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Old 09-17-2021, 06:00 PM   #1
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Mooring slip bow out vs stern out

My 4788 is moored in an outside slip...exposed to all the weather, wind waves and current. Some say we are the breakwater for the rest of the marina. Here’s the question...should you tie up bow out or stern out. Harbormaster says bow out into the oncoming elements...” ever see a boat back into a storm?” Others say stern out so the heaviest part of the boat takes the brunt of the elements...also preventing the bow, the lightest part of the boat, from tugging heavily on the finger pier and bouncing up and down. What are your experiences and how would you moor to the finger pier?
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Old 09-17-2021, 06:10 PM   #2
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I tie bow facing west. Fits better with the neighbors boat, and most storms here have a southwestern vector. I'm on the outside too, end of pier. My boat can take weather on the bow all day/night, and has.

Stern to storm can get real wet. Beats on my dingy too. I don't see boats anchored off the stern around here or in the islands.

Maybe try both this fall, see how the boat takes it.
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Old 09-17-2021, 06:53 PM   #3
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We tie bow in because of the deeper water further out from shore. Fortunately we have a finger pier which allows easy access. This exposed our square stern to the open bay and north winds in FL. The home dock mooring lines are upsized to 3/4" double braid to take the punishment of the strong north winds blowing straight down the bay for a typical 3 day blow. This arrangement worked for 7 winter seasons.

In NJ we had to dock stern in due to no finger pier so access was over the swim platform. The water was deep enough for the keel.
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Old 09-17-2021, 07:13 PM   #4
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I always (always!!!) secure with bow out. Additionally I tie both ends of my dock lines to Seaweed. This way I control my lines and can leave without assistance.

If I have to leave immediately, I can do so without trying to back out. Plus, I'm not good at reverse.

Still, imagine if there was an emergency and you had to leave right way...That's how in my opinion you should tie her up.
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Old 09-17-2021, 08:59 PM   #5
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If other factors such as boarding access allows it, bow to the weather is best practice. The energy of wind and waves is deflected instead of being absorbed and transferred to the cleats, lines and pilings.

Stern to weather has been known to invite waves to back-flood the exhaust outlets.
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Old 09-17-2021, 08:59 PM   #6
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Bow towards the predominant weather. Some in our harbour turn their boats around to face south just for storage in the winter.

Our transient harbour has the somewhat enforced rule (at least in the summer) of being bow out towards the harbour entrance in case of a fire. But they are docks without individual fingers.
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Old 09-17-2021, 09:12 PM   #7
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Bow out if there's weather that can come into the slip. Otherwise, it's a combination of preference and whether the boat fits better in a given slip one way or the other (in terms of actual fit, maneuvering, and boarding).
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Old 09-17-2021, 09:18 PM   #8
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Bow towards any waves that might come in. I saw a boat go down when the waves broke the transom door and filled the lazarette.
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Old 09-17-2021, 09:26 PM   #9
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I tie my 49GB bow out during the winter when there is more wave action. Summer months is generally bow in as it is easier to land and we are in and out more often. The bow and stern lines have rubber snubbers to help absorb the wave loading minimizing high loading on the cleats on the dock and boat. Long spring lines keep the boat in place from moving fore and aft.
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Old 09-17-2021, 09:47 PM   #10
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If you tie stern out to waves/wakes... I strongly recommend exhaust flappers on both exhaust pipes. Actually, for many reasons, I recommend flappers to always be affixed.

https://www.summitracing.com/parts/e...iABEgIn__D_BwE

There are numerous brands
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Old 09-17-2021, 10:43 PM   #11
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Bow to the weather. Ha! That sentence could be taken a couple different ways…

We are also on an end tie on the outside. Best seat in the house, we like to say. But like you, there’s nothing to shield us from the weather. During the winter, our weather predominantly comes from a southerly direction. So we point toward it usually by late September. As most boats are designed to face wind and waves head on, we find that orientation to be the most comfortable.

Come May, the weather typically calms and switches from a more northerly direction. So we turn the boat around, which allows us to have morning coffee on the aft deck overlooking the bay…
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Old 09-18-2021, 08:24 AM   #12
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I almost exclusively do stern in as I have a stern docking station that makes it much easier when single handing. My home slips are always protected boat basins, so wave action isn't an issue. Given a choice between a slip facing significant waves or being on a mooring / at anchor, I'll forgo the slip.

