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Old 08-11-2017, 08:51 AM   #101
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Mark,
If I gave the impression the fenders hang over the side always that was not my intention.

When we travel, the forward ones reside on the sidedeck and the aft ones in the cockpit secured to their hangers permanently so they can quickly be put into place with no tieing, simply pushed out.
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Old 08-11-2017, 12:49 PM   #102
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Haven't read all the posts yet in this good thread.

You can dock single handed...most of the time. Sometimes maybe not.
As already said..too many constantly changing variables.

You can set up your home dock to make it easier to do no matter the conditions..lines set, fenders on the dock, boat hook, other tools so you can get a line on the dock to help secure the boat while getting closser to the dock.

But, there are places without those pre-placed things. Places with no dock cleats but bullnose timbers where you have to pass the line under the timber and tie it or get it back to the boat. Difficult to do single handedly.

So, again..sometimes yes, sometimes not so easy.
I love those days where I just have to get the boat relatively close and the changing tide and light wind perfectly places me on the dock.
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Old 08-11-2017, 01:06 PM   #103
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When I was a kid my dad told me to never dock at a speed that you weren't afraid to hit the dock. That's an oversimplification but in many ways is still true.
I told that the first time I docked a boat. Probably some of the most sound advice anyone has told me.

Like many have said before me in this thread, practise makes perfect. The more you know about your individual boat's tendencies and your docking location's current, wind, ect., the better.

I think some people brag about being able to dock a single engine boat without any fancy thrusters. If you use enough fenders, anyone can dock a single engine boat...
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Old 08-11-2017, 01:26 PM   #104
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After 4 years of owning our boat I docked in zero wind and no current yesterday for the first time...managed to step off onto the dock but came up about 10 feet short
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Old 08-11-2017, 02:21 PM   #105
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I can, but I have a system that might not work for everyone.

I run one long line from the bow back to the helm and one line from the stern to the helm. Then I maneuver to the dock, jump off with both lines in my hand, and run around and tie off like a madman before the wind or current takes control!
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Old 08-11-2017, 04:34 PM   #106
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I can, but I have a system that might not work for everyone.

I run one long line from the bow back to the helm and one line from the stern to the helm. Then I maneuver to the dock, jump off with both lines in my hand, and run around and tie off like a madman before the wind or current takes control!
This is what I do... I also like the prior advice on dock at the speed you are ok having a collision. Speed is not your friend.
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Old 08-11-2017, 06:47 PM   #107
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Can you dock your boat single handed? Why would you have to? With the occasional instance of your own private dock excepted, almost every other time there is somebody around willing to give you a hand and they are already on the dock. The trouble is, we have too much ego in many instances and won't bother to ask. Not long ago in this same forum there was a long thread about reasons to turn down the offer of help from the dockside crowd. Every fuel dock has someone ready to take your line. Commercial marinas have dockside help to guide you to your assigned spot and take your lines. Almost every dock has spectators, liveaboards and other boaters willing to give a hand and just waiting for an invitation. Pretty much every experienced boater can recognize a novice coming in and generally head towards the slip "just in case", especially in adverse weather and current conditions. The same group will also recognize a dissabled boat making their way in and will again be there to assist. I've even had a boater nose into the dock so I could clamber over the bow to take the helm and bring her in (Her, the boat. Not her the person.). I've also been involved in dinghying out to a boat in the channel to transfer aboard to bring her in. All they had to do is ASK.

Personally, I've been known to turn down offered help in difficult docking (ego?) and if other factors are right will touch the bow against the main dock at the end of a slip, holding the bow there with forward idle, gently apply some rudder to swing the stern towards the finger dock. Be careful that the bow doesn't start to slide along the dock but you have to go to quite an angle before she does, that means the stern has moved a considerable distance to the side. Forward idle keeps her there while a stern line is fastened. Now you have time and space to secure the rest of the way. (Please note! I bring the bow as gently as could be against the dock. No crashing involved.)
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Old 08-11-2017, 06:58 PM   #108
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That was one of the musts w latest boat...
I don't think I would consider a boat I couldn't single hand at least in a pinch...better anytime.
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Old 08-12-2017, 06:59 AM   #109
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With the occasional instance of your own private dock excepted, almost every other time there is somebody around willing to give you a hand and they are already on the dock.

Commercial marinas have dockside help to guide you to your assigned spot and take your lines.

Maybe true where you are...

And one reason for not wanting help from any old bozo on the dock is that often bozo won't do what you tell him (or her: bozette) to do. When bozo (or bozette) "knows better" the situation can go south fairly quickly.

