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Old 08-29-2013, 03:24 PM   #1
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Docking Adventure Video

Actually, it's a video of us leaving the dock. I thought I'd post it here as an unedited video for both educational and entertainment purposes!

We were on the reciprocal dock at the Hat Island marina just off Everett, WA. Now this is a "tight" marina that just in the last year expanded by a couple of acres. Of course the camera (a GoPro mounted on the flybridge) only shows what's happening forward, toward the newer larger slips portion of the marina. We're side tied on the older docks, which I believe only have 30' slips. It's much tighter there! I wish I had a second camera mounted aft for this one...

Anyway, as you'll see about three and a half minutes in things get "interesting". There was a wee bit of current and wind pushing us to starboard (we have A LOT of freeboard!). While my wife was, um, slightly freaking out, I felt in total control. Sure, it got a little tight there, but we didn't touch anything. One of the bystanders said "Wow, I think he's going to pull it off!" No blood, no foul, right?

My take is that I got into trouble by not backing up far enough into the small fairway. Though in my defense it was VERY tight back there. I thought I'd have a bit more maneuvering room in between the two parts of the marina, even with boats side-tied.

Lastly, we are a twin screw/no thrusters double deck 46-foot 60,000 pound boat. The Cheoy Lee 46 LRC is commonly mistaken for a Grand Banks 50 if that helps you visualize our boat.

Hopefully others can learn from my almost-mistake...
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Old 08-29-2013, 03:40 PM   #2
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Doesn't look like the video loaded/attached correctly.
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Old 08-29-2013, 03:44 PM   #3
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Yes, my fault. I'm re-encoding the video and will repost in about 30 minutes...
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Old 08-29-2013, 10:11 PM   #4
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Went to repost the video with the edit feature on my original post, but it's not there. So hopefully it will work here:
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Old 08-30-2013, 12:01 AM   #5
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It still no workee...
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Old 08-30-2013, 12:05 AM   #6
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It still no workee...
Just tried it at 9:00pm Pacific time and it worked. Perhaps it was still processing when you tried it. I wish I could just delete this whole post and start over!
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Old 08-30-2013, 12:08 AM   #7
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Worked for me. Those fellows on the lawn chairs must have been waiting for another "Plinko" departure story to add to their long list of horror stories. Too bad for them, and good for you
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Old 08-30-2013, 12:10 AM   #8
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Maybe it just does not like my iPad. I'll try on the MacBook.
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Old 08-30-2013, 12:18 AM   #9
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My take is that I got into trouble by not backing up far enough into the small fairway.

Workee for me.
Terrific quality video. My take is that I would like to be out on that water after watching. Hope you had a great day. A 46 footer in there must have been a challenge.
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Old 08-30-2013, 12:31 AM   #10
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Quote:
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Maybe it just does not like my iPad. I'll try on the MacBook.
That was it - worked fine on the MacBook. A bit odd really, as I used Safari on both. But anyway, it worked and yes, great quality.

FWIW, putting myself and my single engine, no thruster boat in the same situation, it occurred to me that maybe one thing which might have worked better is not to rely so much on such slow manoeuvring juggling your twins, and moving a wee bit quicker and getting more steerage with positive water flow over the rudders. Just a thought...
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Old 08-30-2013, 01:10 AM   #11
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FWIW, putting myself and my single engine, no thruster boat in the same situation, it occurred to me that maybe one thing which might have worked better is not to rely so much on such slow manoeuvring juggling your twins, and moving a wee bit quicker and getting more steerage with positive water flow over the rudders. Just a thought...
That's a good thought, Pete. It wasn't until the end there that I felt I had to rev it up a bit, which is what probably saved me from making any contact with my stern. Since then I've taken to using a bit more power sooner rather than later. But in tight quarters I still don't use the helm. Just the juggling of port/starboard forward/reverse. But I think you're right, knowing when to use more power and when to use less is the secret. Still working on that one!
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Old 08-30-2013, 01:58 AM   #12
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Not bad, close quarters like that pose a real challenge. I've been in that marina before and being in between the finger piers is no place for a 46' boat. That's a TGFT (Thank God for twins) situation all right!!

