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Author Topic:   obscure Coast Guard Reg or what???
simonmeridew posted 07-16-2001 10:52 PM ET (US)   Profile for simonmeridew   Send Email to simonmeridew  
Four of us were whalering in Lake Champlain yesterday, probably going 3 mph in the harbor. My daughter (27 years old) was sitting in the bow with one leg dangling over the side, kind of 'toes in the water' stuff. I was busy watching a USCG vessel approaching us actually glad at that point that my flares were finally up to date,and didn't see her. Anyway all of a sudden on goes the blue light on the CG boat, and over the PA system comes, "feet inside the boat please", then "have a good day," after she pulled it in. Where have I been, is this really a rule or are there fresh water sharks ready to nip off a toe of the unaware.
daverdla posted 07-16-2001 11:00 PM ET (US)     Profile for daverdla  Send Email to daverdla     
I was told at the CG Aux course this past spring that it is a rule. The course was in Cape May, NJ.
gunnelgrabber posted 07-16-2001 11:38 PM ET (US)     Profile for gunnelgrabber  Send Email to gunnelgrabber     
i guess they'd construe that as "bowriding"? while it sure is fun and all of us have done it, you could hit a bar ,toss someone out in front and then run over them pretty quickly...the authorities enforce it here too...lm
flwhaler posted 07-17-2001 09:35 AM ET (US)     Profile for flwhaler  Send Email to flwhaler     
At least you got off with a warning!


Bigshot posted 07-17-2001 09:52 AM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
I got busted for that in 1986. They searched my boat and nailed me for bad flares and old lifejackets. They did NOT find the 3 cases of iced down beer in the forward cooler on my 74 19' revenge. Dad was in the CG for years and got me out of it(only 17). My sister was sitting on the dash between the windshield(was open) with her feet on the ladder in a no wake zone. Those bastards even checked my hull#'s. Do not let anyone sit on the sunpad on an I/O. or anywhere there is not a designated seat. Most Cg will ignore it in Slow zones, but once on plane, you're toast.
Marco Whalo posted 07-17-2001 03:57 PM ET (US)     Profile for Marco Whalo  Send Email to Marco Whalo     
In 1972 at age 12 my dad sent me to a USCG auxiliary class at the Long Branch NJ HS. The three things they stressed repeatedly(the only reason I can remember that after 29 years) was the three Rs, never tow a boat with nylon rope and never sit in the bow with your legs over the edge. The deceleration from slowing down has thrown many people right over the front and by then there is nothing the pilot can do. I think they way they gave the warning was correct. Nothing major just a little "advice". PS. Sometime the USCG is a little bored and just needs to spend some quality time with the recreational boaters. :-)
JimU posted 07-17-2001 04:07 PM ET (US)     Profile for JimU  Send Email to JimU     
What's the deal with a nylon rope? JIM
Bigshot posted 07-17-2001 04:08 PM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
What is the 3rd r? This was in Barnegat light when I got nailed. The Mayor of Harvey Cedars(recently deceased) was on a 16 whaler cutting across the flats in Barnegat light(high Bar Harbor). There is a small unmarked channel and the rest is like 3 inches deep. He was hitting ground and was sitting on the console(homemade no windshield) steering backwards. He hit ground and flew off the bow. The boat ran him over and chopped off half his butt and took out his liver and maybe a kidney, etc(don't know all the specifics, was in the early 70's or late 60's). Anyway he climbed into the boat and drove to his friends house where he climbed out of the boat on to the dock where the ambulance took him away. He literally lost half his organs and had a very bad limp due to hip damage, etc. How he lived is a miracle but was also a lesson to be learned. He died many years later from long-term damage from this. His body filled in the cavity of missing organs, unfortunately this crushed what was remaining of his liver and it failed. Be very careful on boats under power. His kids are good friends of mine.
blackdog posted 07-17-2001 04:30 PM ET (US)     Profile for blackdog  Send Email to blackdog     
I just took one of the USCG AUX courses and I remember them saying the fastest way to get boarded was to “bow ride”.
Nylon Rope- I think it gives too much as it will stretch? I thought that would be desirable to absorb shock?
daverdla posted 07-17-2001 04:32 PM ET (US)     Profile for daverdla  Send Email to daverdla     
Would this apply to sitting on the bow cushion of a montauk with your feet inside the boat?
blackdog posted 07-17-2001 04:39 PM ET (US)     Profile for blackdog  Send Email to blackdog     
Well , being as I was boarded for some other reason Sunday and I had someone sitting on my bow cushion I would say as long as your limbs are in the boat your OK.
triblet posted 07-17-2001 07:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for triblet  Send Email to triblet     
I learned the ONLY line to use to tow is
nylon because it does stretch. You do have
to be careful when slowing down as the
towee is on the end of a rubber band.

