Dock Ramp Ediquitte

Discussion in 'Sport Boats' started by STIHLBOLTS, Mar 9, 2007.

  1. palu49

    palu49 New Member

    Jun 24, 2009
    Lake George NY
    1988 Sorrento S-24
    1989 180 Sport BR
    5.7L/Alpha 1
    4.3L/Alpha 1
    Use the middle ramp if the lines are long
  2. magster65

    magster65 New Member

    Dec 25, 2007
    Saanichton BC Canada
    2002 model 3788
    Twin Cummins 6BTA's
    As it's only a couple blocks from work, I often take my lunch to the ramp and watch the show. You get the normal folks like us Sea Ray owners who seamlessly launch or load their boat with ease and in short order.
    Then there's the bad guys like them 'others' owners... jack-knifed, stuck, unprepared, dead batteries, confused, slow as a snail, wet tailpipes and bumpers and of course my favorite, the yelling at the wife and kids guy... probably kicks his dog too.
    At any rate, it's been a favorite lunch spot for many years because the entertainment is second to none. Of course getting behind a bad guy when I'm launching makes me angry inside but when it's someone else... it doesn't bother me nearly as much :)
    Yes, I could... and do lend a hand if I'm asked but I much prefer to watch people's stupidity, misery and eventual embarrasment whilst I relax to some soothing music and enjoy a ham and cheese on brown with lettuce and tomato.
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2009
  3. avguy

    avguy New Member

    Dec 19, 2006
    East TN
    '05 240 Sundeck
    350 Mag
    Last Saturday when we headed back to the ramp to load the boat we were fortunate enough to time it so that we got there at the same time a bass fishing tournament was about to start. 20 - 25 bass boats all launched & floating in front of the dock. There were a couple other boaters ahead of us trying to bob & weave around the bass boats to the dock without much success. I refuse to let these kinds of things ruin my day anymore so I stopped about 50 yds out, opened a beer & waited.
    Took about 20 minutes or so before they all went roaring out of there. I guess the common courtesies of boating etiquette don't apply during the tournament.......:smt017
  4. BigWill1985

    BigWill1985 New Member

    Feb 6, 2010
    Norfolk, VA
    1992 Celebrity 200 Cuddy Cabin
    260hp Chevrolet 350 with a Mercruiser outdrive
    Another important point, is to ensure you turn off your head lights when backing into the water.... If the area you are loading or unloading from has multiple ramps in a row, this keeps from blinding other boaters and preventing them from backing their trailers into the water. On my truck (1998 Chevy 2500 6.5 turbo diesel), the head lights are always on. My dad actually taught me that you can click the emergency brake in one click to shut off the lights without engaging the brake. That way you can load and unload without blinding everyone else.

    Thank God I'm a second generation boater... Otherwise I'd have no clue what the hell I'm doing.

    ~Will Courtier~
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2010
  5. Oar Play

    Oar Play New Member

    Jan 24, 2010
    '09 240 Sundancer
    5.0 Mercruiser w/Bravo 3
    Geeesh!! It's like floating a tooth pick . !!!!!:smt021
  6. BigWill1985

    BigWill1985 New Member

    Feb 6, 2010
    Norfolk, VA
    1992 Celebrity 200 Cuddy Cabin
    260hp Chevrolet 350 with a Mercruiser outdrive

    ~Will Courtier~
  7. derek4343

    derek4343 New Member

    Jul 4, 2008
    gunpowder cove,chesapeake bay
    240 sundeck,wake tower
    5.0,w/bravo 3 drives
    i read where some of you power load your boat onto trailer. i thought that i read you weren't supposed to do that because of washing out the ramp.
  8. Dave S

    Dave S Well-Known Member TECHNICAL Contributor

    Oct 3, 2006
    Upstate South Carolina
    Go back to the beginning pages of this three year old thread. You will find your answers there.

  9. offshore79

    offshore79 New Member

    Aug 5, 2010
    1989 200 br
    society these days is in way too much of a rush. I am 30 yrs old, hold a 100 ton masters license and have been on boats my entire life. I tend to go out on my boat by myself, meaning depending on the ramp, i have to back down, tie the boat up, go park truck and trailer and then get on boat and go. If the ramp provides additional dock space, I will go park the boat over there, but I do not feel bad for going alone and having to do these things. If you have a problem with the rush at the ramp and dont like waiting, just leave earlier. Same with returning. Stay out an extra hour then go back, ramp usually clear or minimal traffic at that point. It is not a race to unload or load my boat, it is done right, safe and efficient. Cmon, guys its about fun, not getting mad at everyone else at the dock.

    I agree yes there are some extreme jackasses, as i have seen plenty. The funniest that comes to mind is a guy and a wife. He ties line on bow, she stands on pier holding. He backs up at 100 mph and slams on brakes, she refuses to let go of line and is pulled off end of pier. No one was hurt physically, however I do believe egos were bruised. Like I said if you hate the line or the guy like me, launching his boat by himself, go earlier, avoid the rush. Not that hard to do.
    Timmy8101 likes this.
  10. You bought a What?!

