Experts at Your Marine Parts Depot Show How to Be A Small Space Guru

Raritan Engineering Company your marine parts depot specialists would like to share with you these topics we thought would be of interest to you this month regarding how to become a guru of moving your boat in small spaces.

Your marine parts depot says, my home dock, assigned by my friend, the local Harbour Master, has, by virtue of its difficulty, made me a better boater. I have no choice but to try to hone my skills on every docking. The ‘HM’ expresses no interest in my anxiety level (or my crew’s), nor in how many close calls we have had — as long as I actually can get in and out, then he is happy, and for the finesse which this has added to my technique I am grateful.

Step number two: the next, and probably least significant conundrum of this docking entails that first turn to port, to head more or less north, between the two rows of docked boats. The prevailing wind tends to push the boat through a much wider arc than available space permits. We overcome this using the same techniques as for the more exacting maneuvers coming up in a few moments. 

The boat must go very slowly, often coasting, more rarely even using reverse gear to take off headway. Slower speeds allow sharper turns. Start the turn early, knowing that the boat slides and skids as it yaws

Go to http://raritaneng.com/catagory-pages/replacement-parts and see how your marine parts depot specialists know that now that you have slowed down and are about to make the turn, you may need to give the boat a little shove, with the wheel hard over, using more engine power than available at just idle speed. The extra power gives you ‘steering authority’.

Step number three: Back off on the power as soon as possible, and make your way between the two rows of boats. You may have to over-rotate, sometimes by a surprising amount, to compensate for the gradually dissipating momentum which wants to make the boat skid wide through the turn, and to counteract the force of the wind, which is now more or less abeam.

You can find more information as well as get assistance on marine parts depot and on how to move your boat in small spaces at Raritan Engineering.

Step number four: The next corner to negotiate is just the same as the first, except worse. Quarters are getting closer, and a novice or unskilled boater may, even though he felt comfortable making the first turn, now experience unease, even though the general principles have not changed.

My boat’s stern swings to port, in reverse gear, due to ‘asymmetric propeller thrust’. A minority of boats have sterns which swing to starboard. The phenomenon goes by several names, one of which is ‘walking’.

Step number five: By this stage, I need not say that getting through a narrow gap, and then turning the boat sharply into its deep alcove, with many other boats tied up nearby, and the wind howling, is not a trivial exercise.

Three final points: (i) There is quite often a point of no return, a place beyond which there is no practical way to go into reverse gear and back out into open water. Close quarters, wind, reverse gear — these can be an impossible combination.

Conclusion — Close quarters maneuvering has no conclusion. I find this docking easier in October than I did in May, and I hope and expect to find it easier in ten years than I do now. It’s never perfect, and I’m always learning.

So don’t forget these helpful tips on how to move your boat in small spaces. 1) first turn to port, to head more or less north, between the two rows of docked boats;  and 2) getting through a narrow gap, and then turning the boat sharply into its deep alcove, with many other boats tied up nearby, and the wind howling, is not a trivial exercise.

Click here and see how Raritan Engineering has more information on marine parts depot and how to move your boat in small spaces.

via Close Quarters Maneuvering