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Docking boat bow in or stern in ?

Old 05-24-2016, 12:48 PM
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Default Docking boat bow in or stern in ?

Just wondering how many dock your boat by pulling into the slip or backing into the slip?
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Old 05-24-2016, 12:59 PM
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I like to pull bow in so when sitting in the cockpit I don't have to say hi to everyone walking on the dock. Also check with your marina. Some of them will require stern in for appearances.
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Old 05-24-2016, 01:07 PM
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At my marina, I usually pull in portside to the dock... this facilitates unloading and means the transom is pointing toward the forklift that will soon be lifting the boat out of the water and putting the her in the high/dry rack...

...sorry I couldn't resist lol.
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Old 05-24-2016, 01:09 PM
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I have a somewhat tricky (for me) slip with the wind and current often running sideways, so I have my fenders attached to the dock and I back in if the cross wind / current isn't pushing me hard off the dock or go bow in if it is. I also keep my mid cleat line and bow lines on the boat so I can quickly tie it off and control it.
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Old 05-24-2016, 01:28 PM
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Originally Posted by HOGHUNTER View Post
Just wondering how many dock your boat by pulling into the slip or backing into the slip?
I back my boat in. Much easier to flush outboard and wash boat down.
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Old 05-24-2016, 01:31 PM
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In my slip, bow in, the biggest reason is my dock doesn't have a finger pier, so it allows me to get close enough to the dock to board/unload, the taller bow also makes it easier. Otherwise I couldn't trim my motors up without the risk of them getting caught under the dock when the tide rises.
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Old 05-24-2016, 01:32 PM
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If I want to look at the house I back in. If I want to look at the girls riding by its bow first. So you should be able to figure that one out.
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Old 05-24-2016, 01:32 PM
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The two over riding concerns are safely docking and ability to safely unload your passengers. Everything else is secondary.
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Old 05-24-2016, 01:36 PM
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Bow in where I am. Similar thought to not having to talk to everyone that comes by. Also I believe it gives less looks at my electronics, etc when the boat is bow in.
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Old 05-24-2016, 01:37 PM
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Depends on the slip and the boat layout for me. Boarding is easier on my port side so I back in when the dock on that side, pull in if it isn't.
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Old 05-24-2016, 01:45 PM
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For me it's bow first because the slip is a "mudder". The boat bottoms out at low tide for about 45 minutes to an hour depending on the tide range (moon phase) that day.
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Old 05-24-2016, 02:37 PM
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One choice for me...stern in...finger isn't long enough otherwise.
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Old 05-24-2016, 02:42 PM
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Depends on the dock. Ease of loading, face into prevailing winds, face into wakes, requirements of a marina, security
Obviously no one size, fits all
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Old 05-24-2016, 03:23 PM
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I back in serpentine fashion around 2 corners to lay the port side to the main dock with Tee at the bow.

EZPZ with T/I/B's. Rudder angle stays at 0* and tabs are fully retracted. .
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Old 05-24-2016, 04:17 PM
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Always stern-in... unless it is impractical. Stern in allows for easier boarding and departure from dock, not to mention that a bow anchor pointing into the dock is a safety hazard for anyone walking the docks. Also, if the dock is in a high traffic area where the wakes reach the docks, the bow of the boat will cut them preventing any splash.
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Old 05-24-2016, 07:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Jay A View Post
For me it's bow first because the slip is a "mudder". The boat bottoms out at low tide for about 45 minutes to an hour depending on the tide range (moon phase) that day.
same here
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Old 05-24-2016, 08:03 PM
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Well I never thought I'd says these words before, but- I guess I go both ways depending on my mood


ETA: it figures a post like this would be my post #69
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