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Old 06 January 2007, 11:55   #21
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cheers neil i will be in contact nearer the time
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Old 06 January 2007, 12:44   #22
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Dont worry about 4x4 we will have at least 3 discoveries in our group so no problem there ,
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Old 09 January 2007, 17:08   #23
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im travelling down tomorrow to putney slip, underneath the bridge ( wed 9th) i wanted to try it out. spoke to the harbour master who tells me it is the better slip to launch from!! also that the from the next bridge up it has no speed limit however they told me they will prosecute boaters who create too much wake and drive wrecklessly. i asked if 15knotts on the plain (since mine only jumps on the plain at 13-15knotts) was acceptible, his answer was simply to say we will prosercute!!! i guess they may have had a bad time with ribbers. so i intend to be on my best behaviour, but admit to being confused with what HE would consider a reasonable speed in a no limit stretch of water!

for those coming a distance i will post my verdict on slip and parking....
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Old 10 January 2007, 04:34   #24
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Try to launch and recover at high water to make it easy, otherwise it will be a challenge anywhere round there. The Putney Bridge slipway is fine around high water, but next to useless otherwise. The wide slipway opposite Chas Newens is usable for more of the tide, but is difficult/impossible at low water and the cross-current can be tricky.

The speed limit ends at Wandsworth bridge, and there is no problem with driving your boat fast so long as you are sensible. Between Wandsworth and Lambeth there's not much river traffic, just watch out for rowers and the occasional train of waste barges.

Go easy between Lambeth and Tower Bridges as that's where you'll find most of the passenger boats and it can get busy. Keep to starboard and don't get in anyone's way and you'll be fine. Once you're past Tower Bridge you can let rip again.

About the only damage you could do with your wake would be to capsize a rowing boat if you passed very close by. Give them as much space as you can and you'll be fine. If, on the other hand, you come belting under London Bridge on the wrong side of the river and cause a passenger boat to go full astern to avoid you, you should expect to have your collar felt!

Talking of which, you may find that the Police flag you down for a chat. In my experience they are a friendly lot and will be genuinely interested in what you're doing.

There are some more info and links on the RIBnet faq

Have fun!
John
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Old 10 January 2007, 04:59   #25
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There are actually 3 slips at Putney. Two large wide slips by Chas Newens and the rowing clubs, and then a small one under the bridge which you may be referring to. That can be difficult to manouver on to due to parked cars, and it's OK at high tide but very difficult at low tide.

As to the Harbourmaster's comments about speed, you should have no problems from Police or PLA at high speeds once you are past Wandsworth Bridge. Just make sure they don't think you are messing about doing donuts etc by the passenger boats, or by moored boats and keep to the right hand side on the river. If you want to cross the river to see something, go across at a right angle.
If the yellow London Duck Tour amphibian is operating, keep well away from him as he has very low freeboard and will report you if your wash causes him problems.

Once past Wandsworth Bridge, enjoy opening up the speed for a fast run up to around Westminster Bridge, when it's best to ease down (bridge works) and enjoy the sights, and once past Waterloo, get back on the plane again and you'll be at Tower Bridge in no time. After Tower Bridge, the river really opens up to a wide expanse of water and can get choppy and there is really no problem having fun down there a bit further downstream with dun manouevers. This is where the big RIBs of London Rib Voyages do all their tight high speed turns for the thrill seekers, as it's well away from the narrower busy part of the Thames around Westminster.

PLA haven't had a particular problem with RIBS, but they have had problems with visiting boats, in the main speedboats driven by the sort of people that own pitbull terriers and speed in the restricted areas and cause carnage with their wash.
This doesn't happen very often, but resident Thames boat owners have been asked to look out for them and report them to the PLA/River police and usually a police car will be waiting for them when they recover their boat.

It's important to preserve the freedom to use private craft on the Tidal Thames without introducing speed restrictions, but if yobs in speedboats become a problem and we see a major accident, then legislation may follow.

The tidal Thames can be dangerous with it's severe currents, tide range and commercial shipping, however it can be an extremely rewarding and quite awe-inspiring place to drive your RIB.

Have fun
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Old 10 January 2007, 05:01   #26
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JK, posted just after you and hadn't seen what your post said, but agree
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Old 10 January 2007, 05:16   #27
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Good point about the London Duck, I hadn't thought about that. It's exactly the sort of interesting thing that someone might zoom towards for a better look without realising the potential consequences!

John
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Old 10 January 2007, 06:26   #28
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Agree with all the previous " hazards "

Also keep an eye for Canal boats and other narrow boats , whether under way or moored up .There are quite a few in use at the moment in the Royal Docks ( accommodation during the Boat Show ) . They don't like ripples on their cuppas .
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Old 13 January 2007, 04:51   #29
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went down to putney on wednesday, as tide was half out i paid the 10 to the chandlers at putney for launch using there 4x4, parking was free further down after 10.30am and there was loads of room for trailers.

Got passed wandsworth bridge and opened her up, then spent a very good 6 hrs seeing the sites and heading out passed the thames barrier, i found that all the police and enviromental launchs waved me back and considering i was occasionally doing 25knots and definately plus in some areas it did not bother them in the slightist as long as you were being sensible.

tower bridge and surrounding areas were very busy, but who needs to go fast with a view like that!!! when the tide finally turned in areas it was suprisingly choppy, under one of the bridges there were rolling waves 1.5m high, this i had some fun with. Also again when the jet powered tour boats took of from tower bridge there wake is any think but small again made for a good photo oportunity for the tourists and some grins from a rescue/fire launch.

Hopefully weather will be good for the 21st as it was a great day, all will enjoy.
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Old 13 January 2007, 06:19   #30
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When we went on the one last year it was great but alas we cannot attend this one.One particular think i remember was how much trouble it was to recover ,this was i,m sure due to lack of experience and the odd rower using his right of way power they seem to come from nowhere also shouting abuse.Who can give good info on the recovery proceedure with stong falling tide at putney Thanks
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