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Wussername

Are you a Thruster?

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I was watching a boat moor the other day.

There was a thrust here, a thrust thrust there, here a thrust, there a thrust, everywhere a thrust thrust.

And he was still in the middle of the broad!

Too far out to ask the audience, couldn't phone a friend. (No signal)

Has the Thruster taken away basic boat handling skills?

Sometimes you can hear them like an over excited egg beater, achieving, well it has to be said..............not a lot.

Sometimes all that is required is a little nudge in forward, with the throttle to bring the stern round. Sometimes in a strong wind or tide that may be the sensible thing to do.

I have never used one, never had the need. Perhaps I am too old for all that thrusting malarky!

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Back on the gt.ouse the guy moored next to me bought a nimbus with bow thrusters and made an ar5e of every mooring using them despite the fact he had beed driving a fixed prop boat into the same spot for years without them, had a new toy so had to use them.

I can see how useful they can be but people do get too dependant on them and they give minimal manouvering compared to a well helmed boat without.

And WTF is stern thrusters all about??? theres a prop and rudder at that end surely.

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Please do behave Wusser, with a thread title like that you'll give the Pesky Mods a migraine  :naughty:

 

Grace

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Have to say that bow thrusters should be fitted to every hire boat. Yes, experience allows you to use the boat's propulsion very effectively but experience is what those new to hiring (or those just rusty) have not got. It gets them out of awkward situations and I am sure avoids much damage to those they are coming alongside to. 

 

They do get overused but overall I think they are a good addition especially in tight marina situations.

 

Regards

David

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Please do behave Wusser, with a thread title like that you'll give the Pesky Mods a migraine  :naughty:

 

Grace

 

Only a migraine Grace pmsl ................

 

Charlie

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I really don't think it matters whether you use a thruster.a paddle or an old bucket to get into the mooring provided it's done slowly safely and without damage. As for making a pigs ear of it well everyone has to learn everything sometime.

I remember admiring the skill of the helmsman of a twin engine fishing trip boat bringing his boat into a side mooring in a gap just a bit longer than the boat in a very crowded marina. It was a joy to admire his skill using each engine in dependantly no bow thruster needed there

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Ok you lot i've taken two paracetamol, and no migraine....yet! :naughty:  However, I had a boat this year with bow and stern thrusters. I used them very occasionaly untill we moored at the Waveney River Centre. I picked a nice mooring or so I thought that faces the entrance to the centre. Sadly the ladies informed me there was no cleat to tie the port stern rope too. This is where the thrusters came into their own.by pressing the switch to activate both port thrusters I was able to assist the ladies move the boat sideways to a point where there were two cleats to tie up too.

 

I had never had a boat with them till Silver Harmony and Broadway which had both end s with thrusters. I believe they are quite dear to install. so maybe not for all boats but certainly for as many as possible, for us older crews, they are a boon to have.

 

 

cheers Iain.

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Please do behave Wusser, with a thread title like that you'll give the Pesky Mods a migraine  :naughty:

 

Grace

 

Hi Grace,

At first I thought it was about toilet humour :naughty:

 

Regards

Alan

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Iain, I'm glad you were able to activate both port thrusters with two ladies on board, it was probably needed  ;)  :naughty:

 

Grace

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We have a bow thruster fitted and at times it is useful for getting into tight mooring locations, but it is an aid.

 

When I take any of our new owners out on their initiation training we practice mooring with and without the bow thruster, the reason for this is of course is that the bow thruster could fail. This did infact happen to one of owners holding station waiting to fuel up at Broom's.

 

We are currently on our fourth one in service, but since 2011 we have always had a refurbished bow thruster ready to ship to Brundall if required.

 

What I hate to see or even hear is when a bow thruster is used for extensive periods of time rather than a couple of seconds.

There also sees to be the practice of using them to aid steering, which to me seems to be a waste of all the battery storage you have built up on your journey.

 

Regards

Alan

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Alan, if they are hydraulic then not such an issue for battery drainage . On a general note, I used Bow thrusters for the first time this year, and also due to Thunder being equipped with them will have the option to do so from now on if needs be. However I do like  the use of  the throttle as that's what I am used to and also still get a "satisfied" feel if in a tricky spot . I think that  if they are fitted and someone (especially first timers) are comfortable and feel less stress using them then that's got to  be a good thing and potentially reduce bumps and scrapes ... On other hand if you make it too easy  then  less likely to learn to do so without

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Bet you use them all the time once you are onboard.....!

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I've even seen, and heard, people steering down the Ant using the thruster, totally un-necessary.

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Matt, My excuse is that I will do so for a while.. purely out of courtesy to my fellow users you understand for safety purposes , unfortunately  I will then likely  get lazy and may  have to continue ...  

