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Old 10-08-2018, 10:37 PM   #1
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Defever 44' single hand?

Anyone have a Defever 44' and single handle the boat? I'd considered adding bow and stern thrusters to handle that boat by myself but it's a long way from the steering station to the swim platform.
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Old 10-08-2018, 11:03 PM   #2
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Especially with thrusters, you should be able to do just fine. On a calm day!

I can solo our boat in and out of the slip with no problem. However, as soon as the wind exceeds 10 kts I hope for help on the dock if I'm being blown off (we have no thrusters). But our Cheoy Lee 46 has quite a bit more windage than your DF44. So as they say... Your experience may vary!
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Old 10-08-2018, 11:08 PM   #3
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Defever

Don't have a DF44 yet. Just one of the boats on my radar as we are shopping for a new family get away.
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Old 10-09-2018, 01:28 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bshillam View Post
...but it's a long way from the steering station to the swim platform.
.
I routinely dock my 41' trawler solo. For me the trick is to put a long line on the stern cleat and bring the end forward so I can step from the cabin door down to the dock with bow (actually, just forward of midships) and stern lines in hand. Drop a quick knot forward and tend to the stern.

If wind or current present complications....well, that's why we have anchors.
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Old 10-09-2018, 06:37 AM   #5
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I almost always am single handing when docking. While I can dock my single engine boat without the bow thruster, it does make it much easier, especially in high winds or significant current.

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Old 10-09-2018, 06:38 AM   #6
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Not sure I’d attempt to single-hand ours unless I had thrusters. However, there’s a gentleman tied up across the dock from us who is single-handing his second or third loop on a 53-foot sundeck. It has a cockpit but I haven’t seen him use it. We went through Pickwick lock with him yesterday and he makes locking and docking look effortless. He has thrusters and a remote and says he can thread a needle with his vessel. Oh, and he’s in his 70s.
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Old 10-09-2018, 09:39 AM   #7
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I single hand my DeFever 41' almost exclusively. It's all I've ever done. It can be tricky as my slip is perpendicular to the way the wind predominantly blows so I typically start turning early and let the wind push me until I'm almost in line, and then bump the engines into forward a few times until I'm in my slip. I get a few scuff marks from time to time but those come off with a Mr Clean magic eraser or rubbing compound. FYI, I am 36 years old and have been boating for 2.5 years, and this is my 1st/only boat. No thrusters, just twin engines.
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Old 10-09-2018, 09:42 AM   #8
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I dock our 45 myself. Having bow and stern thrusters definitely helps. I use a method similar to Post 4. Remotes for the thrusters is on the list to help on the windy days.
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Old 10-09-2018, 03:05 PM   #9
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I could routinely dock my single screw, no thruster 36 Marine Trader solo. HOWEVER, the wind and tides can conspire against you. If too rough for the slip, I would load up the proper side of the boat with fenders and tie to the face dock and await better conditions. Good luck.
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Old 10-09-2018, 06:08 PM   #10
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The 53 referred to earlier is probably Phantom - a Tarquin Trader, run by Herb Seaton looping for the 2nd time out of Tarpon Springs. He installed Side Power bow & stern thrusters and uses the lanyard remote that he keeps hung around his neck. We were so impressed watching him lock through the Trent Severn solo last year that we now have the same system on our DeFever 49 RPH (waiting to install the remote). They're magic, BUT- they only just held against and could not overcome a 4-5 knot side current at Charleston City Boatyard up the Wando River. A little planning for current & wind + common sense, you would easily be able to single hand a 44.
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Old 10-09-2018, 08:01 PM   #11
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Once you get the hang of spring lines and leaning against a piling, having thrusters are the icing on the cake.
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Old 10-09-2018, 09:19 PM   #12
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I single hand our Selene 47, and before this boat, for many years our Willard 40 sedan. Both the Willard and now the Selene are equipped with Side-Power lanyard type remote controllers. Super easy to install, just plug and play! It can be scary to step off the boat when soloing, but with a midship line in one hand and lanyard bow thruster remote in the other, I have as much control as I need. If a strong breeze is pushing me off the dock, I never fight it -- just exit and look for a "friendlier" landing or a nearby anchorage to drop the hook.
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Old 10-09-2018, 09:57 PM   #13
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We have only had our DeFever 44 for a couple months. While I haven't had to single hand it, I could do it, the control of twins and a bow thruster have already proven that I can easily put in the slip without issue.

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Old 10-09-2018, 10:05 PM   #14
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Used to single hand my single screw no bow thruster 42' sailboat all the time.... Matter of practice and planning.
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Old 10-11-2018, 12:14 AM   #15
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I delivered a DF 44 last year. Twin Lehman’s. No bow or stern thruster. One of the nicest handling boats I have ever handled. Although I was not solo on the trip, I felt I would have been able to handle a solo trip easily. For the record, I single hand my own Cheoy Lee 52’ for the majority of my trips although sometimes have an inexperienced guest as a deckhand. The DF was SO much easier to handle I considered getting one for myself. For about a minute. (Love my CL).
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Old 10-11-2018, 03:12 AM   #16
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Check out Slow hands setup. Ted usually single hands. A cockpit control station is the key. No drama, no blind spots , just back it in. Handle your own lines without worrying about clueless marina kids.
His setup is very common in the commercial work boat world. I don't understand why its not more common on rec boats.
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Old 10-11-2018, 06:59 AM   #17
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It is, in my opinion, not CAN you single-hand the boat but WHY would you single-hand the boat? Boating is supposed to be fun, a shared experience.
I could have single-hand my 46ft Nordhavn with an upgraded bow thruster, and I know I can single-hand my 34ft American Tug with bow and stern thruster but, I have no where to do and cant find a cruise buddy. Tell a woman it's a single stateroom boat and run like a scalded dog. Tell a guy it is a single stateroom boat and they might look at me in a "new light" which I am not seeking.
I guess I will have to do something soon. I am running out of project to do.
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Old 10-11-2018, 09:38 AM   #18
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I used to single hand my old 54 sport fisher and later, my 32 Halvorsen Gourmet cruiser. My present boat is a 42 Ocean Alexander that has no down helm. The starboard door, however, makes single handing a piece of cake. When the boat's in the slip, I scramble down the fly bridge ladder, step through the stbd door and secure the stern line to a cleat.
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Old 10-11-2018, 10:00 AM   #19
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Thanks

All very good suggestions. To the earlier post, I'd like to bring friends and family while cruising however this one is being purchased to take clients out. I'd like to head into bringing clients along and not plan on them helping me. Some of them don't have boating experience and in that case I'd rather do it and let them enjoy the wine and experience.
I'll keep looking and select the appropriate boat for the experience I am trying to achieve. Lots of social space, covered, warm and good viewing from the interior. As a floating home specialist I envision taking my clients to a marina to view/tour homes for sale. It's really about them experiencing or envisioning the life style. What better way to see their new home/marina via the water!
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Old 10-11-2018, 10:03 AM   #20
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My current project. It's not a boat but it does float!

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