Pre-boating Checklist

A conversation among Whalers
deepBlueCayman
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Pre-boating Checklist

Postby deepBlueCayman » Sun Oct 15, 2017 11:48 am

Hello. After 20 years of active sailing (recreational and racing) my wife and I have bought our first powerboat: a 2000 Boston Whaler Outrage 210. We're super excited. We have lived on Grand Cayman since 2013, so our conditions are pretty optimal. The Whaler sits on our dock not 50-feet from our balcony on a protected harbour with immediate access to a six-mile wide sound, bordered by a reef that spills out onto the Caribbean.

We just sold our Catalina 250 sailing yacht. As an experienced sailor, I've always created checklists to follow before and after boating. It's just good safety.

Has anyone created pre-trip and post-trip checklists for their Boston Whaler that they'd be willing to share?

Thanks in advance!
Mark

jimh
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Re: Pre-boating Checklist

Postby jimh » Sun Oct 15, 2017 12:36 pm

Hi Mark--welcome to the forum. Using a check list is a good idea. I have contemplated making them, but, to be honest, I haven't got one. I guess I rely on my memory and a pattern of usage repeated many times.

Since your OUTRAGE boat is at a dock, you won't have to worry about launching and loading with a trailer, where I think there is the most chance for something to go wrong.

About all I can offer is advice to check the main battery switch when leaving the boat. I like to leave the main switch set to OFF. On most modern Boston Whaler boats the sump pump will be wired directly to the battery, and if you leave its control in the AUTO position, the pump will run automatically as needed. On the other hand, depending on your particular set up and how the boat sits in its static trim, you may prefer to leave the cockpit sump drain open to the sea. This will prevent any rain water from accumulating in the cockpit, although some seawater will remain in the sump. In that instance, set the sump control to OFF.

Is your boat set up with dual batteries for engine starting? I don't recall if that was standard rigging or an option. But I would recommend having two batteries that can crank over the propulsion engine, and having a switch to select either or both. Unlike sailboats, with a outboard boat there is no effective means of propulsion if you can't get the engine running.

Wavehopper
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Re: Pre-boating Checklist

Postby Wavehopper » Sat Oct 28, 2017 12:41 pm

Mark

At age 65 my memory is not what it once was and so I compiled these check lists for boating, fishing, trailering, and anchoring over night.
I hope you find these lists helpful.

Bill

Trailering Check List

Insure that VHF antenna is DOWN and Outboard motor is UP.
Check that trailer safety chains are secure and lights are connected and working properly.
Secure boat to trailer with both stern tie downs and bow tie down.
Check Trailer tire pressure and bearing grease in wheel hubs.
Bring spare trailer tire, tire iron, and jack.

Boating Check List

Check Marine forecast for Sea conditions and tides.
File a “Float Plan” with a relative or friend.
Charge the batteries prior to the trip.
Fill the Gas tank.
Put the drain plugs in and bring a spare.
Cash for Fuel, Bait & launch fees.
Bring a copy of the boat & trailer registration.
Ignition key and kill switch.
Life jackets, with whistle & strobe lights attached.
Type-4 Floatation Cushion.
Hand bailer, Bucket, & Bilge pump.
Flares, Horn, & Fire extinguisher.
First Aid kit with Vinegar and baking soda for jellyfish stings.
Dramamine.
Sunscreen, and sun block lip balm.
Space blanket for anyone suffering from hypothermia.
Paddle & Boat hook.
Anchor, anchor chain, and 250’of anchor rode.
Bow and stern docking lines.
3 fenders with lines attached.
Tool kit, with extra fuses.
Trolling motor.
Flashlight.
Binoculars.
Charts.
GPS.
EPIRB.
VHF radio.
Cell Phone with fully charged battery and charging cable.
Porto-Potti with trash bag liners, and toilet paper.
Bottled water, lunch & snacks.
Cooler with ice.
Reading glasses and Polarized sunglasses.
Wind breaker, rain coat, wide brim hat, and boots.
Camera with charged batteries and charging cord.
Hose, Flushing attachment , spray nozzle, and quarters for water at the launch ramp.
WD40 and Simple Green to clean oil residue off hull.
Allen Wrench for Bimini Top adjustments.

Fishing Check List

Fishing license & Fishing regulations booklet.
Check the “Department of Fish & Wildlife” website for regulation changes.
Rods, Reels, & Tackle.
Rod Holders.
Fishing gloves and hand towel.
Weighted milk crate with 100’ of line (Rock Fish Re-compression Chamber).
Filet knife, Filet Table, bait knife, Pliers, Zip-lock bags, and marker pen.
Net, bait net, Bat, and Gaff.
Tape measure and scale.
Kill Bag with ice.
Frozen & Live Bait.

Anchoring Overnight Check List

Check that all of the running lights are operational.
Bring flashlights and spotlight with charging cord.
Sleeping Bag, Blankets, pillow, Bathing suit, Towel, and a change of cloths.
Stern anchor, anchor rode, and chain for double anchoring.
Food, knife/fork/spoon and plate.
Tooth brush, tooth paste.
Insect repellent
Misquito netting to cover cabin door.

