docking...

Discussion in 'Newbie Lounge - NEW' started by DouglasMB, Apr 23, 2012.

  1. DouglasMB

    DouglasMB New Member

    131
    Apr 22, 2012
    Eastern NC
    1981 sea ray 255 amberjack
    2 185 mercruiser
    ok please tell me that docking the boat will not be as difficult as the simulator....
     
  2. Pietro

    Pietro Active Member

    Nov 1, 2009
    Rome, Italy
    1990 390 EC
    3208 375HP CAT
    I don't know if it will be easier, but it will be "different" for sure! :grin:
     
  3. KarenS

    KarenS New Member

    738
    Oct 10, 2011
    We live in Sewell, NJ and Summer in Wildwood, NJ
    1992 270DA in need of some toss pillows to add that "something special"
    Mercruiser 7.4
    Rule 1:
    NO YELLING
    Rule 2:
    Slow like a Pro, not fast like an ass
    Rule 3:
    NO YELLING
     
  4. Bob & Sue

    Bob & Sue Active Member

    Jun 3, 2011
    Browns Point Tacoma WA
    Sold 1999 270DA Sundancer
    5.7l Mercuiser
    Try going out during the week with someone and spend several hours docking from all diffferent directions. Just get in and practice like stated
    NO YELLING
    SLOWWWW
    you can always make a second approach for free
    Fiberglass NOT FREE
     
  5. Pachanga Boy

    Pachanga Boy Member

    359
    Aug 25, 2011
    Cincinnati
    270 Sundancer 1988
    twin 4.3L
    only thing I'll add to what others have said is to try your hardest to ignore any audience that might be gawking at you hoping for a show. it's all about practice and patience. and unless your similuator has throttles and a wheel and is complete first person or vice versa your boat has a mouse and keyboard I don't think you can draw a direct line between the two.
     
  6. northern

    northern Well-Known Member

    Jan 17, 2007
    West coast Vancouver to Alaska
    380 Aft Cabin 1989 GPS and Charts by Nobeltec
    Twin 454 strait shaft
    With small boats or even big ones if you put the engine in neutral before you change wheel position things will work a bit better. Do not touch the trottle unless you need power to avoid things or over come wind and current. That is my system. I was watching 36 foot rental sail boat being returned to a dock. BANG, SCRAPE Person at the dock said good thing they put training paint on the boats.
     
  7. Tonka Boater

    Tonka Boater Active Member

    Jun 11, 2008
    Wayzata, MN
    1997 232 BR
    502 MAG, Bravo I
    Real life will be harder than the simulator because of the unknown variables each time you attempt to dock. Get to know your boat and get a good feel for how she handles. Follow all of the above advice and practice, practice, practice.
     
  8. moparlvr4406

    moparlvr4406 Active Member

    Jun 29, 2011
    Lake Monroe Indiana Fourwinds H31
    1985 340DA
    1966 SRV180
    1960 Sea Ray 600
    (2) 1963 808 Cruise-a-bouts
    twin 350hp Crusaders 4.0 Onan /
    Merc 950 SS
    Merc 650
    Merc 1100
    twin Johnson 40
    if you yell loud enough doesn't it act like a bow thruster :huh:
     
  9. KarenS

    KarenS New Member

    738
    Oct 10, 2011
    We live in Sewell, NJ and Summer in Wildwood, NJ
    1992 270DA in need of some toss pillows to add that "something special"
    Mercruiser 7.4
    lol
     
  10. Gofirstclass

    Gofirstclass Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 20, 2010
    Tri Cities, WA
    1995 550 Sedan Bridge,
    2010 Boston Whaler 130 Super Sport,
    1981 Boston Whaler 130 Sport,
    CAT 3406C's, 580hp.
    The suggestion to practice on a nice, calm, mid-week day is a good one. Spectators only add to the stress level. A couple of things to keep in mind.....

    -there's no shame in taking a missed approach. Pilots do it all the time and it's much cheaper than fixing gelcoat.
    -don't approach a dock any faster than you're willing to hit it.
    -as you approach a dock/slip/fairway, see what the wind/current are doing and picture in your mind what effect they will have on your boat.
    -If you plan your approach with the wind/current in mind, they can be your friend and make your docking easier.
    -if you have a fairway to go down to get to your slip, use the full width of it....especially if there's a wind or current to contend with.
    -as mentioned above, use only your shifters, not the wheel or throttles.
    -as you approach your slip/fairway/dock, make sure your wheel is centered, then don't touch it.
    -spend 90% of your time in neutral. Give the boat a command (by using the shifters sparingly), then give the boat a chance to respond.
    -boats aren't like a car...they take time to respond to a change of direction command. Give them time to react and change direction.
    -if you have guests on board, have them sit quietly while you're docking.
    -your cell phone will ALWAYS ring at the worst possible time when you're docking....ignore it and questions from passengers. Don't let yourself get distracted.
    -nobody jumps off the boat to the dock....people should STEP OFF only after the boat is alongside the dock and has stopped moving.
    -take the time to get your lines and fenders set before you start docking.
    -if you have a slip for the boat, keep your dock lines on the dock, already preadjusted for your boat.
    -PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE.....practice makes perfect.
     