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Old 08-12-2017, 07:18 AM   #110
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After hours at many marinas.....say dinner time arrival......not a sole around all too often.

Speed is your friend when docking with a strong current sometimes because without it, you will get slammed into the boats down cureent and be pinned there until slack tide or a towboat can pull you off.

Sure you can wait to go into that slip, but how long you gonna wait if you need to get tied up? ....or go someplace else because using a little speed to get in was faster than zero...the speed I like when hitting things.

Thats where practice and if necessary, training is the cure.
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Old 08-12-2017, 09:15 AM   #111
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Is it even possible? My boat is a 31' Mainship Sedan Bridge. When it's windy, it might as well be a sailboat. Throw in a current and it's a challenge.

Do any of you do it? If so, what are your techniques?
You've gotten all sorts of advice from skippers whose vessels are not light with high windage. Your Mainship is and will indeed be challenging in strong winds and currents. I know many experienced skippers with vessels like yours who monitor conditions carefully and look seemingly like pros - for them, creating a good docking window pays off.

Heavier and deeper draft vessels like most sail boats can be mastered with a single only. For us sissies who care about gel coat and neighbors, thrusters and twins are quite nice.

I saw a long, narrow and minimal windage lobster boat design the other day perform miracles. Single, huge rudder and about 2 turns lock to lock. Heavy use of throttle and capped off with a legendary skipper. Wow, but it was not like your boat.

Practice and situational awareness is the key for your vessel. Don't be too brave, it can get expensive.
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Old 08-12-2017, 10:53 AM   #112
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Maybe true where you are...

And one reason for not wanting help from any old bozo on the dock is that often bozo won't do what you tell him (or her: bozette) to do. When bozo (or bozette) "knows better" the situation can go south fairly quickly.

-Chris
Yes, you're right. But the OP was about not being able to get it in singlehanded due to conditions. In a case were any help is appreciated or there won't be a successful docking.
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Old 08-12-2017, 11:18 AM   #113
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Yes, you're right. But the OP was about not being able to get it in singlehanded due to conditions. In a case were any help is appreciated or there won't be a successful docking.
Are we still talking about boats?
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Old 08-12-2017, 11:20 AM   #114
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One of the nice features of my boat's stern docking station is the ability to get the stern on a starboard side tie, next to the dock. I'm usually within line tossing or reaching distance of a piling or cleat. With a line from my boat to the piling or cleat, it simply a matter of pushing the bow to the dock with the thruster, walking to midship and grabbing the prepositioned bow line.

If as a previous poster mentioned, you have a midship helm with bow & stern lines, securing the stern first and having a wireless remote for the bow thruster, might take some of the excitement out of solo docking.

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Old 08-12-2017, 11:32 AM   #115
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This is what I do... I also like the prior advice on dock at the speed you are ok having a collision. Speed is not your friend.
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I can, but I have a system that might not work for everyone.

I run one long line from the bow back to the helm and one line from the stern to the helm. Then I maneuver to the dock, jump off with both lines in my hand, and run around and tie off like a madman before the wind or current takes control!
And what do you do if the wind or current does take control?
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Old 08-12-2017, 02:03 PM   #116
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This is what I do... I also like the prior advice on dock at the speed you are ok having a collision. Speed is not your friend.


Drive slow, crash slow
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Old 08-12-2017, 02:05 PM   #117
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I wouldn't even want to try. Could I? Yea maybe, but that means one of two things have happened... Bess has injured herself and can't help, or for some reason, I am boating without the only person I care about on this Earth. Neither reason is very likable or appealing. So there.
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Old 08-12-2017, 03:14 PM   #118
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Re: docking twin boat on a single in high wind.
I've never had a docking accident. That includes boats, tugs (and what's attached), and ships. One reason I don't have an accident record is I have the patience to wait until conditions are favorable. Why risk the damage to your vessel, the dock and maybe injured people?
Anchor or pick an easy transit dock and wait. The wind doesn't blow forever. Same for difficult currents.
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Old 08-12-2017, 04:08 PM   #119
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Drive slow, crash slow
Words to live by!
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Old 08-12-2017, 04:23 PM   #120
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When I was the Training Officer for a Navy patrol boat unit, I had the old Brit saying "Softly, softly, catchee monkey" printed as a header on all docking and alongside training materials for prospective boat captains. Words to live by. Wish I'd been clever enough to adopt "Don't approach anything faster than you're willing to hit it." Good advice from the posters fathers.
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