Bowriding is just plain dumb. If you go
over the side, the prop turns into a meat
grinder. And it's oh so easy to go over the


Marco Whalo posted 07-17-2001 08:06 PM ET (US)     Profile for Marco Whalo  Send Email to Marco Whalo     
The three R's are Red Right Return. The reason you don't want to tow with a nylon rope is that they stretch. If the disabled boat ever gets hung up (bridge, sand bar, etc.), and if either party is using a cleat it can break loose (think of how they are mounted in older boats) and become a deadly projectile. Someone died where I grew up in the sixties when a cleat impaled him in the chest cavity when his boat was getting towed and got stuck in a bridge. By the time they killed the engines, it was too late.
daverdla posted 07-17-2001 09:03 PM ET (US)     Profile for daverdla  Send Email to daverdla     
The USCG Aux Boating Safely book distributed at the course I attended (with a BW Ventura on the cover) says the following:
Riding on the covered bow of a vessel is dangerous and often illegal, even if you are straddling a stanchion or holding onto the rail. A boater who falls off the bow could be hit by the propeller. (Riding in the forward end of a boat with seats is not bow riding and is permitted.) Riding on a gunwale, the transom, a back seat, or a pontoon is also dangerous. If anyone in your boat rides in a dangerous position, you could be charged with negligent operation and fined"

lhg posted 07-17-2001 09:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
The other reason you can't ride with limbs hanging over the side of a boat, is that in the event of a collision, you can lose an arm or leg. Kind of the same situation when docking or rafting. Real easy for something to get crushed.

Whaler's early catalog used to caution against nylon tow lines, saying a fitting that lets loose will be propelled like a missile! It's a very dangerous thing to do.
Even if just the line snaps, you can be seriously injured, by the whip action. That is why Whalers CPD boats have the tow mast with the grate shielding in it, to protect the pilot from line failure.

counterstrike posted 07-17-2001 10:30 PM ET (US)     Profile for counterstrike    
Hanging tender young girls leg over the edge of a boat at the front is sure to get a responce from any costie
jimh posted 07-17-2001 11:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
As it happens, I took a long lunch this afternoon in order go out with the Coast Guard on a 50-foot cutter. We were actually testing some microwave equipment we are going to use on the weekend as part of televising the visit of the tall ships fleet to Detroit, but I just added myself to the crew so I could go along for the boat ride.

As we were returning to the Group Detroit base, a fancy 20-foot bass boat came flying downriver, pulled into the inlet to the base, and started fishing. There were two guys aboard and a rather attractive young woman in a skimpy 2-piece bathing suit.

The immediate reaction on the bridge of the Coast Guard cutter was to break out the binnoculars and take careful observation of the young woman fishing.

Finally the fishing boat skipper looked up and saw 50-feet of USCG cutter bearing down on him, and he wass sitting in the middle of the inlet to the base! The fishermen and lady quickly broke out their life jackets, stowed their rods and reels, and got out of there.

The binnoculars went back in the holder on the bridge and we cleared the inlet and docked the boat.

LarrySherman posted 07-18-2001 08:21 AM ET (US)     Profile for LarrySherman  Send Email to LarrySherman     
Nylon line can be very dangerous if used improperly. When I was in the navy, we watched a mandatory film every year called "Nylon Snapback." Because Nylon streches so much (I forget the percentages, but they were huge), a line in streched condidion can store a huge amount of energy. If the line parts, the parted end will come back like a whip directly in the direction of the standing part, ie: the towing ship.

In the training film, the put several mannequeins on the deck of a sub, with the sub tied up the pier with 3" nylon singled (in the navy you typically single, then double the lines as you tie up). Then a tug pulled the sub away from the pier. the line went tought, then started making cracking noises as it began to strech, then started smoking as the moisture in the line began to cook from the heat and pressure in the line. Then "BANG" like a rifle shot, the line parted, and cut all the mannequeines in half in a split second.

a proper towing bridle uses, I believe, polypropeline (sp). It floats, so should not foul your prop, Very little strech, so much less stored energy: when it parts it should not kill you. Chain is used in the middle of the bridle, if neccessary, to give the tow, and your transom, a softer "pull."

The Canadian Coast Guard publishes the SAR Searh and Rescue manual. Chapter 10 covers towing in depth. Read it before you ever take a tow.


LarrySherman posted 07-18-2001 09:19 AM ET (US)     Profile for LarrySherman  Send Email to LarrySherman     
Looks like the manual I mentioned above does advocate the use of nylon and other lines with strech. They do mention that a line steched to far can cause a towed boat to overide the towing boat, and have a tough time getting "in step" They say to ensure that the line has adequate catenary, a droop in the center of the line that absorbs shock.

Very good reading.

Mullet posted 07-19-2001 09:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for Mullet  Send Email to Mullet     
Don't use three strand nylon. Double braid is excellent as a tow but you have to understand the stretch and strength. In 3 years as a USCG bosun I escorted many boats back to the dock (no citation) for various violations, but bowriding was a definite "chew your $%#@ so your wife and children cry" type of boarding. Have my kids done it at slow speed, sure they have. Is it safe. No.
gunnelgrabber posted 07-20-2001 10:28 AM ET (US)     Profile for gunnelgrabber  Send Email to gunnelgrabber     
larrysherman and mullet,...many aboard the forum have experience(s)that others of us learn from.(life is too short to make all the mistakes yourself!)you salty 'ol nav types are a specialized source of good nautical knowledge..appreciate all of it....lm
LarrySherman posted 07-20-2001 12:29 PM ET (US)     Profile for LarrySherman  Send Email to LarrySherman     
Thank much gunnel, made my day!
RFK posted 07-20-2001 05:42 PM ET (US)     Profile for RFK  Send Email to RFK     
I have a nephew who put his hand between a 13ft Whaler and the dock and lost his thumb.
The boat owner was a physician and put the thumb in a bag and took him to Traverse City, Mi. hospital. As it happened there was a fantastic micro-surgeon who lived there because he was/is a wind surfing nut. Rob has a fairly good working thumb. I ask everyone in my boat to keep all appendages inside the hull.

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