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Old 24-01-2007, 01:16   #16
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Someone posted a similar link, but if you scroll down this ( Anchors-Docking ) page there is a bunch of animated gifs on how to dock a sailboat. Whoever does the web stuff over at US sailing in extremely thorough. That sight is chock full o' info.
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Old 05-02-2007, 20:41   #17
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It's all fine and dandy for those of you with smaller boats. Docking anything under 36' is fairly easy once you have done it a few times. Angelique our Formosa 51 weighs in at 52,000 Lbs dry. Try docking something like that . You learn in a hurry there is no forgiving when you make an error.

1) Allways dock into the wind.
2) Never and I mean Never step off of the boat
3) Watch the current (water direction of flow) at the dock. Look at the weeds and see what they are doing.

So here is a tip on docking a large boat. Naturaly your going to approach in a very shallow angle to the dock. Having as much room to do this as you can.
A) All lines onboard ready
B) Mid ship line first.

Slide up to the dock as slow and as close as possable.
When your midship cleat is close enough to the docks mid ship area toss the midship line out and over the sleat on the dock as you hold onto the bitter end. As the line lies on the dock pull the bitter end or slack back onto the boat. Be sure it goes out in front of the cleat and comes back to you behind the cleat. Now your midship line is looped around the cleat you want to use as your center. Boats forward motion should by now be very slow to stoped. As you pull in on the midship line the center of your boat will move to the dock. It doesnt need to be all the way in or even where you want it when your finished. Your just going to stop the boat. Next decide if your going to do the sturn or bow . The direction of the tide will let you know. If it's from behind then do the sturn. If it's from the bow do the bow. Dont worry to much about finnal adjustment of midship untill your at the dock. ***NOTE*** Do not pull the bow or the sturn line in to tight . On a large boat pulling in tight will cause the opposit end of the boat to swing out. With your fenders in and the midship line in the boat can only pivot on its center and rest on the fenders. Finish off with bow and sturn and then finnal adjusting. If you cant get in to close heave the mid then bow & sturn and warp yourself to the dock. (Pull yourself in). Angelique has 52" of freeboard. Stepping off is not an option. Nor is stepping back on. I hope this helps for some of you. You could even use it on smaller boats.
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Old 06-02-2007, 02:38   #18
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Cruising Technique with Captain Jack Klang (Quantum Sails):

Q&A:
Cruising Technique with Captain Jack Klang

And:

Docking and Maneuvering
http://www.quantumsails.com/pdf/maneuvering.pdf

Storm Preparation
http://www.quantumsails.com/pdf/stormprep.pdf
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Old 07-02-2007, 13:00   #19
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The technique that I use, and is used by many professional captains, involves one well placed spring line.

Run a very long spring line from your dock side jib winch, through a block that is exactly midship, to a dock cleat that is near where the stern of the boat will be. The spring line should have a loop in one end. If you don't have a permanant block midships, rig a temporary snatch block on the rail.

As I approach the dock I drop the loop of the spring line with a boat hook on a cleat that will be near the stern of the boat when docked. You then turn your rudder as if you were turning away from the dock, put your boat in forward gear at idle speed, then start cranking on the winch. The winch will pull the boat to the dock, keeping the boat parallel to the dock. Once you are very close to the dock you can casually step off the boat and attach bow and stern lines. The boat will stay on the spring line, parallel to the dock without other lines, as long as you don't run out of fuel.

This technique is used by many ferries and tourist boats that come and go quickly from the dock. Keeping the rudder turned away from the dock with the boat in gear will keep the boat stationary and stable. Prop walk has no effect on the boat since you are not using reverse. I have used this technique extensively on my boats and it has never failed. It will take a little practice, but even in strong cross winds it worked from me. I have a spring line that is one and a half times the length of my boat. It is even easier to use if you happen to have some crew along for the day. Quick, easy, and no yelling.

One more thing. Never, and mean never, step off the boat. Once, at Monroe Harbor in downtown Chicago, I saw a boat drift way from the pier with no one on board. The owner was alone, stepped off his boat to tie up, and was unable to control the boat because his dock line was too short and the boat drift was too fast. Calamity ensued as you can imagine.
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Old 09-02-2007, 01:46   #20
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OK, after many years putting power boats alongside without too much stress can anyone tell me how to dock a 30' fin keel, right hand prop sailboat, astern into a slip and tie up on the starboard side. I have not managed to find a good technique yet.
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Old 09-02-2007, 03:01   #21
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I will give it a try.

See the ASA links on docking. Take your boat out on a calm day. Throw a cusion overboard and make the boat stop next to it. Try this in all directions. Next, get 2 bottles that float and some string and 2 bricks. Set them in the water about 1/2 the length of your boat apart and try to make the boat stop (dock) there. If somebody on board starts giving you a hard time, make them do it.

This is how I was schooled.

Good luck.
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Old 09-02-2007, 05:39   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeus
Great vids Lynx. If anyone else has any other vids pertaining to boat handling please post them. With me being new seeing the operation in realtime is a great help.
zeus
If you have a NetFlix account, they have several DVDs that are sailboat related. Granted that some of them are not very well made, they do give you some idea on boat handling. There is one that has a bimbo-blonde on the boat that is wearing a miniskirt. I think she is only on there for eyecandy because she doesnt do much but sit in the cockpit.
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Old 09-02-2007, 07:06   #23
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Docking proceedures depend greatly on the boat, weight, how they handle, how big the turning circle is, and how quickly they can stop.

