How to Dock a Boat

 

docking-tips

#1 You’ve probably already heard the cardinal rule of docking a boat: Never approach the pier any faster than you’re willing to hit it. In other words, you never know when a sudden “oopsie” will cause your precious fiberglass chariot to do the opposite of what you had intended. Just in case, always approach solid objects slowly enough that if your docking job turns into a ramming, the results won’t be tragic.

 

#2: Use enough juice to get the job done. When it comes to causes of disastrous docking, applying insufficient power comes in a close second to applying too much. You need to counter and overcome momentum, wind, and current. If you don’t tell your boat what to do—with authority—one or more of these other factors is likely to take over.

 

#3: Always look before you leap. Give your slip a hairy eyeball, even if you’ve backed into it 100 times before. The biggest issue here is mooring lines. If any lines of yours or a neighboring slip fell off a piling and into the water, current could stretch it out across your path. Tangle a mooring line in your propeller, and that docking job will go south in a hurry.

 

#4: With twin inboards, don’t touch the wheel. Ever. You’ll be tempted, but you have more control if you leave the wheel centered and use only the engines. If you do turn the wheel, then when you try to use the engines and the prop-wash hits a cockeyed rudder, the boat may take an unexpected path.

 

#5: In heavy winds, reduce your windage. Particularly in a small boat, this can have a dramatic effect on how easy or how hard it is to dock. A Bimini top or an Isinglass enclosure can act like a sail on a powerboat, and throw you out of kilter. On a sailboat, a sail lazily left unfurled can have the same effect.

 

#6: Never kill the engines until all the lines are secure. Many people who don’t know how to dock a boat well make the mistake of shutting down as soon as the boat is in the slip, but you never know if a crewmember is going to drop his or her line(s), or when a piling will slip out of reach. Keep the powerplants on, so you can maneuver as necessary.

 

#7: Don’t be afraid to abort. This is especially important for sailboats, single-screw inboards, and other boats with a limited ability to maneuver. If the approach doesn’t seem to be going well don’t try to force the issue; instead, circle back for another try.

 

# 8: Learn how to dock a boat using fenders that are placed with precision. There’s more to this than merely hanging the fenders over the side; you need to judge where the boat will kiss a piling, and how to orient the fenders so they don’t get caught under the pier or swing freely above it. Position them properly and you’ll find that even the best boaters in the world can do a better job of damage-free docking, with the pressure-points protected.

 

#9: When docking any type of single-engine boat, always turn the wheel before applying power—not during or after. That way, you won’t get a blast of forward or reverse before the blast of port or starboard kicks in.

 

#10: Always apply short bursts of power, instead of steady power. This allows you to maneuver without building up a lot of momentum, which can quickly get out of control.

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Mercury Outboards

VERADO- SMOOTH, QUIET, AND POWERFUL
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Mercury Verado® is the pinnacle of superior outboard design and performance. Created to power the largest boats for the boldest adventures, Verado delivers advanced engineering and refined operation to boat owners who don’t compromise; every feature is designed to deliver the ultimate on-water experience, greatest confidence and supreme comfort. If you’re looking at Verado outboards, you expect your engines to provide the finest, most enjoyable boating experience possible.

Verado V8 outboards deliver superior fuel economy at cruising speed and wide-open throttle. Advanced Range Optimization (ARO) calibration precisely adjusts the fuel mixture and delivers the best possible efficiency at any speed. Verado V8 outboards are calibrated to deliver full performance on 87-octane fuel. Whether you’re heading up a swell or into a tight turn, Adaptive Speed Control on V8 Verado outboards automatically maintains the set rpm even as load or conditions change. That means you make far fewer throttle adjustments.

 

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F.A.S.T. TAB Hull Design

Patented and proven, Crownline’s F.A.S.T. TAB® Hull Design is one of the most efficient and attractive hull designs on the market today, improving slow-speed stability, time-to-plane acceleration and fuel economy.

The acronym stands for fin-assisted safe turn. That’s the description. In practice, a F.A.S.T Tab hull’s vented chines aerate the running surface to reduce drag, and the fin-like tabs keep those vents from producing handling quirks. The hull sticks in turns, is responsive to trim, and really airs out at speed. Chop back the throttle and you can feel the vents working as the boat glides along for quite some distance before settling off plane.

There’s always positive control with the most unique sport boat hull system running today.

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Sun Tracker Warranty

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SUN TRACKER® construction and quality are second to none. And the 10+LIFE™ warranty coverage offers a level of assurance pontoon boat buyers can’t get from anyone else:

  • 10-Year Bow-to-Stern Warranty—Factory-installed materials and workmanship are covered for ten years from the time of purchase, including electrical components, livewells and plumbing, vinyl, furniture, Bimini top and much more. Your engine is covered by the Mercury manufacturer’s warranty.
  • Lifetime Limited Structural & Deck Warranty—Pontoon logs, the motor pod and other structural elements, e.g., deck supports, perimeter fence rails and gates, are covered for the life of the boat.
  • Provisions for Transfer to Second Owner—The resale value of your boat can be enhanced by provisions to transfer warranty elements to a second owner. Your SUN TRACKER dealer can help you put applicable elements into effect when you are ready.
  • 1-Stop Warranty Resolution—10+LIFE coverage offers a one-stop solution, eliminating the need to pursue separate warranties with component manufacturers.
  • Full Coverage During Warranty Period—There is no pro-rating, or reducing your coverage over time. The peace of mind you enjoy at the outset carries throughout your coverage period.

10+LIFE applies to all 2014 and newer SUN TRACKER models, even those which were purchased before the introduction of the 10+LIFE warranty. See The Boat Dock if this applies to you!

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