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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2019
    Posts
    26

    Default Reversing with outboard in well

    My Shrimper 19 has a 5hp Tohatsu in the outboard well. It has plenty of poke and I'm very happy with the engine (apart from the noise). My problem is getting on or off my very tight marina mooring using reverse. The motor is mounted alongside the rudder to starboard, and I only have steering in reverse at a fair old speed. At lower speeds the boat goes backwards with a slight sheer to port but the rudder seems to have no effect, even when I also steer with the engine (limited by the well). Am I condemned to warp myself on and off my finger pontoon whenever there's a breeze, or is there a trick I'm missing?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Home: Kent. Boat: Chichester
    Posts
    43,538

    Default Re: Reversing with outboard in well

    Quote Originally Posted by johnmcc View Post
    My Shrimper 19 has a 5hp Tohatsu in the outboard well. It has plenty of poke and I'm very happy with the engine (apart from the noise). My problem is getting on or off my very tight marina mooring using reverse. The motor is mounted alongside the rudder to starboard, and I only have steering in reverse at a fair old speed. At lower speeds the boat goes backwards with a slight sheer to port but the rudder seems to have no effect, even when I also steer with the engine (limited by the well). Am I condemned to warp myself on and off my finger pontoon whenever there's a breeze, or is there a trick I'm missing?
    One thing to realise is that the boat will steer well one way and less well the other way. Hardly at all when trying to go astern to starboard with an engine on the starboard side.

    You can learn to take advantage of the effect when turning in the direction in which the offset outboard assists the turn and how to minimise the effect when its working against you

    I find that the trick when turning while going astern against the wishes of the engine ( in my case to port ) is to get some way on as quickly as possible then to throttle down to idle while executing the turn
    Turning the other way ( in my case to starboard , but in your case to port ) is easy because the engine will power you round the turn.


    Be aware of the effects when turning while going ahead too. One way , ( to port in your case ) the engine will power you round a tight turn whereas the other way it will oppose the turn unless you throttle down.

    Experiment and practise .......... remember also that the wind will also try to blow the bow to leeward. Your long keel won't be helping either. ... my twin keels don't have quite the same directional stability
    Last edited by VicS; 20-08-19 at 09:25.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    Home - Sothampton, Boat - Gosport
    Posts
    10,071

    Default Re: Reversing with outboard in well

    If it's any comfort you aren't alone

    Jissel (24ft bilge keeler with inboard diesel is, err, wayward when going astern. The rudder has no effect until I'm going fast enough that any effort to turn almost rips the tiller out of my hands.

    I also recall a review of a long keeler (Warrior, IIRC) as a liveaboard. "What's she like going astern?" "Oh, we let her do what she wants and pretend we meant it" That's pretty much my approach.
    Steve
    Never believe anything until it has been officially denied.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Essex
    Posts
    22,608

    Default Re: Reversing with outboard in well

    I doubt if the outboard is the source of the 'problem', which is a characteristic of many boats, though it may be suffering from lack of initial bite. As said, bags of welly, and if it is moving the wrong way, cut into neutral.
    Far away is near at hand in images of elsewhere

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Essex
    Posts
    22,608

    Default Re: Reversing with outboard in well

    Quote Originally Posted by Stemar View Post
    Jissel (24ft bilge keeler with inboard diesel is, err, wayward when going astern. The rudder has no effect until I'm going fast enough that any effort to turn almost rips the tiller out of my hands.
    Most boats will do this, which is why it is more seamanlike to stand astride the tiller, as well as being much easier.
    Far away is near at hand in images of elsewhere

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Staffy Cher
    Posts
    2,757

    Default Re: Reversing with outboard in well

    Not trying to be clever but have you tried doing it the other way round.

    Ie get yourself some room to get control in reverse and back into your mourning so that you can go out forwards.

    __________________
    Sailing in a windy Scotland www.youtube.com/watch?v=0_-AJqWB9Ks

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2019
    Posts
    26

    Default Re: Reversing with outboard in well

    I do reverse on to my mooring because reversing out is even more of a nightmare!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Boat Orwell - Me Norwich
    Posts
    8,052

    Default Re: Reversing with outboard in well

    Quote Originally Posted by VicS View Post
    Experiment and practise .......... remember also that the wind will also try to blow the bow to leeward. Your long keel won't be helping either. ... my twin keels don't have quite the same directional stability
    +1

    Also consider whether the well allows the outboard to be turned to some extent.

    I had similar problems with a Hurley 22 I used to own. Was great in open water, but close quarters manoeuvring was nerve wracking. Outboard was too big to be turned at all in the well. Prop was behind the rudder, so no prop wash over the rudder available to kick the stern - so tight turns needed some speed, even in forward. Outboard exhaust behind the prop disturbed the flow over it so reduced its effectiveness, meaning the boat couldn't be stopped quickly by a quick blast of reverse gear. In reverse acceleration was very slow and direction random until some speed had been built up.

    When I was approaching a tricky berth I would wait off while I pondered the different factors and possibilities, came up with a plan, and identified the most likely things to go wrong, and points at which I might be able to bale out and try again, or differently. Always had a 'roving' fender to hand in the cockpit in case it all went pear shaped. When visiting a marina I would call in advance explaining I had limited manoeuvrability and request somewhere not too tight. (They would otherwise tend to put a small boat in some awkward to access corner, right at the end of a long narrow approach.)

    It is character building! Eventually you get a bit more skilled at weighing the factors, and a bit more used to it not going quite to plan.

    I must be a glutton for punishment, as when I finally moved on to boats with an inboard and a rudder behind the prop, I got a succession of long keelers, which share many of the problems.

    Quote Originally Posted by VicS View Post
    Your long keel won't be helping either. ...
    Eh? Shrimper is a centre-boarder! It does have the rudder on the back of its vestigial keel, but also has drop down plate on the rudder, I believe. Should be quite manoeuvrable (except in reverse), and not blown around by sidewinds too much, with the centreplate and rudder plate down.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Lymington
    Posts
    534

    Default Re: Reversing with outboard in well

    On my Hunter Horizon 23 I fitted a High thrust prop to my Yanmar 6HP - That would bite at much lower revs in reverse and made life a lot esier.
    Forget the health food. I need all the preservatives I can get.

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