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Old 09-18-2021, 08:37 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Timicrinn View Post
My 4788 is moored in an outside slip...exposed to all the weather, wind waves and current. Some say we are the breakwater for the rest of the marina. Here’s the question...should you tie up bow out or stern out. Harbormaster says bow out into the oncoming elements...” ever see a boat back into a storm?” Others say stern out so the heaviest part of the boat takes the brunt of the elements...also preventing the bow, the lightest part of the boat, from tugging heavily on the finger pier and bouncing up and down. What are your experiences and how would you moor to the finger pier?

I'd probably prefer bow toward weather, assuming some other things fall into place.

Master stateroom forward? That'd probably be loud, with bow slap. Aft or amidships? Better.

Finger pier long enough to get on/off the boat?

Which way are views (and/or privacy) better?

Can you easily reach utilities?

Prevailing wind/tide/current directions, for maneuvering around the dock?

Et cetera...

-Chris
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Old 09-18-2021, 09:16 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Timicrinn View Post
My 4788 is moored in an outside slip...exposed to all the weather, wind waves and current. Some say we are the breakwater for the rest of the marina. Here’s the question...should you tie up bow out or stern out. Harbormaster says bow out into the oncoming elements...” ever see a boat back into a storm?” Others say stern out so the heaviest part of the boat takes the brunt of the elements...also preventing the bow, the lightest part of the boat, from tugging heavily on the finger pier and bouncing up and down. What are your experiences and how would you moor to the finger pier?
Wifey B: If you were boating 24 hours a day for several days and had a choice of boating with your bow into the wind and waves or the wind and waves to your stern, which would you choose?

Thought so. And there is your answer.
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Old 09-18-2021, 11:42 AM   #15
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Totally agree with bow facing the weather but often you have a choice in a well protected setting during benign periods of time. Then my preference is bow in. Believe this allows greater privacy and eliminates or at least decreases the dock walkers from stopping by and trying to engage you in discussions. Get questions “can I come aboard and see your boat while you’re in the middle of a maintenance project?” Can I work on your boat” “I have this for sale” or the folks who would never knock on the door of a random house but think nothing of interfering with your day or activities with inane questions. We are sociable and enjoy chatting with fellow boaters as they are almost universally respectful and sympathetic. It’s the other ones who are intrusive and demanding in an inappropriate fashion.
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Old 09-18-2021, 12:12 PM   #16
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Totally agree with bow facing the weather but often you have a choice in a well protected setting during benign periods of time. Then my preference is bow in. Believe this allows greater privacy and eliminates or at least decreases the dock walkers from stopping by and trying to engage you in discussions. Get questions “can I come aboard and see your boat while you’re in the middle of a maintenance project?” Can I work on your boat” “I have this for sale” or the folks who would never knock on the door of a random house but think nothing of interfering with your day or activities with inane questions. We are sociable and enjoy chatting with fellow boaters as they are almost universally respectful and sympathetic. It’s the other ones who are intrusive and demanding in an inappropriate fashion.
But the OP wasn't describing well protected and benign.

We just firmly say "no" to those you describe. End of discussion. Only possible remaining discussion is asking them "which part of no did you not understand?"
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Old 09-18-2021, 12:24 PM   #17
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But the OP wasn't describing well protected and benign.

We just firmly say "no" to those you describe. End of discussion. Only possible remaining discussion is asking them "which part of no did you not understand?"

I find the MOST annoying of all the "question askers" to be the ones who try to engage you in a conversation before you've even managed to fully tie up.
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Old 09-18-2021, 01:57 PM   #18
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I find the MOST annoying of all the "question askers" to be the ones who try to engage you in a conversation before you've even managed to fully tie up.
I just keep on doing what I am doing and if they keep talking then fine. Usually they loose interest and move on.
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Old 09-18-2021, 02:14 PM   #19
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I just keep on doing what I am doing and if they keep talking then fine. Usually they loose interest and move on.
That's pretty much how I handle dock wandering lookie-loos too.

Once, just for the heck of it to see the guys reaction: With a sincere face, while I continued fastening lines, with no other words spoken by me... I looked up and asked a quick question - You got 20 bucks I could have? No answer, bewildered look, immediate departure.
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Old 09-18-2021, 04:11 PM   #20
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I use Bow out even though it faces our winter winds.

Why??? Because I stay aboard and want my salon to be private while retaining a view.
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