hopefully without all the old salts on the pier nodding sagely and saying, well if he (she) had known what they were doing, they would have....

My take on this would be to:

1. Get at long loop line in the lee pole.
2. Winch (drag) the boat over and release the windward line, allowing the boat to end up resting against the lee pole.
3. Have the crew (pity her!), haul the windward bow line taut and keep it as taut as possible.
4. Back out and at some point taut the lee aft line thereby forcing the bow tonswing to starboard.
5. Continue backing (the aft line will continue to force the boat to turn.
6. Release the bow line as the boat exits between the poles
7. The aft line will force the boat tomturn and finally you put the engine in forward and motor the hell out of there

Does thar sound reasonable? Other opinions?

Remember, this is (un)docking in heavy weather. A situation none of us want tonend in, but wind and weather obey no man(woman).
getting out astern is a lot easier!
keeping a doubled line midships to the windward pole,and taking it in as you reverse will keep you off the leeward side.

as the stern comes into the channel pull your line in and put the helm over,reversing into the wind,untill clear of the moorings,the boat will weather cock stern into the wind.
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Old 18-10-2012, 14:57   #59
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Re: Docking In Heavy Wind

Carsten

It depends (at least, to my way of thinking) on a great many variables.

If I was on one of many modern-underbody yachts, with masses of astern thrust, I'd be inclined to think about almost the exact opposite tactic: using a breast line to starboard to keep the boat up to windward, letting the bow pivot downwind, and motoring off in reverse, stern upwind.

Particularly if the lane which led away was narrow, and/or congested. If you have to mark time waiting for a gap, or sidle close to one side (perhaps to let someone pass from the opposite direction), it's nightmarish doing it with the bow into a very stiff wind, compared to the stern.

For instance, you can end up pinned on that side of your lane, because there's nowhere for the stern to swing to drive your bow back into midchannel.

And once the bow falls off too far, there's no way to recover it in a close quarters situation

ON EDIT: atoll posted while I was typing - interesting we independently had the same reaction. It occurs to me that many of the 'books' were written in an era when steering while making sternway was difficult ... so neophytes may not think to exploit the possibilities of a more modern vessel. In any case, I think it's good to present the alternative, although many people will still not be in a position to apply it.
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Old 18-10-2012, 17:09   #60
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Re: Docking In Heavy Wind

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We came in hot, (my wife is an excellent crew), she dropped the two lines on the pole from the bow as we went past. I tauted up on the aft line, she tauted up on the bow to pole line, I hit reverse, stopped the boat a foot from the dock. She did her death- defying leap onto the dock with the extra bow line, tied it off on a dock windward cleat.
I think if you "accurately" can predict the distance from spring cleat to pole you may not have to belay. Just measure it out and cleat it off.

The momentum of the boat as it comes against the spring will probably "jerk" the bow to windward and as Andrew say you can "cheat" the gap, which I sorta show in the sketch, position 1.

Getting out? I'm also with Atoll and Andrew - Gotta keep the spring tight as you back out. When to release and how to release can be tricky, the bow will fall off and if you aren't out far enough you will get a really nice boink on the leward bow.

Although I couldn't think of a good reason for leaving in 35kts+ - LOL...
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