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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Gillingham(Dorset) Boat East Cowes
    Posts
    2,689

    Default Re: Manoeuvring with outboards

    The type of boat the OP is talking about appear, to me anyway, to have a lot of windage at the bow and very little weight for the keel to grip in the water and with 2 big lumps at the back, I'd imagine quite difficult to control when berthing.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Live London
    Posts
    3,761

    Default Re: Manoeuvring with outboards

    I have had stern drives never outboards of any size but I imagine it is similar

    If you have shafts the props are under the boat. Outboards are at the back. As such the force required to make the boat twist on its axis is far higher

    If the person you were watching wanted to move the stern then sure he can turn and you have a large an powerful stern thruster, but to move the bow he has a bow thruster and he used it

    I have never understood the predudice against using the equipment the boat has.

    I come out of my berth and turn the boat 90 degrees on thruster due to the proximity of the next boats bow lines.

    It is there so use it.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    2,115

    Default Re: Manoeuvring with outboards

    A lot of people with highly manoervable boats think they are much more skilled than they really are and do not realise (because they have never helmed one) that a boat with a fixed outboard and no prop wash over the rudder(s) is a much more difficult proposition than a boat with prop walk and prop wash to help park the boat. Some of these same people can also be quite disparaging about others (in less handy boats) using a bow thruster.

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Farnham, Surrey
    Posts
    21,321

    Default Re: Manoeuvring with outboards

    May I humbly suggest that it's not as simple and straightforward as some suggest with their criticism.

    For a twin screw boat on shafts, nearly all the manoeuvring at slow speed is done without touching the helm. Lots of sailers with their big rudders don't realise that at slow speeds, the tiny rudders on a planing boat have hardly any effect. Occasionally you can use a bit of helm and a nudge of fwd to help kick the stern round, but in most maneuverers most of the time it's a waste of time. When I am examining people for their YM (Offshore Power) if I see them winding the helm back and for at slow speed, I am never impressed and think of it as a sign of lack of experience. I know one very good instructor who teaches, "Helm straight ahead and put one hand in your pocket." when teaching twin shaft driving at slow speeds.

    However Bow thrusters can be worth their weight in a strong cross wind when reversing into a berth. Motor cruisers get blown down by the bow very easily. A touch of bow thruster to keep her straight is a wonderful thing. Lots of other circumstances where a bow thruster makes life a lot simpler.

    I admit that I do get irritated when I see (and hear) people steering their boats with the bow thruster. Off they go threading their way through the marina with bow thruster buzzing every few seconds. It works, but I'm not sure it's very good practice...

    I also get irritated when people start using LOTS of bow thruster but it usually means they've got themselves into trouble and I suppose it's better to use the bow thruster than hit something. Walking yourself off a wall/pontoon with the bow thruster when there are other more elegant ways to proceed seems to show lack of experience/seamanship, but it's all a matter of opinion and best not to get worked up over these things too much.

    I haven't commented on outboards because it's a whole different ball game and reversing the outboard with it pointed in towards the jetty is a powerful way of tucking your stern in. Same with outdrives - but beware the power...
    Semper aliud

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Long Beach. CA.
    Posts
    2,593

    Default Re: Manoeuvring with outboards

    Quote Originally Posted by john_morris_uk View Post
    May I humbly suggest that it's not as simple and straightforward as some suggest with their criticism.

    For a twin screw boat on shafts, nearly all the manoeuvring at slow speed is done without touching the helm. Lots of sailers with their big rudders don't realise that at slow speeds, the tiny rudders on a planing boat have hardly any effect. Occasionally you can use a bit of helm and a nudge of fwd to help kick the stern round, but in most maneuverers most of the time it's a waste of time. When I am examining people for their YM (Offshore Power) if I see them winding the helm back and for at slow speed, I am never impressed and think of it as a sign of lack of experience. I know one very good instructor who teaches, "Helm straight ahead and put one hand in your pocket." when teaching twin shaft driving at slow speeds.

    However Bow thrusters can be worth their weight in a strong cross wind when reversing into a berth. Motor cruisers get blown down by the bow very easily. A touch of bow thruster to keep her straight is a wonderful thing. Lots of other circumstances where a bow thruster makes life a lot simpler.

    I admit that I do get irritated when I see (and hear) people steering their boats with the bow thruster. Off they go threading their way through the marina with bow thruster buzzing every few seconds. It works, but I'm not sure it's very good practice...

    I also get irritated when people start using LOTS of bow thruster but it usually means they've got themselves into trouble and I suppose it's better to use the bow thruster than hit something. Walking yourself off a wall/pontoon with the bow thruster when there are other more elegant ways to proceed seems to show lack of experience/seamanship, but it's all a matter of opinion and best not to get worked up over these things too much.

    I haven't commented on outboards because it's a whole different ball game and reversing the outboard with it pointed in towards the jetty is a powerful way of tucking your stern in. Same with outdrives - but beware the power...
    I almost never use the helm on a twin or triple screw boat.

    I was given so much abuse when i trained at my last company for this despite always docking without hitting anything and with one exception first time every time. There are undeniably times when rudder input helps though.

    Likewise my last UK command put us in some pretty tight spaces and 999.9% of the time it was only engine maneuvering.

    I also had someone tell me I couldn't split twin outboards as it didn't work - WHILST I was demonstrating it did!

    As for using a thruster to get out of trouble... I won't embarrass the border patrol crew who got stuck on the mud in Empress Dock a few years ago and desperately tried to thrust themselves alongside.

    W.
    Last edited by PilotWolf; 31-08-19 at 18:03.
    .

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    SoF
    Posts
    9,538

    Default Re: Manoeuvring with outboards

    In crowded Med moorings with slime lines and mooring lines everywhere it can be very prudent to only steer with the thrusters. The more rudder, prop, leg etc moving in the water the more chance of snagging one
    Neither a Leaver or Remainer be

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    No fixed abode
    Posts
    2,659

    Default Re: Manoeuvring with outboards

    Thank you all, enlightening.
    Last edited by Hadenough; 31-08-19 at 18:48.

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Conwy
    Posts
    4,072

    Default Re: Manoeuvring with outboards

    I dont have a bow thruster. It's exciting at times

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Farnham, Surrey
    Posts
    21,321

    Default Re: Manoeuvring with outboards

    Quote Originally Posted by Bouba View Post
    In crowded Med moorings with slime lines and mooring lines everywhere it can be very prudent to only steer with the thrusters. The more rudder, prop, leg etc moving in the water the more chance of snagging one
    As I’ve done a lot of twin engine work in the Med I understand your post but I don’t necessarily agree. You still need forward propulsion and the bow thruster obviously doesn’t give you that so nudging ahead with the drives is the only option. Choosing port/starboard/both gives you slow speed steering.
    Semper aliud

  10. #20
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Manchester
    Posts
    817

    Default Re: Manoeuvring with outboards

    Quote Originally Posted by BruceK View Post
    I dont have a bow thruster. It's exciting at times
    In a sentence Bruce says it for me also


    I enjoy just going out to play and faffing in practicing to three point turn in a 30 foot wide ditch. reverse park i love lol. with a single outboard that is.

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