    You bought a What?! New Member

    Aug 29, 2010
    '78 Sea Ray 195
    Mercruiser 898
    I think tolerance should be added to the list. A lot of the people that slow up boat ramps are not inconsiderate, just inexperienced. People just need to be educated. Not by yelling at them but by going over to lend a hand. Kind words of advice and encouragement go a long way. As Offshore79 said,"its about fun, not getting mad at everyone else at the dock." I have been boating all my life and have many funny stories of boat ramp escapades and I have had my share of problems at the ramp. Is there anyone here who has never launched a boat with the plug out? I doubt it. We all have our moments of greatness as well as moments of stupidity. Some times the stress of trying to launch quickly (for an inexperienced boater) precipitates the moments of stupidity. As with everything, there are exceptions.

    I know this post is several years old, but it's message, asside from the "to power launch or not" debate, is still important today as it will be many years from now. For you new boaters out there. Take some time and watch how others do it and try to learn from them. You will see many different techniques. Take from them what will work best for your situation. Get yourself a routine so you don't have to think about what the next step is, you just do it. Try to be respectful of other boaters waiting in line. Most importantly (and this goes to everyone) have fun. If it isn't fun, then why do it?
  11. alwhite00

    alwhite00 Active Member

    May 31, 2010
    1997 250 Sundancer
    5.7 EFI/ BIII
    We were at the dock 2 weeks ago. It;s a single dock with a ramp on either side. There were 2 guys backing in so I was waiting. A guy with a Chevy and a guy with an escalade. (guess which one was done first) - The Chevy guy was done unloading and they pulled the boat to the end of the dock. (long enough for 2 boats on either side) He pulled his truck out and I pulled in and launched. I look over at escalade man and he's loading his boat on the ramp with the boat in the water.
    I went and parked my truck, Started the boat & left. Escalade man was still hauling coolers, sacks of snacks, wifes purse, loads of crap. When I was pulling away from the dock he was leaning over the stern tying a cooler to the swim deck and a 3rd guy was already backed in and pulling the truck away on our side, What an @$$hole.

  12. CV-23

    CV-23 New Member

    Jun 25, 2010
    Williamsport, PA
    1990 270 Sundancer, 2003 Ford Excursion 4x4 Limited
    454 merCruiser w/Bravo 1
    I've trailered different boats for over 30 years and the stories could go on for hours. I guess I'm spoiled because our ramp must be perfect....I float on the 270DA and my Excursion tires are still on dry land or in an inch or two. I only crank to snug to bow into the bow stop. My bunks place her dead center. It pays to have a trailer built for your specific model boat. The first time I loaded the cruiser, I almost hit my head on the bow pulpit and anchor....something I never had before! I have to admit leaving her docked for weeks at a time in a slip is nice. I've seen plenty of damaged bow gelcoat from excessive powerloading.....and a few bent props. We always time our launch and recovery during the less busy times & days of the week, Mike.

    Last edited: Dec 7, 2010
  13. Paladin

    Paladin New Member

    Aug 15, 2010
    SF Bay area
    1981 or 1982 Sea Ray SRV255 wide bodied sedan cruiser with flybridge
    454 Mercruiser, Merc Trans II transmission, TR outdrive
    I am amazed that the carpet covered wooden guides on the side of the trailer are not that popular
    Hey, I have those! The PO said they made loading much easier becasue he could see better where the trailer was, I guess.
    Mine's a triple axle trailer. I haven't done it yet, a newby, but I will be. My boat is a SRV 255, so it looks daunting to me.
    So do others find them unnecessary? Thanks! Paladin
  14. floriduramax1

    floriduramax1 Active Member

    Sep 19, 2010
    280DA, Magic Tilt triple axle, 2006 GMC 2500 D/A
    T4.3/ Alpha
    Old thread or not, still important. My Admiral cant handle the boat in the busy launch area nor can she (I will not allow) back down the steep ramp with the 280. Having said that, we have been boating together for 19 yrs and have a "system". The 280 changed the system a little especially when I back down and by the time it's floating off the trailer, I'm out of the truck and helping her tie to the dock. I run back to the truck and park. Literally run back to the boat (she has the engines running) and back away while the 2 or three on each side of us are still dinging with getting backed in! Now loading is the same, she can't drive with the trailer so I tie at the furthest point away and run for the truck, back in and run for the boat. By this time she is sitting in the truck (she can drive in a straight, I have to power load due to how shallow our ramps are (esp. at low tide). You can back to end of ramp and still will rip off the bow eye if you try to winch. She watches for a :thumbsup: and she SLOWLY (I now put in 4 low with the 280 so she don't get crazy with the throttle and throw gravel and dirt all over the boat when the turbo spools:smt021) pulls straight up and out of the way. We are very efficient. I see people throw up their hands and start cursing when they see us unload and her standing there with the boat tied at the end of the ramp while I go park the truck. And then I have to chuckle when I see that same guy jack knife and wind up crossways in the middle of a 3 wide ramp. Sorry for the long winded post, but around here our salt water ramps are always crowded and makes for great entertainment. Usually there are tons of cars blocking parking spaces just from the "ramp spectators", it's those people that piss me off more than the boating people that can't drive:smt013
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2010
  15. flarepoman