  11. DouglasMB

    DouglasMB New Member

    131
    Apr 22, 2012
    Eastern NC
    1981 sea ray 255 amberjack
    2 185 mercruiser
    great info thank you so much... the guy that owns the boat yard where I will have my boat delieverd said I could buy some of his time to take me out to show me the area and some trouble spots to avoid... maybe i should pay for an extra couple hours just to work on docking in my slip. He did say something about showing me how to dock the boat without ever touching the wheel.
     
  12. Tonka Boater

    Tonka Boater Active Member

    Jun 11, 2008
    Wayzata, MN
    1997 232 BR
    502 MAG, Bravo I
    Awesome advice....pretty much closes the topic :)
     
  13. KarenS

    KarenS New Member

    738
    Oct 10, 2011
    We live in Sewell, NJ and Summer in Wildwood, NJ
    1992 270DA in need of some toss pillows to add that "something special"
    Mercruiser 7.4
    I think I'm going to print this out and hang it in the boat lol
    Thanks!!
     
  14. Pkunze

    Pkunze New Member

    78
    Sep 14, 2011
    Lake Winni
    2013 Yamaha Waverunner XLT1800

    Previous boats
    250CR Monterey Cruiser
    190 Stingray
    V-drives 8.1 Horizons
    I upgraded from a single IO to DA 340 with 2/8.1's. Everyone says twins are easier... they are all right. took the last two weekends practicing docking and just getting use to the boat. the marina I purchased from sent someone out with me to show me the lines (ropes), he was an x navy guy, a real big help, I strongly suggest it.

    Also I used the simulator, real life seems a bit easier but then again I can't just close the browser when I screw up on the lake...
     
  15. Pyrojodge

    Pyrojodge Active Member TECHNICAL Contributor

    May 1, 2011
    Lake Erie Ohio
    1989 Sea Ray 340 DA
    twin 454 Mercs
    GFC did a great job of explaining the procedure...

    Never panic... it will only cause more problems
    Only go as fast as you are willing to hit something
    YOU have to drive the boat! Not the wind/current.
    Never trust a dock hand to do what you expect them to do!
    Don't yell at the admiral if she misses an upright. It is a two way street. The captain makes the 1st mate look good/ the 1st mate makes the captain look good.
    Learn the lingo so you can explain what you want done in advance of getting in a tight spot. Never assume anything!

    Take your time when you are learning how to drive. By owning a single then a twin screw the twins are magical once you learn to use them.

    Keep us posted on your progress!:thumbsup:
     
  16. dpmulvey

    dpmulvey New Member

    Dec 19, 2007
    Homeport: Charles City, VA
    1999/2007 330 Sundancer Hardtop.
    6.2 Merc Horixons
    1.5:1 Velvet Drives
    I take a day out or work in the middle of the week at the beginning of every season to do nothing but practice docking. I spend a good 4-6 hours on it. I use my slip, the gas dock, the pumpout dock, other marinas, private docks, nose in, stern to........I make mental and pen and paper notes of my mistakes.

    At the end of the day, I'm mentally exhausted.

    I for one always have to use my throttles to swing the boat fast enough into my slip. It's a tight fairway. I've seen others with different boats not have to. Both work.

    You have I/O's. Your experience is going to be different than straight inboards.

    Good luck.
     
  17. 320Bob

    320Bob Active Member

    Nov 2, 2009
    AZ
    2012 Chaparral 267 SSX Sold
    Boatless
    Eventhough I am now a single engine use-the-wheel stern drive boater, what helped me dock better with the twins on my old 320 was what Captain Phil told me to do when docking stern in. Face the stern of the boat when coming in and work the shifters from behind you. You want the boat to move to the port while backing in, bump the starboard shifter and vice versa to move to the starboard. It took me virtually no time to get use to this and you should try it if your shifters are reasonably postioned as mine were on the 320.
     
  18. marysamberjack

    marysamberjack New Member

    29
    Aug 27, 2011
    long island
    2005 270 amberjack
    350 merc bravo III
    when i got my boat last year.the first thing i did was spend a long time practicing backing.
     
  19. AKBASSKING

    AKBASSKING Active Member

    Apr 13, 2008
    SE Alaska Summer/Columbia River winter
    1988 Yacht Fisher
    Twin 375hp Cat 3208 T/A
    This was the BEST piece of advice I got when I started docking:

    Go as fast as you want to hit the dock!
     
  20. DouglasMB

    DouglasMB New Member

    131
    Apr 22, 2012
    Eastern NC
    1981 sea ray 255 amberjack
    2 185 mercruiser
    the twin is what I am starting with... just kinda how it worked out...
     

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