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If a boat has thrusters I’ll use them, it’s a nice toy to do some impressive things with - especially if those you have fitted are of decent power – I agree therefore they are handy to have especially for hirers, but I think more tuition needs to be given in what you can expect from them and what would be asking too much of them.

 

Despite so many new hire boats having them fitted many of the hirers I have seen have no real knowledge of how best to use them – for example trying to leaving a mooring into the wind - many a thruster has not got the beans to shift several tonnes of boat away from a bank while being pushed on by the wind so the boat is no more aided than if it did not have such fitted.

 

Then you’ve got hydraulic powered thrusters.  These are powered by a hydraulic pump connected to the engine. When you need the thrusters most most – engine at tick over – they are not being supplied with enough ‘juice’ from the hydraulic pump to be fully effective, taking the boat out of gear and putting some revs on suddenly makes them come to life but this process is often missed by hirers.

 

Then you’ve got boats with boat bow and stern thrusters – some electric sometime they are hydraulically powered such as those on Broadsman etc. Brinks Rhapsody had electric bow and stern thrusters but the stern thruster was not of the same power as that of the bow, so you could not actually leave a berth sideways because the bow would always drift away faster than the stern. It took some pulses on the bow thruster with constant thrust from the stern to achieve a sideways departure or arrival.

 

What was nice however was being able to use both with the propeller and rudder while using the thrusters giving thrust from different directions simultaneously (bow and stern) so the boat while also powering forward or back the boat could be made to move diagonally or spin, which put on a nice show if nothing else.

 

Now in the private world of boats these thrusters I believe are pretty rubbish – anything you can’t use for very long before it thermally fuses to protect itself yet costs several thousand pounds seems just insane.  They are, effectively large starter motors consuming huge amount of amps to work.   When one looks into other systems you can get brushless motors with 100% duty cycle and fully variable speed operation which would make much more sense when you need just a bit of thrust or a great deal.

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Have just gained a thruster for the first time in 8 years of boating and it is brilliant.

 

have not had to use it for more than 2 seconds but in that 2 seconds you can change the whole dynamic of the maneuver. 

 

to my mind it is more about stopping the bow going where you don't want it to than it is making it go where you do.

 

Fantastic for stern mooring with the wind on the bow, no more bow turning round and messing things up.

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We got both

Are they necessary? 

No, definitely not, we got them when we upgraded the boat and wanted them 

Do they make you lazy? 

Yes, but who cares I am on leisure time

Do they work? 

Yes,  and work well, they are electric have their own batteries and when you use them you move, no ifs or buts - if they don't they are the wrong size and type

So it's all just choice,  different folk have different ideas on boats from the most basic to the most elaborate. 

You pays your money .......

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I had a bow thruster on my last boat.  Didn't use it too much, but coming in to a mooring only a couple of feet longer than the boat it was great.  Nose in , helm over to bring the stern in and a bit of thrust to stop the bow from swinging out. Plus as others have said, it was nice to be able to make the boat go sideways!  Entertaining for the gawkers.

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Bow thrusters are a great bit of technology and nobody should be shamed into not using them by the opinions of others. If using thrusters avoids one vessel clouting another then that's a 100% winner in my book.

 

Incidentally, there are neither bow nor stern thrusters on my boat as it has twin-engines. If, however, thrusters were to be fitted, I would feel quite happy to use them should I feel that the situation demanded such assistance. What I wouldn't do is look for the approval of other people on the system before thrusters were deployed (early morning and late night mooring excepted, naturally).

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I find our bowthruster very handy, it is electric and a few seconds use is normally all thats required, a bit longer if doing the full 360 but in 5 years ive never had it trip out on me.

Im not sure about needing a stern thruster as im usually pretty good and controling the stern with the rudder, coupled with the bow thruster i can more or less crab sideways.....but then I dont have a stern thruster and have never used one so cant really comment

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I occasionally resort to the use of a bow thruster on my halfdecker, when I've misjudged the strength of the wind and have come up just short of the mooring I intended to sail gracefully in to. My 'thruster' consists of her majesty kneeling on the foredeck with a paddle.  The view I have of this spectacle, from the cockpit, is but a mere bonus :)

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Thrusters can make quite an annoying noise although it's less annoying than the sound of banging. I think twin screwing has to be the best option.

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The reason that hubby and I like to have bow thrusters available is just to give us a bit extra control and reassurance when arriving or departing from a mooring. As there's only the two of us we don't have spare crew to get off and take the ropes, one person front and one person back. Now I know there are other people who solo helm and manage the whole lot themselves, but it really helps for me to know that while hubby is dealing with the stern, if the bow starts to drift I can bring it back to where it needs to be - I'm always at the helm to moor up or to leave the moorings while hubby deals with the ropes.

 

Admittedly having now had more experience I hardly used them on our last trip but would still prefer to know I have that option.

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