Having a second mate who is handy with a fender is a plus too. She seems to know her way around the boat?
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Old 08-30-2013, 03:12 AM   #13
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But in tight quarters I still don't use the helm. Just the juggling of port/starboard forward/reverse.
That`s usual I think, and you can speed things up with judicious throttle. I like being able to swing the boat using prop walk in reverse, when I want to take some speed off.
When rotating the boat in place adding helm speeds the process.
I thought you did well, though the last bit was "interesting". Then I got worried someone might, after all that effort, close the gate.
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Old 08-30-2013, 03:42 AM   #14
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Workee for me.
Terrific quality video.
Video doesn't work/show for me. Regardless, sounds like a lousy marina. Why stay/go there?
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Old 08-30-2013, 06:41 AM   #15
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Mark, are you using iPad..? I found it did not work on that, but does on my MacBook, even tho currently using Safari on both.

Moonfish, coming back to clarify what I was getting at a bit more. What I find works well for me and would for any boat with a bit of weight in it, is to make use of two forces. The momentum that remains once you are moving, and the inertia that develops when you suddenly change thrust direction. Using that, I set the boat going astern at reasonable pace, then put helm hard over in the direction I want to go, slip it into neutral, then at the right moment, (which can be a bit hair-raising to the uninitiated onlooker as you near the other side of the fairway), you slip it into forward and gun it a bit. The boat's inertia as the momentum in reverse fights the change in direction, means it hardly moves forward at all, but develops a really good kick, forcing the stern significantly to the side your helm is away from. If it is still not possible to complete the turn with one of those 'kicks', then just gentle reverse, leaving the rudder hard over as it will have no effect going astern, and repeat process one. Works a treat. Doing the I can spin my boat in its length, and with just one engine, and no thrusters. I have noticed those who own boats with twins or thrusters seldom ever use this technique, and rely on the thrusters and or juggling the engines.
I believe it is a good idea to practice the above in case one engine ever fails you at a bad moment, or thruster dies, for those who have one.
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Old 08-30-2013, 07:00 AM   #16
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There was no need to move faster with a twin...look at the burgee and the water surface...

The only thing I saw was your initial angle headed for that last boat with the pulpit almost to the fairway.

You stopped, twisted..forced the stern to port and slid by...pretty much what I would have done. Now wheel was ever needed but would have been usefull in the one little shift the stern part.

NEVER listen to the people on the dock..remember they are on the dock (and usually so)...not underway. 90% of the time they are making things worse by confusing the underway skipper...even if they have a good idea...you usually are too involved with what you are thinking to combine and execute quickly.
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Old 08-30-2013, 08:10 AM   #17
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Wow, that's one tight marina, alright. I would have struggled with my 30 footer. What do you do if there is a good breeze blowing?
You certainly seemed in control though. I would have used a few more revs and ended up
just making more noise and attracting more attention.
Well done!
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Old 08-30-2013, 11:50 AM   #18
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Great job skippie, I might just have backed out. One of the best things that happened when we bought our boat and moved aboard, was we needed to go pump out about every 10-12 days. It forced us to learn quickly how to move the boat in tight quaters. Sometimes we would just drive over and the back all the way back, just to get use to how the boat handled.

You did a great job there, love you boat I tried to buy one down here a few years back. Great video, slow can be your friend

Enjoy
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Old 08-30-2013, 12:20 PM   #19
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Looked totally reasonable to me! But then, I've been known to maneuver & dock by the braille method.
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Old 08-30-2013, 12:48 PM   #20
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Man that's tight! Excellent work.

Two questions:

1) Why did you not reverse to port at the very beginning when you were leaving the dock? You are very clearly comfortable piloting your boat so I assume there is good reason -- it just looked to me like if you reversed into that space and then moved forward to pivot to starboard you could have avoided the point where things got interesting at 3:00?

2) What is beeping? That would drive me nuts!
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