Yacht & Boat Builders

List of Boat Dealers, services, National listing

Boat Parts, Equipment and Accessories

Problems - Anchoring Problems, Facts and Rules

Fisherman type - Fisherman anchors, characteristics & advice for selection

Guide to Food onBoard - Packaging, Garbage, Beverages, Transportation and storage

Winter Cruising, Great Lakes

Tips to Economy Fuel

small yacht practical advice - Fitting Out and Laying up - good working knowledge-article

engine technique - "do it yourself" technique - auto engine converted to marine use

Buying a boat via eBay - May be interesting if you plan to Buy a Boat via the internet

"go-fast" ideas - sailing and "go-fast" ideas by Steve Benjamin(article)

Boat shopping simple guide - important considerations

Point of View - Is Bigger Boat Better?

AIS and Radar - There isn't a "better" solution - different systems, different advantages

the Old style pole mooring - spar/devil's claw arrangement

GPS - Guide and receivers, Getting Started With GPS

Gallon per hour estimates - How to find your most economical cruising speed

Take care: Boat Maneuvering & Docking Notices

Boat Articles, Guides, Commentary and archival articles & helpful sailing - information

 Take care out there. Tips for Boat Maneuvering

Maneuvering & Docking

When Docking to portside

boats on dock

When the engine is in reverse - Single-screw Yachtsmans usually favor bringing the boat into the dock on the side to which the rotation of the boat propeller brings the stern of the boat in toward the dock. With right-hand propellers-clockwise rotation, this is the port side. The reason for this is that when the boat has headway and the engine is in reverse the stern will be driven to port regardless of the position of the rudder.

Leeward-side landing

Occasionally, because of strong winds and seas, it is unadvisable to land the boat on to the dock. This is a difficult maneuver and there is a risk of damaging the vessel. The correct way is to approach the dock bow first, with enough headway to hold into the wind. As the bow line is thrown ashore, boat engines are reversed to stop headway. Secure the bow-spring line. Turn the rudder to starboard, with engines in forward, to move against the wind. As soon as possible, throw a stern line ashore.

The down-wind or down-current landing

Securing the bow first risks being turned end-for-end. If the wind or current is from the stern, turn the propeller slowly in reverse to hold against them, with rudder only slightly to port. The stern will come in first, so an afterquarter line should be secured first. When this landing is a must, have a stern line ready to throw ashore as soon as possible. With the stern secured, the bow will swing into the dock from the pressure of the wind or current.

Using twin screws:

By putting one engine in forward and the other in reverse or neutral, a twin-screw boat may be turned around in her own length with the rudder amid-ships. Mastering this technique of steering with the throttles allows the twin- screw captain better maneuverability than with a single-screw.

Getting away from a float

If the wind or current is holding the boat into the dock, an after-bow spring line is used. If wind or current pushes the boat off the dock, simply loose the lines and let these forces carry the boat away from the dock. The boat goes ahead on the spring with the rudder set toward the dock. This swings the stern clear allowing the boat to back into the wind. The same usefull technique works if the wind or current is from the boat's stern. When the wind or current is from the bow of the vessel, a forward-quarter spring is used in the same manner to hold the stern in and let the bow swing out away from the dock. When the stern is out 45 to 90 degrees from the dock, with the engines in neutral. If onshore help is Unavailable, double the after-bow spring line so that it comes free and can be hauled aboard when one end is let loose aboard.

Inboard-outboard/outboard Engines maneuver

The inboard-outboard and outboard maneuver in the SAME manner as the single-screw inboard, except that the skipper has more control over the boat, because the rudder and propeller are both turned by the wheel.

Well-meaning dock helpers

There are times, such as when the vessel is blown off the dock during landing, or onto the dock during the get away, when on-shore help is much needed.

Difficult approaches are more on a catch-as-catch can basis. It is especially important for the captain and first mate to have an agreed upon procedure, as the first mate may be the only person close enough to a dock hand to yell instructions. When anticipating a get-away problem, before leaving the dock, it is wise to enlist help and plan a strategy together so that the captain, first mate, and dockhand all have a clear understanding of who does when and what.

When conditions are calm or after the captain and mate have mastered the art of landing and departing, a well-meaning dock hand may be a detriment. Many a skipper has planned and executed an approach impeccably, only to have a "dockhand" yank on a line, throwing the yacht into an unexpected trajectory. Pull a bow line and the stern leaves the dock. Pull a stern line and the bow will be out of control. It helps if the mate understands the captain's plans and can inteqtret them to helpers. When landing in good conditions, the mate should hand the line to the helper, telling them to hold it, but not to secure or pull on it until requested.

Good practices and tips - Docking in the wind .

Knowing these things and taking your time will make docking in the wind and current much easier.

Trip Line: The Key to Docking

This is a handy and simple method to control your boat's headway and sideways movement when docking in a Med mooring. Take a floating line of any size and the length of your slip plus enough extra line to tie a few knots. Make a couple of carefully spaced large loops in the line, add some floats, then tie it loosely between the mooring ball and a dock cleat. When entering the slip, pick up the first loop using a boat hook and place it on a cockpit winch. Walk forward and pick up the second loop and place it on a foredeck cleat. The winch loop stops the boat's foreward motion; the foredeck loop keeps the boat from veering to port or starboard.

Connect-A-Dock's - Floating docks & Different Dock-applications, Manufacturers

FAB Dock - minimal maintenance and mobile dry docking boat systems