Sunday, October 25, 2009

Dinghy part two

Dinghies have the annoying habit of going bump in the night, requiring someone to get up and deal. Grand yachts once had long boat booms, equipped with an outhaul. When not in use and not taken aboard, the yacht's tender would be run out to the end of the boom. In fact, these booms have made a reappearance as part of the equipment of huge power yachts and their coterie of tenders and "toys". Although some of these yachts seem almost totally divorced from their tradition, it is somehow comforting to see their boat booms, which would not have been out of place on Mr. Morgan's Corsair.

If your LOA is shy of one hundred feet, a boat boom may be difficult to stow. Alternatives are many: a very short painter (ineffective), a bucket tied off the dinghy's stern so it trails better (sounds ridiculous), using a spinnaker pole as a boat boom (not long enough). On Journeyman we tie the tender alongside, amidships, using the painter and the little stern line. I bring the painter through the bow chock and back to the cockpit, so I can adjust both bow and stern lines from one location. Although the tender has permanent fenders, they aren't quite enough if a boat speeds by in the night, so I usually hang a couple of regular fenders too.

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