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Old 01-09-2016, 11:34 AM   #1
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Dock line noise

Sitting here in a pretty surgy Marina in Ensenada, and getting tired of all the noise my dock lines are making. Anyone have any secrets for reducing the creaking and squeaking of dock lines? Getting them wet works - until they dry.

Cheers!
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Old 01-09-2016, 12:00 PM   #2
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Change the lines to something different. Are they 3 strand?
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Old 01-09-2016, 12:28 PM   #3
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I don't know what your line setup is, but if you have short lines going directly from the boat to the dock, how about changing all of them to longer lines and use a spring line setup?
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Old 01-09-2016, 12:33 PM   #4
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SOAP!!! Dawn or something like that. I used to live aboard and had that issue. The soap doesn't last forever but it will at least get you thru a windy night.
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Old 01-09-2016, 12:43 PM   #5
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I'm using 3/4" double braid.
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Old 01-09-2016, 12:48 PM   #6
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SOAP!!! Dawn or something like that. I used to live aboard and had that issue. The soap doesn't last forever but it will at least get you thru a windy night.
I sincerely hope you are saying to use it on the dock lines and fenders!!!!

Even where the floating dock rubs on nearby pilings sometimes...
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Old 01-09-2016, 12:49 PM   #7
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With my braided lines, squeaking only occurs if opposing lines are set without a little slack.
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Old 01-09-2016, 01:11 PM   #8
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I second using dish soap. Living aboard, it gets bad in the winter time with the dry, windy air. Dish soap on the fenders works great as well. I always keep a bottle of dollar store dish soap on board.

Something I haven't tried, but was recommended on the lifeaboard forums was to hand wash your dock lines to get the dirt and salt out (friction doesn't help the squeaking) and then to treat with fabric softener. . .
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Old 01-09-2016, 01:58 PM   #9
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I sincerely hope you are saying to use it on the dock lines and fenders!!!!

Even where the floating dock rubs on nearby pilings sometimes...
Damn!!!! That is pretty darn funny!!!!
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Old 01-09-2016, 02:15 PM   #10
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Damn!!!! That is pretty darn funny!!!!
Didn't mean the second line to have other meaning...but if your mind is active enough.....

WifeyB must be on holiday...she could take a military aviation operators handbook and see a romance novel in it....
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Old 01-09-2016, 03:09 PM   #11
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I kinda went crazy when I bought our dock lines . They are little large (3/4" I think )and I also added these big black snubbers (4 of them ) . But I must say they are quiet and the boat doesn't jerk around in the slip when somebody ignores the no wake zone in marina .
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Old 01-09-2016, 04:28 PM   #12
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Setting the lines so they are longer may help and washing the lines from time to time may help as well.

I once spent three or four days at a marina while waiting for a repair part and I noticed a noise that would continue for hours at a time. The noise sounded like a muffled warning buzzer or a motor starting and stopping quickly. It seemed to be coming from the bilge but everywhere I listened it seemed to be coming from somewhere else.

First, I did the obvious - turned off the battery switch and the shorepower. The nose continued. I unplugged the shorepower and actually disconnected the batteries. The noise continued.

I had nothing left to try so I put everything together and waited for something to break or emit smoke. Nothing

The part came in, I installed it and we went on our way. The next night we were anchored and the noise was gone. We were gone over a month and the noise never returned. Nine months later - no noise.

I can only figure it was either someone else's boat or the floating dock and the noise was coming through the water.
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Old 01-09-2016, 07:59 PM   #13
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Sound can behave strangely moving through wate and coming up against a boat hull. I"ve been in the fore or aft cabin of our PNW boat or in the engine room and been startled by a loud sound that seemed to be coming from inside our boat or right next to it. Motor running, pump running, etc. Turned out to be coming from some other boat clear across the fairway on the next dock in or out from ours or even from a boat at the fuel dock which is almost 100 yards away.

The dish soap idea is a good one I'd not heard before. We'll remember it the next time we're staying on our boat in its slip during one of our winter storms that tend to blow 40 to 50 with gusts measured as high as 80.
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Old 01-09-2016, 10:07 PM   #14
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Chased an intermittent thumping sound around the boat for a bit of time one evening last week. Finally tracked it down to the bass drum at a dockside restaurant. Sound travels in strange paths.
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Old 01-09-2016, 11:08 PM   #15
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Chased an intermittent thumping sound around the boat for a bit of time one evening last week. Finally tracked it down to the bass drum at a dockside restaurant. Sound travels in strange paths.
I have a buddy that ripped his boat to pieces looking for a mystery sound. It was a neighbor that was running his boat in gear in the slip about 6-7 slips down from him.
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Old 01-09-2016, 11:56 PM   #16
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I was new to my boat and had just cruised up the Sacramento River to Old Sacramento for my dockside 50th BD celebration. We were tied up downtown and kept hearing this scratchy noise that sounded like rodents in the ER. As a newcomer to downtown dock use, I had an active imagination. I asked my experienced boat friends to check it out and no one could figure it out.

The next night, I discovered when the breeze would stir, the sound returned. I found the sound was emanating from a squeaky metal-on-metal burgee connection. It traveled through the SS rails to the hull.

Another time when the wind blew, it sounded like a dozen pool cues rolling back and forth on the FB. Roll, roll, roll, clank! (and repeat ad nauseum) After a long search of my FB , I was puzzled. Days later I figured out it was the window blinds behind the port fridge banging against the corner.

Just my verbose way of saying that sometimes the sounds come from the darndest places.
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Old 01-10-2016, 12:34 AM   #17
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After a while, your brain will filter out that noise. In the meantime, it isn't just your lines and fenders, it is all the boats around you as well.
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Old 01-10-2016, 07:17 AM   #18
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Could be whales looking for a mate
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Old 01-10-2016, 08:39 AM   #19
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If your dock lines are good quality and in good shape, it pays to wash them every year or so. If not, it's best to replace them.

Good dock lines are difficult to wash because the wash water does not penetrate. I soak mine in soapy hot water for a day or so, then wash them and rinse them. This makes them soft again.

Another "boat noise" that had me worried the first time I heard it was a constant scratching. It turns out that this is the sound of fish or shrimp feasting on bottom growth on the hull. This only happens under certain conditions.
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Old 01-10-2016, 09:51 AM   #20
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After a while, your brain will filter out that noise. In the meantime, it isn't just your lines and fenders, it is all the boats around you as well.
In the 5 years I lived aboard, it was always irritating and I never got used to it.


Other weird sounds...shrimp mating!!!! If you don't know this sound it will drive you crazy....just a continuous clicking sound. It actually drives me crazy...but I know what it is and know it is not part of the boat.
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