Our 35 weighed 10k, could turn on a dime, and stop aggresively, docking was a peiece of cake. We drove it in the hole with speed and slammed into reverse if it was a tough docking condiditon. In light air it was so easy, drop the lines and shove it into the fairway and climb aboard.

The new boat is a bit more challanging. With roller furling it tends to blow the bow down, it has prop walk to starboard that can be pronounced, and it weighs 65k, you can't manhandle it like the 35. If we are coming into the pier with the wind blowing away we'll back into it, hand off the spring and then drive into it. If it's really blowing then we'll also hand off a stern and bow line and use the winches and windlass to bring the boat along side. If it's blowing onto the pier we just pull along side and the wind lays us on it nice as can be. The only trick is to keep it parallel with the dock.

We have a bow thruster but find it will not push the bow in anything over 15 knots. It is a godsend in tight spots when manuevering at slow speeds. Run the throttle and steer with the thruster.

Getting off the dock when pinned we either back against a spring or warp around the end of a dock.

I take this boat out alone but am cautious, the 35 was easy to single hand.

Bottom line, you have to know how your boat handles and plan accordingly. Go sailing and practice.
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Old 09-02-2007, 09:43   #24
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Stern In, starboard tie.

The key is getting movement in reverse and then taking the boat out of gear. Practice in open water as suggested, to get a feel for how much or how little speed you need to move the boat. Full keel is definetely more difficult. Once you have figured out how to back into the slip the mid ship line works the same as has already been discussed. You actually have more time to get it over the cleat with stern in and can control the boats speed sooner. Key is to slow the boat with the mid ships line, not to stop it too soon and jam it against the dock.
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Old 09-02-2007, 14:36   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Razman23
If you have a NetFlix account, they have several DVDs that are sailboat related. Granted that some of them are not very well made, they do give you some idea on boat handling. There is one that has a bimbo-blonde on the boat that is wearing a miniskirt. I think she is only on there for eyecandy because she doesnt do much but sit in the cockpit.
I actually have that movie out right now (not kidding). Crappy quality but actually very informative. The girls alright, I wouldn't call it a miniskirt though
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Old 15-02-2007, 07:57   #26
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Thumbs up 'Never approach the dock faster then you want to crash'

Great thread.

Just two things to add. Most here have mentioned using a midships spring. This is a very important point to make to any crew who may be 'helping'.

I have seen many a good docking turned to a mess when the bow line went over first. If the person on the dock catches it, the bow IS GOING to smack the dock. The midships spring (or in some cases the stern line) are much better options as they will either pull the boat in parallel or bow out.

The other thing, which I got from Chapmans is 'Never approach the dock faster then you want to crash' The moment you trust the motor to stop you it WILL fail.
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Old 15-02-2007, 09:37   #27
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... 'Never approach the dock faster then you want to crash' The moment you trust the motor to stop you it WILL fail.
I cannot recall truer words being spoken.
Not only is unwarranted speed/momentum potentially dangerous, it's usually counter-productive.
I recall an "experienced" cruiser friend, who couldn't effectively "park" his boat in front of an ICW bridge (wind & current in tight quarters). After turning circles, for a while, he offered to get me a beer, affording me the opportunity to take the helm. With the throttle at idle, I was able to easily maintain a stationary position, with occasional fwd-rev gear changes, and fewer (tho' sometimes radical) helm adjustments. LESS IS MORE (except when it's not*).

* Sometimes more is more. I'm off to the airport, and gotta run without explaining myself. Perhaps someone else will take up that thankless task.
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Old 15-02-2007, 11:42   #28
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Yep. I have a friend that just bought a new boat. They took it out for their first solo. It took two attempts to get it back into the birth, but he made it in. She is 40ft by the way. Anyway's, I took a look over the engine and associated equipment for him. To my shock I notice the gear cable had almost totaly disengaged. The cable had selected neutral and had nearly poped right out. One more push or pull and it would most likely select a gear and pop right out leaving the boat in gear. The new owner was so inexperianced, I just know he would have frozen and watched as the either mounted the dock or backed into the boats behind him. Somebody was on his side that day.
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Old 23-02-2008, 09:02   #29
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I saw that same video and totally disagree with you. I thought she had some great assets.
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Old 23-02-2008, 11:25   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GordMay View Post

I cannot recall truer words being spoken.
Not only is unwarranted speed/momentum potentially dangerous, it's usually counter-productive.
I recall an "experienced" cruiser friend, who couldn't effectively "park" his boat in front of an ICW bridge (wind & current in tight quarters). After turning circles, for a while, he offered to get me a beer, affording me the opportunity to take the helm. With the throttle at idle, I was able to easily maintain a stationary position, with occasional fwd-rev gear changes, and fewer (tho' sometimes radical) helm adjustments. LESS IS MORE (except when it's not*).

* Sometimes more is more. I'm off to the airport, and gotta run without explaining myself. Perhaps someone else will take up that thankless task.
When we kept our previous boat (LN 35 with a full keel) in Lake Washington in Seattle, we had to wait quite awhile for the Hiram Chittenden Locks. Everyone else was waiting in line by motoring in circles, but I just took a position and put the stern to the point where it was stable between the current and wind and left it in idle reverse. The boat just sat happily in one spot. The only adjustments needed were occasionally going to neutral or adding a bit of throttle depending on wind.

Steve B.
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