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Old 27 June 2014, 03:38   #1
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Launch and Land on a Sandy Beach

I have sailed dinghies and larger sailboats all my life and I am going to start a sailing school in Hua Hin, Thailand. I am shortly taking delivery of a 4.80 m Far East Boats RIB with 40 HP outboard 2 stroke Yamaha with power tilt and lift for the security.

The boat will be launched and recovered from a sandy beach. Launching is not really an issue as the beach shelves gently and heading out into the surf is just a matter of strength to get it out deep enough to drop the engine sufficiently to gain traction.

My worry is returning to the beach in surf. We're not talking large waves here, maybe 18 ins to 2 ft, as otherwise the dinghies wouldn't be out. Is there a definitive manual for coming ashore? My natural instinct would be to run it into the beach bow first with engine raised as far as possible whilst keeping traction. But I'm sure that there must be better and safer ways. Landing on beaches in the yacht's tender was always more exciting than one would want. In a larger boat the forces are much greater and so a safe technique is required.

All help on this would be much appreciated.
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Old 27 June 2014, 04:06   #2
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With my thundercat I get in close & then turn the boat to face the wAves the boat sits easier. Then you don't get waves swamping over the back.

If it's rougher & I want to get close but not beach it I'll do the same but then end up reversing in.
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Old 27 June 2014, 05:02   #3
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My worry is returning to the beach in surf. We're not talking large waves here, maybe 18 ins to 2 ft,
After reading up on the subject this seems to be the way;


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Old 27 June 2014, 05:27   #4
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Too easy in the vid. Short, sharp shore slop makes it almost impossible. I beach launch the SR more than slip. Launching is usually ok, recovery can be well tricky. If There's a significant shore dump, she stays on a mooring. :-/ The waves will / can dump the boat on the trailer. Not good. :-(
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Old 27 June 2014, 06:44   #5
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How to Launch a Beach Boat in Surf

Quote:
Originally Posted by stray View Post
After reading up on the subject this seems to be the way;



Thanks Stray. That's an excellent little movie. I'm sure it's not as easy at it looks there but those a very similar conditions to our usual weather. The key is obviously not to stint on the quality of the trailer. That might be difficult here in Thailand.

I wouldn't want to leave the boat in the water overnight but it does seem sensible to rig some kind of solid mooring a few metres off. Problem is that the beach shelves very gently and so the sea can go as far a 60 mts out from the high tide line.
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Old 27 June 2014, 06:50   #6
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Too easy in the vid. Short, sharp shore slop makes it almost impossible.
True, but the Op said, It's a gently sloping beach, not more than 1.5 to 2ft waves.
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Old 27 June 2014, 13:14   #7
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True, but the Op said, It's a gently sloping beach, not more than 1.5 to 2ft waves.
Ah right. Let's hope that old King Neptune has his tape measure handy when yer man wants to launch. ;-)
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Old 27 June 2014, 14:30   #8
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We see similar conditions at low tide, and use much the same boat handling techniques to the ones in the video, unless the swell's big enough to start capsizing RIBs.

Admittedly, it's not usually quite that slick. He did well to hold the boat launching — we usually have two crew plus three or four helpers.

The difference with us is that we don't usually take the trailer into the water. We have keel protection and slide the boat across "ways" instead*. It means we don't have to get the boat floating before turning it bows-on to the surf. We also land straight onto the beach, pull the boat out, then recover onto the trailer.

Our way is easy with a 4m Searider and a few people, but harder with the 4.8m Ribcraft. It's just over half as heavy again. It needs a couple of people to hold it upright on the ways.

As you've already said, a good trailer with lots of guide rollers would be really helpful. I've tried putting our boats straight on the trailer a few times, and with narrow keel rollers and one set of guide rollers, it's a waste of time. That said, it does work quite well launching when it's reasonably flat.

The lifeboat next door are getting one of the same boats as us (4m Searider), but with a very different trailer: all guides and no keel rollers, I think. That should be much easier to aim for, but will be a bit heavier.

* Thick plastic pipe sliced in half is good.
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Old 27 June 2014, 15:06   #9
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Ah right. Let's hope that old King Neptune has his tape measure handy when yer man wants to launch. ;-)
Better still, let's all stay safe and dry on land.

Mollers, stop playing Devils Advocate, the man asked for advice on launching and retrieving in small surf on a gently sloping beach, and that's the best video I could find.

Now if he'd asked about big surf .............

RUBBER DUCKIES CAN SURF, THE INFLATABLE RESCUE BOAT.wmv - YouTube
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Old 27 June 2014, 22:58   #10
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Originally Posted by JamesF View Post
We see similar conditions at low tide, and use much the same boat handling techniques to the ones in the video, unless the swell's big enough to start capsizing RIBs.

Admittedly, it's not usually quite that slick. He did well to hold the boat launching we usually have two crew plus three or four helpers.

The difference with us is that we don't usually take the trailer into the water. We have keel protection and slide the boat across "ways" instead*. It means we don't have to get the boat floating before turning it bows-on to the surf. We also land straight onto the beach, pull the boat out, then recover onto the trailer.

Our way is easy with a 4m Searider and a few people, but harder with the 4.8m Ribcraft. It's just over half as heavy again. It needs a couple of people to hold it upright on the ways.

As you've already said, a good trailer with lots of guide rollers would be really helpful. I've tried putting our boats straight on the trailer a few times, and with narrow keel rollers and one set of guide rollers, it's a waste of time. That said, it does work quite well launching when it's reasonably flat.

The lifeboat next door are getting one of the same boats as us (4m Searider), but with a very different trailer: all guides and no keel rollers, I think. That should be much easier to aim for, but will be a bit heavier.

* Thick plastic pipe sliced in half is good.
Thanks James

I've been looking at trailers here and I suspect that Respo is probably as good as I'll get. Something like this looks OK. You make a good point re manpower. This is something that I was hoping to avoid, especially in the early stages. The kids sailing instructor is quite a slight Thai girl and the boat boy is quite strong but it looks as though it would be prudent to have a second boat boy on the staff to be sure.

Expenses, expenses!!
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