    flarepoman Banned

    Jul 18, 2008
    More idiots here to
    And for god sake load your pig on dry land.....
  16. floriduramax1

    floriduramax1 Active Member

    Sep 19, 2010
    280DA, Magic Tilt triple axle, 2006 GMC 2500 D/A
    T4.3/ Alpha
    The whole purpose of the boat is so I don't have to deal with "pigs"
  17. boltman

    boltman Active Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Flint/Swartz Creek MI, Ported in Whitehall/Montagu
    480 Sedan Bridge
    "Sea Ray's Best Boat Ever Made"
    700 hp MANS Diesels Thundering Cathedrals of Torque!!
    OMG Florida you are so right, we trailer and drop the 320 in the exact same way you do, the wife doesn't pull it off or load it on the trailer, but she will pull it out of the water, and here in michigan, there are some real HOt Higgins Lake STATE park we had the DNR shut down the ramp completely, just so we could put her in the water.... help when you buy the DNR a huge tray of donuts and pastries..hahaha People up here actually get mad and very angry, but with us, they just sit back a watch... cause they get mad at me and I'll dump their ass'es right back in the water... Help when we have the F450.. But God I hate people that are so Damn dumb that they get mad.... We saw a boat once land right in the pickup bed.... he power loaded it and never hooked the bow eye up and the truck wouldn't pull it out.. so I told him to hook up the bow eye and have the boat's motor push the truck out..... Ahhh He forgot to hook the bow eye up..... it was awesome....
    Wanna see a great pic..... it's where our trialer fell off the concrete ramp, that was shorter then the dock itself.... we had to have a wrecker pick up the trailer and pull out while on the boom..... it was bad... only cost 70.00 tow bill though...
  18. Boatsteve

    Boatsteve New Member

    Dec 12, 2010
    Ill River
    1974 Boatel 47 Islander
    1997 Searay 27 Dancer
    1985 Hurricane 18
    454,s and one 140HP
    Yes I have wood guides and a sticker on the boat to line up for full loaded position, I do n ot power load ramp time can be 2 minute if I hurry
  19. Kiwi Graham

    Kiwi Graham New Member

    Oct 30, 2010
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Sundancer 315 2002
    Hunninbird 958c GPS
    Raymarine radar

    Sits out of the water on a tripple axel
    Twin 220hp 4.3 Mercruisers w/Bravo I Legs
    The wife and I have it sorted, its the biggest boat we have owned but somehow the easiest to load and unload.

    I back it to the water jump out and hand bow and stern lines to my wife standing on the pontoon. Disconnect the safety chain and back her in to water just before the truck tyres (Toyota Landcruiser VX100) get wet I hit the brakes and she slides off nice and easy.

    I jump out and help tie her off as far down the pontoon as possible then go and park the rig.

    Coming back is the reverse.... back the trailer into the water (truck stays dry) and (the trailer has carpet covered runners and location poles either side) jump aboard the boat, my wife get her close then stands at the front (side) of the trailer and I drive her onto the trailer waiting for the hand up to say she is all the way there. My wife then clicks on the safety chain off goes the motors and up come the legs then is off for a wash down.

    As long as the boat is near central she seems to centralise herself very well, I not yet had to back off and go again.

    When we first had her we used to have a small audience but not anymore, they get far more amusement watching the other trailer boat dramas that happen on a daily basis.
  20. mtbulls

    mtbulls New Member

    Apr 24, 2011
    2002 200 BR
    5.0 Mercruiser
    Old thread but I'm new here and enjoy reading these type of posts.

    My wife and I are fairly efficient. Generally takes us about 1-2 minutes to launch. Helps that my wife can back a trailer fairly well but doesn't get in a hurry. Once we're in the water and have outdrive dropped in the water, fire it up and she backs up and slams brakes. Away I go and she parks the truck and trailer.

    Retrieving is a little more challenging as we have a bunk trailer with no guide-ons. The hull hangs over the wheel wells some so it's easy to get pushed over onto the wheel wells if a considerate fellow boater hits us with a wake or the wind is up.

    So because of this, my wife will back all the way in to wet the bunks and then pull out until the rear tire of the trailer is half in the water. Once she's there, I will ease onto the trailer. Keeping the trailer shallow at first keeps the keel deep in the bunks and keeps the boat from being able to get pushed over onto the wheel wells. Then once we are centered she eases in deeper with the trailer and I give it a little power, about 600 rpms (guessing here but very little power). Essentially she backs back under me while I use the boat motor to keep the boat in place while the trailer backs under. If we do it right, it all happens fairly seamlessly. When it works well, takes a couple minutes from the time the trailer first hits the water, to when I hop out and hook the bow line.

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