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Dutchman
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Re: Pre-boating Checklist

Postby Dutchman » Tue Oct 31, 2017 3:39 pm

Wavehopper
You have a nice list but the OP is an experienced sailor and is well aware of most, if not all the items you mentioned under Boating Checklist as most are safety related and well known to any good sailor.
I do agree with maybe not remembering certain items when we get older but as mentioned by Jim the OP's boat is already in the water and we must assume he has all USCG required safety equipment on board.
So what is left will mostly have to do with operation.
1. Check plug
2. Check Gasoline quantity
3. Check if trim works an see if Engine(s) start
4. Warm up engine(s)
5. Check forward & reverse operation
6. Do VHF radio check.
7. Enjoy boating

Mark you have a simple solid boat and because your boat is docked she doesn't need much in the form of a check list other then to make sure your power(electric & engine) is working. But like Jim said when you are trailering (which we assume you won't do in the Caymans) that is another question and does require more of a checklist.
EJO
"Clumsy Cleat"look up what it means
50th edition 2008 Montauk 150, w/60HP Mercury Bigfoot

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Todd
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Re: Pre-boating Checklist

Postby Todd » Tue Oct 31, 2017 4:49 pm

Even for the most experienced boaters, a checklist is a good idea. I been boating since I could walk and had boats ranging from a 10' skiff with a 3 hp Evinrude to a 38' Sea Ray to my current 2003 160 Dauntless. My wife is the check list person and literally runs through a brief list of items to make sure our boating experience is safe and enjoyable. Recently, she was away on business and I took a couple friends for an afternoon on a local lake. We trailer-ed the boat and launched it just fine. I was parking the trailer and as I got out had a nagging feeling I forgot something. As I walked back toward the launch I realized what I forgot. The drain plug. My friends on the boat saw me and said "there's a pump or something running, is that normal?" I had the power on to raise and lower the motor so the bilge pump was cycling on and off as the water came in. No big deal but a good reason to have my checklist handy and run through it each and every time!

Wavehopper
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Re: Pre-boating Checklist

Postby Wavehopper » Wed Nov 01, 2017 1:07 pm

Fellow boaters--What prompted me to compile that boating check list was a false start to a fishing trip.
My fishing buddy and I launched my boat only to discover that the key was not in the ignition.
I chose to drive home and retrieve the key rather than climb under the helm and hot wire the boats ignition.
At that time I lived only 6 minutes from the launch ramp.
Now I have a 45 minute drive to the harbor.

Looking over this check list one last time before pulling out of the driveway has worked very well for me.

Bill

jimh
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Re: Pre-boating Checklist

Postby jimh » Wed Nov 01, 2017 3:19 pm

Bill--I have experienced the same problem: we were on our way in the car, driving to the launch ramp. We were well into the trip when we realized we did not have the keys for the boat with us. To solve this problem we instituted two practices:

--always keep the keys for the boat in the tow vehicle; well, that won't work for you because you are not towing the boat;

--always keep a spare set of keys for the boat on the boat, but in a rather obscure place so they aren't left in the ignition switch and cabin door lock; this may not be as easy for you, either, since you have an open cockpit boat. How about under the engine cowling?

Wavehopper
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Re: Pre-boating Checklist

Postby Wavehopper » Wed Nov 01, 2017 6:14 pm

Jim--thank you for that suggestion. I will place a duplicate set of boat ignition keys in my truck.--Bill

jimh
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Re: Pre-boating Checklist

Postby jimh » Wed Nov 01, 2017 7:33 pm

Bill--you need to get a red foam plastic WHALER keychain float for those Boston Whaler boat keys.
redWhalerKeyFloat.jog.jpg
redWhalerKeyFloat.jog.jpg (7.19 KiB) Viewed 3482 times


You can buy these from WhalerApparel.com for $5; see

https://www.whalerapparel.com/product-p/bw1128.htm

Now be careful visiting that website, as you can spend a hundred dollars in the blink of an eye on Whaler-logo apparel, but, you do know, it is just about imperative that when operating a Boston Whaler boat you have to wear some clothing that says "Boston Whaler" on it.

Wavehopper
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Re: Pre-boating Checklist

Postby Wavehopper » Wed Nov 01, 2017 11:09 pm

Jim--when I take my Boston Whaler out for a day on the water I always wear my RED) Boston Whaler T-shirt. That way if it warms up and I feel the need to take off my (RED) Boston Whaler" sweatshirt I am still proudly showing my brand loyalty to the Unsinkable Legend.

If Boston Whaler produced an inflatable life jacket with their logo on it I would purchase one in a heartbeat.

All the very best to you and your wonderful family.--Bill

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Todd
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Re: Pre-boating Checklist

Postby Todd » Thu Nov 02, 2017 9:50 am

Jim, being a Whaler newbie I hadn't seen the Whaler apparel website. You just made my wife's Christmas shopping chore much easier! There are 3-4 items here I just have to have! Todd