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Beginners Mistakes


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Always moor against the tide not with it, you'll approach slower with better steering control and better stopping.

Boats don't steer in reverse, a burst in forward is needed to get the back swinging then carry on reversing.

Try reversing in a quiet bit of river to see which way it goes, single prop boats will have a sideways kick depending on prop rotation, it can be helpful.

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Check each day what time low water is irrespective of whether you are going through Yarmouth and remember that it happens progressively later the further you go up river. This will help you keep in mind whether you are travelling with or against the tide and therefore which way to come in to a mooring as suggested by Smoggy. Even at places such as St Benet's a mooring quite a way from Yarmouth, it is far easier to come in against the tide. 

It's also a good idea to have a flag or burgee on the boat so you can keep an eye on which way the wind is blowing. At times it might pay you to moor against the wind, if it is stronger than the tide.

If things go wrong, the slower you are going, the less damage you'll do.

Plan ahead for moorings and bridges and know where they are, especially if you need to take windscreens or roofs down for a bridge.

When mooring make sure you know where everyone is and let them know your plan of action. Which side you intend to moor and which side they should put the ropes out at the ready. Make sure they are ready with the ropes as you approach the mooring, not when you are 5 secs away from mooring up.

Keep the ropes tidy after they have been used to prevent trip hazards but also to ensure they are ready for next use. All too often you see people trying to use ropes that are still knotted or tied off to a cleat from the last mooring.

Above all else my rule is lifejackets when out on deck.

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Just remember the golden rule , when mooring and leaving a mooring , go slowly , no one is perfect and nudges happen but if going slow then the chance of damage or getting being caused is greatly reduced .

a good hint is to put a bit of masking tape on the top of helm wheel when the steering is set straight ahead easily discoverable when travelling along the river, that way when leaving a mooring you will know where the rudder is pointing ergo preventing you side swiping your neighbour when leaving a stern on mooring 

 

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Hi Guy Some that haven't been mentioned are,! all boats have defective hand brakes when you stop the boat will still be moved by the tide or wind or both have seen many people stop to see what/where only to find the boat is moving and panic,    don't tie the mooring ropes to tight allow some slack as the boat will move up or down depending on tide the nearier to Yarmouth the higher lower it goes,   helming a boat is not difficult it just needs a little coordination and when mooring just do everything slowly, hope you have a lovely time and weather stays good for you,   perhaps next year you come you will find May/June is the best time of the year weather wise,  oh and a box of kitchen matches are handy to have. John

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Don’t plan to moor in a particular spot at a particular time. Chances are you won’t. 
Fill up with water every day. 
when going slow you lose steering unlike a car. So if in a queue or approaching traffic hang back a bit.
A little burst of throttle will turn boat faster then back off 

you can’t steer going backwards

don’t forget tv Ariel

you got more battery power than you think

journeys take longer than you think and sunset can creep up on you

The back of boat will turn first like a forklift. It don’t turn, the boat won’t. 
 

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8 hours ago, Smoggy said:

Always moor against the tide not with it, you'll approach slower with better steering control and better stopping.

Boats don't steer in reverse, a burst in forward is needed to get the back swinging then carry on reversing.

Try reversing in a quiet bit of river to see which way it goes, single prop boats will have a sideways kick depending on prop rotation, it can be helpful.

It's not just the tide to watch out for. In some of the upper reaches I find the wind affects the boat more. If you can't see the tide moving, might be worth looking out for signs of wind too.

Also, the yard are bound to tell you the boat steers just like a car. In terms of direction, that us true. But they are much slower to turn. Wind can also affect steering so don't assume that where you think straight is will always be. It's something you get a feel for. As others have said, go slow and you'll be fine.

Have a lovely time.

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If you check out Richardson's Boating Holidays YouTube channel they have some really good videos to watch before you come on holiday. Well worth a watch. I think I read somewhere that you're not coming until next summer? Plenty of time to spend the winter watching all the many videos online.

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Most accidents occur getting on and off a boat.

Falling in.

Broken legs, broken ankles, strained ankles. And so on.

Fending off boats with legs and arms and hands.

Why? 

Because people do not read or listen to those who offer or are employed to give advice.

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Don't try to stop boat by holding onto rope too much. 

Wrap around mooring post and let it take the effort.

Seen too many people (mainly women but blokes tend to send the wife out) trying to hold on to a craft travelling way too fast. Ends in divorce, tears, shouting or water skiing.

