How to Use Twin Screws to Bring a Powerboat Alongside a Dock

Adding an engine to the docking process gives you more control, but it requires a greater level of skill.

List of Items Needed

  • Boating Safety
  • Boats
  1. Approach the dock from four or more boat lengths downwind.

  2. Set up fenders and dock lines.

  3. Stand off the dock one to two boat lengths and slow to bare steerage way.

  4. Estimate one boat length downwind of the dock, then turn toward the dock.

  5. Point the bow to a spot about midway along the dock.

  6. Shift both engines to neutral and center the helm.

  7. Shift the outboard engine (further from the dock) to reverse when the bow reaches a spot the beam's distance from the dock.

  8. Allow the bow to turn slightly away from the dock, then shift back to neutral.

  9. Repeat if necessary to get the boat to turn parallel to the dock.

  10. Make gentle contact with the dock at a spot somewhere between the beam and the bow. Make sure the contact point is fendered.

  11. Allow 1 to 3 feet of distance between the stern and the dock.

  12. Shift the outboard engine to reverse and the inboard engine to forward for just a moment.

  13. Step onto the dock and secure the boat when it comes alongside.

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