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Old 10-12-2015, 03:04 PM   #1
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Backing Into Slip

Having trouble seeing when backing into slip, does anyone use cameras mounted on back of boat?
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Old 10-12-2015, 03:08 PM   #2
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Boat I am having surveyed this week has one on the back of the mast. I haven't yet seen how well it shows the aft section as opposed to the water behind the vessel though.
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Old 10-12-2015, 04:05 PM   #3
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Do you have s flybridge? Most of the time with practice you come to just "feel" where the corners of the boat are. Sort of like driving a big car or truck.

The only way to know where you need the camera to be mounted is to get one and temporarily hook it up and move it around to see where it needs to be for the picture you want. In some cases you need two cameras. One to show each corner.
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Old 10-12-2015, 04:26 PM   #4
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I have single helm station on flybridge with blind stern, and narrow slip. Dangerous to impossible for me to back in slip alone. I mounted single camera viewing stern starboard rear transom corner. Being right handed, and driving concrete trucks in my youth using mirrors for backing I find this setup more intuitive for me. Some folks mount screen for viewing as helmsman faces the stern, so like driving forward. Individual tastes. Two cameras with split screen would certainly work. Whatever it takes to make it fun !
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Old 10-12-2015, 04:36 PM   #5
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Backing Into Slip

I don't have a backup camera. However, I know that some cameras have a feature which allows the user to have a "reversed" image. Much like backing a car with rear view or side mirrors. Easier, for some, to adapt.

I usually keep backing until I hear teak cracking and snapping...
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Old 10-12-2015, 05:30 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Giggitoni View Post

I usually keep backing until I hear teak cracking and snapping...
Ray, that's what I call parking by ear.
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Old 10-12-2015, 06:20 PM   #7
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Ray, that's what I call parking by ear.
Or as I say "By the braille method"
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Old 10-12-2015, 06:37 PM   #8
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Its a feel thing for me getting close. I will sometimes use the outter pile to pivot around on if the wind is blowing. That (backing) part is the most hairyst thing about operating the boat. A camera would just distract me and take my attention away. My wife and I have a system that works pretty well. She says, back, back, back, then if I need to turn one way or another, she says, clockwise or counter clockwise. That way I know which way to turn the boat as I am backing up. The clockwise, counter clockwise method is the same regardless of how you are standing or looking. Then she says , your in the slip, slow down, slowdown, stop. Works everytime unless people are on the dock shouting and I cant hear her giving me instructions. I have thought about a camera running through me I pad. Woudnt be a bad idea.
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Old 10-13-2015, 07:50 AM   #9
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Works everytime unless people are on the dock shouting and I cant hear her giving me instructions.
We have a guy down the dock who has a pair of bluetooth headsets to alleviate exactly this issue.
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Old 10-13-2015, 08:14 AM   #10
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In the last years o' his driving... My grand dad had 14 inch flex spring "curb scraper/sounders" sticking off all four corners of his 1952 Chrysler car's shinny chrome bumpers... ya might try that! Of course you could always go into dock slips frontwards...

I don't own boats without flying bridge. Do most all piloting from the bridge... and 99.99% docking from there... Never have experienced need for a camera.
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Old 10-13-2015, 08:15 AM   #11
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Lot to be said for a stern docking station. Single lever engine control, small black lever on the side controls the rudder through the autopilot, and bow thruster control is mounted on top. This could probably be put on many types of trawlers.

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Old 10-13-2015, 08:46 AM   #12
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We have a guy down the dock who has a pair of bluetooth headsets to alleviate exactly this issue.
This is what my wife and I use for docking situations. Ear Tec by brand name. Better than a camera in that all the pilings, protruding bolts or stanchions get mentioned to the skipper. As well as distances to stop go forward etc. Our boat has excellent sight lines from either helm but the stop now command is nice to hear.

These units are quite common and sometimes used by those who have multiple docking stations since there frequently seems to be tight quarters issues on larger vessels. Have some friends with a large Nordhavn equipped with 5 docking stations, their Ear Tecs are in constant use.
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Old 10-13-2015, 09:43 AM   #13
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We use headphones as well. Don't get voice activated because wind noise will over power them. Full duplex is best because one person can interrupt the other. Don't use them much for backing. That is my job.


I can see out one corner of the stern but cant see the swim platform. It doesn't matter because I know where it is and as long as I can get one cheek of the boat in the proper position the rest of it must follow.
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Old 10-13-2015, 10:30 PM   #14
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We have a set of headphones that are VOX but we don't use them at our home slip. We have a better system--my wife keeps her mouth shut until I'm in the slip unless there's an emergency. .


I can't see the stern but can see along the port side. I know if the port side is just off the finger pier that I have lots of room on the other side. I painted a black/yellow rectangle (3'X6") on the dock, opposite the helm. When I'm that far back I know I'm in far enough.


At that point my wife steps off onto the dock and yells "I'm off" so I know she's on the dock.


I've thought about a backup camera but I don't want my attention divided between the screen and what my eyes are telling me about where the boat is in the slip.
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Old 10-13-2015, 10:52 PM   #15
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I don't back into my slip, even though the vision is better than docking bow in due to a relatively high bow.
I was always concerned about hitting the corner of the finger when making the turn into the slip while singlehanded. What I've done to alleviate this issue is installed a 6 foot flexible flag on the corner of the finger. This makes it very easy to see, and also will show me what the wind is doing.
Perhaps something like this may work for backing in, if your vision is obscured rather than totally blocked. Low tech & cheap.
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Old 10-13-2015, 11:19 PM   #16
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We have a camera. It's dual purpose, for security and for docking assistance.

We also have a back-up camera on our SUV. We didn't ask for it, but now that we have it, we absolutely love it. Far more than watching for other cars is watching for people walking behind you in parking lots.
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Old 10-14-2015, 06:18 AM   #17
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Just use two cell phones on speaker
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Old 10-14-2015, 06:49 AM   #18
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We do like Magnawake. Tom has me in the cockpit giving directional cues if needed, then distances when we get close, "10ft, 5ft, stop", then I step off to the dock to secure the boat. I have a backup camera in my car, and at first it was super distracting, changing the life long habit of backing....but now I love it.
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Old 10-14-2015, 09:17 AM   #19
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This past cruising season we have backed in to many different "new" slips when the harbor master says "we have no starboard ties." A camera is second best to a voice in the ear when doing this especially with strong swirly harbor currents as often found in AK.

In Powell River the marina has very narrow access and we found backing for a hundred yards or so was easiest but challenging. Love those twins!
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Old 10-14-2015, 10:35 AM   #20
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I had installed electronic morse controls , with these I installed a wired remote control which has a 5 metre lead. This allows me to stand on the back deck and back the vessel ,and I have full vision and control of the two stern corners of the vessel.
I dock the vessel on my own and it is as easy as docking a dingy. I don't have thrusters just the twins and they are very responsive.
We have a camera but found that a distraction and hard to judge distance.
There is nothing like having proper vision and hand eye coordination to assist in judging wind and current.

Cheers Chris D Liberty
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