If you can and the boat doesn't have a cleat in the middle, I generally have the crew exit with both fore and aft ropes in hand.

If there is a cleat in the middle, use that.

This bits me because I have a bath tub but when I moor I aim for the hull just behind where I sit to touch. That way I can still hear the crew (wife) tell me what to do. Too many come in too far bow forward with only one rope and the stern just drifts around. Remember the bit about both ropes? this is when it pays off.

Pump the bog before you need to. 

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20 minutes ago, Cheesey69 said:

I generally have the crew exit with both fore and aft ropes in hand.

This is excellent advice. If you don't have the luxury of multiple crew and there are just two of you, this is the way to do it. You will find that 95 per cent of the time the wind will blow away from the mooring. Wife holding bow rope, stern in river. Domestic, seen it countless times. We always try to organise it so that Mrs Nog is stationed on the side of the boat we intend to moor (having checked tide) with both ropes in hand. Step carefully ashore and you have immediate control of the boat. Secure as quickly as possible mindful of safety. 

Agree about the toilet too! As we go out in winter don't leave it until it's too late and yards are closed for the weekend!!! 

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.....just to add to the above. Mrs Nog will invariably turn a rope around a mooring post just for added security until we are safely moored. I always put springs on too. It only take a couple of minutes and means you don't have to faff about adjusting ropes and can leave the boat safely. Even in less tidal areas it keeps the boat snug against the bank especially if it's windy. We'll worth it IMHO :default_biggrin:

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10 minutes ago, NorfolkNog said:

....just to add to the above. Mrs Nog will invariably turn a rope around a mooring post just for added security until we are safely moored. I always put springs on too. It only take a couple of minutes and means you don't have to faff about adjusting ropes and can leave the boat safely. Even in less tidal areas it keeps the boat snug against the bank especially if it's windy. We'll worth it IMHO :default_biggrin:

Yes, definitely worth the effort. My wife was a non-swimmer and therefore afraid of the gap that would sometimes develop as the boat drifted out. The spring line helped to keep the back alongside the quay. Less thumping of the boat against the quay at night too, when you're mid-sleep. Funnily enough, I first learned that from one of those Hoseasons handbooks back in the 70s, which recommended it. 

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1 hour ago, Cheesey69 said:

have the crew exit with both fore and aft ropes in hand.

I do the mooring up and, once I am ashore with both ropes, the other half leaves the helm and comes ashore to help. On a couple of occasions he accidentally nudged the gear lever forward as he left the helm which left me trying to hold the boat still while he dashed back to sort it! Awkward if you have a boat close in front.........:facepalm:

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30 minutes ago, vanessan said:

I do the mooring up and, once I am ashore with both ropes, the other half leaves the helm and comes ashore to help. On a couple of occasions he accidentally nudged the gear lever forward as he left the helm which left me trying to hold the boat still while he dashed back to sort it! Awkward if you have a boat close in front.........:facepalm:

Engine off perhaps? Gear lever creep is not uncommon, for whatever reason, even I have done it, in my formative years!

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2 minutes ago, JennyMorgan said:

Engine off perhaps? Gear lever creep is not uncommon, for whatever reason, even I have done it, in my formative years!

Interesting one as most advice says not to turn the engine off until safely moored. Can see the situation where the mooring goes wrong and the helm is not able to get ashore due to boat drifting out and therefore helm needs to return to steer the boat back in. Always a slight chance that the boat doesn't restart. My throttle control has a button you can push in to disengage the drive and allow you to rev the engine, thus even if the throttle is nudged only the engine revs increase. I personally like to see at least two ropes tied off before turning off the engine, then set about adjusting the ropes and setting any springs that might be needed.

From what I've seen, the throttle is most likely to be nudged when people are rushing or panicking due to a hasty, or poorly planned mooring. Plan, prepare and don't rush always helps. 

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5 minutes ago, Meantime said:

From what I've seen, the throttle is most likely to be nudged when people are rushing or panicking due to a hasty, or poorly planned mooring. Plan, prepare and don't rush always helps. 

Very true but I suspect that we have all seen boats surging ahead with someone on the bank trying to stop it! 

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30 minutes ago, JennyMorgan said:

Engine off perhaps? Gear lever creep is not uncommon, for whatever reason, even I have done it, in my formative years!

Engine never goes off until we are safely moored up. This scenario has occurred twice in 38 years but won’t happen again! (Or there will be blood shed 😉)

 

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