Woman to Woman

Zen and the art of docking

By Capt. Katherine Redmond

A student in my Boat Docking Tips Course said he feared entering his slip because he didn’t know how long it would take his boat to stop. This made me realize how scary it would be if every time I pulled into my garage, I didn’t know how far my car would travel after I stepped on the brake.

Before you can dock your boat successfully, you must know how it responds to your commands, while keeping in mind that external forces can alter your boat’s reactions a little or a lot depending upon conditions.

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Sun exposure on board

By Gino C. Bottino, M.D.

Although it’s winter, I’d rather talk about the sunny boating season to come.

At the turn of the 20th century, people endeavored never to be exposed to the sun (especially women), and doctors recommended sunbathing for good health. After World War II, sunbathing and deep tanning became popular and remain so today.

Medically speaking, although some sun exposure is required for good health, getting a suntan is not. Anyone who spends time on or near the water gets plenty of sun without sunbathing. As a doctor, I believe sunbathing is almost as bad for you as smoking and should be totally avoided.

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How to turn a boat at the dock

Have you been tied up to a long dock on a boat that won’t back up with any degree of certainty with boats sitting on each side of the fairway you could crash into on the way out?

how to turn a boat at the dockIf so, you may be able to turn the boat at the dock within its own length. First, check the wind and current. They don’t have to be completely in your favor, but they should be enough in your favor to allow you to turn the boat and go forward.

First, ready a bow line and a stern line long enough to reach the bow and the dock while turning the boat. Leave one person on board to handle the stern line by bringing it forward to the bow on the opposite side of the boat from the dock. You can do this without a person on board by bringing the stern line forward to the bow and having it available as you turn the boat.

When all is ready, push the stern off from the dock and walk the bow down the dock to where the stern was previously located. You can do this with the bow line or by holding onto the bow pulpit. The wind or current will push the stern around to the previous bow position as you walk the bow down the dock. If the wind or current is in the perfect direction, the stern will come against the dock with little or no help. If not, the stern line can be used to pull the boat into position against the dock. You have now turned the boat in its own length at the dock even with boats ahead and behind you.

If the wind is in the opposite direction, you can still turn the boat by pushing the bow off and walking the stern to where the bow was with the long line on the bow. –Jerry LeCocq


This article first appeared in Boulder Beacon, the newsletter of Boulder Valley Sail & Power Squadron/30.

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How to remove water from a soggy fiberglass boat transom

How to remove water from a wet fiberglass boat transom

By Dave Osmolski

This past year, the brass tube for one of my boat’s self-bailing scuppers came loose. I decided to refasten the brass tube and make it watertight before we left on our annual fall trip to our homemade tropical paradise in Southwest Florida. First, I removed the tube and waited for the transom to dry out. Despite the warm, dry weather, the transom stayed as wet as the day I first removed the tube.

This led me to a discovery: Transoms, rudders and other thick constructions on fiberglass boats are not solid. They are built with air spaces between the laminations primarily for weight reduction.

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Chartering the islands of Grenada and the Grenadines

Chartering the islands of Grenada and the Grenadines

By Van Diehl, with help from Ted and Claudia Bowler

A group of us recently took a wonderful sail charter to Grenada and the Grenadines. One of the Caribbean’s nicest sailing areas, the Windward Islands consist of Grenada, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Saint Lucia, Martinique and Dominica. The islands got their name from the British, who had to beat to windward to sail there from their colonies. The islands lie almost across the easterly trade winds, which makes for an easy northerly or southerly passage. Just far enough apart to allow for an exhilarating open ocean sail, the islands are lush and richly tropical, with high mountains that trap the clouds and produce dense green vegetation.

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Sailing the Door Peninsula

Sailing the Door Peninsula

By Dan Balch

We set sail on Lanikai for our annual cruise around the Door Peninsula late last August. Lanikai, a 1969 Pearson 300 sloop, was originally purchased by my parents, who sailed it 25,000 miles before shipping it to me 20 years ago. The sturdy boat sleeps three to four crew easily.

Its four-cylinder diesel engine was installed in 1995. Lanikai (Hawaiian for “beautiful sea”) displaces 10,000 pounds with 3,800 pounds of ballast, is 30 feet long, has a 9-foot beam, and draws 3½ feet. Our crew consisted of my son Richard, my brother Michael from Iowa, and me. My first mate, Bonnie, declined to join us.

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Building a Legacy for America’s Boating Club

United States Power Squadrons, America’s Boating Club, has been a major force in educating boaters and helping keep our waterways safe for 106 years. To advance our tradition of boater education and safety, we must look beyond member dues to fuel the continued growth of America’s Boating Club.

With these goals in mind, the USPS Endowment Fund Inc. was established in Sept. 2017. Since its inception, the fund has grown, with assets totaling more than $2.1 million. Income from the fund, over $400,000, has gone to support projects crucial to the growth and promotion of America’s Boating Club, including leadership development, expanded outreach to the Hispanic community, web development, and advertising.

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Youth gets hands on training from United States Power Squadrons

Better on the Water

By Robert Anderson, Chuck Wells and Shawn Goit

America’s Boating Club’s on the water training and certification programs include both on-water training and boating skills certification. On-the-water training provides hands-on skill development for new boaters and a practical extension of our classroom instruction. Our Boat Operator Certification program provides credentials certifying the boating skills and educational achievements of members.

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George Doerner

George H. Doerner died on Friday, November 15, 2019. His daughter Christa and her husband David were with him at Northwest Community Hospital, Arlington Heights, IL. He was born on March 26, 1936, to George A. and Viola (Shunneson) Doerner. He married Bridget (Bette) Keating on July 20, 1957.

George Doerner

George Doerner

He was an Electrician for IBEW Local 134. He volunteered as Police Reserve in Des Plaines, IL. He was a member of the Loyal Order the Moose for over 50 years. He was past commander and a Life Member of the Skokie Valley Sail & Power Squadron. He remembered many good times with his friends from Elmwood Park and the Skokie Valley Sail & Power Squadron. He was preceded in death by his parents and his sister June Soyer (Louis). He is survived by his devoted wife Bridget. Survivors also include daughter Christa (David) Hanson and son George A. Doerner: five grandchildren and five great-grandchildren, his sister-in-law Andrea Lenberg, his brother-in-law Thomas (Carole) Keating.

In lieu of flowers please make donations to the Lenberg Health Fund to support music and art therapy for residents of St. Coletta of Wisconsin. Attn: Development Office, N 4637 Co. Road Y, Jefferson, WI 53549 (www.stcolletawi.org).

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Top view of Nao Santa Maria in Beaufort

Piloting a Historic Replica

By Howard Heckrotte with Douglas Nelson

Photos by Bob Corso

The South Carolina Department of Natural Resources 25-foot twin-engine fast boat propelled us through rain and 3- to 4-foot seas at over 35 knots for a rendezvous with the Santa Maria. The North Atlantic waves pitched and yawed the two vessels. When a higher wave materialized, the 25-footer went into thin air, engines over-revving before thudding back into a trough, testing knee and shoulder sinews as white knuckles gripped the center-console grab rail.

The DNR officer smiled thinly and throttled back a bit, continuing a course to our rendezvous point, unseen in the rain and light fog but somewhere a few miles ahead. I was wondering how the boarding would take place when the ship’s profile appeared out of the sea mist, looking daunting.

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