Capttony

Boat handling

4 posts in this topic

When pulling Cayman 206  into a dock or berth with a slight wind, sometimes stern continues to slide in same direction causing me to miss target dock. Occasionally, I need to do a  second approach to dock. Seems the keel is not slowing me down enough to make turn.  Best approach is zero wind and 1-2 knots. Any advice?

 

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Having docked boats in strong winds and currents for years, the only thing I think makes it easier is experience. I've learned to use the winds and currents to push me to the dock when that's possible and when it's not and I have to fight against them I've learned how to 'speed' (a few mph over normal docking) to the dock then suddenly reverse just before hitting into it. I don't like doing that as my motto is "don't go any faster than you want hit the dock", but sometimes it's the only choice (rushing tide and strong wind in the same direction pushing you away from the dock).

I had a boat with two engines for years and it's a lot easier with two engines or a bow thruster to dock in adverse conditions. Now that I only have one engine it is more difficult. Sometimes I have to take a second approach if I've misjudged conditions and I've learned to accept it. I had a flat bottomed boat as a kid and I know how much harder it is to dock a boat like that, but that experience has sure helped me be better at docking.

Good luck and enjoy your time on the water.

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Agree that practice makes perfect.  Also, sometimes throwing a line to someone that they secure on a cleat allows you to pivot the boat in the direction you want to.  For example, if current is pushing away from the dock, and you get the front rope cleated, you can then gently put the boat into reverse with the engine pulling you towards the dock, and it will pull it in properly.

We are on a canal with a boathouse that is barely wider than the boat.  If there is a strong wind, regardless of how I try, I often need someone at the side of the boat to deflect us away from the corner of the boathouse.  Sometimes I can goose it in, but as FullThrottle mentioned "don't go any faster than you want to hit the ____".  

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Thanks for all the help. I have handled boats on the water for many years. My problem may be approaching too fast or making my turn too early. My dock is a slip cut ninety degrees from the canal into my property. When I approach the slip on the canal, most of the time with out current or wind, I completely stop about 25 yards before I get close the the slip and begin to make my turn. I travel very slow, but when I approach the entry to the slip the bow turns properly but the stern continues straight (or slides in the forward direction). Many times I have to reverse the engine to straighten out. Most times, I have to try another or several more approaches. It just seems the stern continue to slide straight when making that turn. (A bow thruster would keep me lined up). My next step is take all the advice to approach slower, make my turn move smooth and keep adjusting my approach until i get it. A big thanks for all the responses.  

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